Little is known of John Ratliff. He was a nephew of Elias Hughes and was married with four children when he arrived in Licking County.  Although he was a good hunter to provide for his family, he was not known as an Indian fighter as Hughes was. He was more inclined to peaceable pursuits. One of his children was John, Jr., who became a good hunter in his own right and eventually moved to Illinois. John senior's first wife died in 1802, becoming the first white settler to die in Licking County. Ratliff remarried to a daughter of Mr. Stateler, and moved to the south side of the Licking River at the mouth of Brushy Fork Creek, between what was later Claylick and Toboso. He died there around 1811. Neither John nor his two wives are noted on any of the cemetery indexes for Licking County. 
- Hill, N., & Graham, A. (1881). History of Licking county, O., its past and present. Containing a condensed, comprehensive history of Ohio, including an outline history of the Northwest; a complete history of Licking county, a history of its soldiers in the late war, biographies and histories of pioneer families, etc. (pp. 212-215; 504-505). Evansville, Indiana: Unigraphic.
- Tharp, R. (1991, March 1). Dates, Places and Events in the Life of Captain Elias Hughes: First Permanent Settler, Licking County, Ohio. The Licking Lantern, pp. 73-77.