Guthrie Genealogy



FAMILY LEGENDS of GFG2A:  The Seven Brothers Theory

The Story of 7 Brothers who came to America from Ireland

SOURCE: American Guthrie and Allied Families by Laurence Rawlins Guthrie

Keeping in mind that a theory is just a theory until it is proven, there are several Guthrie books and online sources out there that tell the tale of 7 Covenanting brothers who came to America from County Derry in Northern Ireland. LRG's book is one such source. It includes a list of seven men who arrived in America about the same time and who also reportedly came from Ireland. However, he states that number might simply be a coincidence rather than confirmation of their relationship or the theory. The lack of any kind of real paper trail providing documented proof of their familial relationship means that DNA is again the way to find some answers. 

If there is any credence to this theory it will go a long way toward finding some common ground for the individual branches of the MD/PA Group. Branches C & D may be represented here based on what we think we know, but must still prove. Branch A is also a possibility if online researchers are right about Robert Guthrie of Carlisle.

9 Potential Candidates for the Brotherhood of 7:

  • James Guthrie of IRL/DE (d.1788) - Emigrated c1745 - Lived in Mill Creek Hundred - Probably GFG6-DE-MCH Group - Need DNA
  • William Guthrie of IRL/DE (1710-1775) - Emigrated c1745:  UPDATE - DNA tested. GFG6 (DE-MCH).
  • Cornelius Guthrie of IRL/DE (married in DE in 1748) - Emigration Unkn - Married, but no known descendants 
  • Archibald Guthrie of IRL/PA  - Emigrated < 1760 UPDATE - UPDATE - DNA Tested. GFG2A - Branch D.
  • Robert Guthrie of IRL/Carlisle PA - Emigrated c1740-44 & wife Bridget in 1745 UPDATE - DNA tested. GFG2A - Branch E.
  • Francis Guthrie of IRL/PA - Emigrated Unk - UPDATE - DNA Tested - Lineage issues. GFG3A vs GFG10 (Donald's Group vs East TN Group)
  • John Guthrie of IRL/PA (1735-1776) - No known descendants.
  • Samuel Guthrie of DE (d.1746) - Emigrated Possibly <1725, but definitely <1746. Need DNA. Possible GFG2A-Branch C connection
  • John Guthrie of IRL/PA (1725-1797) - Emigrated 1771 UPDATE - DNA Tested - GFG2A.
3 have been proven to belong to GFG2A.
1 theorized to belong to GFG2A has no descendant in the project. 
2 have been proven by DNA testing to belong to other genetic groups.
1 theorized to belong to another genetic group but has no descendant in the project. 
2 have no known descendant for testing. 
James, William & Cornelius all lived in New Castle, Delaware. This is the same location and timeframe as Samuel Guthrie (d.1746) who is the potential progenitor for Branch C if the Delaware lineage proves correct. Assuming that there were indeed 7 brothers, including Samuel, on this list means one of the original 7 is incorrect. As with all of these theories some proof might be found with DNA testing.
Samuel Guthrie (d.1746) & Mary (LNU) of St. Georges, New Castle, DE
Sons: Adam, Robert, Samuel
Daughters: Elizabeth, Jane, Mary, Rachel
James Guthrie (d.1788) & Mary Hamilton of Mill Creek Hundred, New Castle, DE
Son: William
Daughters: Isabel, Jean, Margaret, Martha
William Guthrie (1710-1775) & Agnes Campbell of Mill Creek Hundred, New Castle, DE
Sons: Adam, Alexander, William, James
Daughters: Margaret, Mary
Cornelius Guthrie & Jane Peterson (married 1748) of New Castle, DE
Children: Unknown  
Archibald Guthrie has no known ties to Delaware, but he would have been born about the same generation as the men above. This man is linked as the progenitor of MD/PA Branch D.
Presumed Sons: John Guthery, Archibald Guthery
LRG mentions that Bridget (Dougherty) Guthrie, the wife of Robert Guthrie of Carlisle might have come to America with William Guthrie and family when they immigrated to America. It is documented that her arrival was separate from that of her husband who had come ahead to establish himself. This branch claims: "Robert Guthrie of Carlisle PA left behind him the tradition that he was the great grandson of the Rev James Guthrie, the martyr, of Sterling, Scotland." Robert was a staunch Covenanter. Some researchers link Robert to the MD/PA Branch A Guthries.
Sons: Robert, James, John, George
Daughters: Jane, Margaret 
Francis Guthrie of IRL/PA/MD was a Covenanter and lived in Coleraine Twp, Lancaster, PA near Middle Octorana Church where the Covenants were renewed in 1743. One of his sons, Robert, emigrated to Maryland and lived in that colony at about the same time as the family of James Guthrie of MD/NC from Branch A. There is no established connection between Francis and the other potential brothers. The DNA of lineages associated with Francis' descendants fits 2 genetic profiles: GFG3A & GFG10.
Sons: Robert, Paul, James 
John Guthrie of IRL/PA seems to have a couple of different candidates vying for a connection. LRG lists this man on p.383 as being born in County Down, IRL in 1735 and dying in a British prison in 1776 after being captured at the Battle of Long Island. As such, he would've been nearly 35 years younger than some of his brothers. No known descendants. 
A second candidate, John Guthrie (c1720-1797) is discussed in the Guthrie & Guthrie theory about Branches B&D. "John Guthrie (c1720-1797) who was the youngest of 7 brothers, Covenanting Presbyterians from Londonderry City who emigrated to the American colonies. Accompanied by his wife, Mary Jane Reed, and their 6 children, John arrived in Pennsylvania colony in 1771 and moved to the colony's far western frontier, to what in 1773 became Westmoreland County. There he took up land along the Loyalhanna Creek, near the ill-fated village of Hannastown, the first county seat, where he also served as Justice of the Peace."
 Sons: John 'Jack', James & William
 Daughters: Jane, Nancy, Elizabeth, Sarah 
All of these men reportedly came to America from Derry in Ireland. If a genetic connection between the MD/PA Group can be made it will provide us with some evidence of our pre-Colonial Guthrie Origins. 
UPDATE 7/2011:   DNA testing of descendants of the line of Francis Guthrie of Colerain Twp. is underway. A closer look into the published information on this man reveals some very questionable information as to the validity of the direct lines. There appears to be some missing generations, and incorrect conclusions about son James Guthrie's line in particular.  James, Robert and Paul have been listed as the 3 sons of Francis Guthrie. 
Participant A: Descends from Robert Guthrie & Esther Giles. 67-marker test reveals a match to GFG3A:"Donald's Group".
Participant B: Descends from Andrew Guthrie & Isabel Rader. 67-marker test has been submitted to FTDNA. New Group Created: GFG10.
Potential Candidate: Descends from Andrew Guthrie & Isabel Rader. He has shown me results conducted at a different laboratory. If they are the equivalent of FTDNA results, he would not be a GFG2A or GFG3A match. The question now is whether Participant B's DNA will be close to his or will it match one of the established groups. His participation probably depends on Participant B's results. UPDATE: Matches Participant A. Not a GFG2A Match.