|Death: ||Jun. 3, 1826|
West Virginia, USA
Thomas Cunningham was the husband of Phoebe Tucker Cunningham who had been captured by the Wyandotte indians. Thomas served in the Revolutionary War.
Born in Dublin, Ireland in 1748 Thomas Cunningham came to America with his parents Hugh B. and Nancy (O'Neill) Cunningham arriving by sailing vessel in 1752.
About 1775 Thomas and his brother Edward, came to West Augusta County, West Virginia and located temporarily in the area of Fairmont. In April 1776 he married Phoebe (Phebe) Tucker in Prickett's Fort, Marion County, West Virginia.
In May, 1777, Thomas and Edward enlisted in Captain James Booth's Company of Rangers. Their mission was to protect the settlers from Indian attacks in the newly formed state of Virginia. Captain Booth, a resident of Monongalia County, Virginia/West Virginia, had been the first settler in the area in 1768. When he was killed by Indians on 16 June 1778, the Ranger Company was disbanded and Thomas and Edward, having served thirteen months, returned home.
In 1781, the Rangers were reactivated and Thomas was sent to Winchester, Virginia for a month to guard the British soldiers who had surrendered to George Washington at Yorktown. This was the end of Thomas' service.
By 1785, Thomas and Phebe had four children: Henry, Lydia, Walter and Thomas. On August 31, 1785, while Thomas was away on a trading trip to Pittsburgh, an Indian entered the house, as Phebe and her children were eating at the table. When he was Preparing to leave with his captives, the Indian tomahawked Walter, a two year old boy, and threw his body into the back yard. Phebe was summoned to follow the Indian and, with one infant in her arms and two other children clinging to her, she did so, as her house was set on fire. Henry, the oldest son, age four, and Lydia, three, were then killed and scalped. Phebe and the infant were taken to a cave on Little Indian Run for the night. The infant was killed soon after and Phebe was taken into captivity.
Phebe Tucker Cunningham, in captivity for over three years, was released in 1788 after intervention by Simon Girty.
Thomas and Phebe were reunited but did not return to their farm on Cunningham Run where the Indian attack had occurred. They established a home south of Clarksburg, in present-day Lewis County, and had seven more children: William, Jonathan, Sara Leah, Rachel, Phebe, Barbara, Richard.
In 1807, they built a cabin on the South Fork of the Hughes River, a few miles above where Smithville is now located in Ritchie County. Thomas and his son, William, became Methodist Ministers. Thomas continued to serve The Lord until his death.
His memorial stone reads: Thomas Cunningham, pioneer settler of this vicinity 1807, lies on his own homestead. He was a minister of the M.E. Church, and the first class was organized 1810 at his cabin. Here the Barker home now stands. This tablet is placed by his descents, September 1936
Phebe Tucker Cunningham (1761 - 1845)*
Sira Leah Cunningham Hardman (1793 - 1874)*
Rachael Cunningham Collins (1794 - 1882)*
Benjamin Cunningham (1800 - 1853)*
Richard Benjamin Cunningham (1800 - 1853)*
Barker Farm Cemetery
West Virginia, USA
Maintained by: Spirit Wanderer
Originally Created by: Gloria Klug
Record added: Mar 05, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 18244876