In 1893, Burlingame arrived in Walla Walla to inspect the plans for an ambitious irrigation project and stayed to dig the ditch that bears his name today. The Burlingame Ditch turned more than 5,000 acres of sagebrush into productive farmland. More than one hundred years after its completion, the Burlingame Ditch still conveys water by gravity within its earthen banks.

Ed Burlingame is portrayed by Tom Williams.