Private John Lynn Co. I. 3rd. Penn. Reserves. Born 1840 near Portglenone Co. Antrim.

Labourer - American Civil War Soldier 1861-65 - Farmer - Gold Prospector Colorado.

Sert.Bernard Diamond V.C. Bengal Horse Artillery. Born Portglenone 1827 died Masterton New Zealand 1892.

(A) It should be remembered that when emigrants from Ireland were asked to state where they were from on arrival in America in most cases they simply said Ireland or if they were asked where from in Ireland they generally gave the name of the nearest town. In few instances townland names or specific village names be recorded. This would be the case with James Lynn who though he appeared to be living on the Co. Derry side of the river Bann simply named Portglenone and Co. Derry when stating where he was from. Even as now though Portglenone is in Co. Antrim and Glenone ( a hamlet on the Derry side of the bridge ) and Greenlough Parish and church is on the Derry side people as now use Portglenone Co. Antrim as their postal address. Its the nearest largest postal distribution town.
(B) It is likely that the name Lynn is more associated with Moneystaghan townland close to the larger Ballymacpeake townland. There is even a road named Lynns Brae in the area. The name Lynn or from the Irish O'Loinn is one of ancient lineage in the area and this name has been around in this area of Ireland since the early centuries of the Christian era.
(C). Although not an American Civil or Revolutionary War soldier as such it would be small minded of me not to record some information on another son of Portglenone and probably Greenlough Sergt Bernard Diamond V.C. who fought in the British army in India and secured their highest medal of valour.

James Lynn born June 15th. 1798 in Portglenone Co. Antrim Ireland. He married Ann O'Kane of Co. Derry who was born June 12th 1800 in Co. Antrim. John Lynn one of their sons was born in 1840. It is more likely he was born in the Clady or sometimes Claudy area on the Co. Derry side of the river Bann on the other side of the bridge there probably in Greenlough parish. His mother Ann O'Kane may well have been from the Co. Antrim side of the river. I feel that it is probable the family were small farmers who strove to make ends meet in the post 1845 famine era. Perhaps looking for a better future his father and mother then aged about 50 rather late in life decided to seek a better future for their young family in America. The family initially settled in New Hope Township on the Delaware River Penn. then they moved to Philadelphia. John worked as a labourer there, then became a soldier in the Civil War then with land probably bought cheap because of his war service moved with his family to Montgomery Co. Kansas. The family farmed there and John also it is assumed worked with them. Sometime between 1870 and 1875 John got the urge along with thousands of others at the time to go prospecting for gold and minerals in Colorado. He choose the Leadville area of Lake Co. in that state. He was now a prospector, a miner looking for gold and other minerals perhaps hoping to make his fortune as a few others did.

John Lynn probably taken Philadelphia 1864 after he re-enlisted.

John's father James Lynn died Aug 1st 1878 in Cherry Township Montgomery Co. Kansas. Anne O'Kane his mother died Aug. 1st 1888 in Montgomery Co. Kansas. James and Anne had the following family all born in Ireland.

Felix Lynn the eldest son born May 1824 Portglenone married Mary McElhone a local girl in Portglenone May 4th. 1846 in Co. Antrim at the height of the Irish famine. Felix died Dec. 10th. 1875 Montgomery Co. Kansas.
Catherine Lynn born about 1826 in Portglenone Co. Derry.
James Lynn born about 1830 in Portglenone. Died 1875 Montgomery Co. Kansas. Never married and is buried in St. Andrews Catholic Cemetery Independence Kansas.
Mary Ann Lynn born May 1st 1835 who later married a Alex Hanna. Died May 27th. 1914 Cherryvale Montgomery Co. Kansas.
Patrick Kane Lynn born Portglenone Co. Derry Dec. 1838. Died Nov. 25th 1907 Independence Kansas.
John Lynn born Portglenone 1840 the man featured in this article.Probably died whilst prospecting in Colorado circa 1890.
It is possible there were others but no details on hand.

