The first settlers in Burbank Township were two Norwegian brothers Halvor and Thor Jorgenson (Postmyhr). After first exploring the area in 1858, they brought their parents, Jorgen and Guri Postmyhr from Wisconsin to the area in 1859. The first post office in the township was established in the home of Ole Reine in 1860 and the settlers took turns at delivering the mail to the newly settled families, until 1862 when Halvor Jorgenson was hired to deliver the mail. The official Burbank post office was established in 1867 and John H. Stauffer was chosen as postmaster. At that time, the mail was brought once a week from Paynesville, MN. This post office was discontinued in 1904 and the post office at New London, MN., served this area.
Burbank was the temporary county seat of Monongalia County in 1866. The first birth recorded in the township was for Henrietta Geer on the 16th of May, 1865. Mrs. Martha J. Whitla, wife of J. L. Whitla, was the first recorded Burbank Township death in November, 1866. The first recorded marriage was between Lewis B. Geer and Fannie E. Hudson on Oct 15, 1866; the marriage license recorded in the old Monongalia County.
The early churches of Burbank Township were: The Methodist Episcopal Church established in 1865, was later disbanded and some former members joined the Presbyterian Church when it was established in 1889. The Crow River Evangelical Lutheran Church was established in 1866 following the return of many Norwegian settlers who had fled the area in 1862 because of the Indian uprising. (Their first religious organization occurred in Oct 1861.) The Gausdal Church was organized in 1891 by people who had left the Crow River Lutheran Church. The parishioners named the church Gausdal because many had immigrated from Gausdal in Gulbrandsdalen, Norway.
Some of the first pioneers in Burbank Township
Gunder (George) Johnson...was born in Gausdal, Norway on 14 Feb 1842. He immigrated to the US at the age of 15 on the Norwegian ship, De Tre Brödre, sailing from Christiania (present day Oslo) on April 21, 1857 arriving at the quarantine station at Grosse Isle on May 26, 1857. The family came from a cottager farm named Indlaeggingen on the Restad main farm in East Gausdal in what was then called Christians Amt which is now Oppland Filke. The family was listed as out-migrants from Gausdal on 2 April 1857. Gunder worked on various farms in Waupaca county, Wisconsin before coming to Monongalia county in July 1860. He carried the mail for part of the years 1860 and 1861 between St. Cloud and St. Peter, MN. He married Johanna Johnson at St. Cloud, Mn. on 2 July 1861. They left the area during the Indian outbreak and lived in Wisconsin before returning in 1864. Their claim was in Sec 14 of Burbank township. 8 Children: Johan Peder, b. Jan 27 1867; Elvina Maren, b Jan 27 1867 (Mrs. Newgaard of Rat Portage, Ontario); Juliana b May 22 1869 (Mrs. Axel Olson of New London, MN.); Julius G. b Jan 22 1872, d March 16 1895; George M b March 10 1874; Pauline b Sept 15 1876, d Dec 25 1896; Elias b Feb 24 1879 (Carrington, ND); Anne Jorgina b July 26 1882. All of the family settled in Scandinavia Township, Wisconsin except Gunder who left Wisconsin for Minnesota in 1860.
Amund O. Sonstegord...was born at Gausdal, Gulbrandsdalen, Norway on 28th of May, 1841. Father: Ole Sonstegaard; Mother: Olive Olsdatter b at Svastum, Norway 1804. Amund attended school at Hammervik, Norway. He immigrated along with family members and his future wife in the spring of 1867 on board the ship, Boston, arriving in NY on June 7th. A month later, he arrived in Minnesota at St. Cloud where their future neighbor, George Johnson (see above) met the party and brought them to Burbank. Amund married Maren Carlsdatter in Jan 1868. She had traveled with him across the Atlantic. She was born in Modom, Norway on 3 Oct 1841. Her parents were Carl Pederson Foss b. at Fossen, Modom, Norway 19 April 1808 and Johanne Olsdatter, b. at Aamaat, Norway 12 Aug 1804. Paternal grandparents Per and Eli were also residents of Fossen, Norway. The mother's parents were Ole and Elizabeth Sund. 9 Children: Julia b. Oct 25 1871, d. Dec 24 1879; Olaus b. Sept 8 1867 (Brooten, MN. he had three children: Minnie, Arnold and Ruth); Carl b Aug 26 1869 (Sisseton, SD); Bernhard b Nov 25 1873 (Sisseton, SD); August b. Jan 3 1876 m. Louis Gilbertson; Rudolph Ferdinand b Feb 1 1878 (Sisseton, SD); Julia E. b March 23 1880; Amanda Matilda b June 7 1882; Peter Olaf b. May 10 1885. The Amund Sonstegord family belonged to the Crow River Lutheran Church.
Other Early Settlers
Jorgen Olson...b Tördal, Norway, homesteaded in Burbank in 1860.
