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Famous Iraqi POW had Civil War ancestors

Jessica Lynch

Famous WV POW PFC Jessica Lynch, captured in Iraq in 2003 and rescued as a prisoner of war, had two ancestors who fought in the Civil War. One was also a prisoner of war.

Ms. Lynch’s great-great-great grandfather, Joseph P. Lynch, and his son Francis (her great great grandfather) both fought with Companies C and K of the 7th West Virginia Infantry.

The 7th West Virginia Infantry was known as the “Bloody Seventh” due to all the bloody battles where they saw action. Joseph was seriously wounded in the right hip at the Battle of Cold Harbor, VA on June 3, 1864. He was treated in a military hospital in Philadelphia, PA. He was placed on the Invalid Pension Roll and received a disability pension of $4 per month. He died in 1887 at age 78.

His son Francis was also wounded in the hip with his injury coming at the Battle of Antietam on September 17, 1862. He also participated at the Battle of Gettysburg where he suffered deafness in the left ear from incessant cannon fire as he supported the battery. He was captured at the Battle of the Wilderness and held in three Confederate prisons in Richmond, VA; Andersonville, GA; and Florence, SC. Francis died in 1929.

Ms. Lynch still lives in West Virginia. She also had an ancestor who fought in the American Revolution.

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