First Cutlips in America



First Cutlips in America
British or German?

(Early Name Changes & Migrations)

     The name "Cutlip" appears in England as early as the seventeenth century; however, the preponderance of evidence — circumstantial in some cases — strongly suggests a German origin for most, if not all, branches of the Cutlip family. The German name Gottlieb can be used as either a given or family name, much like "Bruce" or "Lester" or "Clark" can be either first, middle, or last names in English-speaking countries. Gott is German for God. Lieb is German for love. Gottlieb, then, means "love of God." Another West Virginia family with German roots is named Crislip today; but was Christlieb back then.

The First George Cutlip: 1711

     If the German George Cutlip presented here was not our first ancestor, those who propose an English background will have to produce an English George very much like this German George. According to his military record our George was born in 1711 and 38 years later decided to move to the New World and to chase the American Dream.

To South Carolina: 1749

     George arrived on 17-Oct-1749 at Charleston, SC aboard a ship from Saxe-Gotha in what is today north-central Germany. The name of the ship was not preserved, but the list of 33 "heads of families" of passengers was. Immigration records indicate there were three people in the "Geo. Gottlieb" family. We assume he had a wife and one ten-year-old son. (He may have had no wife and two children, or some other "family of three.") A little over a year later, in 1751, he was granted a 150-acre homestead (50 acres for each adult family member) in Amelia Township near the Congaree River among a concentration of German immigrants. However, the stay in SC was brief. Nothing more appears in public records.

To Pennsylvania: 1753

      Most likely, during the summer of 1753 the family moved to Lancaster Co., PA — a heavily German-populated area. On 25-Jun-1754, "George Godlip" was granted 25 acres in Lancaster Co., PA by the Penn family, owners of Pennsylvania. Very interestingly, in 1754, Christina Gottlieb married Abraham Gussman in Lancaster Co., PA. Was this a daughter of George? Do we have a whole family of relatives originating with the Gussmans? Or, perhaps George's wife left him and married another! This could be an interesting (and likely frustrating) area of research. So could "Johannes Gottlich and Henrich Gottlich" who arrived in Philadelphia aboard the ship Robert and Alice on 03-Dec-1740. Were they relatives who arrived nine years prior to George to scout out the land? Remember, the two oldest sons of the George who pioneered Ohio were named John and Henry! "Johnnes Gotliff" was eventually granted 50 acres in Lancaster Co., PA. What happened to Henrich? We are not sure; but the Report on the Commission to Locate the Site of Frontier Forts of Pennsylvania (pages 285-286) contains an eyewitness account by nineteen-year-old Henry Hess of an Indian attack on his father's plantation in Lower Smithfield. The Indians killed his father and several hired hands including "one Gotlieb." Could this be Henry / Henrich? Who was John Cutlip of Hanover Co., PA who served in the AmRevWar? Many interesting questions remain unanswered.

A New Wife ... More Children: Mid-1750s

     Sometime, not too long after the move to PA, George married again. In filling out pension applications for the War of 1812, Isaac Cutlip (son of David) and Samuel Cutlip (son of George) swore that their fathers were "half-brothers." So, George probably married his second (or third, or ...) wife in the mid-1750s. David was probably born on the PA frontier about 1757, making him 18–19 at the outbreak of the AmRevWar in which he took part. As a guess, Abraham may have been born a year or two later. Many questions haunt us about the early years: Was "Christina" George's first wife? Did "Christina" leave him? Or, was Christina a daughter? Or, no relation, at all? Did Abraham move to Georgia and start the Cutliff clan which spread across the south? Was David {Cutlip} Cutliff, who settled near Mammoth Cave (KY) between 1810 and 1820, a son of Abraham? The years 1750–1800 are still obscure.

Military Service: 1756–1757

     In 1756 war broke out again with the Indians and the French. Of 29 men from his area who volunteered for duty, George Gotlieb was the first. He served in the military as a Sergeant in the PA Militia (Major James Burd's Co., First Regiment of Foot) 03-Mar-1756 — 02-May-1757 during the French & Indian Wars. A good deal of his time was spent building a frontier fort (Fort Augusta) on the east bank of the Susquehanna River just below the junction of the North and West Branches (where Sunbury, PA stands today). Colonel Burd spoke glowingly of George Gotlieb in his handwritten journal — on file in the Pennsylvania archives. It was here that pay records begin with "Geo. Gotlieb" then "Geo. Gotlip" and end with "Geo. Cutlip." The name change was complete.

To Western Virginia — The Frontier: c.1760

     After his military service, George moved his family down the Shenandoah Valley into the heart of the Appalachian frontier in what would become West Virginia in 1863. He, however, arrived more than a century earlier. That century would see Cutlips fighting in the AmRevWar, the 1812War, the MexWar, and the war that saw Cutlips fighting and dying on both sides — the AmCivWar.




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