McGlothlin Family

I had hoped to be able to connect the two McGlothlin men that married Corel daughters, but unfortunately the world does not always work the way we want it to.

In many places you can find the claim that John McLaughlin and Judith Leathers are the parents of both Robert Emmitt McGlothlin and David McGlothlin.  I have not found anything confirming or denying that David is their son, but after quite a bit of research, I can confidently say that Robert Emmitt McGlothlin was not a son of Judith Leathers McLaughlin.

The first clue that hints that Robert Emmitt McGlothlin is not the Robert McGlothlin born to Judith and John McLaughlin is that in 1858 Judith McLaughlin seeks to get a land bounty for the land that her deceased husband owned.  Judith requests that the warrant and all communication go through Robert McLaughlin Esquire of Richlands, Tazewell County, Virginia.  “Esquire” generally indicates that the person is an attorney, or in the least of a higher social status.  On census records, Robert Emmitt McGlothlin lists his occupation as a farmer.  Additionally, Robert Emmitt was in Maiden Springs, Tazewell County, not Richlands.  Both of these items can be easily dismissed, but what I found next left no more doubt in my mind.

The indisputable proof that Robert Emmitt could not be a child of Judith Leathers McLaughlin is found on one of her daughter’s death certificate.  The death certificate for Mary Jane “Polly” McGlothlin Ratliff, who died in 1911 in Pike County, Kentucky clearly states that her parents were John McGlothlin and Juda Leathers of Sandy Hill, Virginia and that her date of birth was October 15, 1818, six months and ten days after Robert Emmitt was born according to his tombstone in Buckley Cemetery, Seed Tick, Lawrence County, Kentucky.  Honestly, I even find it a bit difficult to accept that Judith Leathers McLaughlin gave birth to Mary Jane because she would have been in her 50s by the year 1818.  But, this is not for me to prove one way or another.


I have become even more confused!  I have just received an email from Teresa Klaiber, who has extensively researched Robert Emmitt McGlothin’s line and she has sent me snippets of a letter written by Thomas R. McGlothlin in letter Dec 2, 1942

“…Judy Leathers, and Juda’s mother was a Wheatley, and they came over with the colonists or later known as first settlers…” “…heard their grandmother …that Judy Leathers was of Wales; that her mother …was a Wheatley; that Judys parents did not come to Am and d bef she came with her brothers John Leathers and Patty Leathers; …also …Judy was 109 when she died…”

Evelyn S. Jackson Collection Elswick vf Boyd County Public Library, Ashland, Kentucky March 2003

The one big question that keeps bouncing around my head is why would Thomas R. McGlothlin, son of Robert Emmitt and Rebecca Ann Corel McGlothlin know this about Judith Leathers and refer to her as his grandmother?

I still don’t think that there is enough evidence to prove that Robert Emmitt McGlothlin is Judith Leathers McLaughlin’s son, but with this new documentation, I cannot say it is impossible.

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