1434. Gratis Monroe COMSTOCK286,505 was born on 7 April 1884 in Cove Creek, Crawford County, Arkansas.9,364,440 He died on 26 January 1971 at the age of 86 in Madill, Marshall County, Oklahoma.406
Tonya Mercer gives name of community where Gratis was born as Rosedale.
Obituaries, Death Notices & News Items Extracted from the Van Buren Press 1905 Fran Alverson Warren, p.37
23 Dec 1905 Gratis Comstock of Uniontown expects to leave next Monday in company with John Rainwater for San Francisco, Calif., where he has accepted a position as stenographer.
VAN BUREN PRESS
April 27, 1907
The Uniontown High School closed last Friday after a most successful term, with a splendid entertainment for its many patrons and friends. Professor A. D. Smith, the principal, had arranged a choice program, which was rendered to the satifaction of a full house. The exercises proved a great success in every way, netting the school $462.65. Those who graduated from the the common course school and received diplomas were: Misses Rebecca Wright, Oma Morrow and NORA HAYS, and Mr. G. W. Frances. The post graduates were Misses MINNIE HAYS and Tessie Lemon and Mr. G. M. Comstock.
Obituaries, Death Notices & News Items Extracted from the Van Buren Press 1908 Complied by Fran Alverson Warren, p. 3
25 Jan 1908. G. M. Comstock and Miss Zella Wood, both of Uniontown, have been granted marriage license.
Marriage record: Gratis M. Comstock, age 23, Zella Wood, age 21; 26 Jan 1908; R. V. Dipboye, JP.
1910 Census. Gratis is listed as a rural school teacher.
Gratis was enumerator for District 16, Van Buren (City) Township, in the 1920 Census. However that was not his district. He is counted the District of Kate Campbell, Household #403. Occupation: Carpenter - House.
Gratis Comstock was also a Justice of the Peace. Found in the Marriage records for Crawford Co, AR. On the 5th of April 1912, Gratis M. Comstock, JP married Walter Morton of Uniontown, age 23 to Miss Carrie Hanner of Uniontown, age 21.
Obituaries, Death Notices & News Items Extracted from the Van Buren Press Argus 1916 Fran Alverson Warren, p.22-24
28 Jul 1916 Uniontown High School made the 18th Annual announcement of the school and gave its history - there had been 150 common school graduates and 50 first year high school graduates and several had completed the two year High School course. Among the latter were Miss Minnie Hays, vocal & instrumental music teach of Van Buren, and Ira Comstock of the firm of Comstock & Rainwater Stock Co. of Oklahoma. All of the faculty were graduates - the principal was Gratis Comstock who had graduated in 1905 and taken a post-graduate course, and the primary teacher was Miss Edna Comstock who graduated in 1915 - Ira's younger sister.
Obituaries, Death Notices & News Items Extracted from the Van Buren Press Argus 1924; Vol. 8, Fran Alverson Warren, p.19-20
27 Jun 1924
G.M. COMSTOCK IS HELD FOR RIFLING UNITED STATES MAIL
Gratis M. Comstock, for the last nine years a most efficient and popular clerk in the Van Buren Post Office, was taken into custody last Tuesday afternoon by Deputy U.S.Marshal George Yoes, charged with rifling letters containing money. He was afterwards released under bond pending a hearing before a United States Commissioner.
Frequent complaints of failure to receive letters supposed to contain money have been made from the Van Buren office by post office inspectors during the past and the postal officers on last Monday addressed a letter to a fictitious person at Van Buren and enclosed $1.50 in marked Monday. On Tuesday a postal inspector called for the letter but it could not be found in the office after a thorough search.
The call for the letter was made at a time when it was known Comstock would be off duty. Following their failure to find any trace of the letter, the officers went to Mr. Comstock's home and a search of the premises revealed the envelope that had contained the marked money hidden behind a dresser and the marked money was found in Comstock's possession.
It was stated by the arresting officer that the accused admitted having opened the letter and removed the money. It is believed that Comstock's detection is going to clear up a number of irregularities in the local post office covering several years.
14 Nov 1924
NEW CLERK APPOINTED
Postmaster W. H. Taylor of the Van Buren office has announced the appointment of Ward W. Ramey of Natural Dam to succeed Gratis M. Comstock.
Obituaries, Death Notices & News Items Extracted from the Van Buren Press Argus 1925
Vol 9, Fran Alverson Warren, p.18
16 Jan 1925
ENTERED PLEA OF GUILTY
G. M. Comstock, until recently a clerk in the Van Buren Post Office, entered a plea of guilty to two federal grand jury indictments charging grand larceny, when arraigned for trial before Judge Youmans last Monday. He was sentenced to serve four months in jail on each indictment the terms to run concurrently. A fine of $50 was added to each offense in addition to the jail term.
1930 Census. Gratis was listed as a mechanic for an auto body company. He was age 45. Zella age 43. They had been married about 22 years. Alma was 16, Madge 13.
1940 Census. Van Buren, Crawford, AR, ED 17-31, Sheet 17A
Gratis M Comstock, living on Henry Street - renting for $8 per month. Age 55. He is a Carpenter and working for the WPA, building construction. He made $568 the past year.
