The name Burke was a prominent name in the early school records of Lincoln township. However, we do not have much information about the family.
The third school house built in Lincoln township was located in the northwest corner of the SW¼ of Section 21. The area is identified in 1956 as Ike's Grove. Near the school house was a log cabin where the Burke family lived.
Nellie Richardson Lewis Warner said that one of the earliest families living near where Zearing was located was the family of Ev Burke. Burke had several daughters. Nellie said that the school roster in the summer of 1875 contained the names of five pupils. Nellie was one of them. Another was Ella Burke.
Albert F. Rahfeldt said that Burke was discouraged by the death of his father in 1872. He did not live in our community very long after his father's death. Albert said that he was almost certain that Burke moved his family to the vicinity of Earlville, Illinois.
A date on the Burke tombstone in the cemetery at Illinois Grove points to the arrival of the Burke family in our community during the 1860's. The date of the death of Priscilla, the wife of E. M. Burke, is given as March 24, 1866. She was born on September 9, 1809.
E. M. Burke died on May 5, 1872. He was born on February 11, 1807.
The Burkhart family could be listed as the leading family in the early history of Zearing. Every member of the family took a leading part in community affairs. John C. was a charter member and the first commander of the G.A.R., business man, postmaster, and prominent in local government. Anna Albaugh Burkhart was a charter member of the Christian Church. Charles A. was a prominent business man and a leader in local government. Hubert E. was a Spanish American war veteran and postmaster. Grace was a charter member of the Diogenes. Queen helped to organize the N.O.C. club. Jessie was prominent as the wife of James S. Smith.
John C. Burkhart was born in Cambria county, Pennsylvania, in 1833. John C. came to Linn county, Iowa, in 1856. Anna Mary Albaugh was born in Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania, on May 21, 1840. Her family moved to Linn county, Iowa, in 1846. John C. and Anna were married in Linn county in 1858. They moved to Zearing, Iowa, in 1882.
John C. and Anna. were the parents of eight children. Three died in infancy. The others were Charles A., Jessie M., Hubert E., Grace, and Queen.
John C. died in 1911. Anna died on August 30, 1924.