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Kumpf died in a blizzard, and a few years later his widow was married to Henry Loseke.

William and Catherine Bucher had five daughters: Paulina, Mrs. A. D. Becker, of Columbus; Louise, Mrs. Myron Gray, of Los Angeles; Wilhelmina, Mrs. Fred Boehm, of Columbus; Martha, Mrs. George O'Brien, of Los Angeles; and Ella, Mrs. Keith Perkins, of Columbus. Four daughters and one son died in infancy.

In April, 1929, William and Catherine Kumpf Bucher celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary. Mr. Bucher died in 1938, and Mrs. Bucher died February 10, 1945.

Mr. Bucher was a member of the Knights of Pythias Lodge. In 1938, he was the oldest honorary member of the Columbus Fire Department. Politically, he was affiliated with the Republican Party.


Emil A. Bucholz, son of John F. and Louise Koehler Bucholz, was born March 15, 1898, at Bancroft, Nebraska. He came from there to Platte County, August 26, 1920, and has since been a leader in the field of rural education in the county. He was one of fourteen children.

Emil attended the Zion Lutheran School, at Bancroft, the Concordia Teachers College, at Seward, Nebraska, and the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.

On December 28, 1924, at Columbus, he married Clara E. Grotelueschen, daughter of Adolph and Mathilda Wilke Grotelueschen. Mr. and Mrs. Bucholz have seven children: James, born September 22, 1925, graduated from St. John's Academy, at Winfield, Kansas, and served in the United States Merchant Marine; Frederick, born November 12, 1926, graduated from the Bremerton High School at Bremerton, Washington, and served in the Army Air Corps; Miriam, born April 22, 1931, was graduated from Kramer High School; Mark, born July 27, 1928, graduated from Kramer High School; Wallace, born July 31, 1934; Priscilla, born June 11, 1936, attended Kramer High School; and Stephen, born July 28, 1940, is a pupil at Christ Lutheran School.

During the twenty-nine years that Mr. Bucholz has been teaching at Christ Lutheran School, he has been active in organizational work and has endeavored to improve the standards of rural education. He is a member of the Lutheran Choral Union, the Walther League, the Laymen's League, the Platte County Educational Association, the State Teachers' Association, the Concordia Historical Institute of St. Louis, and the Guild of Lutheran Teachers. He has taken great interest in the church musical circles.

Although Mr. Bucholz has had many offers and opportunities to teach in other fields-or enter other lines of business-he has decided to remain with the school of the Christ Lutheran Church. The achievements and fine citizenship of the many graduates who have studied under Mr. Bucholz are, in themselves, a tribute to his devotion to his work.



Howard Leroy Burdick

Howard Leroy Burdick, cashier of the Central National Bank of Columbus, was born at David City, Nebraska, July 16, 1907, the son of Doctor Harry E. and Bertha Hill Burdick. Doctor Burdick, a native of Haywarden, Iowa, was born January 3, 1878, and died at David City, January 12, 1937. He spent his 4 active years as a physician and surgeon in David City. Howard Burdick has two brothers and one sister: Donald, a practicing physician in David City; Harold, a chemist; and Elizabeth. Howard attended the David City schools, is a graduate of the David City High School, and later attended the University of Nebraska, where he was affiliated with the Sigma Nu Fraternity.

He came to Columbus in June, 1933, and has been associated with the Central National Bank, except for a short time in 1937, which he spent in Chicago. He held several positions with the bank prior to his present office of cashier.

On February 6, 1937, at Chicago, he married Dorothy Speice, daughter of W. I. Speice, former County Judge, and Louise Matthews Speice. Mrs. Burdick has one sister, Katharina, the wife of Lester Carrig.

During World War II, Howard Burdick served twenty-eight months in the United States Army, both in the United States and in the European Theatre of Operations. He is a member of the American Legion; the Rotary International; the Y.M.C.A.; the Columbus Chamber of Commerce, of which he is past president; and the B.P.O.E. Politically, he supports the Democratic Party. The Burdicks are members of the Grace Episcopal Church, of which Howard Burdick is treasurer.


