A Genealogical History of the Family of Alexander Bothwell

The following was contributed by Linda Wolff

If you believe that you are a descendant of this Alexander Bothwell and Catharine Hagen, please contact Linda Wolff.

The following is taken from:

Genealogical History of the family of
With Additional Biographical Data Concerning the Related Pioneer
Families of Captain John Potter, Andrew Scott and George Claypool

Based on an Original 33-Page Paper

Mimeographed in 1947
Revised and Expanded by JOHN LUSE SCOTT in Collaboration with

and Others
1971 Not copyrighted

Alexander Bothwell I and Catherine Hagen

According to old family beliefs and traditions perpetuated over the 160 years since his death, Alexander Bothwell presumably was born sometime around 1750 and somewhere in the county of Lanarkshire, Scotland, near the town of Bothwell in the parish of Bothwell, which is on the River Clyde seven miles southwest of Glasgow.

These assumptions, although supported by the flimsiest of evidence, have been accepted by his descendants largely on the strength of two family documents:

1. A statement made by Alexander's grandson, John Thompson Bothwell (1816 - 1911) to a niece, Maria Elizabeth Foster (1849-1935), and printed in a 20-page brochure entitled Chronological Record of Potter-Bothwell Families in 1904.

2. A long family letter written by Alexander's great grandson John Homer Bothwell (1849 - 1929) to his cousin, John Thompson's granddaughter Marion Bothwell on July 2, 1921.

Maria Elizabeth Foster was the daughter of Catharine Bothwell Foster and the granddaughter of Alexander's oldest son, James. She lived in Chillicothe, Ohio, and was visiting her numerous relatives in Clay City, Illinois, when she compiled this "chronological record." On her return home she had it set in type and published. Portions of it are reproduced here on page 8. Her uncle John Thompson Bothwell was 88 years old at the time and she quoted his recollections as he delivered them from memory:

The following is the information given by Uncle Thompson Bothwell concerning our great-grandfather and his family.

"His name was Alexander Bothwell. He was a thoroughbred Scotchman. Uncle Thompson does not know what county in Scotland he was born nor at what time he left Scotland, but when he left he went to Ireland, and settled in Downs County, Ireland. Uncle does not know whether he had any brothers or sisters ...

He was married in Scotland, but he does not know where, but it was no great distance from Bothwell Castle. There were at least two daughters, and perhaps four daughters born in Scotland. ... By occupation our great-grandfather was a wheelright and was a first-class workman ... Our great-grandmother's maiden name was Catharine Hagen."

John Homer Bothwell was a prominent lawyer, state legislator and financier of Sedalia, Missouri. In the course of his visits to Scotland he made a special study of Scottish history and Bothwell ancestry. His letter was preserved by Marion Bothwell, who was born in 1873 and still living in Fairfield, Illinois at the age of 90 in 1963, and she made copies available to a number of interested relatives. This was John Homer's version:

"Through my father, James Kimble Bothwell, and your grandfather, John Thompson Bothwell, I learned that James Bothwell, their father--my grandfather--was born in the county of Londonderry, Ireland, and was one of the children of Alexander Bothwell and his wife, Catharine. The following statement was made to me and by me written down at my father's home in the words of my father who spoke with care and deliberation Dec. 29, 1882:

"My father--James Bothwell--was born unto Alexander Bothwell and Catharine, his wife, August 20, 1785 in the county of Londonderry, Ireland, where Alexander Bothwell had migrated from Scotland. His wife, Catharine had been born in Wales, probably of English parentage.

"From my father's statements I learned that in 1792 Alexander and Catharine Bothwell emigrated from Londonderry, Ireland to the United States of America, bringing their children--among them, James Bothwell, then seven years old--and landing at Newport News, Virginia, going thence to Winchester, Va., for a short time, and thence moving to the town of (New) Geneva, Pennsylvania."

John Homer went on to cite some of the historical considerations that may have resulted in bestowing the name of Bothwell on his ancestors. He wrote:

"While it is certainly true that the Hepburns were not Bothwells, it is true that there were families of the name of Bothwell in Scotland for several centuries before the Hepburns were given the Earldom and became associated with the name of Bothwell.

