Guthrie Genealogy




There seem to be many versions of the tale of the Three Brothers Guthrie: Robert, James, and John who were from a family of ironmongers in Edinburgh, Scotland. Just how much truth exists in the old family stories is anyone's guess, but traditional research leads to that old brick wall. DNA is providing us with a method of proving whether or not the lineages associated with these three men are actually related.

The progenitor of Branch F is a man named John Guthrie who began life in Scotland, lived in Northern Ireland, and eventually made his way to Connecticut. He is said to have had several sons, but the only one whose name is known is his namesake, John Guthrie who married Abigail Coe.

THE DNA PROJECT: Guthrie Family Group 2A - Branch F - Cluster 1 - The Three Brothers Theory

According to the Branch B Origin Theory, the father of John Guthrie was from Edinburgh, Scotland. Also named John Guthrie, he was one of three brothers who came to America. Branch B's progenitor, Robert Guthrie, was another brother. The third was reportedly James Guthrie who married a Miss Bissell or Bussell.

We are now one step closer to proving that theory and to finding the right path to the MD/PA Group's Guthrie Origins. The MD/PA Group now has a match for the line of John Guthrie & Abigail Coe, now identified as Branch F. If the origin theories hold true, then it is possible that Branch B & F merge at the next generation.


PARTICIPANT:  Charles Woodson "Gus" Guthrie 

HOW YOU CAN HELP: Would like more representation from Branch F descendants of John & Abigail's other sons. If you are a male Guthrie descendant of one of these other sons, please contact Ann Guthrie for more information. 

DIVISION I:  Participant CWG has the genetic marker DYS534 = 15, which is found within the majority of the MD/PA Group.

CLUSTER 1: The Three Brothers Theory

Participant CWG has 'Mode DNA', which represents the most common value at any given genetic marker when compared to the entire group. Mode DNA is also found in Branch B. This cluster is also associated by known residences either in Connecticut or in Nantmeal & Brandywine Townships, Pennsylvania. When viewed as a whole, the cluster is comprised of lineages that are associated with the Three Brothers Theory. 


John Guthrie & Abigail Coe & Susanna (nee Unknown)


John Guthrie

Son of John Guthrie Sr

Birth: Before 1700

Location: Unknown      

Married 1st: 11 June 1727 in Stratford, Fairfield, CT

Married 2nd: After 1747


Death: 19 August 1756

Location: Woodbury, Litchfield, Connecticut

Burial: Presumably in Connecticut

Abigail Coe

Daughter of John Coe & Mary Hawley

Birth: 15 Nov 1702

Location: Stratford, Fairfield, Connecticut

Sons: John, James, William, James, Joseph, Ephraim, Ebenezer

Daughters: Mary, Abigail, Sarah, Lydia

Death: 25 March 1747

Location: Southbury, Fairfield, Connecticut

Burial: Presumably in Connecticut

Susanna (nee Unknown)

Daughter of Unknown

Birth: Unknown

Location: Unknown

Guthrie Children: None

Married 2nd: Daniel Orson 15 Nov 1756 in CT

Orson Children: Unknown 

Death: Unknown

Location: Presumably in Connecticut

Burial: Presumably in Connecticut

Before 1700: BIRTH of JOHN GUTHRIE
John's father was reportedly John Guthrie, one of 3 brothers who came to America from Scotland and/or Ireland. According to accounts in the resources listed in the sections below, the brothers were at first in Boston, but went thereafter to Connecticut. So far I have found no concrete evidence to corroborate the story. So it is still unknown exactly when or where John was born. 

Abigail's birth is documented in the Barbour Collection of early Stratford, CT vital records as 15 Nov 1702, daughter of Ens. John & Mary. Recorded Vol LR2.

Note that the Dunn book lists her DOB as 11 Nov 1702. 

