Introduction to Lynch Clan

My Lynch ancestors from Ireland came to America in 1848. The group included my Grandfather James Lynch and his five siblings, ages 10 to 18, who sailed without their parents to New York City. Soon they were living in a tenement house in Massachusetts working in a textile mill. From there they gradually migrated west. This blog will contain information gathered by my mother, Hazel Lynch Skonberg from her father, giving details of the trip over and life in America. There is also a diary written by his son, Will Lynch, who was with the American Consular Service of the State Department, and was taken hostage on Dec. 8, 1941, by the Japanese Army who had captured Shanghai that day. I hope you enjoy this blog about the James Lynch family in America.
To receive these blogs by email, sign your email address in the space called Follow By Email, provided on the right hand side of the page. Roselyn George

Thursday, February 23, 2012

WR Lynch Days 199, 200 and 201

Will Lynch buys more shorts, preparing for warmer weather in new post--perhaps Cairo, Egypt.  He hears that probable sailing date for repatriation of diplomats will be June 29.  Roselyn

June 24, 1942.  Wednesday.  199th Day.
     Good weather.
     Sailing date still indefinite.
     Called at American School where Farina, Rolled Oats and Cracked Wheat are still being doled out.

June 25, 1942.  Thursday.  200th Day.
     Nice weather.
     Delivered another suitcase to Schrapf-Guenther & Co., as only 3 are said allowable on the bus to the boat, now said to sail next Monday, 29th of June.
     Bought from Wm. Yu, for CRB$20.00 (China Bank), another pair of khaki shorts.  He will put on a buckle strap and another hip pocket, and have it ready tomorrow by 10:00.
     Beat A.M. at rummy.

June 26, 1942.  Friday.  201st Day.
     Nice weather.
     Got another pair of shorts, khaki from Wm.Yu--CRB $20.00 .  Seems we are to embark next Monday, 29th--maybe?
     British in North Africa seem to have taken a licken'.  Wonder what ails 'em?


Tuesday, February 21, 2012

WR Lynch Days 197 and 198

Will Lynch says there is still much conjecture about the sailing date for exchange with Japanese diplomats.    Roselyn

June 22, 1942.  Monday.   197th Day.
     Big news is postponement from Wednesday to Saturday, maybe, of sailing of SS Conte Verde.  We are all agog as to reason and much surmising.
     Deadline for conversion of "old money" to "new money" at 2 old for 1 new has been extended a few days.  It's equal to a 50% capital levy, a slick trick if it works, but brought with an awful headache - if?  It is "major chizzlin".  (Meaning cheating or taking advantage.)

June 23, 1942.  Tuesday.  198th Day.
     Nice weather.
     Went to 69 Chusan Road with A.M. and got CRB$80 (Chinese Bank) refused from Mr. Turner in Room 4, House 47, 1285 Joffre.
     Walked aplenty.
     Thence back and A.M. bought a quart brick of what is called "ice cream" and 1/2 pound of wafers, and we had a feed at A.M's room No. 1, No. 12 Seymour Road, The Berkeley.
     Chusan is in Jewish refugee sector, Honkew.
     Much conjecture regarding our sailing date!
     Washed out a pair of sox, a handkerchief and a coat shirt.  I'm some "washee man"!  (Will Lunch was used to having his laundry done by a Chinese man servant).

Saturday, February 18, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 195, 196 and 197.

As the American Consular diplomatic exchange in Shanghai nears, the people are exchanging "gifts" to "remember you by".   The definition of a "topee" is that it is a pith helmet.  I never did learn the identification of A.M.  Roselyn

June 20, 1924.  Saturday.  195th Day.
     Recovered my topee, and will give it to Bg. for similar one received from him.
     With A.M., saw "Private Life of Henry VIII" at Cathay.  
     A.M. now lives at the Berkeley and is more content.
     Tomorrow is last day to exchange old Fapi for new Chinese Bank money.

