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{{redirect|KKK}}{{featured article}}
|name =
|title = Ku Klux Klan
|image = [[Image:KKK.svg|200px]]
|caption =
|headerstyle = background:#ccf;
|labelstyle = background:#ddf;
|header1 = In Existence
|label2 = 1st Klan
|data2 = 1865-1870s
|label3 = 2nd Klan
|data3 = 1915-1944
|label4 = 3rd Klan{{smallsup|1}}
|data4 = 1945-present
|header5 = Members
|label6 = 1st Klan
|data6 = 550,000
|label7 = 2nd Klan
|data7 = 6,000,000 (1924 Peak)
|label8 = 3rd Klan{{smallsup|1}}
|data8 = 8,000
|header9 = Properties
|label10 = Origin
|data10 = [[United States of America]]
|label11 = Political ideology
|data11 = [[White supremacy]]
|label12 = Political position
|data12 = [[Far-right]]
|label13 =
|data13 =
|belowstyle = background:#ddf;
|below = {{smallsup|1}}<small>The 3rd Klan is decentralized, with approx. 179 chapters.</small>
'''Ku Klux Klan''' ('''KKK''') is the name of several past and present secret organizations in the [[United States]], mostly in the South, that are best known for advocating [[white supremacy]] while hidden behind masks and robes. The first KKK arose in the turmoil after the Civil War. It used [[terrorism]], [[violence]], and [[lynching]] to intimidate and [[oppress]] [[African American]]s.
The first Klan was founded in 1866 by veterans of the [[Confederate States Army|Confederate Army]]. Its purpose was to restore white supremacy in the aftermath of the [[American Civil War]]. The Klan resisted [[Reconstruction]] by intimidating "[[carpetbagger]]s", "[[scalawag]]s" and freed [[history of slavery in the United States|slave]]s. The KKK quickly adopted violent methods. The increase in murders finally resulted in a backlash among [[Southern United States|Southern]] elites who viewed the Klan's excesses as an excuse for federal troops to continue occupation. The organization declined from 1868 to 1870 and was destroyed by President [[Ulysses S. Grant]]'s prosecution and enforcement under the [[Civil Rights Act of 1871]].
In 1915, the second Klan was founded. It grew rapidly in another period of postwar social tensions. After WWI, many Americans coped with booming growth rates in major cities, where numerous waves of immigrants from southern and eastern Europe and the [[Great Migration]] of Southern blacks and whites were being absorbed. After WWI, labor tensions rose as veterans tried to reenter the work force. In reaction to these new groups, the second KKK preached [[racism]], anti-Catholicism, [[anti-Communism]], nativism, and anti-Semitism. It conducted ceremonial [[cross burning]] to intimidate victims and demonstrate its power. Some local groups took part in lynchings, attacks on houses and public property, and other violent activities. The most violence and murders occurred in the South, which had a tradition of lawlessness.<ref>Jackson 1967, pp. 241-242.</ref>
The film ''[[The Birth of a Nation]]'' and the sensationalized newspaper coverage of the trial, conviction and lynching of [[Leo Frank]] of [[Georgia (U.S. state)|Georgia]] sparked the Klan's revival. The second Klan was a formal [[Fraternal and service organizations|fraternal organization]], with a national and state structure. At its peak in the mid-1920s, the organization included about 15% of the nation's eligible population, approximately 4–5 million men.<ref>According to the 1920 census, the population of white males 18 years and older was about 31 million, but many of these men would have been ineligible for membership because they were immigrants, Jews, or Roman Catholics. Klan membership peaked at about 4-5 million: {{cite web |url=http://www.aaregistry.com/african_american_history/2207/The_Ku_Klux_Klan_a_brief__biography |title=The Ku Klux Klan, a brief biography |accessdate= |author= |date= |work= |publisher=[[The African American Registry]] }}</ref> The Klan's popularity fell rapidly during the [[Great Depression]], and membership fell further during [[World War II]].{{fact|date=April 2008}}
The name Ku Klux Klan has since been used by many independent groups opposing the [[Civil Rights Movement]] and [[desegregation]], especially in the 1950s and 1960s. During this period, they often acted with impunity by alliances with Southern police departments, as during the reign of [[Bull Connor]] in [[Birmingham, Alabama]]; or governor's offices, as with [[George C. Wallace|George Wallace]] of Alabama.<ref name ="McWhorter">McWhorter 2001.</ref> Several members of KKK-affiliated groups were convicted of manslaughter and murder in the deaths of civil rights workers and children in the [[16th Street Baptist Church bombing|bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Alabama]], the assassination of [[NAACP]] organizer [[Medgar Evers]], and the murders of three [[Mississippi civil rights worker murders|civil rights workers]] in Mississippi. Today, researchers estimate there are 150 Klan chapters with up to 8,000 members nationwide. The U.S. government classifies these groups, with operations in separated small local units, as [[hate group]]s. The modern KKK has been repudiated by all mainstream media, [[Politics of the United States|political]] and [[Religion in the United States|religious]] leaders.