Prior to 1726, John Guthrie lived in Durham, Middlesex, CT

John removed from Durham to Stratford, Fairfield, CT where he purchased the home of Samuel Beardsley on 1 November 1726. (Stratford History & Genealogy)

Abigail 'united with the First Congretional Church in Stratford in 1726.' (Glasswork Restoration)

The Barbour Collection of early Stratford, CT vital records records the marriage of John & Abigail twice. First in LR2-57a as the marriage of Abigail Coe and John Griffin (overwritten to read Guthrie of Durham) on 1 June 1827. Then again on LR2-481a as Abigail Coe and John Guther for the same date, with a marginal note indicating the month might be July instead.

John was born on 20 Jan 1728 in Stratford, Fairfield, CT. He married Patience Knapp, May 10 1750 in Woodbury, CT. John was a Revolutionary War soldier. He married Patience Knapp. They had 5 known sons. There are currently no participants in the Guthrie DNA Project representing John's direct line.

James was born in July 1729 in Stratford. He died in infancy at an unspecified date.

William was born on 30 December 1730 in Stratford. He married Susanna (nee unknown) aka 'Suse'. William died in Jericho, NY in 1806. Alternate death location is given as Bainbridge, Chenago, NY. Online trees list William & Suse with several children, but only 1 son, also named William. There are no direct descendants in the DNA Project at this time.

James was born on 5 April 1732 in Stratford. He married Abigail Betts on 17 July 1755 at Woodbury, CT. James died 22 April 1804 in Sherburne, NY. There are currently no participants in the DNA Project representing James' direct line. James & Abigail were grandparents to Samuel Guthrie (1782-1848), a physician and inventor. He is credited with the discovery of chloroform

Joseph was born in June of 1733 in Stratford, CT. He married 1st Mrs Elizabeth (Carpenter) Carey; 2nd Mrs Rachel (Hand) Kirby; and 3rd Mrs Hannah (Woodard) Cogshell. Joseph had issue by all three wives, including 4 sons. He died 30 May 1808 in Troy, Ohio. Joseph & Elizabeth (Carpenter-Carey) Guthrie were the ancestors of DNA Project participant Charles Woodson 'Gus' Guthrie.

The Guthrie family removed from Stratford and settled in Durham, Middlesex, CT. 

Mary was born in Durham, Middlesex, CT on 20 December 1725. She was baptized on 23 Dec 1735 by the Rev. Nathaniel Chauncey. She married James Calhoun on 31 Dec 1754 in Washington, Litchfield, CT. Mary died on 1 May 1809 in Washington, Litchfield, CT.

Ephraim was born in Durham, Middlesex, CT on 1 March 1737. He was baptized on 5 March 1727 by Rev. Nathaniel Chauncey. He married Thankful Stone. Online trees list them with 12-14 children, about 7 of whom were sons. There are no direct descendants in the DNA Project. Ephraim died in 1809 in Aurora, Cayuga, New York.

Ebenezer was born on 20 July 1740 in Durham, Middlesex, CT. He was baptized on 29 July 1740 by Rev. Nathaniel Chauncey. He married 1st Hannah Richards on 16 March 1767 in Southbury; 2nd Sarah N. Hawley, 1794, Southbury. Unknown whether either marriage had issue.

Abigail was born in Durham, Middlesex, CT on 3 May 1742. She was baptized by Rev. Nathaniel Chauncey on 21 July 1742.

The family removed from Durham and resettled in Woodbury, CT sometime between the baptism of daughter Abigail and the birth of daughter Sarah. 

Sarah was born in Woodbury, CT on 3 April 1744. She married Reuben Murray in 1766. Sarah died in 1792 in Pompey, Onondaga, New York. Sarah & Reuben were the great-great-great grandparents of Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill. This connection was also published in the Clan Guthrie News.

Lydia was born in July of 1746 in Woodbury, CT. She married Eleazer Ingraham on 5 or 6 August 1765 in Washington, Litchfield, CT. 

Abigail died on 25 March 1747 in Southbury, Fairfield, CT.

John Guthrie remarried sometime after Abigail's death. Susanna was named in his will (see the DUNN info below). The records of Washington, Litchfield, CT show a marriage of a Susanna Guthrie of Judea to Daniel Owen of New Milford dated 15 Nov 1756, which is a couple of months after John's death. 