"As far back as A.D. 1200 there was a barony or lordship of Bothwell, and the famous old Bothwell Castle on the bank of the River Clyde, near the great city of Glasgow, was early as that century if not before. The barony or lordship was a lesser title of rank or nobility than that of earldom, yet the barony or lordship of Bothwell was one of great dignity and influence in Lanarkshire, in the southwest of Scotland, and the families of DeMoravia or Moray and of Murray who early held the lordship and title became famous and had the earldom created and conferred on them in the 16th Century.

"I believe it was Andrew Murray, Lord Bothwell, who married Christian, the sister of King Robert the Bruce, in A.D. 1300. The earldom was created and bestowed on Patrick Hepburn, the first Earl of Bothwell, in A.D. 1488. The second Earl of Bothwell was Adam Hepburn, the third Earl was Patrick Hepburn, and James Hepburn who became the fourth Earl of Bothwell on Nov. 3, 1556; was married to Queen Mary on May 15, 1567, and left her at Carberry Hill on June 1, 1567, a month after their marriage.

"With a castle and lordship named Bothwell, and with a town that grew adjacent to the castle, it is but true to the development of the names of families that some of them--either from kinship or having lived in or about the castle--when removed to other localities would be given or would assume the name of Bothwell, to distinguish them from others. In that manner, I presume, some Scottish families acquired that surname and there are certainly families of that name in Scotland today. ...

"For myself, I do not believe that there is the slightest evidence of our connection with any family of the Scottish nobility, and I do not believe that our parents or grandparents ever believed or claimed that we were descended from the titled families of Scotland. I am quite content to know that my parents and grandparents were honorable and kind and that they lived useful lives and are to be respected and honored by their descendants, who may feel that they have done well if they can prove as useful, kind and honorable as their known ancestors."

In spite of John Homer Bothwell's disclaimer, many of the original Alexander's other descendants did not give up so readily but have attempted at various times to establish relationships either with the early Lord of Bothwell at Bothwell Castle in Lanarkshire or with the later Earls of Bothwell or Hepburns whose ancestral homes were Hailes in East Lothian near the Firth of Forth or Hermitage in Roxburghshire near the English border.

As indicated in the "Chronology of References to Bothwell and Related Names" at the end of this section, and confirmed by a study of the Scottish Ministry of Works' Official Guidebook to Bothwell Castle, no one by the name of Bothwell ever occupied Bothwell Castle, and no Earl of Bothwell, as far as the records show, or his descendants ever took the surname of Bothwell.

Nevertheless, some of John Homer's conclusions have been disputed by relatives. Elizabeth Felton West (1865-1949), for instance, took issue with him in a letter she wrote to Judge James Roy Bothwell (1882-1948) on January 9, 1947. She also supported the theory that Alexander Bothwell I had been born in Lanarkshire:

"John Homer Bothwell was in Scotland, the letter he writes to Marion shows. However, I don't think what he writes is conclusive as to who the blood ancestors were; he may be true in what he says, but even if they claimed nothing, they may not have been in a position to know the true facts themselves. Others have been to Scotland also, but I have never been able to learn any pertinent information so far from any that did ....

Aunt Catharine Bothwell Foster (1815-1892, Alexander's grand-daughter) told me that Alex Sr., would never tell anything of his past life or just where he was born; the only thing he ever told me was that he was born in Scotland near Bothwell Castle."

Much other family correspondence over the years has related to visit to, and speculations concerning, Bothwell Castle. John Homer Bothwell's celebrated mansion outside Sedalia, Missouri, was popularly supposed to have been inspired by his trips to this allegedly ancestral castle, even though there is no similarity in their appearance other than their locations overlooking deep valleys.

Elizabeth Felton West's sister Annis Strong Felton Smedley (1871-1956) was another descendant to express disappointment over gaining no "pertinent information" from a visit to the castle. Colonel James Lawrence Bothwell (1916- ) spent some time in Uddingston, which is the actual location of the castle, in 1957 and made an excellent series of color photographs, although he knew in advance that it had never been occupied by anybody with the name of Bothwell. And in another old letter dated March 11, 1909, Cidna Maria Jones Rockhold (1851-1909) wrote to her cousin Alice Delilah Bothwell Lonsdale (1852-1935):

"I went abroad in June, went by the St. Lawrence route, and was not seasick except for a few hours while crossing the North Sea from England to Holland. I had a lovely trip through Scotland and England. I saw the ruins of Bothwell Castle--but I shall not tell you about that until you come to see me . . ."

