The community was not without groceries for very long. In 1924 William Burk built a new general store about a quarter of a mile northeast of the one that had burned. It was situated on what was then the main road to Coupeville, and named The Bayview Cash Store. The Burks operated the store for about six years, selling it to Harold Johnston in 1930. The store became a community land-mark during the years it was owned by Johnston prior to his retirement and subsequent death. As this is written it is owned by Bill Lanning, Jr., who has done an excellent job of restoring the exterior and remodeling the interior. He has assembled an interesting display of memorabilia in half of the building in which he operates Bill’s Feed and Tack. He leases the remainder of the historic building to Whidbey Island Food Co-op.
William Burk arrived in Bayview from Seattle in 1910 with his wife Ava, and children Mae and Claude. Originally, William and his brother, John had come to Seattle from Arkansas in 1905, and both men had been working at the Seattle Cedar Mill. John, who spelled his last name with an “e,”—Burke, moved his family to Bayview in 1910 shortly after his brother settled there.
William purchased a saw mill on Lone Lake and operated it until it burned in 1914. The family then moved to Stanwood, but returned to their Lone Lake home in 1917, purchasing a mill near Midvale which they ran until 1924 when they started the Bayview store. William and Ada added five more children, besides Mae and Claude, to their family; Charles, William Jr., Elmer, Merle, and Lillian. In later years, William and Ada and all of their children moved off the island except for Charles who remained to become one of the com-munity’s leading citizens.
Charles Burk (or “Chuck,” as he is better known) attended Bayview grade school and Langley High School after which he purchased a truck and started hauling lumber for hire. In the course of events, he met a young lady—Lois Anderson—who had come from Okanagan in 1926 and was working for the Noble family in the telephone office on Anthes Street in Langley. Lois worked the day shift and Tudy Patzwold, now Mrs. Aldon Johnson, worked the night shift. There were about 150 telephone patrons at that time, with ten to twelve people on each party line. Ten cents an hour was considered good wages.
Romance blossomed between Lois Anderson and Chuck Burk and they were married in 1932, making their home in a house on Second Street in Langley, which had been built in 1906. They remodeled and modernized their 26-year-old home and lived there until 1953 when they built a beautiful brick house across the street from their former home, which is now owned by H. C. Cherry.
In the meantime, shortly after their marriage, they started a lumber yard next door to their house in Langley. Later, they purchased property on Second and DeBruyn streets in Langley and expanded their business, building a new lumber yard and store which they operated until 1972 when they retired. They sold the property and business to Phillip Bjorn and, as this is written, it is still in operation.
Both Charles and Lois Burk have been influential members of the Langley community over the years. Charles served on the Langley city council for eight years and was the town’s fire chief for four years. Lois has been active in community service organizations including bond drives during the war, the March of Dimes, and the Hobby Club of Home Decorating. They have two children, Francis and William, and two grandchildren.
While William Burk was busy with lumber mills and the Bayview store, his brother John and wife Leota had built a resort on the southeast shore of Lone Lake including eleven cabins and eighteen row-boats at their establishment. The lake was filled with catfish, bluegills, bass sometimes weighing as much as seven pounds—and perch, often fifteen inches long. Whole families of vacationers from the main-land would patronize the Lone Lake Resort during the summer. John and Leota had a deep love for the island and for their resort which they operated for 50 years before retiring and turning it over to Ray Howard in 1960. Leota died when she was 77 and John at the age of 92. Both are buried in Langley Cemetery.
Their youngest son Arthur was born after they came to Lone Lake. He shared their love for South Whidbey. He and his wife Dorothy make their home (as this is written) on the shore of Lone Lake on a portion of the original Burke property.
After graduating from Bayview grade school and Langley High School, Arthur started a business venture with his boyhood friend Lloyd Smith, whose family—the George Smiths— were neighbors of the Burkes near Lone Lake. The two young men opened a roller skating rink on the hardwood stage of the Pole building at the fair-grounds. Their next business venture was to build and operate the Burke & Smith Service Station across the street from the Langley school buildings. The building was later known as the Snack Shack. Besides being a filling station for cars, it also was a filling station of sorts for hungry people, providing hamburgers and hot dogs. Selling high school office supplies also was a part of the Burke & Smith operation.
When World War II broke out, Arthur Burke and Lloyd Smith went into the army, selling out their business. After the war, Arthur returned home briefly, then went to Oregon where he became an employee of the Burlington Northern Railroad for 39 years. His wife Dorothy is an Oregon native. In 1976, Arthur retired from the railroad and he and Dorothy returned to Lone Lake, building a home on the property which he had retained throughout the years. They are the parents of four daughters and a son, all of whom have left the island excepting Janice Burke Vaughn who is assistant manager of the Whidbey Island Bank.
After his service in the war, Lloyd Smith also returned home. He had a keen interest in the political activities of the island and, among other services, he was Langley’s mayor for several years.