Remembering The Past: Perth Amboy-B.P.O. Elks, No. 784

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by Diane Norek Harrison

The history of Perth Amboy Lodge No. 784 began in the year 1902 when Perth Amboy was a quiet little city, with a population of 18,000. Its principal business section on Smith St. extended from Front St. to state St, and the section beyond the tracks known as “Dublin.”

In the month of may there suddenly appeared in store windows, on telephone poles, on barns and sheds, in fact, everywhere, glaring posters on which were printed in purple this mystic announcement, “B.P.O.E. ARE COMING.” The town was aroused and asked, “What is the B.P.O.E. anyway. The local newspaper of those days, The Perth Amboy Republican and the Perth Amboy¬† Chronicle gave front page captions such as “THE ELKS ARE COMING” and “THE B.P.O.E. IS COMING.” The people now knew that an Elk’s Lodge was being formed. The lodge was instituted on June 10, 1902 with 39 charter members.

If you have your own memories of the past in Middlesex or Union counties, email me at or send copies of your material to me c/o CMD Media, 1139 East Jersey St., Suite 503, Elizabeth NJ, 07201

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