June 21, 1942.  Sunday.  196th Day.
     ?     ?   Missed!

June 22, 1942.  Monday.  197th Day.
     Capt. Tornroth wanted my parasol to "remember you by".  I similar countered, and he gave me a good suit, 2 pieces, of silk pajamas, pongee (silk).  A.M. got a big doll, Chinese, rag.  A.M. somehow had a pair of men's silk pajamas, and insisted I take 'em.  I did.
     At 6:00 had tea at Circle Sportif Francaise.  Did quite well today.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 192, 193 and 194.

Will Lynch is late reporting in, and found Japanese guards were looking for him.  Roselyn.

June 17, 1942.  Wednesday.  192nd Day.
     Had super-excellent chow at Jimmy's "Mandarin Inn".  Gorgeous joint.  Present were Mr. and Mrs. James, A. Murphy, Mr. Parks and myself.
     Was late reporting back and Japanese guards were looking for me at my room 903.

June 18, 1942.  Thursday.  193rd Day,
     Some rain.  Warm.
     Tonight's paper says we embark June 24, next Wednesday.
     Helped A.M. move today to "Berkley", No. 12 Seymour Road.
     Won cribbage 3-2 from Mr. Groves and lost one, tied one and won 3 checkers off JBS.
June 19, 1942.  Friday.  194th Day.
     Rainy and warm.
     Had new rubber heels put on my shoes.
     Saw G. Giliberto, 112 Vallon.
     Much talk anent impending repatriation, now scheduled for next Wednesday, 24th June.
     Am not sure how much Military Yen to take as I don't know whether stewards will be Japanese or Italian.  (I assume he means for tips and paying the stewards).

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 189, 190 and 191.

Will Lynch buys clothes more suitable for the warmer climate he expects later.  He sees Japanese planes fly in formation over his hotel in Shanghai.  Roselyn

June 14, 1942.  Sunday.  189th Day
     Saw the movie "Hollywood Party" at Roxy.  It was for the "eye and ear".
     Played checkers with JBS.  I won 4 games and drew 1 or 2, forget which.

June 15, 1942.  Monday.  190th Day
     Wore first "shorts" today and like them o.k.
     Had one pair of khaki long pants cut down.  Plus a Hawaiian coat shirt and am quite cool.
     Beat JBS at checkers 3-1.  
     Got two free tickets for chorus at Roxy next Sunday morning, 10:00 a.m.
     Butterscotch at Chocolate Shop is CRB (China Bank) $18.00 a box.  I got 1/4 pound today for CRB $3.60, as it was sale day, at 20% discount.

June 16, 1942.  Tuesday.  191st Day.
     Bought coat shirt for CRB $3.30.
     Omitted dinner (supper) as tummy wasn't too good.  Also bad throat.
     Much talk of date of departure.
     Saw 14 Japanese planes pass over our hotel in formation about noon.

Monday, February 13, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 186, 187 and 188.

To his dismay, Will lynch learns departure date has been postponed for 10 days.  Roselyn

June 11, 1942.  Thursday.  186th Day.
     Warm to hot.
     Our baggage was taken by Schraff, Buenther to their godown.  I had 1 trunk, 2 bags, and a suitcase.
     In afternoon we were informed sailing date postponed from 16th to 26th.   Darn!  I have retained enough gear, so I can "live out of my retained gear", fortunately, for a while.
     A.M. called
     I still have a bit of a sore throat.

June 12, 1942.  Friday.  187th Day.
     Bought a Hawaiian "coat shirt" for CRB $28.50 (about US 80 cents.) at Wing Sun Co., 155 Seymour Road.  Quite a good garment.
     Good chow at 3:00 p.m., at Mrs. J.J. James.  A. Murphy and 2 James girls present.
     Back to cell 903 (his hotel room) by 7:30 p.m.

June 13, 1942.  Saturday. 188th Day.
     Nothing to report.
     Cocktail party at Stanton's to "drink up the remains".

