Monday, October 27, 2014

Madness Monday: Thomas Lynchard

Thomas Lynchard (about 1780-before 1820), my 5th great grandfather, drives me mad.  Where was he born?  Who were his parents?  Why do I not find a single other person in the United States with the last name Lynchard before 1800?  Was his last name Lynchard, or Linchard, or Lencher?

The few things that I do know come from a very nice family history, "My Virginia kin : comprising the Hamlett, Witt, Giles, Wills, Eubank-Fortune, Mullenix, Lynchard, Talbot, and Kight families" by Blanche Hamlett Baldridge (available to users here), a marriage bond for him and his wife Prudence Talbert/Talbot in West Virginia, and a Stoner Township, Bourbon, Kentucky 1810 Census entry.

I have searched US records for anyone with the last name Lynchard in 1800 and before.  The only result I came across is Revolutionary War soldier  Amasa Lynchard who served for Rhode Island.  Further investigation in revealed that this was most certainly an erroneous transcription of Amasa Linchorn/Lincoln.  I doubt that Lincher/Lencher/Lynchard is a corruption of Lincoln, but I am not totally sure.

[ My Virginia kin : comprising the Hamlett, Witt, Giles, Wills, Eubank-Fortune, Mullenix, Lynchard, Talbot, and Kight families : [database on-line]. Provo, UT: The Generations Network, Inc., 2005.
Original data: Baldridge, Blanche Hamlett,. My Virginia kin : comprising the Hamlett, Witt, Giles, Wills, Eubank-Fortune, Mullenix, Lynchard, Talbot, and Kight families : with a short treatise on the Loving family. Strawberry Point, Iowa: Press-Journal Pub. Co., 1958.]

There are some problems with above biography.  If Thomas and wife Prudence got to know each other in Bourbon County, Kentucky, then why they would go about 289 miles east to Harrison County, West Virginia (then part of Virginia) to get this marriage bond recorded?

["West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 08 Jul 2014), Thomas Leuchard and Prudence Talbert, Harrison, West Virginia; citing v 2 p 68; FHL microfilm 847274.]

Harrison County, West Virginia, was created from Monongalia County, West Virginia (Virginia) in 1784.  I suspect that Thomas Lynchard was possibly born in that area, but his surviving children gave Ireland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Kentucky as his place of birth in their 1880 Census.  What I glean from this is that they thought he was:

  • of Irish ancestry
  • possibly born in what was Virginia  (and in an area was that was very close to Pennsylvania along the Monongahela River), 
  • possibly from Kentucky, as it was still a part of Virginia around the time he was born (Kentucky was formed from Virginia in 1776).

It has been assumed by the "My Virginia Kin" work that Prudence was the daughter of Bourbon County, Kentucky resident Henry Talbot and his first wife, Hannah King.  For a number of reasons that I will cover on another day, I believe that Prudence was more likely the daughter (or at least relation) of Cottrell Talbot and Elizabeth Reger, who lived in the same area as where the marriage bond was created, and were known to have had a daughter named Prudence.  I don't think Thomas Lynchard and Prudence came to Bourbon County, Kentucky until 1806, based on known children's birthplaces.

[Year: 1810; Census Place: Stoner, Bourbon, Kentucky; Roll: 5; Page: 248; Image: 00136; Family History Library Film: 0181350. 1810 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2010. Images reproduced by FamilySearch.
Original data: Third Census of the United States, 1810. (NARA microfilm publication M252, 71 rolls). Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C.]

The household of Thos Linchard indicates 1 boy under 10, 1 man 26-44, 2 girls under 10, 1 woman 26-44.  The census list is alphabetical, so it is unknown who his immediate neighbors were.  There are no other Linchards/Lynchards in the area.  There IS a Hamilton Lincher about 40 miles south in Estill County, Kentucky (formed from Madison and Clark counties in 1808).  I need to investigate who this is.

The story goes that Thomas Lynchard served in the War of 1812 and died sometime afterwards from the effects of exposure during his service.  I do not know his dates of service or date of death.  His wife Prudence appears in the 1820 Census as the head of household in Owen County, Kentucky.  She married 2 years later  to Jacob Bowman and moved to Cincinnati, where she died about 1834, so it is unlikely she ever filed a widow's claim for Thomas Lynchard's 1812 service.

© 2014 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

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