Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 09: BIOGRAPHY
Elanor Burkhard Brawner (1940-2022)

John Burkhard, Steven Hayes, Elanor Burkhard and Helen Hayes c. 1947, at PMSS . [burkh_022.jpg]

(Elanor Louise Brawner Burkhard 1940-2022)

TAGS: Elanor Burkhard Brawner, Mrs. Larry Brawner, PMSS friends, Infirmary, Esther Weller Burkhard, Fred J. Burkhard, Burkhard Family Collection, photography, printing


Elanor Burkhard Brawner Friend

Elanor Burkhard Brawner (1940-2022). Source: Casey County News on Legacy.com.

Elanor Burkhard was born on May 7, 1940, in the Infirmary at Pine Mountain Settlement School in Harlan County, Kentucky. She considered it a badge of pride to have been the first child born of the Boarding School faculty in the School’s Infirmary.

Elanor’s mother, Esther Weller Burkhard (1912-2014), was educated at Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Ohio. She began at PMSS as a Boys’ House housemother at Pine Mountain, then taught the PMSS pre-school, Little School, in 1936. From 1937 through 1940, she served as a teacher and counselor to PMSS students.

One year after Esther arrived at the School, she met and later married Fred J. Burkhard (1910-1990), a 1935 graduate of Berea (Kentucky) College who had accepted the position of printing instructor at PMSS. Fred supervised the student-run print shop and taught printing classes from September 1937 until June 1940.

Just before leaving Pine Mountain in 1940, their first child, Elanor, was born at the School. The family then moved to North Newton, Kansas, where Fred worked at Bethel College for two years. There, Elanor’s brother John Phillip Burkhard, was born.

Fred and his family relocated again in 1942 to Chanute, Kansas, where Fred taught printing at Chanute Junior College for several years.

By 1947, they were living in Liberty, Kentucky, Fred’s birthplace, where the couple owned and operated The Casey County News until 1976. This local newspaper is still in operation today.



After graduating from Liberty (Kentucky) High School in 1958, Elanor went on the study German and French at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, where she met her future husband, Larry Brawner. They were married at the First Methodist Church in Liberty on August 24, 1963.

After college graduation and her marriage, Elanor began teaching German and French at Fort Knox High School in 1964, an occupation she enjoyed until her retirement in 1995. Elanor and Larry had two children, Neal F. and Beth Anne.

Elanor often returned to the School in recent years to assist with the digitizing of PMSS archive material for the “Pine Mountain Settlement School Collections” website. She also provided vital PMSS information and items from her family collection. During her visits Elanor took many photographs of Pine Mountain, demonstrating her aesthetic appreciation for the beauty of the campus, its people, and its natural surroundings. In recent years, she generously shared her photos for use on the Collections website where their stunning colors and pleasing compositions have enhanced a number of pages. See samples of her work here.


Elanor Louise Burkhard Brawner passed away on January 13, 2022, at her home in Elizabethtown, Kentucky, after a long battle with cancer. According to her obituary in The Casey County News, Elanor “loved growing flowers and plants, and working outside in her beautiful gardens. She also enjoyed photography her entire life.”

See Also:

A Sample of Photographs by Elanor Burkhard Brawner:
Photographs – Centennial 2013 Celebration

Title  Elanor Burkhard Brawner
Alt. Title  Elanor Burkhard ; Elanor Brawner ; Mrs. Larry Brawner ; Elanor Louise Burkhard Brawner ;
Identifier https://pinemountainsettlement.net/?page_id=100082
Creator Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY.
Alt. Creator Ann Angel Eberhardt ; Helen Hayes Wykle ;
Subject Keyword Elanor Burkhard Brawner, Mrs. Larry Brawner, PMSS friends, Infirmary, Esther Weller Burkhard, Fred J. Burkhard, Burkhard Family Collection, photography
Subject LCSH Brawner, Elanor Burkhard,  — 1940 – 2022.
Pine Mountain Settlement School (Pine Mountain, Ky.) — History.
Harlan County (Ky.) — History.
Education — Kentucky — Harlan County.
Rural schools — Kentucky — History.
Schools — Appalachian Region, Southern.
Date 2023-01-20 aae
Publisher Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY.
Contributor n/a
Type Collections ; text ; image ;
Format Original and copies of documents and correspondence in file folders in filing cabinet.
Source Series 09: BIOGRAPHY – Friends
Language English
Relation Is related to: Pine Mountain Settlement School Collections, Series 09: Biography.
Coverage Temporal 1940 – 2022
Coverage Spatial Pine Mountain, KY ; Harlan County, KY ; Liberty, KY ; Elizabethtown, KY ; Lexington, KY, Fort Knox, KY ; 
Rights Any display, publication, or public use must credit the Pine Mountain Settlement School. Copyright retained by the creators of certain items in the collection, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
Donor n/a
Description Core documents, correspondence, writings, and administrative papers of Elanor Burkhard Brawner ; clippings, photographs, books by or about Elanor Burkhard Brawner ;
Acquisition n/d
Citation “[Identification of Item],” [Collection Name] [Series Number, if applicable]. Pine Mountain Settlement School Institutional Papers. Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY.
Processed By Helen Hayes Wykle ; Ann Angel Eberhardt ;
Last Updated  2022-02-26 aae ; 2023-01-20 hhw ;
Sources  “Elanor Brawner” obituary published by The Casey County News from Jan. 18 to Jan. 19, 2022, and posted on Legacy.com: <https://www.legacy.com/us/obituaries/caseynews/name/elanor-brawner-obituary?id=32281938 > Accessed 2022-01-19. Internet resource.

ESTHER WELLER BURKHARD Staff” and “FRED J. BURKHARD Staff.” Series 09: BIOGRAPHY – Staff. Pine Mountain Settlement School Institutional Papers. Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY. Internet resource.

Return to BIOGRAPHY – A-Z