Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks
|Legal status||501(c)(8) fraternal benefit order|
|Headquarters||Chicago, Illinois, United States|
|Affiliations||1,928 local lodges, Elks National Home and Retirement Center, Elks National Foundation, Elks National Veterans Service Commission, Elks Veterans Memorial Restoration|
The Elks had modest beginnings in 1868 as a social club for minstrel show performers, called the "Jolly Corks". It was established as a private club to elude New York City laws governing the opening hours of public taverns. The Elks borrowed rites and practices from Freemasonry, including racial restrictions on membership. Until 1973, membership was restricted to white men.
The BPOE was originally an all-white organization. In the early 1970s, this policy led the Order into conflict with the courts over its refusal to allow blacks the use of its club and leisure activities. In nearly all instances, the all-whites clause was made public after someone was denied the use of the Elks' dining or leisure facilities. The clause was revoked at the Grand Lodge of 1976, with the proviso that it could be reinstated if the law allowed.
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In 1919, a "Flag Day resolution" was passed, barring membership to even passive sympathizers "of the Bolsheviki, Anarchists, the I.W.W., or kindred organizations, or who does not give undivided allegiance to" the flag and constitution of the United States.
In 1979, the qualifications for membership included being male, at least 21 years old, of sound mind and body, a citizen of the United States and not a member of the Communist Party. Belief in a Supreme Being has been a prerequisite for membership since 1892. The word "God" was substituted for Supreme Being in 1946.
The current requirements include belief in God, American citizenship, willingness to recite the Pledge of Allegiance, willingness to salute the flag of the United States of America, willingness to support the laws and Constitution of the United States of America, being of good character and being at least 21 years of age. There is also a background interview conducted by the Membership Committee, who make the final recommendation to the Lodge members. The members then use a ballot box, with the back drawer first being displayed to the members to be empty, then the members dropping one at a time into the hole in the back their vote, typically a white glass marble to accept or a black lead cube to reject, with a 2/3 majority of members voting necessary to be accepted.
Until 1995, The Elks had traditionally been an all-male fraternal order. Unlike many other male orders, it never had an official female auxiliary, after passing a resolution in 1907 that ruled "There shall be no branches or degrees of membership in the Order, nor any insurance or mutual features, nor shall there be other adjuncts of auxiliaries".[full citation needed] The Elks enforced this resolution through at least the 1970s. Nevertheless, several unofficial female auxiliaries were created: the Emblem Club, the Lady Elks and the Benevolent, Patriotic Order of Does. The Lady Elks appear only to exist on the local level and vary from place to place with regard to its activities. There also does not appear to be any published or printed ritual.
More organized are the Benevolent, Patriotic Order of Does who were chartered on February 12, 1921. This organization does have an organization above the local level, complete with districts, state organizations and a national "Grand Lodge". The Does also have a written secret ritual based on the Magnificat of Mary and which makes reference to St. Paul's First Epistle to the Corinthians Chapter 13, emphasizing love and charity.
The Emblem Club was founded in 1926, with a ritual written by a male Elk. It also has a national organization with local Clubs, State Association and a national Supreme Club of the United States.
In Beynon v. St. George-Dixie Lodge 1743, the Utah Supreme Court ruled that while Freedom of Association allowed the Elks to remain a men-only organization, "the Elks may not avail itself of the benefits of a liquor license and the license's concomitant state regulation" as long as it violated the Utah State Civil Rights Act. Faced with losing their liquor licenses if they did not admit women, the Elks Lodges of Utah voted to become unisex in June 1993, which was followed by a vote at the Elks National Convention in July 1995  to remove the word "male" from the national membership requirements.
No person shall be accepted as a member of this Order unless he be a white male citizen of the United States of America, of sound mind and body, of good character, not under the age of Twenty-one years, and a believer in God.
In 1972, the Elks expelled the head of the Ridgewood lodge because of his advocacy against the Elk's racially discriminatory policies. A resolution to repeal the discriminatory clause passed in 1973 after failing at 3 previous national conventions.