The Irish famine circa 1845 era would result in hundreds of thousands of Irish from all over Ireland emigrating mostly to N. America from this part of Ireland. The Lynn family emigrated in 1848 having survived the worst of the famine as there there would be little to stay for in Ireland. So it appears all the family would set off for a new life. James the father would in 1848 be aged 50 and his wife Anne aged 48. Not a age that any man would want to emigrate to the unknown of the America of the time. This is a good indicator of just what difficulties the family were in. Felix the eldest married son was 24 years of age and had just been married two years, daughter Catherine would be aged 22, son James would be 18, Mary Ann would be 13, Patrick would be 10 and John ( later the soldier would be aged 8 ).
As to which route they took one can only guess. New York, Philadelphia and Quebec could be destination options. Derry Belfast and Liverpool were possible exit ports.
The first trace we see of the family is when they turn up in the 1850 census in New Hope Township in Bucks Co. in Pennsylvania. New Hope on the banks of the Delaware river and northeast of the Philadelphia of the time. They are noted as being in houses No.198 on page 23 of the census form. They probably established themselves there and it is likely the men would do labouring work as would the father James. The mother Ann and the girls would be servants or work in the local mills.
Sometime between 1850 and 1860 the family move west to Philadelphia and the family are noted in the Pennsylvania Federal census as being in the 11th and 12th Precinct 23rd Ward on June 9th. Pages 968/12 refer. Houses No's 50 and 53. This would be the Philadelphia that was organising to form up units for the fast approaching Civil War. A young John Lynn would be aged 20. Would the family have known many of the young men from around Co. Derry and Tyrone who were to join the 69th Pa. Vol. Infantry? Most certainly.

Map of the area from which John Lynn came from in Ireland

Aerial view of Portglenone on the River Bann Co.Derry-Antrim border."Port Chluain Eoghan" the "port of Eoghans meadow",

As with most emigrants into America it is possible to link them to their churches either Catholic or Protestant back home. The Lynns are no exception. Perhaps easy in this case as the two ancient churches are still standing one in use and one used from time to time. Looking at the various headstone names I see names associated with his mother at the Aughnahoy church and that of his father at Greenlough churchyard. See images below.

1782 church at Aughnahoy on Co. Antrim side of river.

Current church built 1842 on the post Penal site at Greenlough Tamlaght Finlagan close by Clady on Co. Derry side of the river Bann.
The above old church would also have had many links to men who fought in the 69th Pa. and their families. There are still many family links to Philadelphia.

The above church is the second on the site. The first chapel was erected post Penal times in 1793 by a Father O'Regan on land given to him by the McErlane and McLaughlin families. The church would have had a thatched roof and a clay floor. Rushes or straw would have been used as a floor covering. The church was improved in 1825 by the then parish priest a Dr John McCrory. In 1841 the church was rebuilt by a Father McLaughlin who remained until 1847. The church had been completed and opened in 1842. In 1847 a Father Hasson from Glen near Maghera took over the parish. These two men most certainly knew the
Lynn family and probably baptised some if not all of the children and who knows maybe married the parents. The above church is the basically the same structure as that known by the Lynn family prior to their departure for America 1848. It is of interest to note that many of the McErland, Lynn and Diamond soldiers who fought in the ranks of the 69th Pa. were probably baptised in the church above. Their parents probably also married there or in the previous church on the site.
NOTE;Click on the image to the left for a short history of the Churches of this area.This is quite a large file so allow time to download.
A young John Lynn for whatever reason chose to join the 3rd Penn. Reserves probably due to its links and his to Bucks Co. He signed up 31st. May 1861 in Philadelphi. He mustered in at Harrisburg Pa.on 29th. July 1861. His war would soon commence. John would participate in many battles and skirmishes but was lucky and survived the war. Details of the actions he was involved in are seen at the bottom of the page. John had initially signed for a three year stint and this ended at the end of 1863 but he then re-enlists 1st Jan 1864. The war was not yet over but it would appear the attraction to re-enlist was high perhaps due to the money paid for additional service and the possibility of cheap land. It would appear that he was promoted which would gain additional pay.As to when the photo at top of page was taken it is though likely to be after he re-enlsited, got his sign up bonus and a months furlough to go back to Phikladelphia and impress his family and friends with what looks like a new uniform and cravat and hat. He was lucky again and as a post war service bonus it would he benefited from the government backed opportunity to buy cheap land in the west,in his case the Kansas territory. This is confirmed by the fact that the family turn up in the 1870 Kansas Federal census of Montgomery Co. Cherry Township. Dwelling No. 97. John is listed living with his parents but by the time of the Kansas State census of 1880 his named has dropped off. What happened to him?
Here is what has turned up so far. John's brother Patrick K Lynn turns up as a farmer in the Kansas 1880 Montgomery Co. census.

