While most of us know them, simply, as The Elks Club, their official name is,
"The Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks". The Elks Club was
formed by 15 actors and others in New York City in 1868. Their mission was to
perform patriotic and benevolent acts for charity. By 1970, The Elks college
scholarships donations was over one million dollars . This was in addition to
providing assistance to many other charitable causes in the fight against
The Elgin chapter of the Elks, or Lodge 737, formally received their charter
in November of 1901. However, by 1921 their membership outgrew their current
downtown Elgin location. The building show above was secured for $16,000. By
1928 the lodge at 18 S. Villa Court was completed at a total price of $100,000.
It was considered to be one of the finest lodges in the country.