In 1989, there were allegations of applicants being denied membership in lodges located in various parts of California because of their race.
Structure and organization
The Elks' national headquarters are located in Chicago at the Elks National Veterans Memorial and Headquarters, overlooking Lincoln Park, near Lake Michigan. This building was originally conceived as a memorial to the nearly 1,000 Elk brothers who were lost in World War I. The cornerstone was laid July 7, 1924, and the building was officially dedicated on July 14, 1926.[third-party source needed]
The rotunda displays murals and statues illustrating the Elks’ four cardinal virtues: charity, justice, brotherly love and fidelity. The friezes depict the "Triumphs of War" on one side and "Triumphs of Peace" on the other. The entrance is flanked by large bronze elks.
The BPOE is organized on five levels: the national or "grand" level, the regional level, the state level, the district level and the local lodge level. The highest level is the Grand Lodge, which meets in convention annually. The Grand Lodge elects all the officers of the order, such as the Grand Exalted Ruler—the chief executive officer of the organization—Grand Secretary, Grand Esteemed Leading Knight, Grand Esteemed Loyal Knight, Grand Esteemed Lecturing Knight, Grand Treasurer, Grand Tiler (in charge of regalia), Grand Inner Guard and Grand Trustees. The three Knights assist the Grand Exalted Ruler and officiate in his absence; furthermore, the Grand Esteemed Loyal Knight acts a prosecutor in cases when an Elk is accused of an offense against the order. The Grand Trustee have general authority over assets and property owned by the order. The Grand Esquire is appointed by the Grand Exalted Ruler and organizes the Grand Lodges and serves as marshal of Elks parades. The Grand Chaplain is also appointed by the Grand Exalted Ruler.
Grand Exalted Rulers
This is an incomplete list of the organization's Grand Exalted Rulers:
- 1871 – George J. Green / Charles T. White
- 1872 – Joseph C. Pinckney
- 1874 – James W. Powell / Henry P. O'Neil
- 1876 – Frank Girard
- 1878 – George R. Maguire
- 1879 – Charles E. Davies / Louis C. Waehner
- 1880 – Thomas E. Garrett
- 1882 – John J. Tindale
- 1883 – Edwin A. Perry
- 1884 – Henry S. Sanderson
- 1910 – August Herrmann (1859–1931)
- 1919 – Frank Lewis Rain (1877–1941)
- 1924 – John G. Price (1871–1930)
- 1959 – William S. Hawkins (1910–1971)
- 2010 – Michael F. Smith
- 2011 – David R. Carr
- 2012 – Thomas S. Brazier
- 2013 – Millard C. Pickering
- 2014 – John Amen
- 2015 – Ronald L. Hicks
- 2016 – Michael F. Zellen
- 2017 – Malcolm J. McPherson Jr.
- 2018 – Michael T. Luhr
- 2019 – Robert L. Duitsman
State Associations and Lodges
The state level organizations are called "State Associations"; state level officers include presidents, vice presidents, secretaries and treasurers. Local groups are called "Subordinate Lodges". Lodges officers are essentially the same as the ones on the national level, with "Grand" prefix removed. Lodges also may establish dinner and recreational clubs for members. In 1979 there were 2,200 lodges  Lodges which are incorporated are required to be governed by a board of directors. Otherwise the Lodge Trustees are the governing board.
Elks Mutual Benefit Association
Like many other fraternal orders, the Elks at one point sponsored an insurance fund. The Elks Mutual Benefit Association was founded in 1878. At the 1885 Grand Lodge it was reported that the EMBA was prosperous, but its finances were carelessly managed. The Association was disbanded after the 1907 Grand Lodge passed a resolution banning mutual or insurance features, as well as degrees and auxiliaries.
Despite its 1907 resolution banning any auxiliaries, the Elks at one point had a youth affiliate for young men called the Antlers. The first chapter was organized in February 1922 by San Francisco Lodge #3. The 1927 Grand Lodge approved the junior order, granting the Grand Exalted Ruler the power to permit subordinate lodges to instituted organizations for males under 21. In 1933, there were 45 local units of the Antlers with 3,584 members. However, the Antlers numbers were decimated during the Second World War, with so many young men having gone off to war. Despite 86 local Antlers groups still existing in 1946, the Grand Lodge deleted all reference to them in their constitution and bylaws that year. However, some local Antlers groups were still active in 1979, according to one source.
