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John Taylor Burris

Constitutional Delegate. Born: December 22, 1828, Butler County Ohio. Married: Martha A., 1850. Died: December 4, 1915, Los Angeles, California.

Born in Butler County, Ohio, on December 22, 1828, and educated in the public schools of Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky, John T. Burris taught school in Kentucky and enlisted in the Mounted Rifles for service in the Mexican War. Burris married Martha A. _____, who was five years his junior, in 1850 (she was Indiana born) and was admitted to the Iowa bar in 1853. In 1858 they moved to Olathe, Kansas Territory, where he practiced law. After representing Johnson County at the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention, where he was actively engaged in the deliberations, Burris served as a sergeant in Jim Lane's Frontier Guard and then received an appointment as U.S. district attorney in 1861; but Burris soon resigned that position and mustered into the service as a lieutenant colonel in the Tenth Kansas Volunteer Infantry on July 24, 1861. He mustered out with the regiment in August 1865, having been brevetted a colonel in March of that year. Colonel Burris was speaker of the Kansas House of Representatives in 1866, president of the Republican State Convention in March 1868, and judge of the Tenth District court, March 1869 to January 1870 and January 1890 to September 1901. He lived and worked in Olathe for many years, but died in Los Angeles, California, on December 4, 1915, while visiting at the home of one of his daughters.

Entry: Burris, John Taylor

Author: Kansas Historical Society

Author information: The Kansas Historical Society is a state agency charged with actively safeguarding and sharing the state's history.

Date Created: June 2011

Date Modified: January 2013

The author of this article is solely responsible for its content.