for 3 years in Nebraska but the exact location is not known. Elizabeth is listed as a witness at the birth of her grandson Claude Wicks at Hay Springs 15 Jan 1892. Approximately these same years a Potter Wicks livery stable was in Valentine, NE. Most likely they did return to the Burr Oak area along with the other families in 1894. Elizabeth died in 1895. In early Mar of 1900 George was out cutting wood near the creek (Krumm/Price farm) when a tree fell on him and broke both bones in his ankle. He crawled 3/ 4 of a mile through snow to the nearest house (SE 1/4 SE 1/4, Section 36, west side of Highway 52). With his heavy beard and being covered with mud and snow, the family thought he was a stranger passing through on the highway and they hesitated to offer assistance. By late Mar he was getting around with a crutch but his health and mind gradually failed and 2 weeks before his death he was taken to the hospital in Independence where he died 3 Jul 1900. The funeral was held in Burr Oak by Elder Ridley and he was buried beside his wife in the Burr Oak Cemetery. The exact location of their burial has not been confirmed but information passed by family members give the location as the same plot where his son John is buried. George was an active member of the Advent Christian Church, served as superintendent of the Sunday School and taught Bible classes.
Wicks, John and Evaline (Burrows)
John Nelson Wicks was born 20 Feb 1861 near Whitby, Canada to George and Elizabeth (Potter) Wicks. He had one brother Robert Harvey born 6 Oct 1863 at Whitby. The family moved around 1863/65 to a farm in Section 34, Burr Oak Twp., Winneshiek Co., IA. John’s grandfather John Potter and his children moved from Canada to a farm next to George and Elizabeth. As a young man John lived with his parents and was a school teacher.
John and Evaline “Eva’’ Burrows were married 20 Oct 1888 at Burr Oak by Elder John Ridley. Evaline was born 11 Aug 1867 in Bluffton Twp. to Robert and Rebecca (Smith) Burrows. Their children were: Roscoe Herbert (b. 2 Jan 1890); Claude Edmund (b. 15 Jan 1892); Robert George (b. 11 Jul 1896); Cecil John (b. 12 Jun 1899); Bertha Matilda (b. 18 Jul 1901); and David Roy (b. 24 Jul 1904). All the children were born in Bluffton or Burr Oak Twps. except Claude who was born near Hay Springs, NE.
Evaline's brother John had settled near Hay Springs in 1884 and in the years around 1889/91 several families from the Burr Oak area moved to that area. Three of Evaline’s sisters and their families homesteaded land adjacent to their brother John Burrows. John’s brother Robert Wicks and family had moved there about 1887. It is understood that John Wicks bought land but the exact location is unknown. Indian scares were commonplace because of the recent uprisings on the Reservations a short distance north of Hay Springs and the wives and children moved into Hay Springs for a period of time. Comments from the book Old Jules by Mari Sandoz: “The early nineties were so dry even the old timers wondered if it would ever rain again. About the time the blackbirds from the painted wood of the river darkened the fields in search of nubbins, the settlers began to leave. The Iowa colony went first leaving Johnny Burrows. They drove out with nothing except a crow-bait team and wagon.”
John and Eva returned to a home on her father’s farm in Bluffton Twp. Eva told about wolves coming around their home. About 1898/99 they bought a farm in Section 26, Burr Oak Twp., where they lived until 1914. John was awarded a teacher’s certificate again in 1899. In Sep of 1906 Eva purchased 120 acres of her home farm from her sister Sarah Morrison for $2,900. In 1914 they moved to the "Old Masters Hotel” where they lived the remainder of their lives. John was a school teacher in the Lost Nation School for several years. He worked on Roscoe’s farm east of Prosper, MN for several years and used a team and wagon or walked to and from the farm. For some time he was a licensed minister and conducted services and many funerals in the Advent Christian Church. They owned the old stage barn north of the hotel and he kept a cow or two in the basement and creek pasture. In later years he kept his '29 Chevy on the main floor. John was an excellent checker player and spent many hours over the checker board with his sons, especially Claude. He enjoyed keeping a keen mind, participating in debates in the early thirties, and exchanging algebra problems with his sons and with Evaline’s uncle William Smith.
While living in the hotel Evaline took in boarders, served dinners to large groups in the lower level, kept a large garden west of the store and worked at the store. She kept a row of red poppies on the south side of the hotel. There was a cistern at the southwest corner of the building where she would lower her butter and cream. There was also a spring to the west where she kept things to cool. Eva shared her husband's religious convictions and either had her Bible in her hand or on a table nearby.
John died at his home in Burr Oak 8 Dec 1938. Evaline died 12 JuM950. Both are buried in the Burr Oak Cemetery.
Wicks, Leonard and Joan (Stejskal)
Leonard Milton Wicks was born 31 Mar 1918 in Bluffton Twp. to Claude and Olive (Olson) Wicks. His siblings were: Harley (1915-1917); Marie (b. 1920) married Paul Snyder; Marion (1924-1994) married Glorianne Narveson; and Marvin married Virginia Quandahl. Leonard attended the McCaffery School, District #3, Bluffton Twp. and graduated from Burr Oak High School in 1936. After graduation he did farm work and also owned a truck and worked as a trucker until he was drafted into the Army. He left the farm home for military duty 7 Jan 1942, one month after Pearl Harbor and the declaration of war. The temperature that day was 30 some degrees below zero, side roads were blocked by snow and after working to clear the drive, start tractors and cars, he was finally forced to leave by taxi. It was important to report on time. From Ft. Des Moines he went to Edgewood Arsenal, MD and
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this page was last updated on Tuesday, 30 March 2021