Lynn Family

Margaret Lynn

Ancestor Margaret Lynn born 3 July 1693; died 1773 most likely Belefont Farm, Augusta County, Virginia; buried 1773 most likely Belefont Farm, Augusta County, Virginia next to her husband; married 1715 County Donegal to John Lewis born 1678 Donegal Co., Ulster, Ireland; died 1 Feb 1762 Augusta Co., Virginia. Five, six or seven children; see Lewis

Margaret Lynn Parents

The origins and ancestry of this Lynn line are not well documented and, consequently, are uncertain. Various claims have floated around for years, now being propagated via the internet, but no evidence accompanies them. Parents of Margaret Lynn (1693-1773) are technically unproven though it is generally thought that she was daughter of William Lynn (abt1672-aft1727) and Margaret Patton (1676-aft1727) who had seven or eight children. Their death dates are BOTH variously reported as 1727, although I suspect that one or both may be "After 1727" but have absolutely no evidence. One may have died 1727, the other known living at that time. Frazier (page 18, see later) reports the Margaret Patton Lewis died 1727, William died 1729 but does not state where those dates came from. I also do not know where these parents died, if it was Ireland or America, but might speculate - based in the "After 1727" benchmark that it might have been in America and they immigrated sometime around, and in some connection with, the fleeing of John Lewis (1678-1762) from Ireland in 1729. Margaret Lynn Lewis (1693-1773) reportedly joined her husband a couple years later. Again, I cannot cite any evidence.

Lynn Origins

Frazier, in The Family of John Lewis, Pioneer presents in Chapter 3, a discussion of Margaret Lynn Lewis and "the Legend of Loch Lynn." Within his discussion that "Loch Lynn" might be a legend, and nothing more, he provides transcription and citation of the will of Dr. William Lynn, brother of Margaret Lynn Lewis, which contains specific and valuable genealogical information. The book and chapter is must background reading with its comprehensive and lucid discussion of the issues, as of 1985. One interesting speculation is that, rather than being Scottish, the Lynn surname was Irish, originally derived from "McLaughlin," and corrupted into "Laugh-Lynn" then "Loch-Lynn." That is interesting, though seemingly unlikely.

After I wrote the above, I have found cross-referenced mentions of a "Loch Lynn (Linnhe)," Loch Linnhe being a claimed real place in Scotland. It is apparently on the west coast, in the vicinity of Inverness, but at this point I cannot say for certain. However, the source of that information is Wikipedia which, in turn, states that the article itself needs reference or source citations. See: Wikipedia: Loch Linnhe

Various writings, including published books, claim that Margaret Lynn (1693-1773) was the "daughter of the Laird of Loch Lynn" of Scotland. That is problematic for two reasons. First, given various circumstances, I suspect she would have been the granddaughter of David, who is more commonly reputed as the Laird of Loch Lynn, who would then be the father of the above William Lynn (abt1672-aft1727). Second, as Frazier et. al. have commented [cite TBA], researchers have not been able to locate a physical place documented as "Loch Lynn" although they also report that names of many small Loch's have been lost over the centuries. Their search reported encompasssed maps of the time. Location in Inverness-shire has been mentioned as a possibility. On the other hand, "Loch Lynn" may be somewhere near Brigadoon.

David Lynn

David Lynn (Linn), Laird of Loch Lynn (Scotland); born abt 1640 in Kilmacrenan, County Donegal,Ulster Province, Ireland. He supposedly descendant of John Lynn (1585-?) of Loch Lynn, Ayrshire?, Scotland and may be patriarch of the line of Margaret Lynn Lewis (1693-1773). This line needs work, particularly source citations and understanding of history and political geography of Scotland and Ireland, though it has apparently been the subject of various research previously. See Wikipedia: "Ulster Scots people" and Wikipedia: "Plantations of Ireland" Any lineage should be considered speculative and unproven. There is substantial apparent conflict and discrepancy among the various secondary sources concerning the Lynn(Linn)/Lewis/Patton families and lines. Disagreement about EVERYTHING: Names, places, children, dates, spouses, etc. So far, I have not seen a shred of primary evidence that would even begin to clarify the confusion. It is so bad that it looks like people are just guessing; it is a mess. I have not had a chance to look at them closely.

"The Diary"

"The Valley Manuscript" aka The Diary of Margaret Lynn Lewis aka "The Commonplace Book of Margaret Lynn Lewis" has been reported in family legend as containing an extract from a personal "diary" written by Margaret Lynn Lewis (1693-1773). However, while it appears to contain some accurate Lewis data, its authenticity has been disproven. (I did not have the feeling of genuineness when reading it.) Further, a portrait that has been circulated as representing Margaret Lynn Lewis has been shown to not be her.

House of Lynn: Margaret Lynn Lewis and "The Valley Manuscript" has an excellent summary of the problems surrounding this manuscript and includes a scan of the February 1948 article from the Richmond-Times describing them in more detail. I have transcribed the text of the article and posted it here: Bogus Portrait Supplements Old 'Valley Manuscript' Hoax

The preface to the online posting of The Valley Manuscript reads:

"The following is taken from the Land We Love, edited by Gen. D. H. [Daniel Harvey] Hill, of date January, 1869, and was prepared by Fannie Fielding, of Norfolk, VA, who prefaces it with the following words: 'From a collection of archives known in our household by the above title from which I have been making extracts.' It is now re-published by request in this paper and will appear in three parts."

I did a quick search and only found what appears to be a Volume 5 of Land We Love by General D. H. Hill on Google Books which is dated "May---October, 1867-'68." The title page states: "THE / LAND WE LOVE, / A MONTHLY MAGAZINE / DEVOTED TO / LITERATURE, MILITARY HISTORY, AND AGRICULTURE" "CHARLOTTE, N.C. / PUBLISHED BY D. H. HILL / 1868." It appears the publication on Google Books is a collection of the magazines of those respective months and that the diary originally appeared in the January, 1869 issue of that magazine.

The online version The Valley Manuscript shows the three parts. The footnote to the preface seems to indicate that its source was the Rockbridge County News (Maryland?) from 26 February 1891 through 12 March 1891, which were three consecutive Thursdays.

Note particularly that this Manuscript, among its many problems described in the Richmond-Times article, mentions "Alice," a supposed daughter of John and Margaret Lynn Lewis. There is no evidence such a person existed. If an Alice is shown somewhere as their daughter, this discredited Manuscript is probably the source.


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