==First Klan 1865-1874==
[[Image:Kkk-carpetbagger-cartoon.jpg|thumb|left|A cartoon threatening the KKK will [[lynching in the United States|lynch]] [[carpetbagger]]s, [[Tuscaloosa, Alabama|Tuscaloosa]], [[Alabama]], ''Independent Monitor'', 1868]]
[[Image:Anti-kkk-cartoon.jpg|left|thumb|A political cartoon depicting the KKK and the Democratic Party as continuations of the Confederacy]]
[[Image:NathanBedfordForrest.jpg|left|200px|thumb|[[Nathan Bedford Forrest]]]]
As W.E.B. DuBois noted, "It is always difficult to stop war, and doubly difficult to stop civil war...In the case of civil war, where the contending parties must rest face to face after peace, there can be no quick and perfect peace." As reported by [[Mississippi]] Governor [[Sharkey]] in [[1866]], disorder, lack of control and lawlessness were widespread; in some states armed bands of Confederate soldiers roamed at will. Southerners seemed to take out on blacks all their wrath at the Federal government. They casually attacked and killed blacks whose bodies were left on the roads.<ref>W.E.B. Du Bois, ''Black Reconstruction in America: 1860-1880'', New York: Oxford University Press, 1935; reprint, The Free Press, 1998, pp.671-675</ref>
The original Ku Klux Klan was created in the aftermath of the [[American Civil War]] by six educated, middle-class [[Confederate States of America|Confederate]] veterans on [[December 24]], [[1865]].<ref>Horn 1939, p. 9. The founders were John C. Lester, John B. Kennedy, James R. Crowe, Frank O. McCord, Richard R. Reed, and J. Calvin Jones</ref> from [[Pulaski, Tennessee]]. They made up the name by combining the [[Greek language|Greek]] "{{lang|grc-Latn|kyklos}}" (κυκλος,circle) with "[[clan]]"<ref>Horn 1939, p. 11, states that Reed proposed "{{lang|grc|κύκλος}}" ("{{lang|grc-Latn|kyklos}}") and Kennedy added "clan." Wade 1987, p. 33 says Kennedy came up with both words, but Crowe suggested transforming "{{lang|grc|κύκλος}}" into "{{lang|grc-Latn|kuklux}}."</ref> It was one among a number of secret, oath-bound organizations, including the [[Southern Cross]] in [[New Orleans]] (1865), the [[White League]], and the [[Knights of the White Camellia]].<ref>W.E.B. Du Bois, ''Black Reconstruction in America: 1860-1880'', New York: Oxford University Press, 1935; reprint, The Free Press, 1998, pp.679-680</ref>
In an 1867 meeting in [[Nashville, Tennessee]], Klan members gathered to try to create a hierarchical organization with local chapters reporting eventually up to national headquarters. As most of them were veterans, they were used to such organization. Former Confederate Brigadier General [[George Gordon (Ku Klux Klan leader)|George Gordon]] put the proposals together in what was called the "Prescript." The Prescript suggested elements of white supremacy belief. For instance, an applicant should be asked if he was in favor of "a white man's government", "the reenfranchisement and emancipation of the white men of the South, and the restitution of the Southern people to all their rights."<ref>{{cite web |url=http://www.albany.edu/faculty/gz580/his101/kkk.html |title=Ku Klux Klan, Organization and Principles, 1868 |accessdate= |author= |date= |work= |publisher=[[State University of New York at Albany]] }}</ref> Despite Gordon's work, local Klan units never accepted the Prescript and continued to operate autonomously. There were never hierarchical levels or state headquarters.
