Austin Bailey Lynch is one of the grand old men who acknowledged allegiance to the Union and marched from their homes to southern battle fields when the unity of this great country was menaced by civil war. He is a genial Irishman who has won a host of friends in the Southwest by his kindness, honesty and generosity, for no man was ever more liberal when a friend needed help, either financially or morally. Mr. Lynch was born on a farm in Warren county, Illinois, March 27, 1843, the son of Patrick and Margaret Harris Lynch. The father was born in County Cork, Ireland, in 1805; he came to the United States and in 1829 located in St. Louis, where he followed his trade of brick mason for three years. In 1832 Mr. Lynch bought 620 acres of land in Warren county at $1.25 an acre and for the following twelve years devoted his attention to farming. During this time the land appreciated in value and he sold out to a considerable advantage, buying more land in Sayler county, Illinois, on which improvements had been made, and remained there until 1858, when he removed to Adams county, living there until his death in 1873. Mr. and Mrs. Lynch were married at McComb, Ill., in 1832. Mrs. Lynch was a Kentuckian by birth, born in that State in 1813, being the usual charming southern woman of birth and breeding. She passed away in Adams county in 1873. There were six children in the Lynch family: Margaret, born in 1833, married Peter Mecum in 1859, and became the mother of two children, a son and a daughter; Michael C., born in 1841, died in 1910; Austin Bailey; Alexander H., born in 1846, is now a cattleman at Great Falls, Mont.; Mary F., born in 1848, is now the widow of W. W. Shannon, and lives at Fellsburg, Kan.; Patrick Henry, born in 1849, died in 1863; John, born in 1853, is a farmer near Moses, Idaho.
Austin Lynch received his educational advantages in the public schools of Illinois and worked on his father's farm until the outbreak of the Civil war, when he enlisted in Company I, Fifty-seventh Illinois infantry, on December 2, 1861. He was promoted to corporal for gallantry on the battle field of Shiloh, where he was wounded, though not severely. With his regiment Mr. Lynch participated in twenty-one important engagements, and was under command of General Sherman on the memorable "March to the Sea." When the war closed he was mustered out of the service July 14, 1865, and within a short time went to Texas, where he worked on the range as a cowboy, making two trips up the famous Chishold trail in 1870-71 to Baxter Springs with cattle for the eastern markets. In 1872 he located on a soldier's homestead in Barton county, Kansas, where he was engaged in farming nineteen years. The country was little settled when Mr. Lynch first came and he spent much time hunting buffaloes over the western part of the State, so he well deserves a place among the hardy pioneers who opened the way for civilization and the plow. Mr. Lynch bought land in Allen county in 1890, where he again engaged in agricultural pursuits until 1894, when he came west to Stevens county to buy 1,600 acres of grazing land near the southern boundary. This is one of the finest and largest ranches in the Southwest, for Mr. Lynch stocked it with fine cattle, which have increased year by year, although he sells many each season. Mr. Lynch's success has been phenomenal, but it is a just reward for hard work directed by a master mind which finds no detail too trivial when business is concerned. Having learned the cattle business on the range, Mr. Lynch has conducted his ranch along advanced business lines which he finds to be successful and today his place has the most up-to-date equipment of any in the Southwest. He has a host of friends in Kansas, where he conducts his business deals. He is a member of that rapidly thinning band, the Grand Army of the Republic, having membership in the S. A. Hulbert Post, No. 48, of Ellinwood. Mr. Lynch married Mary Robe in Barton county, in 1874, and they have become the parents of eight children, four of whom are living: William A., born in 1875, is now an engineer in Chicago; Earl, born in 1877, is in partnership with his father; Bessie, born in 1891, lives at home, and Hazel, born in 1893, is a teacher in Stevens county.Pages 606-607 from a supplemental volume of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed October 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM196. It is a single volume 3.
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