Other Information:
Birth Year 1840
Birthplace Ireland.
Age 40
Occupation Farmer
Marital Status Married
Race W
Head of Household Patrick K. LYNN
Relation Self
Father's Birthplace Ireland
Mother's Birthplace Ireland.
Source Information:
Census Place West Cherry, Montgomery, Kansas
Family History Library Film 1254390
NA Film Number T9-0390
Page Number 362C

Also in the same 1880 census of Lake Co. Colorado we find that Patrick's brother John ( the soldier ) was then in Lake Co. Colorado.
JOHN LYNN Household
Other Information:
Birth Year 1841
Birthplace Ireland.
Age 39
Occupation Miner
Marital Status S
Race White
Head of Household Sarah M. Litter
Relation Other
Father's Birthplace Ireland.
Mother's Birthplace Ireland.
Source Information:
Census Place Adelaide And Preece Hill, Lake, Colorado
Family History Library Film 1254091
NA Film Number T9-0091
Page Number 508C

If we compare the two census returns we see that between 1870 and 1880 John Lynn had moved from Montgomery Co Kansas where his family were farming and moved to Lake Co. Colorado. He is noted as being at Adelaide and Breese Hill east of Leadsville, Lake Co. and living with Sarah M. Litter as landlady in Adelaide Breese Hill being his work place with temporary sleeeping quarters. He would have moved west to Colorado and joined the gold and mineral miners of that era. The exact date of his departure from Montgomery Co. is unknown but as his name first disappeared off the 1875 Kansas census. it would suggest he probably moved with some of his family from Philadelphia just after the war when he obtained his Kansas land grant say 1866. From the family farm in Montgomery Co. he would have gone west to Colorado between 1870 and 1875. His family would soon lose trace of him.
Piecing together the story of John's life takes a degree of good luck and help from other sources. Perhaps the best prime information comes from an obituary notice in The South Kansas Tribune No.8 Independence Montgomery Co. Kansas August 7th. 1878.
LYNN.Died at the residence of his son P.K.Lynn in Cherry Township Montgomery Co. Kansas Aug. 1st 1878 James Lynn in his 81st year of his age. Mr Lynn was born near Port Glanoun Co. Derry Ireland and emigrated to this country in 1848. (Irish World please copy).
Brothers James and Patrick are noted as applying for American citizenship in Philadelphia in 1856 just before the Civil War. It would also appear that the family split for a period and the father James and son John and perhaps another son went west to Montgomery Co. Kansas to set up the family farm. His wife and other family members would follow later. In an email to me from the Leadville Genealogy group John Lynn is recorded in a newspaper article of the time in the edition of Nov. 8th 1879 that John Lynn was living at The Maine House (which was on Breese Hill). This house would be a fairly primitive affair with 12 beds in it. John is recorded as coming home one morning after working the night shift and finding a sick man in the house. He along with another man tried to help the man but to no avail. The injured man whose name was John O'Neill died the next morning. He has apparently been in a fight and had been hit in the stomach and died from internal bleeding. The man who hit him was then no doubt a wanted man. Colorado was a dangerous state to be in in those days!. It is of interest to note that John was probably using the house of Sarah M. Litter as his "permanent" place of abode but when actively working at the mine was using a shanty house called The Maine on site which was probably a rough 12 bed shack to rest between shifts. Trace of John Lynn seems to have been lost after 1880 census. A descendant family member states that the family tradition is that John went to Colorado and was never heard of again. What happened to him?. I feel that there are several scenarios. Perhaps he made it big and made a fortune. I feel that if this were the case because of his background and family ties he would most certainly have come back home. Perhaps he developed disease and died. Quite possible in the dreadful conditions these men lived in and the vicious winters in that part of the West. Maybe he was killed in a fight with other miners. Fighting would appear to have been a common event among men fuelled by greed and enviousness. Perhaps shot in the numerous miners strikes broken up by militias. We probably will never know. Leadville was a wild town of the time. gun fights, bars. bordellos and public hangings were part of the scenario. If John did survive into the 1890's mining it is interesting to note that the Sherman Silver Purchase of 1893 basically collapsed the silver mining trade. Thousands would simply back up and leave. Another possibility?.