John died on 19 August 1756 in Woodbury, Fairfield, CT. 

RESOURCE: 'Records of the Guthrie Family of PA, CT, and VA' by Harriet Nancy Dunn and Eveline Guthrie Dunn

"On account of the religious persecutions under which the family suffered, James, John and Robert Guthrie decided to leave Edinburgh and seek security and repose in the New World.

They first settled in Boston. The earliest record of James Guthrie we find from Suff. Pro. VI. 416, in the will of John Richardson, dated May 7, 1683, in which he says, " I give and bequeath unto James Guthrie all I have in the world except twenty shillings to buy John Harris a ring and ten shillings to buy John Kyte a ring,"
( John Raynsford.Witness

( John Ramsev.

John Guthrie removed from Boston to Litchfield Co., Conn., where he died about 1730.

2. John Guthrie, son of John, removed from Durham, Conn., to Stratford, Conn., where he purchased the homestead of Samuel Beardsley, Nov. 1, 1726. He returned to Durham about 1734, later to Woodbury, Conn., where he became an honored and wealthy citizen, owning large tracts of land in Woodbury and adjoining towns. He married first, Abigail Coe, of Stratford, in June, 1727. He married second, Susanna . Abigail Coe was born Nov. I1, 1702, and was the daughter of John and Mary (Hawley) Coe. She united with the First Congregational church in Stratford, in 1726; her father, Captain John Coe, son of Robert and Susanna Coe, was born in Stratford, May 10, 1658; married Mary Hawley, Dec. 2O, 1682. He became a distinguished citizen of Stratford, was appointed by General Assembly respectively: Ensign, Lieutenant and Captain, and was a Deputy from 1710 to 1715. He died April 19, 1741, aged 83 years.

Robert Coe, father of Captain John Coe. and grand-father of Abigail (Coe) Guthrie, was born in 1627, in England, married at Hempstead, L. I., Susanna . He died in 1650.

The following lines were written at the time of his death, by the Rev. Abraham Pierson, of Branford, Conn., the father ?: the first president of Yale College:

" Rest blessed Coe, upon thy bed of ease, 

I' the quiet grave with thee is no decease, 

All, all our anguish hath its period fixed, 

Ere hence we go; not any joy but mixed. 

Rear grace which makes the life of man the best, 

This young man lived to God, and now is blest. 

Come parallel this saint; now far exceed, 

Omit no means that may true goodness breed. 

Our trials come, bestowed for days of need? 

The Lord his widow bless and take his seed." 

— From Hawley Genealogy.

Robert Coe, Sr., father of Robert Coe, and great grandfather of Abigail (Coe) Guthrie, was born in Suffolkshire. England, in 1596; sailed for Boston, Mass., with his wife, Anna, April 1o, 1634, in Ship Francis. He was one of the Weathersfield Company that bought the plantation of Stamford, Conn. He was Deputy from Stamford in 1644, and Commissioner for Jamaica in 1664. His wife Anna was born in 1591.

The following is the inscription on the tombstones of Capt. John and Mary (Hawley) Coe standing in the old Congregational Church-yard at Stratford, Conn.: 

Here lyes Buried Here lyes Buried

Ye body of .Ye body of Mrs.

Capt. John Coe, Mary Coe, wife

who died April 19, 1741, to Capt. John Coe, 

83 Year of His age. who died Sept. 9, 1731, 

69 Year of Her age.

Mary Hawley Coe, died Sept, 9, 1731. She was the daughter of Joseph and Catherine (Birdseye) Hawley. Joseph Hawley, grand-father of Abigail (Coe) Guthrie, on her maternal side. was Deputy to the General Assembly of Connecticut for Stratford, from 1665 to 1689. Was Town Clerk and Recorder sixteen years, and Treasurer of the town. He was Deacon of the First Congregational church.

Joseph Hawley was born in Derbyshire in 1603, and died in Stratford, Conn., in 1690.

John and Abigail (Coe) Guthrie had eleven children

3.—John, b. Feb. 25, 1728, in Stratford; m. Patience Knapp, May 10, 1750, at Ancient Woodbury.