Unfortunately, it will never be known what information was exchanged when these cousins met or even, for that matter, whether they ever did meet, because Cidna Maria died later in the same year, evidently of disorders she described later in her letter. These instances are reported only to show the fascination that Bothwell Castle has held for successive generation of this particular Alexander Bothwell family and to indicated the general acceptance of the supposition that their ancestors, being named Bothwell, must inevitably have originated in either the town or the parish of Bothwell if not actually in the castle itself.

If the family did originate in or take its name from that locality, however, it would have been long before the probable period around 1750 when Alexander was born. In 1960 and again in 1963 John Luse Scott (1902- ) a great-great-grandson of Alexander's daughter Mary Bothwell Scott, spent several days searching the Registers of Births and Baptism at the General Registry Office in Edinburg for the parish of Bothwell and the twenty other parishes in the county of Lanarkshire closest to Glasgow.

These Registers, which were painstakingly prepared and are faithfully preserved, not only fail to reveal the birth of an Alexander Bothwell during that period, but produce no evidence that any family by the name of Bothwell was living in the entire area at the time. In fact, some of the Registers dating as far back as 1700 still show no Bothwell entries.

As a last resort this descendant turned to the telephone directories of Uddingston, Bothwell, Glasgow, Edinburgh and London in the hope of finding some Bothwell listings which might provide a clue. There were none for Uddingston or Bothwell, only two for Glasgow and eight for London. The Edinburgh directory contained just four Bothwell names--as opposed to more than a thousand Scott names--but luckily one of them was that of William G. Bothwell, who lives on Mountcastle Drive South in the Portobello section of Edinburgh and who has become exceedingly cooperative and sympathetic toward the project of locating the birthplace and birthdate of the particular Alexander Bothwell in question.

Following John Scott's first visit to Edinburgh Bill Bothwell relied to his letter in part as follows:

"Quite frankly, until I received your letter I had never given much though to the origin of the family name. Such thought as I might have had would have led me to the same conclusion as the one you came by; namely, that it had been taken by or given to people who originated in the parish of Bothwell when they turned up so somewhere else.

"I was born in Aberdeen and so was my father (1877), his father (Alexander, 1840) and my great-grandfather. I believe my great-great-grandfather lived in Oldmeldrum, a village in Aberdeenshire.

Another resident of Edinburgh, James G. Bothwell, of 19 Cammo Road, likewise cited Aberdeen as his family's home town:

"I regret that I cannot be of any immediate assistance to you in your quest. My knowledge of the name I bear is restricted to my own branch of the family and this is only for two generations. My later father was born in Aberdeen around 1892, one of a family of ten. I do not know if this was the birthplace of his father."

In addition to these two reports from Edinburgh, another involving the county of Aberdeenshire was received from Harry J. Bothwell, an architect of Cincinnati, Ohio, who furnished the information that his great-grandfather John Bothwell had been born in Aberdeenshire March 15, 1828.

From this starting point, the search of Alexander Bothwell was transferred from Lanarkshire to Aberdeenshire. Bill Bothwell and his daughter Alison revisited the General Register Office and carefully examined the registers of births, baptism, marriages and deaths for some 44 parishes. In marked contrast to the findings in Lanarkshire, in Aberdeenshire they located 80 individual Bothwell names, representing at least 21 families and including eleven who were named Alexander. In so doing they also located, in the parish of Kintore, Harry J. Bothwell's great-grandfather John and his six brothers and sisters; they were the children of John and Jane Caynad Bothwell, born between 1828 and 1839. To date no definite relationships have been established between any of these Bothwell families of Aberdeenshire.

Any one of three among the eleven Alexander Bothwells thus discovered could be the ancestor who is sought:

July 24, 1749 Alexander son of William Bothwell in parish of Inverurie
1744 Alexander son of John Bothwell in parish of Oldmeldrum
1743 Alexander son of William Bothwell of Tillwell, in parish of Tarves

Certain positive dates in the life of the Alexander Bothwell who emigrated to America in 1792 and settled in New Geneva, Pennsylvania, are well established by old family records in the handwriting of Margaret Bothwell Webb (1840-1917), the daughter of Alexander's son, Alexander II, who recorded not only "My Brother and Sisters Age," and the ages of her aunts and Uncles, but also "My Grandfather's Marriage" and "My Grandmother's and -father's death."