Dahlbrink, Johannes...b in Bollnäs parish, Hälsingland, Sweden on April 14 1822. Wife Carin Larsdotter, b 1828. Immigrated to America in 1852. Moved to Waupaca, Wisconsin where he served in a Wisconsin regiment during the Civil War.
Johnson, Peter...b Alfta, Hälsingland, Sweden April 18 1830. Immigrated in 1853. Moved to Peddler's Grove, Mn.
Jorgenson, Ole (Sr.)...b Tördal, Norway, died in Pierce Co., Wisconsin fall of 1860, 85 yrs old.
Nelson, Levor (Nerison)...b Drangedals parish, Norway, May 15 1815. Immigrated in 1854. Marr Marthe Olsdotter. First came to Burbank in 1860, moved to Goodhue Co., Mn. in 1862 later returned. Children: Ole A. Thor Jorgen (Canada); Andrew (Willmar); Mrs. Mikkel Olson (Colfax), Torber Carine, Anne Berthine, Marthe Lovise. Levor Nelson died June 4 1879. His wife moved to Belgrade, Mn.
Newgord, Torkel Zacharias (Nygaard)...b June 19, 1842, Finnaas parish, Bergens diocese, Norway; came to America 1852; settled here in July 1859, on sec. 21; marr Martha Gilson, 1868; five sons...Joseph T., George O. (Duluth), William F., Edwin L. and Rudolph T.; five daughters...Mrs. Thom Larson (Burbank), Anne C., Mrs. Albert Berg (Belgrade), Mrs. Elias Moen (Duluth), and Johanne S.; lived SW 1/4 sec. 14.
Postmyhr, Halvor Jorgenson...b in Tördal, Norway; visited town in 1858, settled there on May 17, 1859; enlisted in Wis. regiment in Pierce county in 1863, and was killed at Atlanta, GA.
Postmyhr, Ole Jorgenson...b Tördal, Norway, Drangedals parish. Norway, April 19, 1831; came to America 1850; wife, Elizabeth Jacobsdotter Nygaard; settled on sec 8 July 1859; lived for a short time in New London; assisted in building mill dam there; was blind fifteen last years of life; died April 14, 1893; son Jacob (S.D.); daughter, Mrs. Anna Johnson (Tjernagel) Burbank; widow lived on old place.
Postmyhr, Jorgen Leiulson...b Tördal, Norway; wife Guri Olsdotter; settled May 17, 1859, in sec 17; three sons settled in town; died July 24, 1860; wife died Dec 7, 1872 age 67 yrs.
Postmyhr, Thor Jorgenson...b Tördal, Norway; visited town in 1858; settled on NW 1/4 sec 8, May 16, 1859; years afterwards sold farm and moved to Fergus Falls, MN., where he lived as of 1905.
Quie, Osten Anderson...b in Norway; settled on claim in sec 30 in 1860; acquired title to SW 1/4 NW 1/4 sec 20, June 6, 1861; combination dugout and shanty was burned by Indians; later moved to Carver county.
Reine, Ole...b Norway; located on sec 7, in 1860; brother-in-law of Newgord; moved to Pope county and died there.
Engebret, sec 4 June 29 1874 moved to Red River Valley
Anderson, Simon, sec 5 Dec 2, 1880 b Norway moved to Washington, d in 1901.
Amundson, Andrew sec 13 Aug 4, 1882 b Norway, d March 26, 1897
Andrews, John Q. sec 30 June 20, 1870 b Wayne Co., Ohio; moved to Lithcfield and later to L.A. Calif.
Andrews, Horatio N. sec 29 Jan 10, 1870 b Kankakee Co., Ill. came to this county in July 1864 d Aug 1871.
Andrews, Elijah sec 29 Sept 20 1870, b NY d on homestead Dec 9 1893 aged 82.
Batterberry, Michael sec 32 Nov 16, 1870 b Ireland; served in Co. E., Eighth MN.
Björge, Engebret O. sec 3 Oct 11, 1871; b Ringelen, Norway d at Belgrade MN.
Belland, Berge S. sec 8 June 29 1874; b Storöen, Norway; moved to Red River valley.
Christianson, Ole sec 1 June 16 1881, b Gausdal Norway; d in Willmar in the 1880's.
Christenson, Nils C. sec 2 May 7 1873, b Helgeland Norway; lives at Belgrade.
Christenson, Christen sec 2 May 7 1873, b Helgeland, Norway lives at Belgrade.
Carr, Terrence sec 5 March 2 1876
Coffaa, Alba G. sec 21 Dec 29 1869 b at NY d at Burbank April 26 1902.
Coffaa, Anthony sec 25 Dec 22 1869 b Conn. d March 13 1889 aged 86 wife d day before aged 89 buried in same grave.