Most Elks lodges operate a social quarters with a private bar. According to sociologists Alvin J. Schmidt and Nicholas Babchuk, members primarily joined the Elks to be "provided with entertainment, liquor, and food at reasonable rates" in the social quarters.
National charity programs
Lodges are encouraged to participate in national Elks charity programs. There are also State Elks Associations charity programs. This usually includes a State Major Project. Elks Lodges are usually involved in other local charitable efforts.
Due to the willingness of most Elks Lodges to respond to community needs and events, it is common to turn the BPOE abbreviation into a backronym for "Best People on Earth".[third-party source needed]
Elks National Foundation
Established in 1928, the Elks National Foundation is the charitable arm of the BPOE. The foundation, with an endowment valued at more than $400 million, has contributed 455.4 million toward Elks' charitable projects nationwide. Since inception, the Elks have received more than $243.3 million in contributions and bequests. Today they boast more than 100,000 active donors and an endowment fund valued at $606.7 million.
- Elks Veterans Memorial in Chicago, Illinois
- The Army of Hope, established in 2003, primarily serves families of deployed service members.
- Adopt-a-Veteran Program
- Freedom Grants!
- Veterans Leather Program
- Veterans Remembrance
- Playing Cards for Veterans
- Re-Creation USA
- Elks National Foundation Scholarships
- Hoop Shoot (National free throw contest)
- Drug Awareness
- Soccer Shoot
- Junior Golf Program
- Dictionary Project
- Youth Recognition
The Elks have shown their devotion to Americanism by conducting bond drives, promoting civil defense programs and Flag Day observance. During World War II, they designated the week of March 15, 1942 "Win the War Week" and helped recruit for the United States Army Air Corps. An "Elks National Service Commission" was in operation from 1946 to 1950, and the Grand Lodge adopted a "Declaration of American Principles" in 1961 in Miami.
Elks National Home
Rites and traditions
The Elks originally borrowed a number of rites, traditions, and regalia from the Freemasons. However, by the first decade of the twentieth century, much of this had been abandoned as the Elks sought to establish their own identity. The original two degrees required for membership were consolidated into one degree in 1890, the apron was discontinued in 1895, the secret password was gone in 1899, and the badges and secret handshake were abandoned by 1904.
Initiation and funeral rites still exist, however. The initiation rite is not considered a secret. The initiation involves an altar, with a Bible upon it and chaplain leading the brethren in prayers and psalms. The candidate must accept a "solemn and binding obligation" to never "reveal any of the confidential matters of the Order". He further promises to uphold the Constitution of the United States, protect brother Elks and their families, only support worthy candidates for admission and never bring political or sectarian questions up into the Order. The funeral rite is called the "Lodge of Sorrow" and also involves prayers.
The Hour of Recollection
Deceased and otherwise absent lodge members are recalled each evening at 11 p.m. Chimes or sometimes a bell will be rung 11 times and the Lodge Esquire intones, "It is the Hour of Recollection." The Exalted Ruler or a member designated by him gives the 11 o'clock toast, of which this version is the most common:
You have heard the tolling of eleven strokes. This is to impress upon you that with us the hour of eleven has a tender significance. Wherever Elks may roam, whatever their lot in life may be, when this hour falls upon the dial of night, the great heart of Elkdom swells and throbs. It is the golden hour of recollection, the homecoming of those who wander, the mystic roll call of those who will come no more. Living or dead, Elks are never forgotten, never forsaken. Morning and noon may pass them by, the light of day sink heedlessly in the West, but ere the shadows of midnight shall fall, the chimes of memory will be pealing forth the friendly message: “To Our Absent Members.”
The Elks have communal cemetery plots, often these are marked with impressive statuary.