My Grandfather's marriage

Alexander Bothwell and Catharine Hogan were married March 14, 1782

Grandmother's & father's death

Catharine Bothwell died March 11, 1806

Alexander Bothwell died December 2, 1811

The page from Margaret's record giving this information is reproduced earlier in this section and shows that Alexander married Catharine Hogen (Hagen) on March 11, 1782, and that he died on September 2, 1811. His youngest child, Jane Bothwell Carothers, was born June 28, 1800.

Eight of the eleven Alexander Bothwells of Aberdeenshire mentioned above were born either before 1735 or after 1770, and are therefore eliminated from consideration because of age. Of the remaining three, the Alexander of Iverurie at first sounded like the most logical candidate, but he too was eliminated when Alison Bothwell discovered that he had a son William who was born in Inverurie on October 2, 1783. The Alexander of New Geneva also had a son William, but his birthdate is given in all the family records as January 15, 1790. And it is believed, although not verified, that the family had moved onto Ireland by 1783, certainly by 1785.

The two Alexander Bothwells born 1743 and 1744 would have been 38 or 39 years old at the time of marriage, 56 or 67 years old when their youngest child was born, and 67 or 68 at the time of death. Thus, either of these Alexander Bothwells may conceivably have been the object of this search. Alison Bothwell later rechecked the registers of Lanarkshire and also searched 46 parishes in Ayrshire, 17 in Renfrew, 12 in Dunbarton and 24 in Haddington without finding any other Alexander Bothwells.

Almost as difficult as locating a specific Alexander Bothwell in Scotland has been the matter of unraveling the sequence and birthdates of his children. There are several differing accounts handed down through the years. In the same letter quoted previously, John Homer Bothwell had this to say:

"Also I learn from father's statement that he had another uncle, John Bothwell, who served as a soldier in the American army during the war of 1812 with England, that Arthur and William Bothwell -- brothers of James Bothwell -- were finally lost sight of by their family who had moved to Ohio in 1814.

"My grandfather had three sisters. One died unmarried, my father told me, and the others married M. Scott and Mr. Corruthers or Corrothers. I have known two or three of the grandsons of Mary--"Mollie"--Bothwell, two having lived in Athens, Ohio. One lived in Columbus where he was the president of the Ohio State University, and John R. Scott is living at Columbia, Missouri, where he was long a professor at the Missouri University but is now retired.

"My father told me that his Uncle Alexander Bothwell went to Ohio about the same time that my grandfather went there, and that Alexander married Hannah Claypool or Claypole and afterwards moved to Northern Illinois where he settled in Knox County, and there lived to an old age and raised a large family."

John Thompson Bothwell had a slightly different version, as related to Maria Elizabeth Foster and published in her Chronological Record of Potter-Bothwell Families:

Alexander Bothwell

The following is the information given by Uncle Thompson Bothwell concerning our great-grandfather and his family.

"His name was Alexander Bothwell. He was a thoroughbred Scotchman. Uncle Thompson does not know what county in Scotland he was born nor at what time he left Scotland, but when he left he went to Ireland, and settled in Downs County, Ireland. Uncle does not know whether he had any brothers or sisters.

Our grandfather, James Bothwell, was born August 20, 1785 in Ireland. He was 10 years old when our great-grandfather came to America, and settled in Winchester, Virginia, but he afterward moved to Greensburg, Virginia.

He was married in Scotland, but he does not know where, but it was no great distance from Bothwell Castle. There were at least two daughter, and perhaps four daughters born in Scotland.

He was never married but once, a least Uncle Thompson never heard of a second marriage.

He had four daughters and five sons.

His first daughter, Mary Bothwell, married John Scott.

His second daughter, Jane, married Thomas Carothers, and when last heard of lived on the Miami River but the locality is unknown.

Then there were Sarah and Catherine, who never married.

His daughter Mollie lived and died at McConnellsville, Ohio.

