October 20, 2020 • 3 min read
There is usually a story behind every business name, and ours is no different. The history behind the Lynch Creek Farm name is certainly special to me and my family. My name is Andy Hunter, owner of Lynch Creek Farm along with my wife Tracey Hunter. It all started when my folks bought 10 acres of land in 1974 on Lynch Road the year I was born! They built a house right away and soon after started growing vegetables on the land, initially to feed the family but soon it seemed we were feeding a small village. As my folks got serious about farming in 1980, we started going to the local Shelton Farmers’ Market and soon needed a name to better sell our veggies. Our last name is Hunter and "Hunter Farms" would have been the most obvious name, but in our small town there is another Hunter family who had been well established for years running a huge pumpkin patch and other business ventures. So at that point, we had to pick another name. Lynch Road was the local road the Farm was on, and it was also the road my mother was born and raised on and, in fact, still lives on today. My grandparents and many other relatives lived on Lynch Rd at that time back in 1980. There is also a beautiful, wooded stream called Lynch Creek that ran through the back of our family property. As kids, my two brothers and I spent countless days playing in and along the creek. So, when our family business needed a name, Lynch Creek Farm was born :) As a side note, my brother and his family live on the original Lynch Creek Farm property today, and my wife, two daughters, and I live across the street from him on Lynch Road.
The history of the name “Lynch” dates back many years before the turn of the century. A settler to the area named Jeremiah Lynch and his wife settled on a large plot of land on Lynch Rd and Lynch Creek, likely including our family farm. Jeremiah eventually sold the property to his niece, Marguerite, and her husband who continued to farm shellfish into the 1900s. They never had children and were very close friends to my grandparents who also lived on Lynch Road…..back then, the road was still just a dirt road. Sometime after WWII, Marguerite and her husband were selling the property and all but begged my grandparents to buy it from them. History would be a little different if this would have happened, as I might be selling clams and oysters today instead of fresh evergreen wreaths. The property was eventually purchased by relatives of Marguerite named the Bishops, and they continue in the shellfish business to this day. We are lucky to have such good neighbors in the Bishops as they continue in the tradition of shellfish to this day and are good stewards of the land.
A local South Sound Business news article tells about the Little Skookum Shellfish Growers and their harvesting history:
In 1849, Jeremiah Lynch left his home in County Cork, Ireland to seek his fortune in the California gold rush. Luckily, gold eluded him, and by 1883, he had found his way north to the Washington Territory, to what is now the town of Shelton. There he built his home on the shores of Little Skookum Inlet, a small inlet at the south end of Puget Sound. He quickly discovered the beautiful oyster beds on the tide flats of his homestead, and began his practice of sharing his bounty with family, friends, and neighbors. This soon grew into the family business, now known as Little Skookum Shellfish Growers. Today’s owners, Lisa and Brett Bishop are the fifth generation of Jeremiah Lynch’s family to dedicate themselves to the legacy which began over 125 years ago. They, with their sons, Jeremiah and Justin, plan to continue farming the tidelands just as it has been.
I hope this information is helpful, and I truly appreciate telling our family story. My wife and I purchased a house and old dairy barn on the other side of the road from the original farm on Lynch Rd and live very close to the original homestead of Jeremiah Lynch. My brother lives in the original Lynch Creek Farmhouse across the street, while my Aunt and Uncle live beside us. So, our family still makes this beautiful place our home.
We continue the family tradition of selling elegant handmade evergreen products during the holidays. We love what we do creating fresh and fragrant wreaths, centerpieces, garland, and tabletop trees for you and your loved ones and hope you and your family and friends will share and enjoy our products this Christmas season. Nothing makes us happier!