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General Forest Calbert, (1862-1936) Ella Mae Haas (1864 – 1946)

Updated: May 20, 2023

General Forest Calbert (G.F) was my 2nd Great Grandfather born on a plantation north of Nashville, Tennessee possibly in Southern Kentucky. The information is from an interview that my cousin Cindy Miller and her mother, my Aunt Janet Staley had with my grandmother’s cousin, Mary Elizabeth Raper (Babs) (born 1915). The interview took place in 1997. Much of the information about G.F.’s younger years was provided to Babs from stories from Felix Calbert (1859 – 1957) who was G.F.’s older brother several years earlier.

In the early 1800’s as Americans moved west, families traveled together for safety. It turns out that the Walters family from Virginia and the Waddles family from North Carolina were camping together on the journey westward. The Walters had a son Robert and Waddell’s had a daughter Nancy. They ended up becoming my 4th great grandparents. They would have been G.F.’s grandparents who settled in Southern Kentucky close to the Tennessee border and lived on a plantation north of Nashville. Records have been destroyed as to the exact location of the plantation. It is possible that the plantation was in Kentucky close to the Tennessee border.

G.F. who was born in 1862 was just a baby and toddler while the Civil War was taking place. His older brother Felix was a boy during this period and could recall some of the events making him able to pass on the Information. The plantation had about 50 slaves that worked the plantation. My 4th great grandmother (Nancy C. Waddle) made clothes for the slaves and was the doctor for the slaves. She also sent the slaves’ children to school.

One interesting story. My 2nd Great Grandfather had an uncle, Flavius Walters, who lived on the plantation. As a teenager he was conscripted into the Confederate Army. He was homesick and went AWOL and came back home. That first night the Army came looking for him. Their neighbor was an officer, Capt. Horn in the Confederacy, and he was going to hang Flavius if he found him. My 4th great grandmother argued with the officer, and he left. The mother talked Flavius into returning to the army. Luckily a few months later the war was over, and Flavius made it home safe. Later, Flavius ended up marrying Capt. Horn’s daughter Virginia.

Another interesting story that Felix shared with Bab was that he witnessed Jesse James and his brother Frank James robbing a bank one day when he walked to town. After research, it was found that Jesse James and his brother James did indeed rob the Old Bank on Mar 20, 1868, in Russellville, KY. Russellville is in Sothern Kentucky 54 miles North of Nashville, TN.

An interesting note while researching G.F. Calbert’s family in Kentucky. Kentucky had men who served in the Union Army and men that served in the Confederate Army during the Civil War. G.F. had an Uncle Vincent R. Calbert who served in the Kentucky 2nd Battalion 8th Union Cavalry Regiment Company G. They were assigned to defend Union Supply lines from marauders. The records show he was a private that was activated in Russellville, Kentucky on September 6, 1862, and died while serving at Elkton, Kentucky on February 13, 1863, at the age of 21. The records do not show whether his death was from combat or due to illness.

After the Civil War times were tough. G.F. at age 13 had finished the 8th grade of school. This was the only school they had for youth, and he read in a newspaper that there were companies in the North that were hiring Children to work in factories. G.F. moved to Noblesville, Indiana at 13, which is just Northeast of Indianapolis for work. This is where he met his future wife, my 2nd great grandmother Ella Mae Haas. G.F. and Ella moved to different towns around Indianapolis. His oldest son, my great grandfather Francis Marshall Calbert was born in Brownsburg, Indiana in 1882. G.F. and Ellis Mae Calbert in 1897 eventually moved their 7 Calbert kids to Plainfield Indiana.

My 2nd great grandfather G.F. was a businessman, he started the Quaker oil company in Plainfield, Indiana and provided fuel to the local area. They delivered fuel to the many farms in the area as farmers were starting to use tractors to replace farm animals being used for farm work. Later, G.F. opened a pool and tourist cottages for the area. It was a Calbert family affair as the family performed different duties.

G.F. was just one of my ancestors that took a chance to move at the age of 13 to start a new life. If he hadn’t taken that step of faith and adventure, how would of things been different. I think of how many lives he changed.

Many of the traditions of the Calbert family were passed on to future generations. One of the traditions was family get-togethers. The picture on my ancestor page and assigned to this post is a picture of one of those family gatherings. The older gentleman sitting down in the center of the picture with the bowtie is my great grandfather, General Forest Calbert. The older gentleman just to the left of G. F. is his older brother Felix Calbert. The lady holding the baby is my grandmother Rose Calbert Bombei with the baby being my dad’s older, brother Maurice Bombei who was born in 1931. The lady on the second 2nd from the right is Mary Elizabeth Raper (Babs).

Family Line to Darrell

2nd Great Grandparents.

· General Forest Calbert (1862-1864) / Ella Mae Haas (1864 – 1946)

Great Grandparents.

· Francis (Gramps) Marshall Calbert (1862 – 1971/ Eunice Elba Tomlinson (1882 – 1950)


· John Henry Bombei Jr. (1908 – 1977) /Rose Lavada Calbert (1911 – 1979)


· Robert Darrell Bombei (1934 -2018) / Betty Jean Cline (1936 – 2010)


Darrell Robert Bombei (1959 -) / Theresa Ann Bishop (1959 - )

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