4.—James, b, July, 1729, at Stratford; d. in infancy. 

5.—William, b. Dec, 30, 173o, in Stratford; m. Suse ; d. d, 1806, in Jericho, N. Y.

6.—James, b. April, 1732. in Stratford; m. Abigail Betts, July 17, 1755, in Woodbury; d. April 22, 1804, in Sherburne, N. Y. 

7.—Joseph, b. June, 1733, in Stratford; m. 1st Mrs. Carey; 2d Mrs. Kirby; 3d Mrs. Cogshell; d. May 30, 1808, in Troy, Ohio. From Stratford, they removed to Durham, where the following children were born, and baptized by the Rev. Nathaniel Chauncey: 

8.—Mary, b. Dec. 2o, 1735; bap. Dec. 23, 1735; m. James Calhoun, Dec. 31, 1754, in Washington; d. May i, 1809, in Washington. 

9.—Ephraim, b. March 1, 1737; bap. March 5, 1737; m. Thankful.

10.—Ebenezer, b. July 20, 1740; bap. July 29, 1740; m. 1st Hannah Richards, March 16, 1767, in Southbury; 2d Sarah N. Hawley, 1794, in Scuthbury. 

11.—Abigail, b. May 3, 1742; bap. July 21, 1742. 

From Durham, they removed to Woodbury, where the following children were born:

12.—Sarah, b. April 3, 1744; m. Reuben Murray in 1766. 

13.—Lydia, b. July 1746; m. Eleazer Ingraham, Aug. 5, 1765, in Washington, Conn.


At a Court of Probate held in Woodbury, Aug. ye 18, 1756, William Guthrie appeared in court and exhibited the last will of his honored father, John Guthrie, late of Woodbury, in order to its approbation, which being read and considered and no objection made against it, said will is approved and accepted to be recorded and is as followeth:

Willm. Guthrie and James Guthrie (sons of the above deceased) being in sd Testament appointed Executors of sd Testament, sd Willm. Guthrie in Court declared his acceptance of said trust and acknowledged himself bound unto this Court in the recognizance of one hundred pounds in lawful money of the Colony, that he will be faithful unto the above sd trust reposed in him.

May 4, 1757, James Guthrie accepted the as above and himself under an equal bond.

As Attest, A. Stoddard, Register.


In the name of God, Amen, I, John Guthrie, of Woodbury, in Litchfield County and Colony of Connecticut in New England, being of perfect mind and memory thanks be given to God, but calling to mind ye mortality of my body and knowing that it is appointed for all men each to die and willing that my estate be settled according to my mind, do make and ordain this my last will and testament, that is to say principally and first of all, I recommend my soul unto God who gave it and my body I recommend to ye earth when it shall please God to call me out of this world to be buried in decent and Christian manner, at the discretion of my executors, nothing doubting but at ye general resurrection I shall receive the same again by the Almighty power of God. And touching such worldly estate wherewith it hath pleased God to bless me in this life, I give, devise, and dispose of the same in the following manner and form:

Imprimis. I give and bequeath to my beloved wife, Susanna Guthrie, my sorrel mare, my black cow and six of my best sheep, all to be at her own dispose. I also give to my said wife the kitchen-room of my house, to be solely for her use during the time she remains my widow and no longer. I also give to my said wife my chest with one drawer, my best bed, bedstead, and sufficient bedding; a table, three chairs; one iron pot and iron kettle; my warming-pan and box iron, to be at her own dispose forever and further it is my will and pleasure that my said wife have fifteen pounds per annum paid to her annually out of my estate by my five sons, Willm., James, Joseph, Ephraim and Ebenezer, during the whole time she shall remain my widow and no longer, which shall be at her own dispose forever.

Nextly. I give to my eldest son, John Guthrie, of Kent, five shillings lawful money, to be paid to him by my executors out of my estate; which together with what I have heretofore given him will make his full portion of my estate.

