William F. Burk Lodge #230 F. & A. M.
390 Palisade Ave
Bogota, NJ 07603

Constituted May 1922

WB = Worshipful Brother
one who has been elected head of a Masonic Lodge
RW = Right Worshipful
One who has served on the Grand Lodge Staff in some capacity.
MW = Most Worshipful
The Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of the Most Ancient and Honorable Grand Lodge of Free And Accepted Masons for the State of New Jersey

Before the constitution of William F. Burk Lodge, the center of activities of the men of Bogota was the Men's Club at the Community house of the Bogart Memorial Church. At these meeting to was found that many of the members of the Men's Club were also members of Masonic Lodges from coast to coast. A that time the nearest Masonic Lodges were Pioneer Lodge #70, Hackensack and Mosaic Lodge #194, Ridgefield Park.

It was decided to organize a Club to be known as "The Masonic Club of Bogota". At the organization meeting of the club, which was held at the Borough Hall, over one hundred Masons attended. The Club became very active, which helped in a great measure toward creating a Masonic Lodge in Bogota.

In the fall of 1921, the members decided to organize as a Lodge. The Charter was issued on April 22, 1922, and the Constitution of William F. Burk Lodge and the installation of its officers were held on Saturday, May 13, 1922 in Rutherford, New Jersey, where the Grand Lodge of the Most Ancient and Honorable Grand Lodge of Free And Accepted Masons for the State of New Jersey convened in an Emergent Communication for that purpose.

The first meeting in the renovated Masonic Hall in the Central Avenue Fire House was held on October 21, 1922. During 1922, William F. Burk Lodge received 104 petitions for membership.

During the summers of 1922 and 1923, the Masonic Club held two financially successful carnivals at the corner of Palisade Avenue and East Fort Lee Road. The monies generated from these carnivals were placed in a "Building Fund". Throughout 1924, the members of the Lodge made personal contributions in the amount of several thousand dollars. a committee was appointed and the detailed arraignments for the erection of a Masonic Temple were consummated.

On June 6, 1925, MW Ralph E. Lum, the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of the Most Ancient and Honorable Grand Lodge of Free And Accepted Masons for the State of New Jersey and his staff took part in the laying of the cornerstone of the Masonic Temple.

The 100th Stated Communication was held on March 23, 1927. At that time, WB Fred Schwenk, on behalf of Mosaic Lodge #194, presented a 'Mosaic Pavement' to William F. Burk Lodge, in token of friendship and brotherly love.

On May 13, 1945, in response to the request of the Most worshipful Grand Master, an Emergent Communication was held with a special service at the Bogert Memorial Reformed Church in Commemoration of 'Victory in Europe' Day, in accordance with the Proclamation of President Truman (Most Worshipful Grand Master of Missouri). Rev. WB Magnus A. Bradford delivered the sermon entitled "Lasting Peace can only be founded on the principles of Christianity".

On October 23, 1946, the Lodge observed 'Affiliate and Charter Member Night', at which time 25 year membership buttons were presented to WB George S. Bush, WB Frank M. Bullen, and brothers William Forstoff, Bernard Dutcher, Fred B. Reuter, Walter S. Smith, Harry R. Constant, Walter J. Treloard, and George Price. The presentations were presented by RW Charles S. Elliot, PM of Pioneer Lodge #70, Hackensack, NJ. RW Howard C. Weden, 33°, Past Junior Grand Deacon, delivered a lecture entitled "Opportunities of Freemasonry in the Past and in the Future".

On November 27, 1946 a Resolution extolling the virtues of the late WB Albert F. Hoehl was adopted. At that time, an alter cloth was presented to the lodge by his widow, Mrs. Myrtle Hoehl.

Burk Lodge has been honored with many Grand Lodge appointments:

  • RW John W. Bauer, Grand Chaplain
  • RW Richard B. Greenhalgh, Grand Chaplain,
    Masonic Home Trustee, Grand Lodge Legal Committee
  • RW Alvin A. Birne, Grand Chaplain
  • RW David V. McQueen, Grand Chaplain
  • RW William Donovan, Grand Chaplain
  • RW Francis T. Bullen, Grand Chaplain
  • RW Frank Beaumont, District Deputy Grand Master, 3rd Masonic District
  • RW Jack Feiler, District Deputy Grand Master, 25th Masonic District
  • RW Clifford Throp, District Deputy Grand Master, 3rd Masonic District
  • RW Richard Schmidt, District Deputy Grand Master, 3rd Masonic District
    Masonic Charity Foundation Trustee
  • RW Frank Austin, District Deputy Grand Master, 3rd Masonic District
  • RW Walter Moore, District Deputy Grand Master, 5th Manhattan District
  • RW C. William Leonard, Grand Steward, Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of New York

In 1971, Tuscan Lodge #115 merged into Burk Lodge bringing many new members into Burk Lodge.

In 1984 Townley Lodge #220 merged into Burk Lodge, also bringing many new members into Burk Lodge.

With the merger of these two lodges, donations to the Order of DeMolay, Englewood Hospital, the American Legion, and several college scholarships were possible, and these donations continue to this day.

Up until 1995, no Master of Burk had served more than once.

WB Donald Barone was the first to do so, and served three times.

RW David McQueen, WB Carvel Grim, WB Robert Lynn, and RW Ronald Seilheimer served twice.

RW Alvin Birne served five years, once as Master of Tuscan Lodge, and four times as Master of Burk Lodge.

RW Richard Schmidt served once as Master of Burk, and once as Master of Congdon-Overlook #163.

WB Marshall Pelz was the youngest Master of Burk, at age 29, and served as Master of Burk five times, as well as having served twice as Master of Pioneer Lodge.