Transcribed from "An Illustrated History of The Big Bend Country, embracing
Lincoln, Douglas, Adams and Franklin counties, State of Washington",
published by Western Historical Publishing Co., 1904.
EDMOND J. BURKE, an old timer
of Almira, Washington, is a respected citizen of Lincoln county and an
energetic business man. He is well liked and popular, owing to his
sound principles. The success he has achieved is the due reward of
his labors and wisdom and although he has met numerous obstacles in his
career, he has invariably overcome them and is now possessed of a large
holding in this world's goods.
E. J. Burke was born in Winona county, Minnesota
on May 28, 1861. His father, Thomas B. Burke, was a native of Ireland
and emigrated to America in 1848, settling on a farm in Minnesota.
In 1875, he moved to Greene county, Iowa, and there farmed. The mother,
Sarah (Kain) Burke, was born in Ireland and came to America when a young
girl. She died in 1869. Our subject received his education
in the district schools of Minnesota and Iowa then completed the same in
the graded schools of Nebraska. He came to Idaho in 1883 and soon
thereafter made his way to Washington. In the spring of 1884, he
came first to Douglas county, Washington, and took a homestead in what
is known as the Grand Coulee settlement. Later he took a timber culture
claim and also bought land at various times until he owns a total of nine
hundred and sixty acres. This is divided into several farms, each
of which is well improved with all the necessary buildings and fences.
Mr. Burke started in to raise stock in this country and handled cattle
for seven years. Then, it being 1891, he sold his cattle, took a
trip to California and in 1892 returned to Almira, where he bought grain
for the Northern Pacific elevator company. In 1893, he bought grain
with J. C. Keller, in 1894, he was associated in the same business with
J. C. Johnson. Finally he sold to Mr. Johnson and in 1898, went to
the Palouse country and bought a store. He operated this for two
years and then the same burned up. In 1900, we find Mr. Burke again
in Almira, where he bought a large grain warehouse. This he sold
the next year to the Puget Sound warehouse company and since then has been
buying grain for them. Since he quit the stock business, in 1891,
he has rented his farms and they bring him in annually a handsome income.
Mr. Burke started with a very limited capital and is now one of the leading
and substantial business men of this part of the country.
The marriage of Mr. Burke and Mary E. Kirk,
was celebrated in 1893. Mrs. Burke was born in Maine, on July
13, 1875, the daughter of William and Eliza (Crain) Kirk, who are living
near Almira, and are mentioned in another portion of this work.
Mr. Burke has one brother, Thomas, living
near Almira. Mr. and Mrs. Burke have one child, William E., born
February 2, 1901.