Nextly. I give to my second son, Willm. Guthrie, a yoke of oxen, the one colored black the other a brownish color; also my bay mare with the white face and my pied cow and the one-half of my dwelling-house; all to be his own forever. I also give my said son, William, one-fifth part of all my lands in Judea, in said Woodbury, to be equally divided for quantity and quality between him and his four brethren; to be freely possessed and enjoyed by him and his heirs forever, provided he pay to my above said wife three pounds lawful money per annum, annually, during the whole time she shall remain my widow. I also give to William, four sheep to be at his own dispose forever.

Nextly. I give to my third son, James Guthrie, my small pied cow; a year-old heifer and four sheep, all to be at his own dispose forever. I also give to James ye east lower room of my dwelling-house to be at his own dispose forever. I also give my son, James, one-fifth part of all my land in said Judea, to be equally divided for quantity and quality between him and his four brethren to be freely possessed and enjoyed by him and his heirs forever, provided he pay to my said wife three pounds per annum, annually during ye whole time she shall remain my widow and no longer.

Nextly. I give to Joseph Guthrie, my fourth son, one yoke of oxen, one a dun color, the other a pied color; my Dutch mare; two sows; one year-old heifer and four sheep; all to be at his. own dispose forever. I also give to Joseph one fifth part of all my lands in Judea to be divided as above-mentioned and provided he pay my said wife three pounds lawful money per annum, annually, during the time she shall remain my widow and no longer.

I give to my fifth son, Ephraim Guthrie, my yoke of three-year old steers; my colt; two swine, one year-old heifer and four sheep; all to be at his own dispose forever. I also give to Ephraim one-fifth part of all my land in Judea to be divided in manner as above-mentioned, to be freely possessed and enjoyed by him and his heirs forever, provided he pay to my said wife three pounds lawful money per annum, annually, during the time she shall remain my widow and no longer.

I give to my youngest son, Ebenezer Guthrie, my other yoke of three-year old steers; one yoke of one-year old steers and four sheep; all to be at his own dispose forever. I also give to Ebenezer one-fifth part of all my lands in Judea, to be divided in manner as above-mentioned, to be freely possessed and enjoyed by him and his heirs forever, provided he pay to my said wife three pounds lawful money per annum, annually, during the whole time she shall remain my widow and no longer.

I give to my eldest daughter, Mary Calhoun, one lookingglass; four chairs, and four sheep, to be at her own dispose forever; which together with what I have heretofore given her makes her full portion of my estate.

I give to my second daughter, Abigail Guthrie, a twoyear old heifer and one calf and four sheep; one bed ar bedding; one pot; one large brass kettle; one peel; pair of tongs and trammel, a chest with drawers and warming-pan; all to be at her own dispose forever.

I give to my third daughter, Sarah Guthrie, one yoke of year-old steers and one calf and four sheep; a bed and bedding, one pot and one kettle; one peel and tongs; one trammel; a trunk, one warming-pan; all to be at her own dispose forever.

Lastly. I give to my youngest daughter, Lydia, two yearold heifers and one calf and four sheep; one bed and bedding; one pot and kettle; one peel and one pair of tongs, and one trammel; one chest and a warming-pan; all to be at her own dispose forever.

And it is my will that all my household goods herein, before not disposed of, shall be equally divided among my three daughters, Abigail, Sarah, and Lydia, to be at their own dispose forever.

And further it is my will that all my husbandry tools shall be divided equally among my five sons, William, James, Ephraim, Joseph and Ebenezer, to be at their own dispose forever.

And further it is my will that my executors make sale of my Litchfield lot of land and with the money obtained by such sale, to pay my just debts, funeral charges, etc., and that the over-plus of such money (if any be), shall be equally divided among all my children.

And I do hereby constitute and appoint my two sons, William Guthrie and James Guthrie, to be sole executors of this my last will and Testament; and I do disavow and revoke all former wills and legacies and executors by me heretofore made and named, and do ratify this and no other to be my last will and testament in witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 2gth day of June, Anno. Dom. 1756. Signed, sealed, published, pronounced and declared by ye said John Guthrie to be his last will and testament.

John Guthrie. In presence of:
Junia Ingraham,
Joseph Calhoun.
Increase Moseley.

