Sherlene\’s G-LOG

Making Sense of the Census (Fording the Langs, at Present)

Cornelius Gatliff (b. 25 Mar 1777, Botetourt County, VA, d. Aug-Oct 1836, Whitley Co. KY), m. Sarah/Sally Lankford, d/o Joseph and Mary,

1777, MARCH 25–BIRTH, IN BOTETOURT COUNTY, VIRGINIA. As posted by Bob Francis, on RootsWeb, at, accessed 22 Jul 2007, by shb: “GATLIFF, CORNELIUS (1777–). Son of Charles and Christiana Gatliff ws born March 25, 1777 in Botetourt County, Virginia. (1).” –shb 22 Jul 2007

HAD CHILDREN BY HIS SLAVES, ALONG WITH HIS FATHER? See letter I wrote to Bob Francis, notes of Cornelius’ father, Capt. Charles Gatliff. –shb 22 Jul 2007

1827, OCTOBER–SON CHARLES AND RACHEL WERE DIVORCED, IN PULASKI COUNTY, KENTUCKY. A racy account of counter-accusations of Charles and Rachel and accounts of witnesses, in court, as part of divorce proceedings, are posted by Arnold Taylor at –shb 6 Jan 2007

1836, JUNE 5–MADE WILL, IN WHITLEY COUNTY, KENTUCKY. As published in the Whitley County, Kentucky Will Book 1, 1818-1854, by Stephen H. Broyles, searched by shb, 5 Jan 2007, at the Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah (Call No. US/Can/976.9132/P26), p. 41[initialling anything in brackets that I insert, and bolding names mentioned, as inserted by Broyles (but it did not show up here)–shb]:

“October Term 1836
The last Will and testament of Cornelus Gatliff Decd was produced in Court, proven by the Oaths of Joseph Gilliss and Eli Snyder Subscribing Witnesses thereto which is ordered by the Court to be recorded (which is as follows)

“In the Name of God Amen
I Cornelus Gatliff of the County of Whitley and State of Kentucky being in great bodily pain, but of Sound and disposing Mind and Memory and Wishing to settle my Worldly affairs whilst I have Strength and Capacity so to do do Make this my last Will and Testament Hereby revoking any former Will or Wills heretofore made by me, And first
To my Wife Sally Gatliff and my three Sons

p. 71
“Silas Mc Gatliff, James B. Gatliff & John S. Gatliff I give the land whereon I now live together with a tract adjoining the same Between Me and Burton Litton containing in all Seven hundred and fifty acres to be eaqually [sic–shb] divided in three shares agreeable to quantity and quality as near as may be and My Said Wife and My Son Speed is to have the third part containing the dweling [sic–shb] home, and other improvements where I now live. The balance to be divided betwe[en] my son Silas Mc & James B. by themselves, or in case they cannot agree by referee [?] chosen by them

“2nd To my daughter Jane Faris I give my Negor girl Harriet to her only [p. 42–shb] proper use apart from the controal [sic–shb] of her husband and to dispose of said Girl at her death as she may deem proper, Provided however If the said Jane should die without sons then the children of the said Harriet if any to be the property of my five Sons eaqually.

“3rd To my daughter Anne Finley I give my Negro girl Lane in her own right and her heirs forever

“4th To my Wife and my Son John Speed I give my three slaves Poll, Dick, and Ben, to the proper use and benefit of my said Wife during the Monety [minority] of my said Son John Speed and on his arriving at the age of Twenty One years the right in full of and to the said Ben to Vest in him, the balance to be and continue to [“be”] the use of my said Wife during her life, and then to decend [sic–shb] and be the property of my said Son John Speed

“5 To my four sons Joseph Langford, Charles Harbert, Silis McGun [sic–I had it previously as “McGuire”–shb] and James Britton, I give my three Slaves Jesse, Peter, and Rafer and my said Sons in consideration of Said bequest are Jointly to pay one Moiety of a debt owen [sic–shb] by my father and myself in the Northern Bank

of Kentucky, and they are not to sell or transfer their title of interest in said Slaves except in the family

“6th to my son Charles Harbert I give and bequeath the Land on which he now lives to the use of him and his heirs forever

“7th The fifty acres of Land including the Mill together with said Mill I leave to my Wife and children not to be disposed of in any Other Way during her life

“8th One tract of one hundred Acres lying on Gelico together with an entry of fifty acres adjoining the Same. all which I Value at three hundred dollars Also one tract on Cumberland River of fifty acres which I value at one hundred and fifty dollars and I advise that the above Lands be not Sold untill they will fetch Said Sum So much of the proceeds of of [sic] Said lands to be applied to the Schooling of My son John Speed as will give him a good education. the residue to be divided amongst my Sons eaqully [sic–shb]

“9th Out of the proceeds of the Sales of the grain and Liquor now on hand I allow So much as will pay for a good Saddle and bridle and a good Suit of Clothes for each of my three younger Sons to be applied to be applyed [sic] to that use the residue to the use of the fam[i]ly

“10th Having Made a Survey of five hundred Acres in partnership with Joseph Gillis one half of which belongs to me the proceeds of which when Sold I allow to be divided eaquilly amongst my five sons also the part I hold in a tract of Land purchased of William Earlies heirs I give to my five Sons jointly

“11th To my Son Joseph Langford I give one hundred & Seven Acres of Land lying adjoining the land I one [sic, own or once] deeded to him also three cows and calves

“12th One hundred acres of Land purchased at Sheriffs Sale the property of my brother James Gatliff