Coffaa, William A. sec 26 Jan 26 1871, b NY enlisted in Co. A 118th NY d in S.D. July 4 1897 buried at Effington S.D.
Carter, John sec 26 Nov 14 1870 moved to Kansas in grasshopper times, died there, marr a Coffaa.
Careless, James sec 32, moved to Estevan, Assa., in 1902; d there Aug 24, 1903.
Everson, John sec 1 March 3 1879, b Norway came to county in 1868; d April 2 1875, name also written Iverson.
Erickson, Ole sec 15 Nov 29 1880 b Gausdal Norway.
Eliason, Andreas sec 18 Feb 19 1889 b Bergen Norway.
Everson, Ever sec 24 June 29 1874 b Gausdal, Norway lived on sec 27.
Easom, William H. sec 26 oct 7 1871 moved to Kansas.
Enden, John H. sec 10 June 16 1875 b Gausdal Norway d at Fisher, Polk Co.
Görgenson, Thor sec 8 July 19 1869 b Draugedal Norway; moved to Ottertail county.
Grinden, Chris. A. sec 10 Nov 25 1873 b Österdahlen Norway, moved to Montevideo in grasshopper times.
Geer, Lewis B. sec 19 enlisted in Co. D., 1st MN at Clearwater; wounded twice at Gettysburg; died Sept 16 1867; patent issued to heirs Nov 15 1869.
Geer, George Sheldon sec 27 Dec 22 1869 b NY Nov 8 1828; marr A. Fish in 1848; arrived in territory in 1858; came to Burbank from Watab in April 1865 d Nov 4 1895.
Geer, Charles W. sec 27 Jan 26 1871, Enlisted in Co. D. 1st MN wounded at Gettysburg; lives near King, Ore.
Geer, Horatio P. sec 31 Oct 26 1870, b Pennsylvania, lives in Crow Lake twnsp.
Hudson, Rolla C. sec 32 Dec 31 1871, b Paulding Co., Ohio; served in Co. D, 38th Ohio Reg., moved to Spokane, WA.
Hagen, Hans N. sec 6 May 6 1884, b Norway.
Henningson, N.F.W. sec 7 July 1, 1870, (Nicoli Fredrick Wilhelm); was county surveyor; moved to Gary, S.D.
Iverson, Peter O. sec 1 May 9 1881, b Helgeland, Norway.
Iverson, Gunder sec 10 Oct 22 1874, b Gausdal, Norway, moved to New London, MN.
Iverslie, Thos. A. sec 12 b Gausdal, Norway, sold farm moved to Belgrade.
Johnson, Mathias sec 11 Aug 20 1881 b Toten, Norway, died Willmar 1903.
Johnson, George sec 13 June 18 1868 [see above under Early Pioneers]
Jacobson, Thos. J. sec 14 Nov 25 1873
Jacobson, Talak sec 22 Oct 30 1869
Johnson, Ole sec 24 Oct 10 1874
Kloppbakken, John sec 12 Sept 22 1874
Morgan, McKenzie sec 24 Oct 7 1871
Martin, Daniel sec 6 Jan 8 1871
Moen, Bertha sec 22 Sept 18 1899
Mork, Kasten sec 12 Nov 1 1876
Nordrum, Ole J. sec 4 Nov 26 1880
Olson, Ole sec 9 Oct 11 1871
Olson, Gulick sec 9 June 23 1870
Olson (Sonstegaard) Amund sec 12 May 20 1874
Olson, Martin sec 14 Aug 21 1872
Olson, Ole (Haugen) sec 22 Oct 7 1871
Peterson, Christen sec 2
Pederson, Halvor sec 12 May 20 1874
Price, John W. sec 22 March 6 1869
Price, David J. sec 26 July 11 1883
Price, Catherine sec 26 April 8 1885
Roe, Peter (Simonson) sec 10 Oct 22 1874
Shipstead, Sivert sec 5 Oct 11 1871
Shipstead, Over sec 9 Oct 11 1871
Simonson, Kari sec 15 Nov 29 1880
Sonstegaard, Erland G. sec 23 Nov 29 188?
Other Pioneers who Homesteaded in Burbank Township
Amey, S.; Andrews, Jos. F.; Barns, T.O.; Beckwith, Daniel; Berg, Ole O.; Carter, John; Cartledge, W.B.; Christofferson, Ole; Henningson, A.S.J.; Geer, George H.; Geer, O.S.; Green, Carl A.; Haugen, Martin O.; Jones, Griffith R.; Jorgenson, Claus; Klopbakken, Syver P.; Knutson, Lars; Moen, Christian Johnson; Price, E.V.; Price, J. H.; Stauffer, John H.; Sonstegaard, John G.; Torkelson, Ole; Torgerson, Hans; Tomeson, Johannes; Thomas, Edward; Ward, John D.; Whitla, Jesse L.; Wrolson, William; Orn, Bert E.;
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