3. John Guthrie, son of John (2), was born Feb. 25, 1728, in Stratford, Fairfield Co., Conn., married Patience Knapp, May 10, 1750, in Woodbury, removed to Kent, Conn.

The following served in the war of the American Revolution, enlisting in Fairfield Co.: 

  John Guthrie, May 12, 1775. 

  John Guthrie, Feb., 1778. 

  Abel Guthrie. 1781. 

  Abraham Guthrie, Feb. 28, 1778. 

  Ensign Guthrie, April, 17/7. 

  James Guthrie, April 24, 1777. 

5. William Guthrie, son of John (2). was born in Stratford, Dec. 30, 1730. United with the First Congregational church

in VVoodbury in 1752. He married Suse , and removed

to Jericho (now Bainbridge), Chenango Co., N. Y., where he died in 1806.

Children of William and Suse Guthrie: 14.—William, b. Dec. 4, 1768; m. Sarah Whitney, Dec. 3,

1/99; d. March 14, 1813. 15.—Eunice, m, Mr. Graham. 16.—Rhoda, m. Mr. Kelsey. 17.—Anna, m. Mr. Kirby. 18.—Mary, m. Mr. Moore. 19.—Sarah, m. Mr. Merwin. 20.—Jemime, m. Mr. Hyde. 21.—Ruth, m. Mr. Cooper.

6. James Guthrie, son of John (2), was born in Stratford, April, 1732, he removed to Durham, with his parents, thence to Woodbury, where he united with the First Congregational church in 1752. He married Abigail Betts, July 17, 1755. They removed in 177o to Lenox, Berkshire Co., Mass., where they were received into the First Congregational church, Aug. 4, 1771. He settled on a farm of one hundred and twenty-five acres he had bought of James Dwight; his land was conveyed to him by Dwight's executors in 1775.

James Guthrie figured prominently in the stirring events of his day. He drew up and was the signer of many important documents, before, and during the American Revolution. Among them the historical document termed the "Covenant," signed at Lenox, in 1774; and like his namesake, James Guthrie, the Martyr, he was one of the first to step forward and sign his name.

On June 3, 1776, the following instructions were voted to the Representatives of the Town:

These are to direct you to use your Best Endeavors to suppress all the Tyrannical measures that have or may take Place from Great Britain; and Likewise to take as much care that you do not set up any thing of a Despotick Power among ourselves; but let us have freedom at home, altho we have war abroad. We do Further Direct you to use your utmost abilities and interest with our Assembly, and they theirs with the Continental Congress, that if they think it safe for the Colonies, to declare independent of the Kingdom of Great Britain. And in your so doing, we Do Declare in the above-mentioned thing. We will stand by you with our lives and fortunes.

(Signed by)
Elms Willard, 
James Guthrie, 
James Richards, Jr. 

James Guthrie was a Revolutionary soldier, enlisting from Lenox, with his sons, Samuel and Joseph. He sold of his land, twenty-four acres in 1786, and ninety-nine acres in 1792, removing to Bainbridge. N. Y., where he remained a short time, settling in Sherburne, early in the summer of 1792.

John Lincklaen, of the Holland Land Co., recorded in his "Journal," the following: "Thursday, Oct. 11, 1792, we passed through Sherburne, Chenango Co., where we found one Mr. Guthrie, who had been there three or four months."

The old meeting-house on West Hill was the first churchedifice erected in Sherburne. The society was organized at the home of James Guthrie, Tuesday, Nov. 25, 1800.

James Guthrie died in Sherburne, April 22, 1804, Abigail, his wife, died in 1814.

Children of James and Abigail (Betts) Guthrie: 22.—Samuel, b. May 23, 1756, in Woodbury; m. 1st Sarah;

2d Anna; d. Aug. 23, 1808.

23.—James, b. Nov. 19, 1757, in Woodbury; m. Mehitable Hicock.

24.—Joseph, b. 1760; m. Phoebe Abbott, Nov. 10, 1784; d, in Sherburne, 1855.