Gordon supposedly told former [[slave trade]]r and Confederate General [[Nathan Bedford Forrest]] in [[Memphis, Tennessee]], about the Klan. Forrest allegedly responded, "That's a good thing; that's a damn good thing. We can use that to keep the [[nigger]]s in their place."<ref>Horn 1939. Horn casts doubt on some other aspects of the story.</ref> A few weeks later, Forrest was selected as [[Imperial Wizard]], the Klan's national leader. Although, Forrest always denied leadership.
In effect, the Klan defended the interest of the planter class and Democratic Party by working to curb the education, economic advancement, [[voting rights]], and [[right to bear arms]] of blacks.<ref>Foner 1989, p. 426.</ref> The Ku Klux Klan soon spread into nearly every southern state, launching a "reign of terror" against [[History of the United States Republican Party|Republican]] leaders both black and white. Those political leaders assassinated during the campaign included [[Arkansas]] Congressman [[James M. Hinds]], three members of the [[South Carolina]] legislature, and several men who served in constitutional conventions."<ref>Foner 1989, p. 342.</ref>
In an 1868 newspaper interview,<ref>Cincinnati 'Commercial', August 28 1868, quoted in Wade 1987. [[wikisource:Interview with Nathan Bedford Forrest|Full text of the interview on wikisource.]]</ref> Forrest stated the Klan's primary opposition was to the Loyal Leagues, [[Republican Party (United States)|Republican]] state governments, people like Tennessee governor [[William Gannaway Brownlow|Brownlow]] and other carpetbaggers and scalawags. He claimed that many southerners believed blacks were voting for the Republican Party because they were being hoodwinked by the Loyal Leagues. One Alabama newspaper editor declared "The League is nothing more than a nigger Ku Klux Klan."<ref>Horn 1939, p. 27.</ref> At the local level, however, old feuds and grudges were the cause of numerous attacks, and Klan members worked for their own dominance in the disrupted postwar society.
As historian Elaine Frantz Parsons discovered:<ref>Parsons 2005, p. 816.</ref>
{{cquote|Lifting the Klan mask revealed a chaotic multitude of antiblack vigilante groups, disgruntled poor white farmers, wartime [[guerrilla]] bands, displaced Democratic politicians, illegal whiskey distillers, coercive moral reformers, bored young men, sadists, rapists, white workmen fearful of black competition, employers trying to enforce labor discipline, common thieves, neighbors with decades-old grudges, and even a few [[freedmen]] and white Republicans who allied with Democratic whites or had criminal agendas of their own. Indeed, all they had in common, besides being overwhelmingly white, southern, and Democratic, was that they called themselves, or were called, Klansmen.}}
Klan members adopted masks and robes that hid their identities and added to the drama of their night rides, their chosen time for attacks. Many of them operated in small towns and rural areas where people otherwise knew each other's faces. "The kind of thing that men are afraid or ashamed to do openly, and by day, they accomplish secretly, masked, and at night." With this method both the high and the low could be attacked.<ref>W.E.B. Du Bois, ''Black Reconstruction in America: 1860-1880'', New York: Oxford University Press, 1935; reprint, The Free Press, 1998, pp.677-678</ref> Some blacks believed Ku Klux Klan night riders were the ghosts of dead Confederates.<ref name="splc">{{cite web |url= http://www.iupui.edu/~aao/kkk.html |title= A Hundred Years of Terror |accessdate= |author= A special report prepared by the [[Southern Poverty Law Center]] |date= |work= |publisher= [[Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis]] }}</ref>
The Klan raided black members of the Loyal Leagues and intimidated southern Republicans and Freedmen's Bureau workers. Agents of the Freedmen's Bureau reported weekly assaults and murders of blacks. "Armed guerilla warfare killed thousands of Negroes; political riots were staged; their causes or occasions were always obscure, their results always certain: ten to one hundred times as many Negroes were killed as whites." Masked men shot into houses and burned them, sometimes with the occupants still inside. They drove successful black farmers off their land. General Canby reported that in North and South Carolina, in 18 months ending in June 1867, there were 197 murders and 548 cases of aggravated assault.<ref>W.E.B. Du Bois, ''Black Reconstruction in America: 1860-1880'', New York: Oxford University Press, 1935; reprint, The Free Press, 1998, pp.674-675</ref>
