James Burk


Spelled and referred to variously (Bourke), James Burk probably was born about 1730. Most references in the record address him as "Mr. Burk" - perhaps an expression of some deferece. We seek information on his origins and path to Albany.

His wife was named "Margaret." Their son James was christened at St. Peter's church in June 1763. They witnessed a christening there in November 1757. He was a St. Peter's subscriber (pledged support). "Mr. Burk" was included with his daughter on a list of "Church of England" members taken in December 1771.

In 1756, his house was included on an inventory of buildings made by the British army. At that time, his house was identified as a "dramshop." Assessment rolls from the 1760s, valued his first ward house and lot moderately.

Burk's name has not been found on contemporary militia rolls for Albany County.

In October 1773, the city council reported that one Patrick Gahagen had worked at "Mr. Burcks."

Following the outbreak of hostilities in 1775, "Mr. Burk" began to have contact with the Albany Committee. In November 1777, he was asked to lend one of his two sets of "tinman's tool" as they were needed by the artillery. He refused and the Committee ordered that they should be appraised, procured, and then returned as soon as they can be spared. A week later, Burk refused to part with his wire and the Committee empowered Capt. Andries Douw to commandeer the metal.

James Burk was dead by March 1779 when his first ward house and property were valued under the name of Widow Burk. After that, Burk's name has not yet been found in our search of the community-based record.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of James Burk is CAP biography number 7490. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources.

first posted: 8/20/11