James D. Lynch
Secretary of State: 1869-1872
Born: 1839 in Baltimore, MD
Died: December 18, 1872
A.M.E. minister, newspaper editor. Because Lynch is already well-known and well-documented, I have spent less time on him than other men on this site.
For more information on Lynch’s career in the ministry, search for “Lynch” in the online edition of My Recollections of African M. E. Ministers by Alexander Walker Wayman.
“LYNCH, JAMES, a son of Rev. Benjamin Lynch, was born in Baltimore, Md. When a little boy he was a pupil of Bishop Payne’s, and afterwards went to a college in the East. In 1859 he was admitted into the Indiana Conference. In 1860 he was transferred to the Baltimore Conference, where he remained for a few years and then went to South Carolina as a missionary. He succeeded in organizing churches in several parts of the State, and went to Georgia and organized churches there. In 1865 he was appointed by the Bishop editor of the “Christian Recorder.” He resigned in 1866, and joined the M. E. Church, and went to Jackson, Miss. After filling many stations and districts, he was elected Secretary of the State. He was a very eloquent speaker, but died in the prime of life.”
(Alexander Walker Wayman, Cyclopaedia of African Methodism, 1882)
“By 1870, he was the most popular black man in the state and the best Republican stump speaker, black or white. Even Democrats respected this slender, fiery politician with the massive head and the direct, no-nonsense approach.”
(Lerone Bennett, Black Power U.S.A.: The Human Side of Reconstruction, 1867-1877, 1967)