25.—Benjamin, m. Milly .

26.—John. m. Polly Purdy.

27.—Nathan, b. 1767; m. 1st Mabelle Patterson; 2d Abi

(Richardson) Hale; d. 1820. 28.—Sally, m. Mr. Averill. 29.—Easter, m. Thomas Jenks. 30.—Harvey.

7. Joseph Guthrie, son of John (2), was born in Stratford, June, 1733. In Aug. 1757, there was an alarm for the relief of Fort William Henry, near Lake George, Joseph Guthrie enlisted in Capt. Wait Hinmon's Company.

We find on record in Woodbury, 1791, a deed for land from Joel Titus, to Joseph Guthrie, with forge and tools connected; also a deed from John Harrand to Joseph Guthrie, Sept. 27, 1792. Joseph Guthrie died in Ohio, May 30, 1808. For record of his son, Elias, see page I.

8. Mary Guthrie, daughter of John (2), was born Dec. 2o, 1735, in Durham; married James Calhoun, in Washington, Conn., Dec. 31, 1754. She died May 1, 1809, in Washington, He died Feb. 12, 1814, aged 83.

More Text

RESOURCE:   'American Guthrie and Allied Families' by Laurence Rawlins Guthrie

"JOHN GUTHRIE is generally credited with having migrated to New England about the year 1700. Hughs in American Ancestry, Vol. 5, p. 165, under head of "Seymour Guthrie of Chicago," says, "John Guthrie, who was in the iron business in Edinburgh, Scotland, with three brothers, went to Ireland in 1680; emigrated to America (Connecticut) 1700. Started a foundry at Litchfield, Connecticut, 1730."

Seymour Guthrie, himself says in his book, "A Brief History of a Branch of the Guthrie Family," "The earliest traditional knowledge of the family is in 1680, in Edinburgh, Scotland, where they were of the best middle class and interested in the manufacture of iron.

"About this time John Guthrie severed his connection with his partners and brothers, Robert and James, and with a small capital sought his fortune in Ulster County, Ireland. It is not known what business he embarked in while there, but it is probable that his knowledge of the iron industry led him to take up some branch of it. He had not been there long before he married a Protestant lady of good family. At that period the Protestants were unpleasantly situated in that country, and naturally his mind turned to the New World where religious oppression was unknownwhere a man could worship his Maker as his heart dictated without risking his life or jeopardizing his chances of gaining a livelihood. It was about 1700 when he bade farewell to his friends in Ireland and set out to seek his fortune in the new world.

"After a wearysome voyage of two months he landed at Boston. Remaining here but a few years, he moved to Washington, Litchfield County, Connecticut, and engaged successfully in the iron business, running a forge and furnace on the Housatonic river. There he died in 1730, leaving four sons who carried on the business.

"About the time that John emigrated from Ireland, his two brothers, Robert and James, came out from Scotland and settled in Pennsylvania."

Harriet N. and Eveline Guthrie Dunn in "Records of the Guthrie Family," give virtually the same as Seymour Guthrie and will not be quoted here.

The Ancestry of William Dameron Guthrie gives,

"John Guthrie was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, where he kept an iron foundry. He left there in 1670 and went to Ulster County, Ireland. In 1700 he emigrated with his brothers James and Robert to America and settled in Washington, Litchfield Co., Connecticut, where he established an iron foundry. He died there in 1730."

Mrs. Amy L. Peoples, of Los Angeles, Calif., a descendant of John Guthrie says,

"Sometime about the year 1700, two brothers, Robert and James Guthrie, came from the North of Scotland and settled in Pennsylvania, and soon after a younger brother John Guthrie came to Connecticut and married a woman by the name of Cone and raised a family of ten children."

Mrs. Peoples also quotes Truman Guthrie of Newbury, Ohio, as stating

"Previous to the Revolutionary War three brothers of the Guthries emigrated to the Colonies from Scotland. Their names were Robert, James and John. Robert settled in Pennsylvania; John settled in Connecticut, in or about the county of Litchfield, where he married and raised a large family of children, consisting of six sons and four daughters."

