~ david coombe history

Mostly Coombe in Australia &

Coumbe in North Hill, Cornwall

Family History & Genealogy

Mostly CoombeMigrants – The Coombs of Moorna


This web page is very much a draft as more information is needed on the Coombs of Moorna. Major questions that are as yet unanswered are:
1) John Coombs’ origins - birth and migration,
2) relationship to Thomas Coombes who married at Moorna in 1869.


John and Sarah Coombs (nee Middleton) started the Moorna Bush Inn in 1865 and ran it until 1874. Wonderful research into the inn is documented in the poster In the Kitchen at the Moorna Bush Inn by Jeannette Hope, Wilfred Shawcross & Sarah Watts.


In June 1880 the Ral Ral Hotel licence was transferred to James from his father. John Coombs bought four lots at the first Moorna town land sale on 20 August 1860. It is possible, but fairly speculative, that he is the same “John Combes, a servant of Mr James Chambers” mentioned in South Australian Register 1 May 1850.


For information on the no longer existing locations of Moorna and Cal Lal, search for Moorna in the Wentworth Shire Heritage Study.


Recollections of John and Sarah’s son, John George Coombs, “bushman, stockman and mail coach driver”, are documented by Robert Crick.


Further family research is also at


The families are listed below. The following abbreviations are used: ? = uncertain, NI = no issue, ... indicates known descendants, SA = South Australia, NSW = New South Wales.


John COOMBS, b.c. 1824-30 ?, d. 1880 Ral Ral Hotel SA age 56

+ Sarah Ann MIDDLETON, b.c. 1833-34, m. Jan 1852 Adel SA, d. 10 Jun 1873 Moorna Wentworth NSW

  ├── John George COOMBS, b. Nov 1852 Thebarton Adel SA, d. 1930 Magill SA ...

  ├── James William COOMBS, b. 1854 Thebarton Adel SA ...

  ├── Sarah Ann COOMBS, b. 1857 River Murray SA, m. James Bruce MULLINS 1875 Wentworth NSW ...

  ├── George Moorna COOMBS, b. 1862 Wentworth NSW, d. 1923 Renmark SA Obituary ...

  ├── William COOMBS, b. 1864 Wentworth NSW, d. 1932 Renmark SA Obituary ...

  ├── Edward R COOMBS, b. 1866 Wentworth NSW

  ├── Florence COOMBS, b. 1868 Wentworth NSW

  ├── Lilly Harriett COOMBS, b. 1870 Wentworth NSW

  └── Albert Henry COOMBS, b. 1873 Wentworth NSW


Thomas COOMBES, b.c. ?,

+ Rosetta ROGERS, b.c. ?, m. 24 Nov 1869 Moorna, River Murray NSW, d. 1872

  └── Frances Hannah COOMBES, b. 1871 Wentworth NSW, marr. BENGER 1900 Broken Hill NSW, d. 1912 Adelaide SA ...


To add, contribute, comment, contact David Coombe


Updated: 23 Jul 2013