His sons were James, who lived and died at McArthur, Ohio.

Alexander also lived and married there. His wife's maiden name was Hannah Claypool. They had six children when they moved to Illinois. He started to go to Peoria, but we heard in an indirect way that he stopped in Perry County, Illinois.

John Bothwell was in Wheeling, Va., in 1872. Heard of him there, but he moved down the river--do not know where.

There were two other sons, William and Arthur, but we never knew what became of them."

Several discrepancies appear in these two accounts, and some obvious errors. It is very doubtful that there was a fourth daughter, Catherine, in the family; probably at some time the mother's name was included among the children's and John Homer was right in stating that there were just the three daughters. In that event Mary and Jane were the second and third rather than the first and second daughters, and neither of them were born in Scotland. Greenburg is in Pennsylvania rather than Virginia, and such other questions as whether the family lived in Londonderry or Downs County are impossible now to answer.

Combining these records, however, with the Margaret Bothwell Webb data and a similar record which Hattie Altana Little Webb copied from the old family Bible of Alexander II provides certain well documented facts about Alexander and Catharine Hagen Bothwell and their eight children. By 1801 at the latest, the family had settled in New Geneva, a little town in Springhill Township, Fayette County, Pennsylvania, situated on the east bank of the Monongahela River just north of the (West) Virginia border. Both parents died there, Catharine on March 11, 1806 and Alexander on December 2, 18ll. Their children were:

201. Sarah Bothwell was born September 4, 1782, possibly in Londonderry County, Ireland but more probably in Scotland. She was unmarried and nothing further concerning her is found in any of the family records.

202. James Bothwell, as related, was born in Londonderry County in 1785, married Charlotte Potter in 1810, moved on to Ohio in 1814 and died in McArthur on December 4, 1863. He was the father of eleven children, seven of whom grew up to raise families of their own. His many descendants are enumerated in Section III which follows.

203. Mary Bothwell was born in Ireland February 10, 1788; married John Scott and moved to Putnam (now Zanesville, Ohio) in 1807, and died in McConnelsville, Ohio, September 11, 1828. She bore eleven children. The families of six of them are listed in Section V.

204. William Bothwell was born in Ireland January 15, 190, which is about all that is known about him.

205. John Bothwell was born December 21, 1792, possibly at sea since several of the older members of the family recalled hearing that one of the children was born during the voyage to America, which took place in 1792. The statements of both John Homer and John Thompson Bothwell that he was a soldier in the War of 1823 are confirmed by entries in Pennsylvania Archives (Sixth Series, Vol. IX, pages 93, 95 and 237) which show, by the payroll of Captain John Phillips Company of U.S. Volunteers, under command of Major John Herkimer, that John Bothwell, Private, was discharged at Oswego, New York, on August 26, 1813 and received $20.

206. Alexander Bothwell II was born April 12, 1794, at either Winchester, Virginia, or Greensburg, Pennsylvania. In 1814 he moved to Ohio with his brother James, in 1822 he married Hannah Claypool and in 1864 he died in Knox County, Illinois. Section VII contains the family records of seven of his twelve children.

207. Arthur Bothwell was born November 29, 1798. No further information is available.

208. Jane Bothwell was born June 28, 1800. Possibly by that time the family was living in New Geneva. The statements of John Homer and John Thompson Bothwell represent all that is known about her.

The reasons for the family's various moves from Scotland to Ireland and from Ireland to America have been the subjects of many rumors and much speculation among their descendants. In fact, several cloak-and-dagger episodes have been promulgated by various relatives, including another by the Elizabeth Felton West whose letter to Judge James Roy Bothwell in 1947 was previously quoted. In an earlier letter to his son, James Latimer Bothwell, she wrote:

The family name was Douglas, but for some reason when Alex came to the United States he took the name of Bothwell ... Aunt Catherine B Foster (Maria's mother) and Maria have told me Aunt Mary Scott told them that her father (Alex. Sr.) would never tell his family anything, but they gathered from conversations they overheard that he left Scotland on account of some political trouble. He had locked chests in the loft the children never saw until once, when he went away and forgot to lock one, and the children looked and saw that they afterward realized were jewels and fine tapestries and materials ... The reason I told Mary Sanders I thought our Bothwells were the Douglas line---Uncle David Warren Jones told me had understood that and supposed they took the title for a surname on account of the circumstances under which they left Scotland.