Klan violence worked to suppress black voting. As examples, over 2,000 persons were killed, wounded and otherwise injured in Louisiana within a few weeks prior to the Presidential election of November 1868. In St. Landry Parish, where there was a registered Republican majority of 1,071, after the violence, in the fall elections there was no Republican vote. Democrats cast the full vote of the parish for Grant's opponent. This followed the KKK killing and wounding over 200 black Republicans, hunting and chasing them through the woods. Thirteen captives were taken from jail and shot; a half-buried pile of 25 bodies was found in the woods. The KKK made people vote Democratic and gave them certificates of the fact.<ref>W.E.B. Du Bois, ''Black Reconstruction in America: 1860-1880'', New York: Oxford University Press, 1935; reprint, The Free Press, 1998, pp.680-681</ref>
In the April 1868 [[Georgia (U.S. state)|Georgia]] gubernatorial election, [[Columbia County, Georgia|Columbia County]] cast 1,222 votes for Republican [[Rufus Bullock]], but by the [[United States presidential election, 1868|November presidential election]], after Klan intimidation, only one vote was cast for Republican candidate Ulysses Grant.<ref>{{cite web |url=http://www.georgiaencyclopedia.org/nge/Article.jsp?id=h-694 |title=Ku Klux Klan in the Reconstruction Era |accessdate= |author=Bryant, Jonathan M. |date= |work=[[The New Georgia Encyclopedia]] |publisher=[[Georgia Southern University]] }}</ref>
Klansmen killed more than 150 African Americans in a county in [[Florida]], and hundreds more in other counties. Freedmen's Bureau records provide a detailed recounting of beatings and murders of blacks by Klansmen. <ref>''The Invisible Empire: The Ku Klux Klan in Florida'' by Michael Newton, pp. 1-30. Newton quotes from the Testimony Taken by the Joint Select Committee to Enquire into the Condition of Affairs in the Late Insurrectionary States. Vol. 13. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1872. Among historians of the Klan, this volume is also known as "The KKK testimony."</ref>
In [[Mississippi]], according to the Congressional inquiry<ref>Rhodes 1920, pp. 157-158.</ref>
{{cquote|One of these teachers (Miss Allen of [[Illinois]]), whose school was at Cotton Gin Port in [[Monroe County, Mississippi|Monroe County]], was visited ... between one and two o'clock in the morning on March, 1871, by about fifty men mounted and disguised. Each man wore a long white robe and his face was covered by a loose mask with scarlet stripes. She was ordered to get up and dress which she did at once and then admitted to her room the captain and lieutenant who in addition to the usual disguise had long horns on their heads and a sort of device in front. The lieutenant had a [[pistol]] in his hand and he and the captain sat down while eight or ten men stood inside the door and the porch was full. They treated her "gentlemanly and quietly" but complained of the heavy school-tax, said she must stop teaching and go away and warned her that they never gave a second notice. She heeded the warning and left the county.}}
[[Image:Misissippi ku klux.jpg|right|200px|thumb|Three Ku Klux Klan members arrested in [[Tishomingo County, Mississippi]], September 1871, for the attempted murder of an entire family.]]
{{wikisource|Interview with Nathan Bedford Forrest}}
By 1868, two years after the Klan's creation, its activity was beginning to decrease.<ref name = "Horn-p375">Horn 1939, p. 375.</ref> Members were hiding behind Klan masks and robes as a way to avoid prosecution for free-lance violence. Many influential southern Democrats feared that Klan lawlessness provided an excuse for the federal government to retain its power over the South, and they began to turn against it.<ref name = "Wade-p102">Wade 1987, p. 102.</ref> There were outlandish claims made, such as Georgian [[B.H. Hill]] stating "that some of these outrages were actually perpetrated by the political friends of the parties slain."<ref name = "Horn-p375"/>
===Decline and suppression===
Although Forrest boasted the Klan was a nationwide organization of 550,000 men and he could muster 40,000 Klansmen with five days' notice, as a secret or "[[Invisible dictatorship|invisible]]" group, it had no membership rosters, no dues, no newspapers, no spokesmen, no chapters, no local officers, no state or national officials, making it difficult to judge its membership. Its popularity came from its reputation, which was greatly enhanced by its costumes and and threatening theatrics.
One Klan official complained his, "so-called 'Chief'-ship was purely nominal, I having not the least authority over the reckless young country boys who were most active in 'night-riding,' whipping, etc., all of which was outside of the intent and constitution of the Klan..."