Sunday, February 12, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 184 and 185.

Will Lynch was notified State Department was asking for volunteers for reassignment to posts in Africa, Near East and India.   Roselyn

June 9, 1942.  Tuesday.  184th Day.
     Had tiffin with Reni Nieh.  
     Tea at French Club with Mrs. M. Krahmaloff, a widow of a bit over a year.
     Got mimeo copy of notice regarding leaving for repatriation, to be about 16th.
     And C.G. informed me of receipt of inquiry from State Department for volunteers for reassignment to posts in Africa, Near East and India.  I agreed to go any place, but suggested a salary readjustment.  He said he'd take it up when he arrived in Washington.

June 10, 1942.  Wednesday.  185th Day.
     Packing, packing!  Gosh!  What a job.
     Sore throat.
     Musical supper tonight.
     I ought to be better tomorrow.
     Station from Hankow called.
     Later I went out to American School site, as Red Cross doles out cracked wheat, Farina and Rolled Oats gratis to American citizens.  Lots of people are discovering they are Americans that didn't care much previously.

Friday, February 10, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 181, 182, and 183.

Will Lynch receives notice to have heavy trunks ready to put on ship by June 10, 1942.  Roselyn

June 6, 1942.  Saturday.  181st Day.
     Rained all afternoon.
     Went to town and got CRB$37.50 net from furniture auction.
     Bought some silk goods at Sea Captain's Shop.
     Played rummy with Brookhart 3:00 - 12:00 and lost super series.
     Notice was circulated to have our heavy trunks, etc. ready by June 10, 1942, as Scharp-Guenther would take delivery.

June 7, 1942.  Sunday.  182nd Day.
     A.M. called.  Has very small room.  Seems to be in a mental fog.
     The gang is getting its "gear" ready to move out.
     I called on Miss Nieh, 1187 Joffre.  Will have Chinese chow on Tuesday 9th, at her place.

June 8, 2942.  Monday.  183rd Day.
     Fine weather.
     Got gear---dishes and kitchen wear---and sent to 1285 Joffre, House 47, Room 4.
     Six months ago the war started.
     Did some packing tonight.  What a job!
     Lost two dollars "FAPI (about US 3 cents) playing dominoes.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 178, 179, and180.

Will Lynch "celebrates" his 57th birthday in captivity by Japanese Army in Shanghai, China.  Roselyn.

June 3, 1942.  Wednesday.  178th Day.
     Wet today.
     Forgot to turn in pass until 8:00 p.m.
     A.M. called.  Needs some furniture for new small room.
     Looks like Axis powers are not winning in Africa or Russia.

June 4, 1942.  Thursday.  179th Day.
      Warmer and cloudy.
      Looks like we'll be leaving Shanghai shortly.

june 5, 1942.  Friday.  180th Day.
     Am 57 today!   Wow.
     Repatriation talk is gaining speed.  
     Apparently Germany is getting bombed plenty.  Seems she isn't winning in Russia nor North Africa.
     Japanese seem to be winning against Chinese, but at a price.  Seems Chinese are fighting a delaying fight, with idea of causing Japanese as much trouble as possible.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 174, 175, 176 and 177.

Will Lynch auctioned off his household furniture, hoping that repatriation is soon, and he will be released from captivity by Japanese Army in Shanghai.   Roselyn

May 30, 1942.  Saturday.  174th Day.
     Fine weather.
      No news.  Local German radio claims big victory at Karkov.  If true, wonder???

May 31, 1942.  Sunday.  175th Day.
    Cloudy, but no rain.
    Japanese were to have a big rally on the Race Course.
     I had no pass, for some reason unknown to me, so took only a short local walk.
     My rented radio is "lousy".
     Lost rummy to Brookhart 2-0, and checkers to JBS 1-3 and drew one. 
     A.M. did not call today. Wonder why?

June 1, 1942.  Monday.  176th Day.
     No record.