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Presidents of the United States
- Warren G. Harding, Marion, Ohio #32
- Franklin D. Roosevelt, Poughkeepsie, New York #275
- Harry S. Truman, Kansas City, Missouri Lodge #26
- Dwight D. Eisenhower
- John F. Kennedy, Boston, Massachusetts Lodge #10
- Gerald R. Ford, Grand Rapids, Michigan Lodge #48
- Louis Lincoln Emmerson Mount Vernon, Illinois – Lodge #819
- Robert Ehrlich, Towson, Maryland, Lodge #469
- Joseph Flores
- Daniel Jackson Evans, Governor (Washington) The Seattle Elks Lodge #92
- Albert Rosellini, Governor (Washington)
- Goodwin Knight, Governor (California)
- William M. Tuck, Danville, Virginia, Lodge #227 Governor of Virginia (1946–1950)
Members of Congress
- Carl Albert – United States Representative representing Oklahoma, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
- Edward L. Bartlett – United States Senator representing Alaska
- Hale Boggs – United States Representative representing Louisiana
- Harry P. Cain – United States Senator representing Washington
- Richard E. Connell – United States Representative representing New York
- Dan Daniel – United States Representative representing Virginia
- Walter Evans Edge – United States Senator representing New Jersey and United States Ambassador to France
- Tom Foley – United States Representative representing Washington, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
- Barry Goldwater – United States Senator representing Arizona
- Henry M. Jackson – United States Senator representing Washington Everett Elks Lodge #479
- William F. Knowland – United States Senator representing California Oakland Elks Lodge #171
- Warren G. Magnuson – United States Senator representing Washington The Seattle Elks Lodge #92
- John W. McCormack – United States Representative representing Massachusetts, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives from 1962–1971
- Frank Murkowski – United States Senator representing Alaska
- Tip O'Neill – United States Representative representing Massachusetts, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
- Sam Rayburn – United States Representative representing Texas, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
- L. Mendel Rivers – United States Representative representing South Carolina
- Jim Saxton – United States Representative representing New Jersey
- Thomas L. Reilly – United States House of Representatives representing Connecticut from 1910 to 1915, Past Grand Esteemed Leading Knight 1917 Boston
- Paul Tonko – United States Board of Representatives from New York's 20th congressional district
- William M. Tuck – United States Representative representing Virginia
- Arthur H. Vandenberg – United States Senator representing Michigan
- Sherman Minton – United States Senator representing Indiana from 1935 to 1941, Associate Supreme Court Justice 1949–1956, New Albany Elks Lodge #270
- Lonnie O. Aulds, member of the Louisiana House of Representatives from 1968 to 1972, real estate developer in Shreveport, Louisiana
- Edward Francis Blewitt, Pennsylvania State Senator and businessman. Great-grandfather of former Vice-president Joe Biden
- Armand Brinkhaus, member of both houses of the Louisiana State Legislature from St. Landry Parish
- Overton Brooks, member of the United States House of Representatives from Louisiana's 4th congressional district, based in Shreveport
- Mack Cleveland, member of both houses of the Florida State Legislature from 1953 to 1965; attorney from Sanford, Florida
- Richard Daley, Mayor of Chicago
- David Dank, member of Oklahoma House of Representatives since 2007
- Gilbert L. Dupré, state representative and district court judge in St. Landry Parish, Louisiana
- John W. Grabiel, Fayetteville lawyer, Arkansas Republican gubernatorial nominee in 1922 and 1924
- Robert Grant, Kansas House of Representatives
- Dan W. Gray, mayor of San Jose, California
- Gerry E. Hinton, former Louisiana State Senator
- Robert F. Wagner, Jr., Mayor of New York City; Past Exalted Ruler of New York Lodge No. 1
- Charles Plummer, Alameda County Sheriff
- James Record, Alabama State Senator
- Charles F. Smith, Jr., Wisconsin State Senator
- Zelma Wyche, Louisiana mayor and civil rights activist
- J. M. Whorton, Missouri House of Representatives
- Thomas Z. Morrow, one of 28 men who founded the Kentucky Republican Party
- James Keller, member of the Minnesota House of Representatives and the Minnesota Senate
- Ryan Kiesel, Oklahoma House of Representatives
- Charles Langford, Alabama state senator who represented Rosa Parks in the famous civil rights case of the 1960s
- John J. McClure, Pennsylvania State Senator
- Reuben Neil McKellar, mayor of Shreveport, Louisiana, 1896 to 1900