A federal grand jury in 1869 determined the Klan was a "terrorist organization." It issued hundreds of indictments for crimes of violence and terrorism. Klan members were prosecuted, and many fled jurisdiction, particularly in South Carolina.<ref>Trelease 1995.</ref> Many people not formally inducted into the Klan had used the Klan's uniform for anonymity, to hide their identities when carrying out acts of violence. Forrest ordered the Klan to disband in 1869, stating it was "being perverted from its original honorable and patriotic purposes, becoming injurious instead of subservient to the public peace."<ref>quotes from Wade 1987.</ref> Historian Stanley Horn writes "generally speaking, the Klan's end was more in the form of spotty, slow, and gradual disintegration than a formal and decisive disbandment."<ref>Horn 1939, p. 360.</ref> A reporter in Georgia wrote in January 1870, "A true statement of the case is not that the Ku Klux are an organized band of licensed criminals, but that men who commit crimes call themselves Ku Klux."<ref>Horn 1939, p. 362.</ref>
[[Image:NCG-WilliamHolden.jpg|thumb|Gov. [[William Woods Holden|William Holden]] of North Carolina.]]
While people used the Klan more frequently as a mask for nonpolitical crimes, state and local governments seldom acted against them. African Americans were kept off juries. In lynching cases, all-white juries almost never indicted Klan members. When there was a rare indictment, juries were unlikely to vote for conviction. In part, jury members feared reprisals from local Klansmen. They often agreed with lynching as a way of keeping dominance over black men. In many states, officials were reluctant to use black militia from fear that race tensions would be raised.<ref name="jimcrow-stories">{{cite web |url=http://www.pbs.org/wnet/jimcrow/stories_events_enforce.html |title=The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow &mdash; The Enforcement Acts (1870-1871) |accessdate= |author=Wormser, Richard |date= |work= |publisher=[[Public Broadcasting Service]] }}</ref> When Republican [[Governor of North Carolina]] [[William Woods Holden]] called out the militia against the Klan in 1870, the result was Republicans' losing their majority in the legislature. Disaffection with his actions led to legislators' impeaching Holden and removing him from office, but their reasons were numerous.<ref>Wade 1987, p. 85.</ref>
Union Army veterans in mountainous [[Blount County, Alabama]], organized 'the anti-Ku Klux.' They put an end to violence by threatening Klansmen with reprisals unless they stopped whipping Unionists and burning black churches and schools. Armed blacks formed their own defense in [[Bennettsville, South Carolina]] and patrolled the streets to protect their homes.<ref>Foner 1989, p. 435.</ref>
Nationally sentiment gathered to crack down on the Klan, even though some Democrats at the national level questioned whether the Klan existed or was a creation of nervous Southern Republican governors.<ref>Wade 1987.</ref> Many southern states began to pass anti-Klan legislation.
In January 1871, [[Pennsylvania]] Republican Senator [[John Scott (Pennsylvania)|John Scott]] convened a Congressional committee which took testimony from 52 witnesses about Klan atrocities. They accumulated 12 volumes of horrifying testimony. In February, former Union General and Congressman [[Benjamin Franklin Butler (politician)|Benjamin Franklin Butler]] of [[Massachusetts]] introduced the [[Ku Klux Klan Act]]. This added to the enmity southern white Democrats bore toward him.<ref>Horn 1939, p. 373.</ref> While the bill was being considered, further violence in the South swung support for its passage. The Governor of South Carolina appealed for federal troops to assist his keeping control. A riot and massacre in a [[Meridian, Mississippi]], courthouse were reported, from which a black state representative escaped only by taking to the woods.<ref>Wade 1987, p. 88.</ref>
[[Image:BenFrankButler.jpg|thumb|left||[[Benjamin Franklin Butler (politician)|Benjamin Franklin Butler]] wrote the [[Civil Rights Act of 1871|1871 Klan Act]].]]