Mark J. Burke, active in public life in Platte County for many years, was born at Lisbon, Lynn County, Iowa, October 16, 1868, and arrived in Platte County in November of that year. His father, John C. Burke,

The History of Platte County Nebraska

came to Platte County as part of the construction crew of the Union Pacific Railroad in 1865, after serving in the Civil War. Mrs. Burke had journeyed to the comparative safety of her former Iowa home, immediately prior to Mark's birth and returned to Columbus as soon as she was able. John C. was a roadmaster on the Union Pacific Railroad, during its construction, and shortly thereafter homesteaded at Shell Creek. Both John C. and Margaret Gallagher Burke were natives of the British Isles. John was born in County Roscommon, Ireland, in 1832, and Margaret at Newcastle-on-Tyne, England, in 1852.


Mark J. Burke

John and Margaret Burke had three sons and one daughter. Mark was the eldest, with John, Mary, and James following in that order. Mary is deceased. John lives in Denver, Colorado, and James is a farmer at Geneva, Nebraska.

Mark attended a parochial school in Carroll County, Iowa, where he completed elementary and high school. In 1888, he began working for the Northwestern Railroad Company in Missouri Valley, Iowa, but was subsequently transferred to Chadron, Nebraska, where he worked as a fireman and substitute engineer until the outbreak of the Indian War in 1890. At that time, he enlisted in the United States Army and was assigned as a quartermaster sergeant to Company "H" of the Nebraska State Militia, which was stationed at the Pine Ridge Indian Agency, in South Dakota. He had an interesting experience during the battle of "Wounded Knee." While accompanying General Colby, he rescued the child of a fallen Indian, at the general's request. The little Indian girl was taken by the general and later adopted as his daughter.

After serving in the Indian War, Mr. Burke served fourteen months during the Spanish-American War, with the same unit, at Chickamauga Park, Georgia. He was discharged in October, 1899, and immediately went to work for the Union Pacific Railroad. He served as brakeman and conductor for seven years. While working for Union Pacific he was injured, and after recovering discontinued railroad work entirely.. He was next employed by the City of Columbus as a law enforcement officer in the city's police department for five years. In 1913 he was appointed deputy sheriff of Platte County, and in 1914 was elected sheriff of the county, which office he held for six years. During the first World War, 1917-1919, he served as chairman of the Platte County Draft Board.

On January 25, 1902, he married Nellie Dineen, daughter of Michael Dineen. Mr. and Mrs. Burke had one son, Mark, Jr., born November 22, 1904, in Columbus. On January 24, 1913, Mrs. Burke died. Mr. Burke was married November 16, 1915, to Loretta Conley, daughter of John and Margaret Conley.

Mark, Jr. attended St. Bonaventure's School in Columbus, Quincy College in Illinois, and the Creighton University in Omaha, where he was graduated as a pharmacist. He is now married and a practicing pharmacist in Omaha. He has a son Mark III and a daughter.

Mr. Burke was a member of the Catholic Church, an ardent supporter of the Democratic party, and a charter member of the Columbus Council 938 of the Knights of Columbus, Modern Woodmen of America, F.O.E., and United Spanish War Veterans Association. He was also a member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians. He died October 21, 1949.


Robert O. Burman, known as "Bob," son of O. J. and Sophie Johnson Burman, was born September 9, 1910 at Elm Creek, Nebraska. His father, a mechanic, was born May 14, 1877, in Sweden, and died September 21, 1933, in Kearney, Nebraska. His mother was born March 25, 1881, in Sweden. Robert has two sisters: Mildred, Mrs. Walter Eberly; and Elsie, Mrs. Donald C. Henderson. A brother, Ralph, died April 1, 1915, in Pueblo, Colorado.

Mr. Burman has lived in La Junta, Colorado; Pueblo, Colorado; Kearney and Columbus, Nebraska. He is a graduate of Kearney High School and attended Kearney State Teachers College. He came to Columbus in January, 1945, to take the position of teller at the Central National Bank. He is now with the Personal Loan Department of that bank.

