Margaret Mahoney Daily, Descendant of Patrick H. & Margret Lynch, Interview 1972

The following interview with Margaret Mahoney Daily was featured in the Billings
Margaret was the oldest child of Mary Lynch Mahoney, Patrick and
Margret Lynch’s oldest daughter.  
Her sister, Katie Mahoney Buffington, disagreed
with some of the details in the article.  
It is my understanding that research done
on the casualties of Custer’s Battle dispels the myth that the Mahoney killed there
was a brother of John Mahoney,  
Margaret and Katie’s father.

The Billings Gazette

May 14, 1972

Her cousin was a


her friend was an


And her uncle died with CUSTER


Gazette Staff Writer

Mrs. Margaret Daily of Billings
Roger Clawson photo

An Irish colleen, given a $10 gold piece by Copper King Marcus Daly and bounced on the knee of a Cheyenne warrior who helped kill Custer, remembers Montana in the making.

Mrs. Margaret Daily, widow living at 14 Jefferson Ave, recalls a childhood touched by the degradation of a once proud people on the Cheyenne Indian Reservation.

Mrs.Daily’s parents were Mahoneys and Lynches, natives of the Auld Sod who fought to make a poor living in Waterford County, Ireland.

ACROSS THE BOG lived her grandfather Patrick Lynch’s first cousin-a young, hard-working lad, Marcus Daly.

Young Daly was slopping hogs for a farmer when his fellow Irish Catholics were fleeing the religious and political strife of home to seek their fortunes in the “New World.”

Margaret’s Aunt Rose and Daly’s sister Honor-a pair of comely lasses with beautiful voices-sang together at church gatherings and clan picnics.

THE “ENGLISH TROUBLE” worsened and soon everyone-the Lynches, Dalys and Mahoney’s were boarding boats for America.

Daly went to California, later founding the Anaconda Co., becoming a legend in his lifetime as a copper king and king-maker in Montana politics.

Margaret’s grandmother Mary Lynch married John Mahoney and the family moved to Shullsberg, Wis.-first stop on their westering odyssey.

It was there in Shullsberg that her uncle Patrick H. Mahoney disappeared.

Young Pat, just 16, had joined a crowd of Shullsberg youths celebrating the arrival of the river boat one summer day in the mid-1800s.

THEY WERE DANCING on the deck of a sternwheeler when an insult roused Pat’s Irish ire.

Pat answered  slander with his fists.  When the brawl  had ended, the author of the insult sprawled unconscious on the deck and Pat blanched white with fear.

“He thought he had killed the fellow,” his niece in Billings recalls, having heard the story from her parents.

Patrick H. Mahoney fled in terror, and was never heard from again until many years later.  Then his name was found on the store records of a fort in Minnesota.

Pat had joined the army.

Indian warrior, a friend

Margaret’s photo of Cheyenne chief Two Moon, never before published, she says, was taken in 1912 at Lame Deer.

TRACING ARMY RECORDS, the family learned a half century later that Pat was the first of the family to make it west.

He was also the first to meet Two Moon (and thousands of other Indians).

Riding west with Col. George Armstrong Custer, Pat died in the “battle of the greasy grass” with Custer and his men.

Both the Lynches and the Mahoneys made a second move.

THE DUST HAD HARDLY SETTLEDfrom the battle on the Little Bighorn when both families moved to Butte.

Margaret Mahoney was born in the mining city’s Centerville District in 1890.

Her father, a miner, told her later of the renewed Irish-English conflict that festered in Butte, thousands of miles from their homeland.

Orange Day walks ended in riots, a careless political remark by daylight was frequently answered with clubbings and shootings by night.

MARGARET WAS STILL an infant when the cousin who had made good, Marcus Daly, gave her a $10 gold piece for Christmas.

It was not long after that when her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Mahoney, moved to Lame Deer where there was no more religious friction for the Irish.

(The Mahoneys were not alone among the Irish moving to the reservation country.  Margaret, when only 18, met a handsome young Irishman, Eben Daily.  She was a country schoolmarm, he a dashing cowboy.  They were married in Miles City in 1911).

It was there, in the heart of Cheyenne Country, that the Mahoneys found a people more oppressed than their kinsmen back in Ireland.

THE PROUD MORNING STAR PEOPLE, victors at the Little Bighorn, victims at Sand Creek and Wounded Knee, were reduced to poverty and disgrace.

Margaret remembers a pair of paupers who were once leaders in both war and peace.

Two Moon, Cheyenne chief who led braves into battle against Custer, and Little Chief who fought for his people in the treaty negotiations in Washington, D.C. were both friends and neighbors.

“I can’t remember when I didn’t know Two Moon.” says Mrs. Daily.

“HE USED TO BOUNCE ME  on his knee and say: ‘You’re a pretty little girl.  You’re a pretty little girl.”

Two Moon knew Margaret’s mother as “Am-I-O-Ne,” Cheyenne for ” Walking Woman.”

Little Margaret he called, “Am-I-O-Ne” Histona,” which translates “Walking Woman’s Daughter.”