- Frank W. Parker, American judge who served on the New Mexico Supreme Court for 35 years
- David Roberts, Mayor of Hoboken, New Jersey
- Joe Fine, Mayor of Marquette, Michigan
- Jason Glennon Crowell, Missouri Senate
- Ron Richard, Missouri House of Representatives
- Joseph Poindexter, Territorial Governor of Hawaii
- Robert A. Costa, Maryland House of Delegates
- James W. Newman, Ohio House of Representatives, Ohio Senate, and was Ohio Secretary of State
- Philip Willkie, Indiana House of Representatives
- Lloyal Randolph, Maryland House of Delegates
- Charles W. Lyon, California State Senate
- Richard A. Sossi, Maryland House of Delegates
- Parley P. Christensen, Utah and California politician, Esperantist
- George M. Borg, Wisconsin State Senator
- Isaac P. Witter, Wisconsin State Senator
- Gary R. Goyke, Wisconsin State Senator
- Charles A. Barnard, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
- Charles L. Valentine, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
- Michael J. Barron, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
- John P. Dobyns, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
- William T. Sullivan, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
- Frank McDonough, Wisconsin State Assemblyman and Senator
- Jim Langfelder, Mayor of Springfield, Illinois
- General Frederick Funston
- General James M. Gavin
- General Douglas MacArthur
- General George S. Patton
- General John Pershing
- Captain Eddie Rickenbacker
- Rough Rider Henry Nash
- Dave Beck, President International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Past Exalted Ruler, The Seattle Elks Lodge #92 1928–1929
- Caleb Bradham, Inventor Pepsi Cola, Past Exalted Ruler New Bern, NC #764
- Jack Christian, Automobile dealer, former Mayor/President of Baton Rouge, Louisiana
- Jim Cramer, Summit, NJ lodge 1246
- Julius Curtis Lewis, Jr.
- Gordon L. Park, Chevron Oil Company manager and former member of the Wyoming House of Representatives
- Andrew Querbes, Shreveport mayor and banker/planter
- Samuel Lapham VI, architect
- Edward Everett Cox, newspaper publisher
- Henry Frank, early Montana businessman and political figure
- Andrew Jackson Zilker, political figure and philanthropist in Austin, Texas
- Gail Edwards, actor
- Lawrence Welk, band leader
- Will Rogers, comedian
- Jack Benny, comedian
- Edward Arnold, actor
- Andy Devine, actor, Past Exalted Ruler of San Fernando, California, Lodge No. 1539
- Clint Eastwood, actor and director, Monterey, California, Lodge No. 1285
- Gene Autry, singer and actor, Burbank, CA Lodge No. 1497
- Arthur Lyman, band leader, Honolulu Elks Lodge #616
- William F. Cody (Buffalo Bill)
- Donald O'Connor, actor
- Buster Keaton, actor
- Billy Barty, actor
- Richard Moll, actor
- Tim Moore, comedian (vaudeville)
- Nathaniel Carl Goodwin, vaudeville entertainer
- Nat M. Wills, vaudeville entertainer
- Randall Parrish, author
- Charles Hale Hoyt, dramatist
- Daniel Sully, actor and playwright
- Irving Berlin, composer, New York Lodge 1
- Harry Houdini, magician, New York Lodge 1
- Byron G. Harlan, tenor
- Ben Affleck, actor
- Honus Wagner, baseball player
- Bobby Jones, golfer, Atlanta GA Lodge #78
- Vince Lombardi, football coach
- Casey Stengel, baseball manager
- Mickey Mantle, baseball player
- Whitey Ford, baseball player
- Zack Wheat, baseball player
- Petros Papadakis, football player, San Pedro, California, Lodge No. 966
- Joe Glenn, football player
- Jim Finks, football executive
- Knute Rockne, Notre Dame football coach, South Bend Elks #235
- King Kelly, baseball player
- Katy Easterday, football player and coach
- Eddie Blair, early professional football player with the Latrobe Athletic Association
- Willis Glassgow, early professional football player
- Ace Parker, NFL Hall of Fame quarterback and MLB player, Portsmouth-Chesapeake Lodge No. 82
- Dick Weber, professional bowler, Florissant, Missouri, Lodge No. 2316
- Babe Ruth, baseball player, was initiated into New York Lodge #1 at home plate with over 1,000 brothers as witnesses. Feb 13, 1928
- Jon Condo, professional football player and long snapper for the Oakland Raiders, was initiated into Philipsburg, Pennsylvania, Lodge #1173 on July 12, 2015
- Eli Manning, professional football player, Quarterback on the New York Giants, was initiated into Summit, NJ lodge 1246 in 2016
Other influential people
- Francis Cardinal Spellman, Former Archbishop of New York, New York Lodge 1
In popular culture
- In Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis, a satire focusing on the banality of middle-class American life, the main character, George Babbitt, is an active member of the Elks.
