Egbert "Edward" T. & Isabell (Andrews) Burch

Greenwood, Clark County, Wisconsin


Egbert "Edward" T. Burch was born in Guldbransdalen, Norway, Jul 2, 1848, the son of Torger Bjerke Burch and Gunnhild Torsdtr Segelstad.  When he was two years of age, the family came to America and settled in La Crosse Co., Wis. When he was fourteen years old he went to Black River Falls and worked there. Later on he attended school at Galesville.  In 1877, he married Julia White in 1877 and they had one daughter, Sarah "Sadie" who married Charles P. Hill of St. Paul, Minnesota, December 29, 1897.


The first merchant in Greenwood was Steven Case Honeywell who kept a small stock of goods in his home--the log house built by C. W. Carpenter. Later he and his son John moved their merchandise into a house across the road about where the Catholic parsonage stood (later called the Tom Syth building). In 1870 "Chandler and Brown" of Black River Falls rented Honeywell's store for one year and then built and moved into a building on the lot where they conducted business for a time and then sold to M. B. Warner and son who later sold to Jones Bros. and Johnson of Black River Falls.  E. T. Burch moved from Galesville to Greenwood in April, 1882, and became the manager of the Jones Bros. & Johnson firm for some time and later bought a third interest in the business. As time went on, by his honesty and upright dealing and service to Greenwood, he became a successful merchant and businessman.  Later owners in succession were Arends Bros. and John Arends. Then Ben Picus rented the building from J. Arends and conducted a general store there with Billie Rellis as manager. Although not the original store, it was on the site of the building once owned by E. T. Burch. 


October 16, 1890, E. T. Burch married Ida (Miller) Pulsifer, the widow of John.  We are not sure what happened, but a little less than a month later, on Nov. 18, 1890, Edward was married to Isabelle "Belle", the oldest daughter of Steven and Harriett Andrews. Of this union another child, Edna Lucille, was born.  She married George Hauser.


At the beginning of winter in 1912, a few people, who had received new books for Christmas, met at the John Drumond home to read aloud and discuss these books and almost immediately the question of a Public Library for Greenwood was brought up.  On January 22, 1913, a meeting was called at the home of Mrs. William Pawling.  Those present were Mmes. Erastus Bowen, William Palms, E. T. Burch, George Begley, Curtis H. Clute, the Misses Allie Williams and Rue Cummings and Messrs. Marion Hunt, William Palms, John Orrick, A. P. Raymond and Dr. Frank Kennedy, who organized an Art and Literary Club, whose sole purpose was to be the advancement of art and the establishment and maintenance of a Public Library.  The following donated some of the very first books: Hannah Honeywell, Julius Hambre, Eunice Paul, Clara Huntzicker, Dr. Carl Baker, Rue Cummings, Mrs. Grasshorn, Charles Varney, Edna Burch.


Although Mr. Burch was a member of the Lutheran Church for many years, he did everything to further the work for good, done by every denomination in the city. He was a charter member of the Odd Fellows and has helped in every way to make their work effective.


No one could have met death more bravely and in a more Christian like spirit. While the comforting words of the 23rd Psalm were sounding in his ears, he passed into the valley of the shadow of death August 17, 1912, with a smile upon his face and with the glad heart of one who has always walked in the paths of righteousness.  He and Isabelle are both buried in the Greenwood City Cemetery, as is Edna and her husband.


The E. T. Burch Store on Main St., Greenwood, Wisconsin
Proprietor Ed Burch is on the left and Adolph Schwarze is on the right.

The handsome and well equipped store of E. T. Burch was erected in 1895 by the Greenwood Mercantile and Manufacture Company with S. P. Jones, F. M. Taylor and E. T. Burch as its officers and who conducted a general mercantile business until 1902, when E. T. Burch bought out the interests of the parties concerned, taking full possession, and has since conducted a most thriving and praiseworthy business and is one of our most prosperous and respected merchants. Greenwood Gleaner
In 1940, this building became known as "Baird's Store," and was owned by J. W. Arends.


E. T. Burch leaves tomorrow for the wholesale markets to get pointers and lay in new goods for the spring trade, which gives every promise of being unusually good.  Greenwood Gleaner, 7 Mar 1902.


The home of Ed & Belle Burch in Greenwood, Wisconsin.

[Additional View] See #43






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