In 1871, President Ulysses S. Grant signed Butler's legislation. The Ku Klux Klan Act was used by the Federal government together with the 1870 Force Act to enforce the civil rights provisions for individuals under the constitution. Under the Klan Act, Federal troops were used for enforcement, and Klansmen were prosecuted in Federal court. More African Americans served on juries in Federal court than were selected for local or state juries, so had a chance to participate in the process.<ref name="jimcrow-stories"/> In the crackdown, hundreds of Klan members were fined or imprisoned. In South Carolina, ''[[habeas corpus]]'' was suspended in nine counties. The Klan was destroyed in South Carolina<ref name = "Wade-p102"/> and decimated throughout the rest of the South, where it had already been in decline. Attorney General [[Amos Tappan Ackerman]] led the prosecutions.<ref>Wade 1987, p. 109, writes that by ca. 1871-1874, "For many, the lapse of the enforcement acts was justified since their reason for being &mdash; the Ku-Klux Klan &mdash; had been effectively smashed as a result of the dramatic showdown in South Carolina." Klan "costumes or regalia" disappeared by the early 1870s (Wade 1987, p. 109). The fact that the Klan did not exist for decades was shown when Simmons's 1915 recreation of the Klan attracted only two aging "former Reconstruction Klansmen." All other members were new.(Wade 1987, p. 144). Horn, a Southern historian sympathetic to the first Klan, was careful in an oral interview to distinguish it from the later "spurious Ku Klux organization which was in ill-repute — and, of course, had no connection whatsoever with the Klan of Reconstruction days."</ref> <ref>[http://www.lib.duke.edu/forest/Research/ohisrch.html An Annotated Guide to Oral History Interviews of the Forest History Society]
</ref> "By 1872, the Klan as an organization was broken."<ref>[http://www.pbs.org/wnet/jimcrow/stories_events_enforce.html "The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow: The Enforcement Acts, 1870-1871", Public Broadcast Service], accessed 5 Apr 2008</ref> In some areas, other local paramilitary organizations such as the White League, [[Red Shirts]], saber clubs, and rifle clubs continued intimidation and murder of black voters.<ref>Wade 1987, pp. 109-110.</ref> Although destroyed, the Klan achieved many of its goals, such as suppressing suffrage for Southern blacks and driving a wedge between poor whites and blacks.
{{Cite wikisource|Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871}}
Despite suppression of the Klan, violence continued against African Americans as whites struggled for power. On [[Easter]] Sunday 1873, black citizens fought a mixed political and racial battle against white militia in [[Colfax, Louisiana]]. The ostensible cause was an election contested at both the state and local levels. Each man elected sheriff claimed the local office. When black Republicans gathered at the courthouse, white militia collected to force them to leave. Estimates of African Americans killed overnight and into the next day were 105 to 280. Some bodies were hidden in the woods or thrown in the river; others buried before state and Federal troops arrived. African-American legislator John G. Lewis remarked, "They attempted (armed self-defense) in Colfax. The result was that on Easter Sunday of 1873, when the sun went down that night, it went down on the corpses of two hundred and eighty negroes."<ref>Foner 1989, p. 437, and ''KKK Hearings,'' 46th Congress, 2d Session, Senate Report 693, and Taylor 1974, p. 268-270.</ref> The [[Colfax Massacre]] had the highest fatalities of any incident of racial violence during Reconstruction.
Shortly after, in [[United States v. Cruikshank]] (1875), the Supreme Court ruled that the few convictions achieved after the Colfax Massacre were faulty. It ruled that the Force Act of 1870 did not give the Federal government power to regulate private actions, but only those by state governments. The result was that as the century went on, African Americans were at the mercy of hostile state governments to intervene against private violence and paramilitary groups.
In 1882, long after the Klan was destroyed, the [[Supreme Court of the United States|Supreme Court]] ruled in ''[[United States v. Harris]]'' that the Klan Act was partially [[Constitutionality|unconstitutional]]. It ruled that Congress's power under the [[Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution|Fourteenth Amendment]] did not extend to regulate against private conspiracies.<ref>{{cite web |url=http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/jbalkin/opeds/historylesson1.pdf |title=History Lesson |accessdate= |author=Balkin, Jack M. |date=2002 |work= |publisher=[[Yale University]] }}</ref>
As 20th century Supreme Court rulings extended Federal enforcement of citizens' civil rights, the Force Act and the Klan Act were used by 20th c. Federal prosecutors as the basis for investigation and indictments in the 1964 murders of [[Mississippi civil rights workers murders|Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner]];<ref>{{cite web |url=http://faculty.smu.edu/dsimon/Change-CivRts2.html |title=The Civil Rights Movement, 1964-1968 |accessdate= |author=Simon, Dennis M. |date= |work= |publisher=[[Southern Methodist University]] }}</ref> and the 1965 murder of [[Viola Liuzzo]]. <ref>{{cite web |url=http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAliuzzo.htm |title=Viola Liuzzo |accessdate= |author= |date= |work= |publisher=[[Spartacus Educational]] }}</ref> They were also the basis of prosecution in 1991 in ''[[Bray v. Alexandria Women's Health Clinic]]''.