The fact that Catharine Bothwell was only 13 years old when her Aunt Mary Scott died in 1828, and that her daughter Maria was not born for another 20 years, somewhat detracts from the credibility of this exchange of confidences. No other evidence has been found to support any part of it, including the assumption of the name of Douglas, and its only foundation in any event was a distant recollection from childhood with every likelihood of exaggeration.

If "the circumstances under which they left Scotland" actually did involve "political troubles," it is interesting now to speculate on which of the many troubles afflicting the British Isles in the early 1780s might have been responsible.

Following the defeat of Cornwallis at Yorktown in October of 1781, the Tory Government of Lord North, which had been subservient to George III since 1770, collapsed in March of 1782. The Whigs were finally back in power, but four different Whig governments, all in varying degrees of conflict with each other and with the King, followed in rapid succession. The government of Rockingham lasted only five months, that of Shelburne for only eight, and the coalition Fox-North government, which Winston Churchill has called "too much for even the agile conscience of the age," held on for only nine months before the stable government of William Pitt the Younger was eventually established in December, 1785.

Regardless therefore, of whether he might have been a follower of the Tory or the Whig Party, of any particular faction of either party, sooner or later Alexander Bothwell would have found his political patrons out of favor with the governing powers. But many other unsettling forces were operating at the same time. The full effects of the "industrial revolution" and its accompanying "agrarian revolution" were just beginning to be felt by 1780. Many dislocations were being caused by the introduction of machinery into both farming and such industries as textiles, steel and coal. Many more workers in the agricultural and industrial areas of England and Scotland were affected by these economic considerations than by political ones. Even more disastrous from the standpoint of the average Scottish family were the periodic famines that befell the country. Janet R. Grover wrote in The Story of Scotland (Roy Publishers, New York, 1958):

Famine recurred in 1740, 1756, 1778 and, with sharply increased severity, in 1782. In order to clear large areas for sheep-walks, landowners forced their tenants to give up their holdings, and the most popular method at first was the simple one of raising rents (in 1771) ... The higher rents forced some tenants to reduce their plots and to live almost entirely on potatoes, but many thousands, driven to despair, sought the more drastic alternative of emigration.

Johnson was horrified by the numbers of people preparing to emigrate when he toured the Hebrides in 1773 ... It is believed that between 1760 and 1808 some 12,000 people left the Highlands for America and at least 30,000 for the colonies.

Under such circumstances it is not surprising that the Bothwells and, as will be shown in Section III, the Scotts, left Scotland during this period in the early 1780s. Neither is it surprising that the name of Bothwell was so much more prevalent in Aberdeenshire in the north of Scotland than in Lanarshire in the south during the 18th Century. The many Bothwell families identified there confirm the claim of John Homer Bothwell that there were families of the name of Bothwell in Scotland as early as the 15th and 16th Centuries.

Disregarding the various Lords and Earls of Bothwell, none of whom are known to have taken the Bothwell surname, a large number of other Bothwells have been located in various parts of northern Scotland prior to 1700. Among them were Richard Bothwell, who became Abbott of Dunfermline in 1449 and provost of Edinburgh in 1460; Francis Bothwell who married Catherine Ballantyne in Edinburgh in 1530; Adam Bothwell who became the first Protestant Bishop of Orkney and had at least three sons--John, Francis and William--and a daughter, Jean; Henry Bothwell who married Mary Campbell in Argyll County in 1676, and many more. Any of hem might have been the ancestors of the Bothwell families later found in the parish registers of Aberdeenshire.

Another episode of intrigue and adventure was related by John Thompson Bothwell and published in the Chronological Record of Potter-Bothwell Families:

"When he left Ireland it was in a time of an Irish feud, and our great-grandfather was on the wrong side--at least he was on the weak side--and those wild Irish got after the side our great-grandfather was on and proposed to wipe them off the face of the earth, and to escape their wrath our great-grandfather hired the captain of a ship to secret him and his family from the angry officers, and for this service he paid the captain a handsome sum of money.

"The officers came on board the ship and searched for them but failed to discover their hiding place and gave up their quest and return to land and the ship sailed away. After they were many miles out on the ocean the Bothwells were released from their place of concealment and allowed the privilege of freedom."