Open and click on Lake Co in center of county map then on each town in Lake Co.

The Breese mine near Leadville Col. where John Lynn worked circa 1880.
Courtesy Denver Public Library.

John Lynn's Civil War record card.

For those of you interested in the regiments of the Civil War here is some information on the two regiments that John Lynn served in. One of the most noticeable things to note is the number of men who died from disease. In the 54th Regt more enlisted men died from disease compared to combat deaths.

3rd Regiment Penn. Reserves Infantry (32nd Volunteers)

Organized at Philadelphia and moved to Easton, Pa., May 20, 1861. Camp there until July 22. Moved to Harrisburg, Pa., July 22, and mustered into United States service July 28. Moved to Washington, D.C., thence to Tennallytown, Md. Attached to 2nd Brigade, McCall's Pennsylvania Reserves Division, Army of the Potomac, to March, 1862. 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, 1st Army Corps, Army of the Potomac, to April, 1862. 2nd Brigade, McCall's Division, Dept. of the Rappahannock, to June, 1862. 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, 5th Army Corps, Army Potomac, to August, 1862. 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, 3rd Corps, Army of Virginia, to September, 1862. 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, 1st Army Corps, Army of the Potomac, to February, 1863. 2nd Brigade, Pennsylvania Reserves Division, 22nd Corps, Dept. of Washington, D.C., to April, 1864. 2nd Brigade, Pennsylvania Reserves Division, District of Alexandria, 22nd Corps, to January, 1864. Dept. of West Virginia to April, 1864. 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, Dept. of West Virginia, to June, 1864.

SERVICE.--Duty at Tennallytown, Md., until Oct. 9, 1861, and at Camp Pierpont, near Langley, Va., until March, 1862. Expedition to Grinnell's Farm December 6, 1861. Advance on Manassas, Va., March 10-15, 1862. McDowell's advance on Falmouth April 9-19. Duty at Fredericksburg, Va., until June. Moved to White House June 9-11. Seven days before Richmond June 25-July 1. Battles of Mechanicsville June 26. Gaines' Mill June 27. Charles City Cross Roads and Glendale June 30. Malvern Hill July 1. At Harrison's Landing until August 16. Movement to Join Pope August 16-26. Battles of Gainesville August 28. Groveton August 29. Bull Run August 30. Maryland Campaign September 6-24. Battles of South Mountain September 14; Antietam September 16-17. Duty in Maryland until October 30. Movement to Falmouth, Va., October 30-November 19. Battle of Fredericksburg December 12-15. "Mud March" January 20-24, 1863. Ordered to Washington, D.C., February 6, and duty there and in District of Alexandria until January 6, 1864. Duty near Martinsburg, W. Va., until January 27. Operations in Hampshire and Hardy counties, W. Va., January 27-February 7. Duty near Kearneysville, W. Va., until March 27, and near Harper's Ferry until April 3. Moved to Webster, thence to the Kanawha Valley, W. Va., April 22. Crook's Expedition to Virginia & Tennessee Railroad May 2-19. Battle of Cloyd's Mountain May 9. New River Bridge May 10. Expedition to Meadow Bluff, Fayette county, May 10-19. Near Newport May 12-13. Left front for Pittsburg, Pa., June 4. Mustered out June 17, 1864. Veterans and Recruits transferred to 54th Pennsylvania June 8, 1864. Regiment lost during service 3 Officers and 69 Enlisted men killed and mortally wounded and 1 Officer and 54 Enlisted men by disease. Total 127.