June 2, 1942.  Tuesday.  177th Day.
     Nice weather.
     Auctioned off my house furniture for some CRB $2,300/2,400, or a bit over US$100.00 at Canton Road place.
     Forgot to turn in yesterday's pass until this morning.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 172 and 173.

Will Lynch, in captivity in Shanghai, puts his furniture up for auction, sailing date may be June 14, so repatriation may be near, found a worm in his oatmeal!  Roselyn

May 28, 1942.  Thursday.  172nd Day
     Fine weather.
     Sent my furniture to Central Auctioneers and Adjustors, 160 Canton Road, to be sold next Tuesday, June 2nd.
     Mr. Lockhart showed me a typed notice he is circulating.  Sailing date is stated to be June 14th or 15th.  We are to submit by tomorrow, a luggage statement.  Looks like we may be going ere long.
      Found a worm in my oatmeal at breakfast--after eating all--less the worm.  Showed it, the worm, to the Chinese waiter and he showed the worm to head waiter, a Russian, and he took up matter with the chef.
     Couldn't get to sleep till 3:00 a.m., 29th.

May 29, 1942.  Friday.  173rd Day.
     Nice weather.  
     Got vaccinated for small pox.
     Walked downtown and back.  Coat--CRB $10.00.  Borrowed off JBS.
     Beat Brookhart 2-1 at rummy and JBS 1-0.  Beat JBS at checkers.  He won one game and I won several games.

Friday, February 3, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 170 and 171.

Will Lynch gets his furniture out of the Consular Office so, he can put it in an auction.  He reports the the war news is "definitely bad".  Roselyn

May 26, 1942.  Tuesday. 170th Day

     Cloudy.  Rain in evening.
     Chinese chow (tea) at King Kong on Rue Wayron.  
     CRB money fast replacing Chinese dollars.  I have Chinese $145.00 left.  Old value was about US$43.00.  Present value is about US$3.00. Sure is "hell" on people with Chinese money, and an awful swindle on the Chinese people.
     Tonight's radio says vessel to repatriate will sail about middle of June.  What a hope.
     Got a replacement radio today, and it does very well.
     Beat JBS badly at checkers 5-1 and rummy 2-0.  Is that an omen?

May 27, 1942.  Wednesday.  171st Day.
     Heavy rains and wind in morning.
     At 2:00 p.m., several of us with 3 Swiss Consular men got into the American Consulate.  I put my furniture out into the corridor, and will later send it to auction.
     War news is definitely bad.
     Repatriation is all the talk.
     Am reading "Tobacco Road".
     Hole Cripes!  US $1.00 equals Chinese $42.30 or CRB $19.00!


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

WR Lynch WW II Diary Days 168 and 169.

Will Lynch speaks of at least three value denominations of money in Shanghai during this time: US (united States), Chinese (Old Chinese), and C.R.B. paper money (Chinese Reserve Bank).  Another is called "FAPI, and seems to be some kind of paper money issued by the Japanese.  This causes the "money situation to be very bad."   Roselyn

May 24, 1942.  Sunday.  168th Day.
     Too warm.
     Attended a party at 4:00 p.m. at Mr. and Mrs. Fowles, Nanking Road.  Good eats and drinks.  A group picture was taken.
     At 7:45, a cocktail party at Room 924, by Mr. Hunt.
     At 2:00 - 3:40, won 2 games of Rummy off A.M.

May 25, 1942.  Monday.  169th Day.
     Nice weather.
     Couldn't get Swiss Consulate on the phone, so went down, but as it was a holiday (Whitsuntide) Mr. Essig and Ruf were not in.  So I could make no arrangements to get my furniture out to send to auction.
     Money situation here is bad.   Chinese $ is being replaced by CRB, (Chinese Reserve Bank) paper money, and is adding untold misery to the populace.
     In afternoon, went to Route D four to a tea party.  
     Am renting, at Ch $40.00 a month, a little radio.
     Was a bit wet this afternoon.