History of Lodge #616
Flag Day – Never a Better Time
There couldn’t be a better time to attend Flag Day services – June 1914. Speakers would praise the flag’s ability to unify an America stressed by involvement in far away lands, rough politics, and a third party candidate resulting in a President some believe unfairly elected.
The First Elks: A. F. Judd, Jr., Lodge Secretary – First & Fast
It would seem Albert Francis Judd, Jr. had little choice in his life’s work. A. F. Jr. would not run away from the law to play music as did fellow Yale Law school grad and Elk Sonny Cunha.
The First Hawaii Elks
“The Elks is essentially an American order, citizenship being an important qualification for membership. . . . The order is a fraternal organization . . [and] aspiring charter members of the Honolulu lodge will doubtless prove no exception to the ‘good time’ methods of this fraternity.”
Joseph Henry Fisher, First Lecturing Knight
Revolutionaries are seldom accountants, but Joseph Henry Fisher was both. He was a by- the-rules businessman, and a break-the-rules rebel.
Frank Edward Thompson: First Esquire
First Esquire F. E. Thompson’s life combined the Elk virtues of Charity, Justice, and Fidelity.
The Tax Man: Charles T. Wilder, First Chaplin
We groan as we think of TAXES in April. Not so Charles Thomas Wilder, first Chaplin of 616. He thought about taxes daily!
Henry Berger, First Lodge Organist
Elk Henry Berger, director of the Royal Hawaiian Band, served as 616’s first Organist. Berger’s appointment was not honorary. He provided the musical accompaniment for lodge activities. August 4th will be his 172nd birthday.
“Sonny” Cunha – Movie Star Elk
In a June 2001 story I wrote that Albert Richard “Sonny” Cunha (616’s first Tiler) played the lead character in a 1918 film comedy, “Poi or Bust,” but that nothing was known about the film. Then chance has smiled. During a search on another topic, I tripped over an ad for the film.
Sonny Cunha Tiler, Composer, Politician
Albert Richard “Sonny” Cunha, (1879-1933) served as 616’s first Tiler. We don’t know much about how Cunha performed his duties as Tiler, but we do know he performed – as a musician and composer.
Hawaii Entertains at San Francisco Elks Lodge Opening
San Francisco July 1925: Newspapers report Santa Barbara’s efforts to rebuild after a June earthquake and plans for the state’s Diamond Jubilee.
A. V. Gear: First Trustee
In 1901, Albert van Clief Gear was elected one of three initial Trustees of Elks Lodge 616. Being first was something A. V. Gear did frequently.
A.L.C. Atkinson: How an Elk becomes a Moose
In 1912, Elk “Jack” Atkinson was loyal. He stuck with his friends in the race for the White House and bet on a moose, not an elephant. While the moose and elephant fought – the donkey won the race.
A.L.C. Atkinson: Adventure in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands
For Jack Atkinson, community service was never dull! A.L.C. Atkinson, Jack to his friends, served fellow Elks as First Trustee, his country in World War I, and fellow citizens as Secretary (Lt. Governor) of the Territory.
A.L.C. Atkinson’s Russian Adventure
In Feb. 1909, Elk A. L. C. “Jack” Atkinson was appointed U.S. District Attorney. The press, and maybe Jack, thought a new career had begun, but before the year ended, Atkinson was distracted by adventure in Russia.
100 years of Elks in Hawaii: A.L.C. Atkinson, First Trustee
At the organizing meeting of Elks 616, founding members have elected high school drop-out A. L. C. Atkinson as one of their first Trustees.
William George Ashley, 1st Treasurer
Money manager? Financial planner? CFO? Today, Elks 616 Treasurer William George Ashley might carry any of those job titles after his name. His career centered on providing financial advice. Most of his public life was related to finance, even the dark corners.
An Elk for Governor: L. E. Pinkham
This year Governor is not on the ballot – BUT imagine you couldn’t vote for Governor. Until statehood, the U.S. President appointed Hawaii governors.
An Elk for Governor: J. B. Poindexter
Elk Governor Joseph Boyd Poindexter surrendered the civil and legal rights of Hawaii residents to martial law after the Pearl Harbor attack, December 7, 1941.
An Elk for Governor: C. J. McCarthy
Charles James McCarthy (ER 1915-1916) stood up for Queen Liliuokalani in 1893, and 25 years later, as Governor, he did it again.
George D. Gear: first Loyal Knight [controversial and unconventional]
Which judge was a charter member of Honolulu Elks Lodge 616? A judge who released self-confessed criminals or an inventive judge who gave first-time youthful offenders a chance to change? Both!
The Malini Magic – An Elk Entertains the Troops
The World’s Greatest Magician was born Max Katz Breit in 1871 (or ‘73 or ’75) in Poland. In Max’s youth, his family immigrated to New York City where he learned magic and began performing at a very young age.
Reminders of the Castle Home
When members and their guests walk along the Lodge sea railing near the pool, you look out at the view or sunset over the ocean.
616 Elks – 80 Years Ago, January 1942
The Dec 7, 1941, attack caused chaos in Honolulu. 616 knew Elks had been in battles at Pearl Harbor, Schofield, Wheeler, and Hickam Fields, but nothing more.
The Many Homes of Honolulu Elks Lodge #616
Honolulu Lodge #616 of the Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks is now more than 100 years old.