On February 10, 1935, at Kearney, R. O. Burman married Ina Marjorie Meyer, daughter of Edward and Mary Thompson Meyer. Mr. Meyer, who was a hotel and cafe operator, was born March 23, 1875, in Illinois, and died January 1, 1927, in Lincoln. Mrs. Meyer was born August 25, 1880, at Alma, Nebraska. Ina Marjorie has one sister, Irma, Mrs. Elmer L. Smith; and three brothers: Henry, an aircraft factory foreman; Raymond, a welding and machine shop workman; and Carl F. Meyer, parts foreman for the International Harvester Company.

Mr. and Mrs. R. O. Burman have two children, both of whom were born in Kearney, Nebraska: Marilyn Jean, born September 23, 1935, and Richard O., born June 23, 1939.

Robert Burman is a member of the DeMolay Legion of Honor, the Junior Chamber of Commerce, of which he was president from 1945 to 1946; the Y.M.C.A., and the Boy Scout District Committee. Politically, he is affiliated with the Republican Party. He served for three years as treasurer of the Friends of Music.



Mr. and Mrs. Burman are members of the Presbyterian Church, and attend the Federated Church in Columbus. Mr. Burman is an elder of the Presbyterian denomination of the federation.


The hardships of the pioneer women of Platte County are exemplified in the life of Mrs. Mary Foley Burns. Mrs. Bums, daughter of Jeremiah and Honorah Meyers Grady, was born March 24, 1848, at Keene, New Hampshire, and came to Platte County from Vernon, Connecticut.

Mr. Grady was born in Ireland, January 9, 1815, and married Honorah Meyers in Barleymont, County Kerry, Ireland, in June, 1844. Three months later they embarked for America, and after a voyage of six weeks they landed at Boston. For several years Mr. Grady was employed by the railroad in New Hampshire. He then went to Vernon, Connecticut, to farm a tract of land which he had purchased. At the outbreak of the Civil War, he enlisted as a private at Camp Foote, Hartford, Connecticut, served in the 14th Connecticut Volunteers, and was promoted to the rank of lieutenant before he was wounded, in April, 1863. He fought in the battles of Fredricksburg, Bull Run, and Gettysburg. He often told of the historically famous battle between the Monitor and the Merrimac, which he viewed from shore. Mr. Grady died May 30, 1897. Mrs. Grady was born May 6, 1825, in Killarney, Ireland, and died in Vernon, August 2, 1899.

Mary Grady came to Nebraska in 1872 with her father and two brothers, to help her father on a homestead, five miles north of Richland. A year later, in 1873, she married Daniel Foley. They had three children: John and Jeremiah are deceased; Mrs. Mary Foley Dill resides in Platte Center.

Mary Grady Foley had many interesting experiences with the Indians. Before her marriage, when the Indians came to the homestead, she and her younger brother would run to the home of a neighbor woman for protection. At one time, the Indians forced Mary and the neighbor woman to draw enough water from the well to water their ten head of horses. Later, in her own home, she saved herself and her small children from an Indian by using her apron as a flag to halt the train that had just pulled out of Richland. The large redskin had Mrs. Foley cornered at the doorway, demanding that she pump water for him. She surprised him by ducking under his arm and running toward the train. The trainmen handled the Indian. At that time, Mr. Foley was section foreman of that branch of Union Pacific.

Another time, Mrs. Foley was setting her table in the dining room. Upon entering the kitchen, she found the room lined with Indian chiefs, their squaws, and families. One big chief took Mrs. Foley by the arm, introduced her to the group, and said that they were hungry and wanted some food. The Indians were on their way to Washington, D. C. In 1876, the Foleys moved to the one hundred and sixty-acre farm they had purchased near Platte Center. Mr. Foley died July 4, 1877, On November 23, 1881, Mary Foley married Martin N. Burns. They had six children: Robert W., of Beverly Hills, California; John C., of Columbus; Edmond D., of Platte Center; and Mrs. Anna Fleming, of Irwin, Idaho. Lucy and James Burns preceded their parents in death.

