Edith Walker Burns 1871 - 1951
Edith was born in State Center, IA. Her father established a homestead in 1872. The next fall, Mr. Walker was elected to the Board of Supervisors; and in 1874, passed an exam and was admitted to the bar. At the end of 1875, the family moved to a new house in Primghar where Mr. Walker continued his legal practice and land business.
Edith survived an attack of scarlet fever in 1879 and moved with her family to Sanborn in 1880. While she was attending school in 1882, her father established the first telephone line in the county from Sanborn to Primghar and another from Sanborn to Sheldon so that all his offices could be connected.
On April 27, 1892, in one of the 'events' of the season, Edith married Mr. Michael Merrill Burns at the home of her parents. M.M. was a successful conductor on the Chicago-Milwaukee Railroad who was left with two small daughters when his wife died around 1886. The Burns' moved into their new home on West 4th St. toward the end of 1892 and resided there throughout their married life. In addition to the girls, they were parents of one son, Warren.
Edith was a very talented individual and used her musical and artistic abilities to the benefit of her community. The spacious residence was the scene of many charitable and social events throughout the years. At least two local organizations were founded within its walls - the Twentieth Century Club and the Milwaukee Railway Women's Club. Mrs. Burns was instrumental in organizing a library for Sanborn and responsible for penning the initial request to Andrew Carnegie for a building around 1910. She was the library board president for 48 years and chair of the local Red Cross Unit. After establishing a DAR chapter in Sanborn, she held several state offices in that organization.