Another historic document in the family archives is the printed Naturalization Certificate granted to Alexander on September 23 1802, and reproduced in full on the following page. When and under what circumstances it was set in type and printed in this form is not known.

I, Ephraim Douglas, Prothonotary of the Court of Common Pleas,
for the County of Fayette in the State of Pennsylvania, in the United States of America, hereby certify that at a Court of Common Pleas held at Union Town in and for the county of Fayette the second Monday of September, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and two before the Judges of said court, Alexander Bothwell, a native of Ireland, now of the township of Springhill, in the County of Fayette and State of Pennsylvania exhibited a petition praying to be admitted to become a citizen of the United States of America and on his solemn oath did declare in the said court that he was residing within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States of America before the twenty-ninth day of January, one thousand seven hundred & ninety-five; that he had resided two years at least with in the limits & under the jurisdiction of the United States, and one year at least immediately preceding this his application within the State of Pennsylvania; that he would support the constitution of the United States, and did absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign Prince, Potentate, State and Sovereignty whatever, and particularly did absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to the King of Great Britain of who he was before a Subject. And the facts state as aforesaid appearing in full proof; and it moreover appearing to the satisfaction of the said Court, that during the said term of two years, the said Alexander Bothwell had behaved himself as a man of good moral character, attached to the Constitution of the United Sates, and well disposed to the good order and happiness of the same. The said court there-upon admitted the said Alexander Bothwell to become a citizen of the United States, and ordered all the said proceedings to be received by the Clerk of the said Court, which record was made accordingly. In witness whereof, I, the said Ephraim Douglas, have hereto set my hand and affixed the seal of the same court at Union Town this twenty-third day of September, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and two.

The final report of the Bothwells in Pennsylvania was found under the heading of "Indiana County Tax Lists, Armstrong Twp., 1807" in Caldwell's History of Indiana County. In a list of 93 taxpayers appeared these four names:
Mary Bothwell, spinster
James Bothwell, laborer
David Bothwell, laborer
John Bothwell, laborer

There was, of course, no "David" in the Alexander Bothwell family, but in view of the other three Bothwell names on the list and the fallibility of old records, it seems practically certain that the fourth member was William. The reason for their presence in Indiana County at that particular time likewise seems obvious. James, like his father, was a wheelwright and cabinet maker, and Indiana County was right in the middle of a building boom.

According to an address entitled "Historic Sketch of Indiana County, Pennsylvania," which was delivered by the Hon. A.W. Taylor during the Anniversary Celebration of July 4, 1876 ...

"Indiana the county seat, was laid out in 1805 ... The proceeds of the town lots were applied to the erection of the county buildings, and thus the old Courthouse (a most creditable building" in its days), and others were built without taxation and without costing the people a farthing. The Courthouse was built in 1808-1809 ...

The assumption that James and his younger brothers were there to work on the construction of the Indiana County Courthouse and other buildings is based on the following chronology:

In 1806, Catharine Hagen Bothwell died, leaving to her husband and eldest son James the responsibility of looking after the other children.

In 1807, James, then 22, was in Indiana County with Mary, a young "spinster" at 19; John, 15, and presumably William, 17. Alexander, Jr., 12; Arthur, 8 and Jane, 7, evidently had stayed behind with their father in New Geneva. Their older sister, Sarah, may have been there too if she were still living.

In 1807 also, some time after the tax lists were compiled, Mary married John Scott and went with him to Putnam, now Zanesville, Ohio, where their eldest son Alexander Bothwell Scott was born in October of the following year.

In 1810, James married Charlotte Potter, possibly having remained in Indiana County during 1808 and 1809 to continue work on the Courthouse.

In 1811, Alexander I died and James and Charlotte, according to her Personal Reminiscences, had moved to Selbysport, Maryland; Alexander II, who was 17 by that time, may have gone to Selbysport with them, because it is pretty clearly established that he was the brother who accompanied them to Ohio in 1814, as related in Section III.

In the meantime, William and John would have become, respectively, 21 and 19 years of age by 1811, and old enough to look out for themselves. Soon afterwards, in fact, John enlisted as a soldier in the War of 1812.