The chief and his people had fallen on bad times, she recalls: “The rations promised the Indians did not reach them.  Millions of pounds of beef went instead to the military, the white Indian agents and others.”

She recalls the “grub dances,” celebrations that marked the rations day on the reservation.

Mrs. Margaret Daily’s photo of grub dance at Lame Deer, which marked ration days on the Northern Cheyenne Indian reservation.

WHEN THE GREAT WHITE FATHER dispensed his meager dole, the people who had once whipped the U.S. Army gathered around as starvation was again delayed.

Little Chief, the Indian statesman left a poignant scar on the memory of young Margaret:

“I remember going to see him with my mother and another woman.

“His wife warned us he was in a bad mood when we knocked at the door.”

At 18 Margaret traveled the Cheyenne reservation on horseback with her mother to visit friends and watch the Indian ‘grub dances.’

INSIDE THEY FOUND THE CHIEFlying on a pallet on the floor.  His woman, nearby, kept the flies from the aging leader with a tuft of shredded newspaper tied to a stick.

“Have you any bread?” the elder Mahoney woman asked.

“No,” said Little Chief.

“Any meat?” Mrs. Mahoney probed.

“No meat,” he said.  ”No meat, no milk, no bread.”

“What about the government?”  Mrs. Mahoney asked.

THE OLD CHIEF ROSE  and retrieved a box from the corner of the small cabin.  Inside were stacks of yellowed documents.

“This is what the government gives us,”  Little Chief said.


“You cannot eat treaties.”

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

DAVID MOGEN publishes Honyocker Dreams


David’s book is a collection of essays
about family and family history.  It
is available from Amazon or University of
Nebraska Press.David is a descendant of Lena Tucker, one of Patrick Hugh
and Margret Lynch’s daughters who arrived in Montana in
Whether they were actually Hungarian or Bohemian, “Hunkies” or “Bohunks,” or even from Eastern Europe at all, to the old ranchers of the Great Plains, the farmers and settlers who moved in and fenced off the open land were no-account “Honyockers.” And to Honyockers like David Mogen’s people, who built lives in the face of great difficulty and prejudice, the name came to bear all the meaning and power of their hard-won home place. It is this sense of place, of tenacious if uneasy belonging, that David Mogen traces through his family history in Honyocker Dreams.
Beginning with his father’s reminiscences as he surveys the Montana landscape, Mogen weaves a narrative of memory and history, of the dreams and disappointments of working-class farmers, cowboys, and miners among his ancestors, and of the post-frontier world of Indian reservations and farming towns that endure on the Montana “Hi-Line,” the flat expanse of Big Sky country that lies hard against the Canadian border east of the Rockies. From the frontier world of his parents and pioneer ancestors to the boom-and-bust tales about growing up in the small-town world of his own Montana childhood in the 1950s, Mogen travels full circle to recent journeys that reveal the paradoxical burdens and strengths of his father’s cowboy legacy as well as the hidden pain and healing power of his mother’s homesteading heritage. His is a journey that opens a window on a unique but little-known region of Montana and the West.
David Mogen is a professor of English at Colorado State University. He is the coeditor of several books, including Frontier Gothic: Terror and Wonder at the Frontier in American Literature, and is the author of Wilderness Visions: The Western Theme in Science Fiction Literature and Ray Bradbury.
Honyocker Dreams is full of humor, sharp details, clear prose, and reflections on what it means to be a Westerner, past and present.”—Jenny Shank, New West
“I grew up in South Texas, about as far south as one can get from the Hi-Line and still be in the United States. But the book continually brought back memories I didn’t even know I had about what it was like to be a kid growing up in a small town, where one learns to rely on one’s own resources. In Mr. Mogen’s fine book, we learn as much about ourselves as we do about him.”—David Crisp, Billings Outpost
Honyocker Dreams implicitly encourages us to comprehend our origins, to become mindful of the often complex influences of place and people who have shaped us.”—Brian Dillon, Billings Gazette
“David Mogen, CSU English professor, has penned a realistic memoir that will trigger memories in all, even if you don’t know what in the world a honyocker is.”—Nancy Hansford, Coloradoan
“Mogen deftly revisits the geographies of his past, resulting in an eloquence testimony to the grit and aspirations of his parents and his own talent as a lyrical chronicler.”—O. Alan Weltzien, Western American Literature
“David Mogen offers critical acumen in thrilling anecdotes.”—Nick Bascom,Great Plains Quarterly
2012 High Plains Book Award Finalist in the nonfiction category.
Publication of this volume was assisted by The Virginia Faulkner Fund, established in memory of Virginia Faulkner, editor in chief of the University of Nebraska Press.
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

We’re back

Sadly, the website developed for the Montana Lynch-Callen Reunion was deleted inadvertently by the carrier when they sold their sites to another entity.  I discovered
it was missing hours after the deadline passed for retrieving the data.

This will be a link to family information, family history, and notifications as to accomplishments by our extended family members!  It welcomes input from links to the
Lynch-Callen line on either side of the Atlantic!

Welcome!  Come visit often!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment