Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Frank Leonard Cunningham

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Frank Leonard Cunningham (1831-1915)

1916 Obituary [1]

FRANK LEONARD CUNNINGHAM was born in Edinburgh on 29th May 1887.

He was educated at a private school in Penzance, at Plymouth and Mannamead College, and at University College, London, where he obtained his Diploma in Mechanical Engineering in 1907.

From February 1908 to August 1910 he served his apprenticeship to Messrs. Sir W. Armstrong, Whitworth and Co., at the Elswick Works, Newcastle-on-Tyne. He was then entrusted by Mr. Alfred Moseley, C.M.G., with a mission to visit Saint Helena and prepare plans and specifications for an engineering plant on that island.

In 1911-12 he was engaged in the drawing-office of Messrs. John I. Thornycroft and Co. at Woolston, Southampton, and in 1912-13 held a post in the drawing-office of Messrs. Vickers, Ltd., at Westminster.

He then entered the service of the Vacuum Oil Co., and was appointed to a post in the Glasgow branch of that company, which he held when the War broke out, the post being kept open for him while on active service.

He joined the Northumberland Hussars at Newcastle in 1909, and on the outbreak of war that regiment was among the first of the Territorial units to offer for foreign service. It was mobilized almost immediately, and proceeded to Belgium with the Seventh Division at the beginning of October 1914. Mr. Cunningham went with his regiment and served through the severe fighting in the neighbourhood of Ypres in October and November 1914. During the great attack on the enemy's positions in the West in September 1915, he was one of four men selected by his officer to carry out a dangerous patrol; all the men's horses were shot, and he and another man were wounded.

He died at the Australian Hospital, Wimereux, near Boulogne, on 1st October 1915, in his twenty-ninth year.

He was elected a Graduate of this Institution in 1907, and was part author of a Paper on the Endurance of Metals, published in the Proceedings in December 1911.

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