54th Regiment Infantry

Organized at Harrisburg August and September, 1861. Duty at Camp Curtin until February, 1862. Left State for Washington, D.C., February 27. Attached to Defenses of Washington to April, 1862. Railroad Brigade, Middle Dept. to July, 1862. Railroad Brigade, 8th Corps, Middle Dept., to September, 1862. Defenses Upper Potomac, 8th Corps, to March, 1863. 4th Brigade, 1st Division, 8th Corps, to June, 1863. Campbell's Brigade, Dept. West Virginia, to December, 1863. 1st Brigade, 2nd Division, Dept. West Virginia, to April, 1864. 2nd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, West Virginia, to June, 1864. 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, West Virginia, to July, 1864. 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, West Virginia, July, 1864. 3rd Brigade. 1st Division, West Virginia, to December, 1864. 2nd Brigade, Independent Division, 24th Army Corps, Army of the James, to June, 1865. 1st Brigade, Independent Division, 24th Corps, to July, 1865.

SERVICE.--Duty in the Defenses of Washington until March, 1862. Ordered to Harper's Ferry, W. Va., March 29. Assigned to guard duty along line of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad by Detachments--Company "A" at South Branch Bridge, Company "B" at Paw Paw, Company "C" at Great Cacapon Bridge, Company "D" at Alpine Station, Company "E" at No. 12 Water Station. Company "F" at Sleepy Creek Bridge, Company "G" at Back Creek Bridge, Company "H" at Rockwell's Run, Company "I" at Sir John's Run and Company "K" at Little Cacapon Bridge--until January, 1863. Skirmishes at Back Creek Bridge September 11, 1862 (Co. "G"); North Mountain September 12 (Cos. "D,"" and "G"); Back Creek Bridge September 21 (Co. "G"); Little Cacapon October 4 (Co. "K"); Paw Paw October 4 (Co. "B"); Hanging Rock, Blue's Gap, October 2. Moved to Romney January 6, 1863. Purgetsville and Going's Ford April 6-7. Duty at Romney until June 30. Moved to New Creek June 30. Pursuit of Lee July 6-19. Skirmishes with enemy July 10 and 19. Return to Romney. March to relief of Mulligan at Petersburg, W. Va., August 1-5, and duty there until November 7. Moved to Springfield, thence to Cumberland, Md., January 1864. Operations in Hampshire and Hardy Counties January 26-February 7. Patterson Creek February (Co. "F"). Fremont's Ford April 1. Little Cacapon April 10 (Co. "K"). Sigel's Expedition from Martinsburg to New Market April 30-May 16. Battle of New Market May 15. Hunter's Expedition to Lynchburg May 26-July 1. Piedmont, Mount Crawford, June 5. Occupation of Staunton June 6. Middlebrook and Brownsburg June 10. Lexington June 11. Otter Creek, near Liberty. June 16. Diamond Hill June 17. Lynchburg June 17-18. Buford's Gap June 20. At and near Salem Juno 21. Movement to the Valley July 1-14. Reached Martinsburg July 14. Snicker's Gap July 17-18. Winchester and Kernstown July 24. Martinsburg July 25. Sheridan's Shenandoah Valley Campaign August to December. At Halltown until August 28. Berryville September 3. Battle of Opequan, Winchester, September 19. Fisher's Hill September 22. Cedar Creek October 13. Battle of Cedar Creek October 19. Moved to Washington, D.C., December 19-20, thence to City Point, Va., and Bermuda Hundred, Va., December 20-23. Siege operations against Petersburg and Richmond December, 1864, to April, 1865. Appomattox Campaign March 28-April 9, 1865. Hatcher's Run March 29-April 1. Fall of Petersburg April 2. Pursuit of Lee April 3-9. Rice's Station April 9. Regiment captured. Sent to Parole Camp, Annapolis, Md. Mustered out at Harrisburg, Pa., July 15, 1865. Regiment lost during service 5 Officers and 108 Enlisted men killed and mortally wounded and 2 Officers and 137 Enlisted men by disease. Total 152.