Mrs. Burns was a member of St. Joseph's Catholic Church, at Platte Center, and was affiliated with the St. Anne's Society of that church. She died April 9, 1946.


William Burris was born in 1857, in Jackson County, Indiana. In 1883 he came to Platte County, locating near Humphrey.

On April 7, 1884, at Humphrey, he was married to Miss Josephine Graves, who came to Humphrey with her parents from Mendota, Illinois, in a covered wagon when she was thirteen years old. Her father, a Civil War veteran, chose Platte County to locate in when offered a choice of lands by the government in its gifts to war veterans.

Mr. and Mrs. Burns had six children: Enos and Ira, who farmed near Humphrey; Mrs. J. E. Echols, of Des Moines, Iowa; Mrs. H. Olson, of Hallock, Minnesota; Mrs. Charles Hook of Columbus, Nebraska; and Miss Talmah, of Humphrey.

On April 7, 1939, William and Josephine Burns of Humphrey Township celebrated their fifty-fifth wedding anniversary at their farm home three miles east of Humphrey. They lived on the same farm through the years.

Quiet and hard working, Mr. and Mrs. Burns spent their long life in close association with their farm work. Mr. Burns sought little in the way of public recognition in his home community, preferring to remain a private citizen over the years. The family are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.


James Burrows, son of Joseph and Marie Burrows, was born February 14, 1841, in London, England, and died January 2, 1920, in Platte Center, Nebraska. He was just a year old when he came to the United States with his parents, in 1842. Upon their arrival in the States, the Joseph Burrows family went to Johnstown, Pennsylvania, where Joseph was employed as an assistant to a land surveyor for thirteen years.

In 1855 the family moved to Illinois. James attended school there and at the outbreak of the Civil War, enlisted in Company "B," Illinois Infantry. He was wounded in the Battle of Atlanta.

In October, 1869, James drove overland through Illinois, Iowa, and to Platte County, Nebraska, where he settled on a homestead, Burrows Township was named for him, and for a time the village of Tarnov was known as Burrows. However, when the Polish

The History of Platte County Nebraska

settlers came to Burrows Township from Tarnov, Poland, they changed the name to Tarnov.

James Burrows later moved to Platte Center, and in 1916-1920, he was the last remaining Civil War veteran in Lost Creek Township, Platte County.

James Burrows was married to Rachael L. Wolf. They had ten children.


George Whitmore Burrows, former Town Marshal of Platte Center and son of James and Rachael L. Wolf Burrows, was born in Burrows Township, October 5, 1886.

James Burrows came to Platte County in October, 1869 and homesteaded one hundred sixty-acres of land near Tarnov. Burrows Township is named in his honor. He died January 2, 1920. Rachael Wolf Burrows was born in Illinois, July 13, 1846, and died in Platte Center, November 10, 1888.

George Burrows is one of ten children. Charles, deceased, was married to Kate Jonas, of Cornlea, Nebraska. Anna May is the wife of Willard Hopkins, of Platte Center. Sarah Jane was the wife of William Godkin, of Neleigh, Nebraska. Clara Ellen, deceased, was the wife of John Burns, of Scribner, Nebraska. James, deceased, was married to Susie Hayes, of Platte Center. Ada Isabelle, deceased, was the wife of Henry Scheidel, of Platte Center. Joseph and Albert are deceased. Lulu Marion is the wife of E. J. Macken, of Denver, Colorado.

On November 11, 1908 at Columbus, George Burrows married Lena Spuehr, daughter of William and Mary Von Huben Spuehr. Mr. and Mrs. Burrows had four daughters: Ruth, born September 15, 1913, died December 11, 1939; Bardeen, born June 10, 1917, died in infancy; Bernadette, born August 10, 1918; and Doris Mae, born May 6, 1920. Bernadette and Doris Mae are married.

Mr. Burrows is now an electrician. He was formerly in the lumber and cement business and was Town Marshal of Platte Center. Outside of living in Platte County, he has lived in Jackson, Mississippi; Seattle, Washington; and Norfolk, Nebraska. He was secretary of School District 24 for twelve years. He is a member of the Lions Club, and politically supports the Republican party. The Burrows family are members of the Methodist Church.