- In East of Eden by John Steinbeck, it is mentioned that Adam is a member of both the Elks and the Masons.
- In The Blacker the Berry by Wallace Thurman, the character Alva and his landlord are both Elks.
- In Podkayne of Mars by Robert A. Heinlein, the title character's Great-Uncle Tom "hangs out at the Elks Club and plays pinochle" and is subsequently shown to be at the Elks Club many times later.
- Canadian indie rock group The Weakerthans have a song entitled "Psalm for the Elks Lodge Last Call".
- The song "Brotherhood of Man" in the musical How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying mentions the Elks.
- In the 1985 film Back to the Future, the Hill Valley Elks Lodge is shown from inside the diner during 1955 sequences. A large Elks emblem is visible on the exterior of the building.
- In the "Homer the Great" episode of "The Simpsons", Abe Simpson says he is an Elk. In the episode "Two Bad Neighbors", former president George H.W. Bush visits the Springfield B.P.O.E.
- In Curb Your Enthusiasm, Larry David claims he's both "a Moose, and an Elk" to get into a mainly white Republican country club.
- In Faulkner's "A Rose for Emily", character Homer Barron is said to drink with "the young men at the Elks".
- In The West Wing episode entitled "The Women of Qumar" from Season 3, Sam Seaborn says, "My dad's an Elk."
- In the Rocko's Modern Life episode "An Elk for Heffer," Heffer Wolfe visits the O-Town Elks Club (literally a club for elks) by disguising himself as an elk.
- "Form 990: Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax". Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. Guidestar. May 31, 2014.
- "Local Lodges". Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. Accessed on March 18, 2016.
- "Elks Founder Dies. J. M. Norcross, Minstrel, 84, Was Last Signer of Lodge Charter". The New York Times. March 1, 1925. Retrieved January 27, 2015.
- Schmidt, Alvin J.; Babchuk, Nicholas (1973). "The Unbrotherly Brotherhood: Discrimination in Fraternal Orders". Phylon. 34 (3): 275–282. doi:10.2307/274186. JSTOR 274186.
- Schmidt pp. 103–104
- "Elks.org :: More Information". www.elks.org.
- "Secret Ballot Box photo".
- Schmidt pp. 102–103
- Schmidt p. 103
- Schmidt, Alvin J. Fraternal Organizations Westport, CT; Greenwood Press p. 109
- Schmidt p. 202
- "Grand Lodge, Benevolent, Patriotic Order of Does – It's [sic] History and Organization". Archived from the original on August 15, 2013. Retrieved August 15, 2013.CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
- Schmidt p. 93
- Schmidt pp. 109–10
- "Beynon v. St. George-Dixie Lodge 1743".
- "ELKS MUST ADMIT WOMEN OR LOSE LIQUOR LICENSE".
- "Elks Lodges Vote on Whether to Admit Women".