A comparison of these statements shows that all save the last one give 1700 as the approximate date of emigration. There is a general agreement about the brothers coming at about the same time. There is a confusion as to whether the emigrant John was the father of the large family in Litchfield County, Conn., or the grandfather. No one gives any account of the emigrant between the years 1700 and 1725. No records in New England have been found to prove that there was a John Guthrie in the colony during that period. The writer does not believe that he was in America during all that period. If it be true that John migrated at about the same time as Robert and Jaynes to Pennsylvania, it is quite certain that he did not come before 1718. Furthermore in view of the fact that the Ulster movement to New England took place in 1718, it would seem likely that John came at about that time and that he was the father, not the grandfather, of the family of children born in Connecticut.

Mr. William K. Jewett, of Pasadena, Calif., a descendant who made investigations of the early Guthries in New England says"I am not satisfied that John had brothers Robert and James, nor am I satisfied that he ever settled in Boston, nor do I know when he arrived in America."

With these statements pro and con before him, the reader is left to his own conclusions.

This family has a tradition that there were seven Guthrie brothers in Scotland, that owing to religious persecutions they left there, some going to Ireland, others to America. One version is that of those who went to Ireland, some returned to Scotland after the oppression had ceased. A tradition among some of the Pennsylvania Guthries was that there were seven Guthrie brothers in Ireland who migrated to America. It is not possible to show who they were nor to determine which version is the correct one. John Guthrie, the emigrant, is said to have had four sons, one of whom was John, whose line follows.

The first record found of John Guthrie in Connecticut is that of a resident in Durham, Middlesex County, where it seems that he had moved for safety during the Indian wars on the frontier in Litchfield County. It seems that this residence in Durham was of about seven years duration. From there he moved to Stratford, Fairfield County, where lst, Nov., 1726, he purchased the home of Samuel Beardsley. Later, about 1734, he returned to Durham and from there went to the town of Woodbury in Litchfield County, where he became a wealthy and influential citizen owning large dads of nearby lands and lots in neighboring towns in that section of the country.

John Guthrie married (1) June, 17267, Abigail Coe, who was born 11th Nov., 1702; united with the First Congregational Church of Stratford in 1726; died "Abigail, wife of John Guthrie March 25, 1747." 

"John Guthrie married (2) Susanna . They had no children. He died about July, 1756."

From his will and from other sources we have the facts that the first five children were born in Stratford, the next four in Durham, the last two in Woodbury.

Children of John Guthrie and Abigail Coe:

1. John Guthrie, b. "Jan. 20, 17278,"13 (p. 80).

2. James Guthrie, 1st., b. "July, 1729""; d. in infancy.

3. William Guthrie, b. Dec. 30, 1730; "Dec., 1730," 113 (p. 83).

4. James Guthrie, 2nd., b. April, 1732; "baptized 1732,"13 (p. 87).

5. Joseph Guthrie, b. June, 1733; "baptized 173334,"88 (p. 121).

6. Mary Guthrie, b. Dec. 20, 1735, (p. 152).

7. Ephriam Guthrie, b. March 1, 1737, (p. 152).

8. Ebenezer Guthrie, b. July 20 (or 21), 1740, (p. 153).

9. Abigail Guthrie, b. May 3, 1742; baptized July 21, 1742; d. at the age of nineteen years.

10. Sarah Guthrie, b. April 3, 1744;" (See The Murrays, Allied Families).

11. Lydia Guthrie, b. July, 1746; m. Aug. 5, 1765, Eleazer Ingraham. (See The Ingrahams, Allied Families)."


RESOURCE:   'History of Durham, CT: from the first grant of land in 1662 to 1866' by William Chauncey Fowler


March 5th, 1737-8.—Ephraim Guthrie, son of John and Abigail Guthrie

Mary, the daughter of John Guthrie and Abigail, his wife, was born Dec. 20th, 1735.

Ephraim, the son of John Guthrie and Abigail, his wife, was born March 1st, 1737.

Ebenezer, the son of John Guthrie and Abigail, his wife, was born July 29th, 1740.