Biography of Mrs. Mary E. Burbank

MRS. MARY E. BURBANK. – The wife of Honorable A.R. Burbank was born near Milford, Delaware, January 14, 1827, and is the daughter of Jesse E. and Ellen Eckles. While but a child of sixteen months, she was bereft of her mother by death, and was intrusted to the care of her sable nurse until three years old. At this date she moved with her father and his family of three daughters and two sons to the far West, crossing the Alleghany Mountains in wagons, and settling at Clarkesburgh, Ohio, in the fall of 1830, residing there five years. As the Eden of their expectations had not been reached, this place was left for amore distant seat in Illinois; and a settlement was made upon a farm near Naples. Here she was afflicted by the death of her father, which occurred June 17, 1837; and she was left to the care of her sisters. At the age of seventeen she was united in marriage to Augustus R. Burbank, the ceremony being celebrated May 1, 1845, at the town of Jacksonville, by the Reverend Chancey Hoberts, at the house of Hicholas and Ann Milburn, – parents of Reverend W.M. Milburn, “the blind man eloquent,” and so often chaplain in Congress. She resided six years of her married life in Naples, and spent two years at Bloomington, Illinois. With her husband she came via the Isthmus of Nicaragua to Oregon, arriving in Portland May 30,1853. The first home was made at Lafayette, but in 1857 a removal was made to Portland. Mrs. Burbank is still remembered as the first church organist in the Methodist-Episcopal church of that city. In October, 1858, a removal was made to Monticello, Washington Territory, where she was landlady of the Monticello House for nine years; and this pretty place near the mouth of the Cowlitz became the birthplace of her daughter Eva. In 1867 a return to Lafayette, Oregon, was effected. In 1870 the mother and her daughter enjoyed a visit by state to California, and thence by the newly opened Central and Union Pacific Railroads across the continent, visiting the old scenes and friends in Illinois and Delaware. On returning to San Francisco, they enjoyed a tour through Southern California, making the return trip to Portland, Oregon, by water. The loss of this daughter on the North Beach despoiled her home of much of its light and joy; nevertheless this great sorrow of her life has been brightened by the christian hope of a heavenly reunion. the intelligent mind of this daughter and her acquirement’s in music and literary culture fitted her for extensive usefulness in life, and were the basis of many hopes as to her future. Mrs. Burbank has been for many years superintendent of and a teacher in the Sunday school, and has presided at the organ and conducted the musical services, in the old church at Lafayette. She joined the Methodist church, – her mother’s church. She enjoys fair health, and carries her age well. She has a lovely and beautiful home, adorned with flowers, shrubbery and grounds, and a small farm adjoining on the east of Lafayette, Oregon.


Biography, Women,

History of the Pacific Northwest Oregon and Washington. 2 v. Portland, Oregon: North Pacific History Company. 1889.

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