Henry Alfred Buss, Jr., son of Henry and Elise Bakenhus Buss, and grandson of Engleke and Helena Suessens Buss, was born August 5, 1905, in Bismark Township, Platte County.

The Buss name was first known in Platte County when his grandfather and grandmother arrived in 1869 from Germany, where they were natives of Hanover. After landing in New York, they proceeded westward to Nebraska and Platte County, where Engleke Buss secured a homestead claim on Section 8, Bismark Township, a part of the county just beginning to develop. As the years went by, he acquired extensive land holdings here, through hard work and careful management. There were five children in the Engleke Buss family: Meta, married Edward Bakenhus, and was the last living member of the family. Helena, who was Mrs. John Bakenhus, died in 1910. Fred and Katie, who resided on the original homestead, died in 1945. Henry, Sr. died on June 16, 1941. The Buss family is one of the oldest in Bismark Township.

Henry, Sr. and Elise Bakenhus Buss had five children: Edward is with the R.E.A.; Louise is married to Walter Blessen; Walter is married to Violet Held, daughter of the Otto Helds of Columbus, and a great-granddaughter of John Held, one of the founders of Columbus; Walter is a Lutheran Parochial School teacher, and lives in Texas; and Henry, Jr.

Henry Buss, Jr. attended the Christ Lutheran School, District 36, Platte County; Kramer High School, the Nebraska College of Agriculture, at Lincoln, for two years; and later took a course in auctioneering. He has always been interested in education, and served as director of District 36 school for several years, an office formerly held by his father.

Henry, Jr. and his family live on the farm where he spent his early years. This farm belonged to the Buss family since 1869. . His work, like that of his father and grandfather, is farming. He is also interested in the breeding of polled Shorthorn cattle, and is an auctioneer.

On April 22, 1931, he married Leona M. Arndt, daughter of Edward and Mathilda Peterson Arndt, both natives of Platte County. Mr. Arndt was born October 10, 1875, and his wife was born June 12, 1876. She died August 15, 1935, in Platte County. Leona Arndt Buss has five brothers and one sister.

Mr. and Mrs. Henry Buss, Jr. have five children: Marylyn and Carylyn, born May 8, 1932; Zona Ruth, born January 22, 1936; and Henry, III and Kathryn, born March 16, 1943. Marylyn, Carylyn and Zona Ruth attended school at Christ Lutheran School. They were all active in 4-H Club work.

Henry Buss, Jr. spent six years as a 4-H Club leader. He is on the Board of Directors of the Platte County Agricultural Society, and politically affiliated with the Republican Party.

The Buss family are members of the Christ Lutheran Church, and Henry Buss was a charter member of the Lutheran Layman's League of the church.


Lawrence H. Byrnes, born in County Wicklow, Ireland, February 18, 1831, died in Columbus, May 11, 1917. When he was twelve, he immigrated to Canada with his parents, and from there went to St. Louis. In St. Louis, in the early 1860's, he married Bridget O'Connor, a native of County Limerick, Ireland. Mr. and Mrs. Byrnes came to Columbus in 1869. They later lived at Duncan, where he was employed for a short time by the Union Pacific Railroad Company.


In the early 1870's, he filed on a homestead in Columbus Township, where the family lived until the spring of 1905, when Mr. Byrnes retired from active farm work. At this time, they moved into Columbus, and until 1917, lived in a house which he built, at 1922 Fourteenth Street.

Lawrence and Bridget O'Connor Byrnes had three children, all of whom attended the District 44 School: John, Lawrence, Jr., and Ella.

In 1898, John C. moved to Columbus, when he was elected Sheriff of Platte County. Lawrence, Jr. went to Montana when a young man, and became a rancher and cattle raiser, near Red Lodge. Later, he went to Edgerton, Alberta, Canada, where he owned and operated a cattle ranch. Ella attended St. Francis Academy, the Columbus High School, and was graduated from Fremont Normal. She taught school in District 44, Platte County, and in the states of Wyoming and Montana. She was married to Harry Matthews, a rancher, at Red Lodge, Montana. They had three children: Harry, Jr., now a rancher at Red Lodge; Lucy, a registered nurse, is Mrs. Keenan; Alice is a teacher in the Montana schools. Ella Byrnes Matthews died in 1946.

