Edmund N. Burch Colfax County, New Mexico

Edmund N. Burch, county commissioner of Colfax County, was born in Keokuk, Iowa, December 12, 1849, son of Eli and Apphiah (Tolman) Burch, and was reared on his father's farm and educated in the common schools of his native state. He continued to reside in Iowa until the spring of 1883, when he landed in New Mexico, the date of his arrival being March 1. His first work here was as a car repairer, in the employ of the Santa Fe Railroad Company. Afterward he clerked for seven years in the grocery of George J. Pace. Then for four years he ran a dairy on the Sugarite, five miles from Raton. In the spring of 1898 he filed a homestead claim to one hundred and sixty acres of land on Johnson's mesa, since then he bought one hundred and sixty acres adjoining him on the south, and now he has three hundred and twenty acres, devoted chiefly to dairy purposes. On this farm is a fine well of pure water, which comes from a depth of ten feet through a crevice of the rock and affords a constant and abundant supply of water.

Politically Mr. Burch is a Republican. In the fall of 1900 he was elected county commissioner of Colfax County, for a term of four years, in 1904 was re-elected for two years, and is the incumbent of the office at this writing. His service as commissioner has been characterized by that enterprise and thoroughness which have brought success to him in his own private affairs. Among other county matters he has been especially interested in the betterment of roads, with the result that many new roads have been made and old ones improved. In educational affairs also has Mr. Burch been prominent and active. He was a member of the school board two years, 1899-1900. It was largely through his efforts that school district No. 5 was organized in 1900 and the schoolhouse built in the spring of the following year, this being the third school on the mesa. Another movement in which Mr. Burch was an important factor was that of securing a telephone system for his locality, in the summer of 1904, he having helped to organize and incorporate a company under the name of the Johnson Mesa Telephone Company. And he has contributed some valuable articles to the Raton Ranger.

December 8, 1875. Mr. Burch married Ada Clark, a native of Iowa. Their fourth born, a daughter, Blanche, died at the age of three years. Of their other children, we record that Maud A. is the wife of Henry Floyd, of Johnson's mesa; Nellie M. is the wife of James Floyd, also of Johnson's mesa; Eli LT. and Verne E., at home. Mr. Burch holds to the Baptist creed and has membership in the church at Raton.

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Source: History of New Mexico, Its Resources and People, Volume II, Pacific States Publishing Co., 1907.

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