- Cornelius v. Benevolent Protective Order of Elks, 382 F. Supp. 1182 (D. Conn. 1974)
- "New Test for Suits Seeking to Halt Governmental Support to Private Discriminating Organizations - Impermissible State Action". U. Colo. L. Rev. 44 (1973–1974): 447.
- Meehan, Thomas. "The other July convention". The New York Times.
- Kandell, Jonathan (March 13, 1972). "Elks Dismiss Opponent Of Their All‐White Rule". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 13, 2019.
- Pfefferkorn, Michael (1988). "The Ability of Voluntary Associations to Control Membership through Expulsion Comment". Saint Louis University Public Law Review. 7: 209.
- Enstad, Frober (July 20, 1973). "Elks open source to blacks". Chicago Tribune. p. 12.
- Fleeman, Michael (September 30, 1988). "Despite Reforms, Blacks Still Struggling to Join Elks Lodges". Associated Press.
- "Elks.org :: History of the Elks National Memorial". www.elks.org.
- "Welcome to the Elks Veterans Memorial". Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.
- Schmidt p. 104
- Schmidt pp. 104–105
- "Elks Magazine Online". Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. Retrieved October 17, 2008.
- "Grand Exalted Rulers". elks.org. Retrieved September 16, 2020.
- Schmidt p. 105
- Schmidt pp. 108–109 Schmidt's main source is James R. Nicholson and Lee A. Donaldson, History of the Order of Elks 1969. He also cites back issues of the proceedings
- Schmidt p. 44 Schmidt's main source is "The Antlers" in James R. Nicholson and Lee A. Donaldson, History of the Order of Elks 1969. The source for the continued existence of the Antlers after 1946 was apparently an Elks official he spoke to. The text of the relevant portion of the 1907 resolution is on p. 109
- Beck, Bill. "A Message From Bill Beck". Springfield, Illinois, Lodge #158. Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.
I will forever remember that BPOE also stands for the Best People On Earth, a line you have used often...
- Kelly, Mike. "The origins of The 11 O'Clock Toast". B.P.O.E. Grand Lodge Historian. Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. Archived from the original on January 12, 2007.
I will forever remember that BPOE also stands for the Best People On Earth, a line you have used often...
- Sparks, Eva. "Elks Walk 2,223 Miles to Attend 1912 National Convention". Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. Archived from the original on March 1, 2007.
Four athletic young men, members of the local B.P.O.E Lodge (Best People On Earth) and employees of...
- "Veterans Services". Retrieved July 3, 2013.
- History of veterans programs, Elks website
- "Journal Entries: Saint Peter's gets $100K grant from Provident Bank". NJ.com. September 22, 2015. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
- Schmidt p. 102
- United States Congressional Serial Set. U.S. Government Printing Office. 1914. p. 43. Retrieved March 1, 2018.
- "Membership of the Louisiana House of Representatives, 1812–2012" (PDF). legis.la.gov. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 4, 2013. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- O'Dowd, Niall. "Biden's Irish Roots". www.globallycastle.com. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
- "Living Legends: Armand Brinkhaus". acadiamuseum.com.
- "Representative Dank, David, District 85". okhouse.gov. Archived from the original on January 2, 2015. Retrieved August 21, 2013.
- "Gilbert Louis Dupre". St. Landry Trade Review. December 1896. Retrieved March 7, 2015.
- http://www.elkshistory.org/ "April 1943 Elks Magazine reported that the Life membership card of Brother Eddie Rickenbacker was featured in several national weekly magazines. This was bestowed upon him by the LA Elks on June 18, 1919"
- "Christian, John "Jack"". Louisiana Historical Association, A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography (lahistory.org). Archived from the original on February 25, 2012. Retrieved December 23, 2010.
- Heinlein, Robert A. (1987) Podkayne of Mars (Ace Edition). New York, NY: Ace Books, p. 11
- Kelly, Mike. "Name That Elk". elks.org. Archived from the original on August 14, 2007.
Although the original Elks were actors and entertainers, members of other professions soon joined the organization. Today's Elks represent just about the full spectrum of occupations in America.
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