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Melissa Ann Davidson Burkhart
Birth: May 13, 1835
Greene County
Illinois, USA
Death: Jul. 4, 1898
Jackson County
Oregon, USA

Oregon Pioneer of 1847.
My great great grandmother. She was one of the children of Hezekiah Davidson and Melissa Ann (Page) Davidson who had come from Kentucky heading towards the Oregon Territory. Along the way, they had Melissa, who was born in Roodhouse, Greene County, Illinois on May 13th, 1835. The Davidsons arrived in Oregon in Oct 1847, having joined up with the Burkharts in Illinois (I believe) and traveling in the same wagon train on the Oregon Trail to the township of Albany. Melissa would have been 12 yrs. old when she met Leander Columbus Burkhart, who was a son of John Burkhart (a very close friend of Hezekiah Davidson), and 12 yrs. older than Melissa. None the less, he continued to court her and they married on July 31st, 1851, almost four years after arriving at Albany, when Melissa was 16 years of age and Leander was 28 yrs. old. Leander Columbus Burkhart was a very industrious man who was also involved in naming five streets in the town of Albany. Those streets were: ALCO (the 1st initials of Albany, Linn County, Oregon)
Burkhart, his family name
Columbus, his middle name
Davidson, to honor his wife's family
Ermine, to honor a distant relative (or close neighbor) & Fulton, named after Leander's aunt Elizabeth (Fulton) Baltzell, wife of Charles Baltzell.
Melissa's husband joined with his brothers in farming the rich lands of the Willamette Valley, planting a variety of crops, and building a smokehouse, a brickyard, and a large barn to house the horses for the stage coach stops between Oregon City and Salem and Independence and Brownsville. Horses had to be stopped every 15m. or so, carrying mail, passengers and certain supplies before the railroad came. Melissa and Leander were blessed with six children, three sons and three daughters. They were:
Hezekiah Davidson, b.Mar 21, 1853, d.July 25, 1924
Frances "Fannie" Ann, b.Aug 6, 1856, d.July 28, 1879 of TB
Nellie Olivia, b.Feb 16, 1859, d.Dec 4, 1948*
Robert Lee, b.Nov 10, 1864, d.Nov 7, 1946
William Chester, b.Nov 27, 1871, d.Dec 3, 1936 and
Bessie, b.May 17, 1874, d.Dec 11, 1906 of appendicitis.
All of their children were raised in the Baptist faith and all of their children attended college, even following Leander's demise.
Leander did not live a long life, only living until eleven days before his 52nd birthday, leaving Melissa a widow at the age of 40 in 1875 with 2 very young children (Will and Bessie). She was able to support herself and her children from the profits of crops planted on the donation land claims owned by Leander and herself with help from the older children, especially Hez and Rob, in addition to other business ventures. She also lost both of her parents in the years following Leander's demise and then, her daughter, Fannie, to "Consumption" [TB] just four years after her husband's death, in 1879, which surely broke her heart. Melissa remained a widow for the next 23 years, until July 4th, 1898, when she was visiting family in Ashland, Oregon and passed from this life at the age of 63 years. Her remains were returned to Albany where she was buried next to her beloved Leander in Riverside Cemetery, Albany, Oregon. She was home.

*Nellie Olivia Burkhart is my great grandmother. 
Family links: 
  Hezekiah Davidson (1789 - 1876)
  Melissa Ann Page Davidson (1804 - 1877)
  Leander Columbus Burkhart (1823 - 1875)*
  Hezekiah Davidson Burkhart (1853 - 1924)*
  Frances Ann Burkhart (1856 - 1879)*
  Nellie Olivia Burkhart Hall (1859 - 1948)*
  Robert Lee Burkhart (1864 - 1946)*
  William Chester Burkhart (1871 - 1936)*
  Bessie Beatrice Burkhart Daring (1874 - 1906)*
  Lauretta Jane Davidson Johnston (1822 - 1900)*
  James Orville Davidson (1825 - 1899)*
  Elizabeth A Davidson Burch (1827 - ____)*
  Hezekiah Davidson (1830 - 1910)*
  Mary Elizabeth Davidson Waller (1833 - 1889)*
  Melissa Ann Davidson Burkhart (1835 - 1898)
*Calculated relationship
"Tho lost to sight, to memory dear."
Note: Thank you to David Bollman for all of your assistance. Thank you to Sue for cropping the photos.
Riverside Cemetery
Linn County
Oregon, USA
Plot: 24N
Maintained by: Kathie L. Webb Blair
Originally Created by: David J Bollman
Record added: Jul 21, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 28423628
Melissa Ann <i>Davidson</i> Burkhart
Added by: David J Bollman
Melissa Ann <i>Davidson</i> Burkhart
Added by: Kathie L. Webb Blair
Melissa Ann <i>Davidson</i> Burkhart
Added by: SSBJ💔
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You left this world while visiting family and friends in Jacksonville on the 4th of July, 1898. You had not felt well for quite some time, but, as with any Loved One, the death of a family member is always upsetting. Your Angel Day is on Monday, when it w...(Read more)
- Kathie L. Webb Blair
 Added: Jul. 3, 2016
Dearest great, great grandmother, I thought I'd left you a Birthday message and am glad I came back today to check. I am sorry for being late on the 181st anniversary of your birth. Without thee, there would be no me. I am grateful you were a brave 12 yea...(Read more)
- Kathie L. Webb Blair
 Added: May. 18, 2016
Remembering my great, great grandmother, a first generation Oregonian. Rest at Peace, dear lady. With Admiration and Affection from Nellie's great granddaughter,
- Kathie L. Webb Blair
 Added: May. 8, 2016
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This page is sponsored by: Kathie L. Webb Blair

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