Zella Mae, wife, age 52.
Madge, daughter, age 22.
The Fourth Registration of the Draft for World War II conducted 27 Apr 1942, was sometimes referred to as the "old men's registration" as it was for men born between 28 Apr 1877 and 16 Feb 1897, men between 45 and 64 years old. Gratis registered - he was living at 20 Henry St. in Van Buren, AR. His date of birth is the expected, but he stated he was born in Odell, AR. Zella Wood Comstock was listed as the "Person Who Will Always Know Your Address". He was self employed as a carpenter. His description: Height; 6'2", Weight; 180 lb., Blue eyes, Gray hair, Light Complexion. He had a birthmark on his leg and a tattoo. His signature is on the card as "G. M. Comstock".
In 1948, Gratis and Zella moved to Levelland, TX to live with their oldest daughter and her family.
Daughter Alma Fitts had an open house in honor of their Golden Wedding Anniversary. They were at that time living in Olton, Lamb County, TX. Gratis was employed as a bookkeeper with the Fitts Implement Co. His mother, then age 93, and all of his siblings were still living. Gratis was the oldest of 10 children. The article states that music for the wedding at the home of her parents in Uniontown, AR, was provided by Miss Minnie Hays. Date of the marriage of Gratis and Zella was listed in the article as January 26, 1908. Pictures from then and now were included. From The Olton Enterprise, published at Lamb Co, TX, date Jan 1958, handwritten.
He is on grave marker with Zella in Dripping Springs Cemetery but date of death never recorded. His obit revealed that he was buried in Watts, OK.
Heritage, published Van Buren AR. Vol 14, April 1971
Gratis M. Comstock, 86 years old, formerly of Van Buren died January 26, 1971 at Madill, Oklahoma.
He was born April 7, 1884 at Cove City, the son of Harve and Minnie Rose Comstock. His wife, Mrs. Zella Wood Comstock died about seven years ago.
Survivors are two daughters, Mrs. Alma Fitts of Kingston, Okla. and Mrs. Madge Stockton of Denver, Colorado; five sisters, Mrs. Hettie Campbell of Uniontown, Mrs. Elsis Edmison, Mrs. Zella Nunn, and Mrs. Rena Morton all of Westville, Oklahoma and Mrs. Cora Burgess of Yuba, California; three brothers, Charles Comstock and Hardy Comstock both of Westville and Tonie Comstock of Marysville, California, and several grandchildren.
Funeral service was held at Watts Memorial chapel Saturday, Jan 30 at 2 p.m. Robert Ewing of Lucas, Texas, great nephew of Mr. Comstock, conducted the service. A solo, "How Great Thou Art" was sung by a great niece, Gale Smith of Levelland, Texas. Burial in Woodberry Forest cemetery at Watts, Oklahoma was by Watts Funeral Home.
Gratis Monroe COMSTOCK and Zella May WOOD were married on 26 January 1908 in Uniontown, Crawford County, Arkansas.9,354,446 Zella May WOOD, daughter of JOSEPH CHRISTOPHER WOOD and LETITIA ANN MAYBERRY, was born on 13 January 1887 in Arkansas.282,354,505 She died on 4 April 1966 at the age of 79 in Levelland, Hockley County, Texas.282,406,506
A memorial article written by Gratis for the Heritage, Van Buren AR, Vol. 10, Jul 1966, states that they were married by Raymond Dipboye JP. Minnie Hays [Mrs. Ira V. Comstock] played the organ.
I read the grave marker as 1887-1966. Buried in Dripping Springs Cemetery, Uniontown,AR.
The Daily Ardmoreite, Ardmore, Okla. Thursday, April 7, 1966, p. 3
Mrs. Zella Comstock
MADILL (Special) - Funeral services for Mrs. Zella Comstock, 79, mother of Mrs. B. C. Fitts of Shay, were to be Friday at 2 p.m. in Wood Memorial Church near Fort Smith, Ark.
Mrs. Comstock was born at Uniontown, Ark., on Jan. 13, 1887, and was reared there and in Van Buren. She was married to Gratis M. Comstock on Jan. 26, 1908 in Uniontown and they continued to reside in Arkansas until 1947 when they moved to Texas.
They lived at Olton for six years before moving to Kingston where they had made their home for three years.
She was a member of the Christian Church since the age of 14. She was a member of the church at Van Buren at the time of her death. Mrs. Comstock was also a member of the Eastern Star. She died Tuesday morning at her home.
Survivors include her husband Gratis M. Comstock of the home; Mrs. Fitts, Shay, and Mrs. Maude Stockton, Denver, Colo., daughters of the deceased. Also surviving are four grandsons and a sister, Mrs. Ola Haggard of Van Buren.
Burial was to be in Dripping Springs Cemetery, seven miles north of Van Buren, Fentriss Funeral Home of Fort Smith was in charge of arrangements there with Rev. T. W. Carroll to officiate at the service. Watts Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements in Madill and transportation to Fort Smith.
Gratis Monroe COMSTOCK and Zella May WOOD had the following children: