Saturday, June 18, 2016

Ten Eyck Olmstead Burleson (1854-1926)

From the Steuben Advocate, November 1, 1939.

    The proud possessor of a truly unusual first name, Dr. Ten Eyck Olmstead Burleson was a native of Steuben County, New York for the entirety of his 72 years, and during that time cultivated a reputation as a prominent physician and man of affairs. A past president of the Steuben County Medical Society, Burleson was also a life-long Democrat and was nominated by that party for a seat in the New York State Assembly in 1908.
  Born in the Steuben County town of Howard on July 21, 1854, Ten Eyck Olmstead Burleson was the son of Hiram and Catherine (Willis) Burleson. His unusual first and middle names were likely given to him in honor of Ten Eyck Gansevoort Olmstead (1833-1878), a former Steuben County resident who found notoriety in Wisconsin, where he would serve as a newspaper editor and Judge of Manitowoc County, holding the latter post from 1874 until shortly before his death.
  The early life of Ten Eyck O. Burleson was spent in his hometown of Howard, where he attended the local school. He would go on to attend Alfred University and later enrolled at the University of Buffalo, where he studied medicine. Burleson graduated in the class of 1880 and soon after resettled in the village of Pulteney (near Bath, New York) where he began his medical practice. He would marry in Pulteney in November 1886 to Lily Bennett and in the succeeding years became:
"Recognized as a physician of considerable skill and readily one the esteem and confidence of his patients.
   After several years of practice in Pulteney Ten Eyck Burleson removed to Bath, New York to accept the position of surgeon at the State Soldiers and Sailor's Home.  He and his wife would occupy a small cottage located on the hospital grounds and for ten years resided there. Around 1900 Burleson relocated to Syracuse, but returned to Bath two years later, continuing to practice medicine there until his retirement.
  A former President of the Steuben County Medical Society, Burleson was active in a number of non-medical areas in Steuben County, including memberships in the local Grange chapter, the Masons, a local pension examiners board and the Presbyterian Church at Pulteney. Remarked as being a "staunch Democrat", Burleson received the Democratic nomination for the New York State Assembly in 1908 from Steuben County, His opponent that year was Republican John L. Miller, a physician and former Mayor of Corning, New York. On election day 1908 it was the Republicans who claimed victory, with Miller besting Burleson by over a thousand votes (6,104 to 4,686).
  Ten Eyck Olmstead Burleson died in Bath on May 12, 1926 at age 72. He is noted as having been in a state of failing health for at least two years prior to his death and was survived by his wife Lily. Both were interred at the Mount Pleasant Cemetery in Howard, New York.

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