Lawrence H. Byrnes, Sr. died May 11, 1917, and Mrs. Byrnes died March 1, 1921.


John Charles Byrnes, son of Lawrence and Bridget O'Connor Byrnes, was born in St. Louis, Missouri, on January 16, 1867. The family moved to Platte County in 1869. His father, born February 18, 1831, in County Wicklow, Ireland, died on May 11, 1917, in Columbus. His mother, born in County Limerick, Ireland, on May 5, 1839, died on March I, 1921, in Columbus, Nebraska.


John Charles Byrnes

John C. Byrnes received his elementary education at District 44 School. His help was needed on the farm, but when his chores were completed, he devoted much time to reading and studying, thus furthering his education. He was an inveterate reader throughout his lifetime.

On February 14, 1898, he married Miss Magdalena Gietzen, daughter of John B. and Francisca Hoffmeyer Gietzen, in Columbus. They had one daughter, Mary, who is now Mrs. Emil Luckey, of Columbus. Mary attended St. Mary's of Notre Dame and a convent in Kansas City. She was graduated from Mt. St. Mary's Seminary in Omaha, and then attended the Creighton University School of Business.

Magdalena Gietzen Byrnes died in 1902. Four years later, June 27, 1906, John C. Byrnes married her sister, Anna M. Gietzen. Their three daughters and two sons are: Louise, Katherine, Ellen, and the twins, John C. and Lawrence H. Byrnes.

Louise and Katherine are graduates of Kramer High School, and Ellen, Jack and Lawrence are graduates of St. Bonaventure's High School. Louise is the wife of Chester Isgrig. They have two daughters, Nancy Ann and Sandra, and live in Lincoln, Nebraska, where Mr. Isgrig is an engineer with the State Highway Department.

Katherine is deputy in the County Judge's office, in the Platte County Court House. Ellen married Arden Wolf. They have two sons, John and Thomas, and a daughter Ann Louise, and live in Grand Island, Nebraska; where Mr. Wolf is district manager of an insurance business. Lawrence is married to Dolores Regan. He is an engineer with the Reed Engineering Company, of Columbus. John C., Jr. is married to Celeste Ann Coufal. He is owner and manager of the Byrnes Insurance Agency, in Columbus. Both John C. and Lawrence are veterans of World War II.

John Byrnes was destined to be one of the state's political leaders and keenest organizers. His interest in politics had manifested itself by the time he reached the voting age. He was only twenty-three years old when, as a young democrat, he held his first political office, that of County Supervisor from Columbus Township. At that time, supervisors were elected from their individual townships for one year terms.

For some years in the '90's, he took part in the Populist Party movement, and it was with the support of both the Populist and Democratic Parties that he was first elected sheriff of Platte County, in the fall of 1897, at the age of thirty. The next year he made his home in Columbus. He served as sheriff for three terms of two years each.

From 1905 to 1909, Mr. Byrnes was engaged in the real estate business in Columbus. In 1909, he formed a partnership with S. J. Ryan, when the partnership of Ryan and F. T. Walker, Realtors, was dissolved. After S. J. Ryan's death, Byrnes' brother-in-law, Leo M. Gietzen, entered the business with him. The firm, now the Byrnes Insurance Agency, was then known as Byrnes and Gietzen. In 1924, Mary Byrnes entered the firm as stenographer and bookkeeper. She successfully operated and managed the business for several years. Since 1946, John C., Jr. has been owner and manager of the company.

In 1907-1908, J. C. Byrnes served as State Senator. After that, he never sought public office, but held tremendous influence in his party.

His interest in politics branched from local circles to state circles, and then to national politics. Political rallies, state and local conventions were never fully complete until "Johnny" Byrnes appeared. Once interested in politics, it is said that he never missed a

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