Biography of Herbert Alfred Burdick of El Monte California

Herbert Alfred Burdick was born in Cortland, New York, February 18, 1855, the second in a family of seven children, five sons and two daughters. The father, Amos, was also born in that place, as was the grandfather, Joseph, who as a frontiersman, engaged as a hunter and trapper, and in summers, as a farmer. Amos Burdick followed his early training and became a farmer, in young manhood removing to Wisconsin, where he enlisted in Company B., Thirteenth Regiment Wisconsin Infantry, and served in the Civil War for three years and nine months. Returning to civil life, he located in Milton, Rock County and pursued agricultural lines until his final removal to California, where he located in Pomona, thence returning east and dying in 1902, in North Loop, Nebraska. His wife was in maidenhood, Martha Spencer, who was born in Cortland County, New York, a daughter of Oliver Spencer, who as a carpenter, passed his entire life in the state of New York. Mrs. Burdick died in Modesto, California, in 1907.

Herbert A. Burdick was reared in Wisconsin, and in North Loop, Nebraska, and was educated in the public schools. Reared upon a farm, he continued this occupation when starting out for himself. He later homesteaded property in Greeley County, after which he went to Sheridan County, and entered land and improved farms. Having learned the blacksmith’s trade in the meantime, he built a shop in Rushville, and worked at his trade. In 1888, he came to California and located in St. Helena. One year later he came to El Monte.

In North Loop, Nebraska, Mr. Burdick was united in marriage with Miss Sarah Elizabeth McDowell, a native of Michigan, and they became the parents of two children; Lester, present El Monte Chief of Police, and Thisba, now Mrs. E.L. Glenn, residing in Long Beach.

Immediately upon his arrival in El Monte in 1889, Mr. Burdick opened a blacksmith shop at Main Street and Granada Avenue, where he followed his trade, remaining in business until about a year before his death, which occurred in June of 1912. Mrs. Burdick’s death occurred November 27, 1932, in El Monte.

In the early nineties, Mr. Burdick was elected a trustee on the Lexington Street Grammar School Board, and served in this capacity for over twenty years. He was affiliated with the M.W.A. Lodge, The Forresters, and the A.O.U.W.

A devout member of the Seven Day Advent Church, and a man of deep religious convictions, Mr. Burdick lived an exemplary life filled with true Christian service.

Source: C. D. Mayon, F. Brow, L. Stoddard, and C. Mudd; El Monte from the Pioneer Days. WPA Project No. N-5740, 1936. In record 19-187072. (California Historical Landmark No. 765: El Monte). On file at the SCCIC, CSU Fullerton.

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