I authorize and direct my executors hereinafter named on the said James Gatliff paying Sixty dollars to convey all my interest in the said Land to the said James Gatliff, and in case the said James Will not agre e to pay that Sum, then my said Executors are directed to pay the said James one hundred dollars out of the joint funds of my five sons and the said Land is to be the Joint property of my Said Sons. [p. 43–shb]

“13th A tract of one hundred or perhaps More Acres of Land lately deeded to me by my father and which is Known by the reavess place I give to my five Sons jointly

“14 My cultivator Mare together With all My household and Kitchen furniture and utentials of every discription thereunto belonging I give to my Wife – My hogs & Sheep I leave to my Wife and my Son John Speed

“15th My Youngest Yoke of Oxin & unbroke Steers I allow to be Sold and the proceeds applied to building a comfortable dwelling house for my Wife to my five Sons I give my Stallion, My Brimer Mare and two Yearling Colts to be their joint property to My Son Silas Mc I give the Mare he now Claims to My Son James B. I give My Kit Mare and to my Son John S. I give the Mare he now Claims and my Yearling Brimer Colt, and to my grandson Cornelius Findley I give my Yearling Colt double head The balance of My Cattle not disposed of otherwise together with farming tools & other articles be[l]onging to Me and not herein Named, I leave to my Wife for the use of herself and fam[i]ly

” All Debts due me I allow my executors to Collect and pay all the debts I Owe and if the ballance

on settlement should be against Me It Must be paid by my Sons jointly and I earnestly request and enjoin it on my Children that they pay due res[p]ect to their Mother and render her all comfort and assistance in their power through life

” And I appoint Andw Craig and Joseph Gilliss Guardians to my Son John Speed during his Minority

“And I hereby appoint Constitute and Ordain my two Sons Joseph L. Gatliff and Charles H. Gatliff Executors of this my last Will and Testamint

“In Witness whereof I Cornelus Gatliff the Testator have hereunto
Set my hand and Seal this fifth day of June in the Year of our
Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty Six

“Cornelus Gatliff

“Signed Sealed and delivered in the presence of us whose names are
hereunto Subscribed
Joseph Gillies )
Eli Snider )

“Codocil June 6th 1836
The clause of my Will wherein I leave my horse Mare and the Coults to my Sons I reverse and alter So far as it respects one of the Yearling Colts called Nancy which I give to my daughter in law Elisabeth Gatliff to her own perticular use

“C. Gatliff

J. Gilliss )
Eli Snider )

“Codocil 2nd
I hereby appoint Nathan Cox Executor to this my foregoing Will jointly with my Sons Named in the last Section of Said Will Witness my hand this seventh day of August 1836

“Cornelus Gatliff

Joseph Gilliss )
Silas Mc Gatliff ) [p. 44–shb]

October Term 1836
The last Will and Testament of Cornelus Gatliff Decd was produced in Court proven by the Oathes of Joseph Gilliss and Eli Snider Subscribing Witnesses thereto which is ordered by the Court to be recorded
“A Copy Test Andw Craig clk” –shb 6 Jan 2007


January 7, 2008 - Posted by | Genealogy/Langfords/Iowa Langfords, Kentucky Langfords, Virginia Langfords


  1. Sherlene, I feel like going down on my knees and thanking you for this information. I actually shed a few tears being reminded of my “ancients” who are closing in, waiting there for me. I had a xerox copy of Cornelius’s will at one time but it was stolen when my filing cabinet was stolen years ago. It was also in somebody’s handwriting which I found hard to read so I’m not sure I actually ever read it all the way through. As you know, Cornelius was my great-grandmother’s [Cynthia Anne Gatliff Adkins] grandfather. He was father to John Speed who was then my grandfather’s grandfather. My grandmother (married to my grandfather Charles Adkins in 1902) referred to him as “Speed Gatliff”. Many thanks and hugs and kisses from your cousin Pat.

    Comment by Pat Hickerson | January 7, 2008 | Reply

  2. Whew! Rachel and Charles were something! A lot of this stuff appeared in Ron Jost’s supplement to Ruth Hart’s book. She told me once that Reese was “a devil” and that he arranged the divorce between his father and stepmother without their knowledge, probably why it was done in another county. Rachel died in 1857 and had a daughter by somebody. I think a lot of this problem was due to alcohol. Apparently Charles made a lot of money from legally made whisky. He was once arrested for public drunkeness and thereafter vowed to drink at home!

    Comment by Pat Hickerson | January 7, 2008 | Reply

  3. My grandfather was Edward J. Adkins, brother to Charles Adkins, son on Cynthia Anne Gatliff Adkins, she moved to Oklahoma City with them where she later died.

    Comment by Sharon Turner | August 15, 2009 | Reply

  4. filing cabinets should be made from metals and other recycleable materials. avoid buying plastic filing cabinets ””

    Comment by LED Torch · | November 14, 2010 | Reply

  5. ;’` I am really thankful to this topic because it really gives useful information *,*

    Comment by Sugar Alcohol | January 25, 2011 | Reply

  6. Hello my loved one! I wish to say that this article is amazing, nice written and come with almost all important infos. I would like to look extra posts like this .

    Comment by SWTOR | August 8, 2011 | Reply

  7. cindy jogatliff

    Comment by Cindy Gatliff | August 5, 2012 | Reply

  8. timothy ray gatliff

    Comment by Cindy Gatliff | August 5, 2012 | Reply

  9. becky luo gatliff

    Comment by Cindy Gatliff | August 5, 2012 | Reply

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