Sergt. Bernard Diamond V.C. Royal Horse Artillery. Born Portglenone Co. Antrim 1827 died Masterton New Zealand 1892.

Bernard Diamond born 1827 and aged 20 after working as a labourer for some years in 1847 joined the British army. This would really have been against tradition and I feel his family may well not have been too comfortable with his joining the British Army based in Ireland. America would have been their option though a lot further away he would be going from one Irish ethos to say the Irish ethos of friends in say Philadelphia or New York. He would most certainly have known the Lynn, O'Kane and McElhone families mentioned above. He may well have been at school with them. He was soon posted to India where he joined the Bengal Horse Artillery. In 1854 while in India he married an English widow a Mary Collins and raised two boys and a girl. Of his 21 years service he served 19 in India and took part in numerous famous campaigns. During his service in India he gave distinguished service. At Bolandshahr India on 28th of Sept. 1857 whilst in charge of a heavy artillery piece he and a fellow Irishman Richard Fitzgerald held the line against withering musket fire and overcame the enemy attack. Both men received the V.C. for their courage. Diamond also took plart in the Punjuab campaign and was in the regiment commanded by Lord Gough. Diamond also fought at the battles of Ramsbuggar, Chilliamallah, Gonjerat. He took part in the advance on Peshawar commanded by General Gilbert. He went through the Euosoufasi country with Colonel Bradshaw and passed through the Quat Pass with Sir C.Najdar. Later he took part in the battles of Nujudghur, the seige of Delhi, the battle of Bolandshahr and Agra under Brigadier Greathead, the seige of Cawnpore, the seige and capture of Lucknow under Lord Clyde and the battle of Newabguage under General G.H. Grant. As well as the V.C. he held the Punjab medal, the Indian Mutiny medal and Good Conduct medal. Bernard was discharged in 1866 due to blindness due to a war wound. In 1875 he emigrated to New Zealand where he remained for the rest of his life. He died in Masterton 29th Jan 1892 aged 65 leaving a widow Mary and three children. Mary died 2nd Jan 1900 aged 82. Both are buried in Arthur St. Cemetery Q.E. Park in Masterton. Bernard Row BD Plot 3. (record 001584 refers). Mary is buried in row MD Plot 3. (record 001585 refers). By any standards Bernard was a survivor. Bernard's medals are held in the museum of the New Zealand Army at Waioru. Richard Fitzgerald won his V.C.in the same action as Bernard Diamond. Not a lot is known about him. As far as is known he was born in Co. Cork Dec 1831 and probably died somewhere in India circa 1884. His place of burial is not really known and one source suggests Ghaziabad in N. India possibly under a different name. Richards medals are held in the City Museum and Art Gallery in Bristol England.This is a very unique situation where two men received the V.C. for the same action but it would appear that it was the combined action of the two men and they who retrieved a very grave situation for many others in very vunerable situations.

With thanks to the following:
Mike Kane Military Researcher. Pittsburg.
Topozone Mapping.
The Leadville Genealogy Group.
Bernard Diamond images courtesy Adele Pentony-Graham.
Dolores Steele for associated images.
Denver Public Library.
The New Zealand Army Museum at Waioru New Zealand.
The good folks of Portglenone, Clady and Greenlough Co's Antrim and Derry.