==Disfranchisement and Great Migration==
{{main|Disfranchisement after the Civil War}}
The [[nadir of American race relations]] is often placed from the end of reconstruction to the 1910s, especially in the South. Once white Democrats regained political power in state legislatures in the 1870s, they passed bills directed at restricting voter registration by blacks and poor whites. Continued low cotton prices, agricultural depression and labor shortages in the South contributed to social tensions. According to [[Tuskegee Institute]], the 1890s was also the [[Lynching in the United States#Statistics|peak decade]] for lynchings, with most of them directed against African Americans in the South. The lynchings were a byproduct of political tensions as white Democrats tried to strip blacks from voter rolls and suppress voting. Some of the violence was directed at trying to break up interracial coalitions that came to power in state legislatures in 1894, with alliances of Populist and Republican parties.<ref>[http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=224731 Richard H. Pildes, "Democracy, Anti-Democracy, and the Canon", ''Constitutional Commentary'', Vol.17, 2000, p.27], accessed 10 Mar 2008</ref> In 1896 the Democrats used fraud, violence and intimidation to suppress voting by poor classes, and regained power.
From 1890 to 1908, ten of eleven southern states ratified new constitutions or amendments that completed disfranchisement of most African Americans and many poor whites. The constitutions had provisions making voter registration more complicated: such as [[poll taxes]], residency requirements, recordkeeping and [[literacy tests]], which were often subjectively applied. In addition, in voting sometimes multiple ballot boxes were used. The result was that blacks and poor whites in most southern states were deprived of suffrage, representation at any level of government, local elected offices, and the right to serve on juries (usually restricted to voters).<ref>[http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=224731 Richard H. Pildes, "Democracy, Anti-Democracy, and the Canon", ''Constitutional Commentary'', Vol.17, 2000, pp.12-13, 27], accessed 10 Mar 2008</ref> In most of the South, sweeping disfranchisement and white one-party government lasted until African Americans' leadership and activism in the Civil Rights Movement gained passage of Federal civil rights legislation in 1964 and 1965.
Beginning in 1910 and going through 1940, tens of thousands of African Americans decided to leave the South and its violence and segregation, in a movement known as the [[Great Migration]]. They went to northern and midwestern cities for jobs, better education for their children, a chance to vote, and the hopes of living with less violence. Northern industry recruited black workers because of a shortage of labor for expanding industries: for instance, the Pennsylvania Railroad hired 12,000 men, all but 2,000 of them from Florida and Georgia.<ref>[http://mailer.fsu.edu/~mjones/rosewood/rosewood.html Maxine D. Rogers, Larry E. Rivers, David R. Colburn, R. Tom Dye, and William W. Rogers, ''Documented History of the Incident Which Occurred at Rosewood, Florida in January 1923'', Florida: Dec 1993, p.2], accessed 28 Mar 2008</ref>
[[Image:Birth-of-a-nation-poster-color.jpg|thumb|right|170px|Movie poster for ''[[The Birth of a Nation]]'']]
==The second Klan 1915-1944==
The second Klan rose in response to urbanization and industrialization, massive immigration from eastern and southern Europe, the [[Great Migration (African American)|Great Migration of African Americans]] to the North, and the migration of African Americans and whites from rural areas to Southern cities. The Klan grew most in cities which had high growth rates between 1910 and 1930, such as Detroit, Memphis, Dayton, Atlanta, Dallas and Houston.<ref>Jackson 1967, p. 241.</ref>
Its growth was also affected by mobilization for WWI and postwar tensions, especially in the cities where strangers came up against each other more often. Southern whites resented the arming of black soldiers. Black veterans did not want to go back to second class status.<ref>[http://mailer.fsu.edu/~mjones/rosewood/rosewood.html Maxine D. Rogers, ''et.al.'', ''Documented History of Rosewood, Florida in January 1923'', ''op.cit., pp.4-6], accessed 28 Mar 2008</ref>
This Klan modeled itself after the many [[fraternal organization]]s that were created in the early decades of the 20th century. Organizers signed up hundreds of new members, who paid initiation fees and bought KKK costumes. The organizer kept half the money and sent the rest to state or national officials. When the organizer was done with an area, he organized a huge rally, often with lighting crosses and perhaps a ceremonial presentation of a Bible to a local Protestant minister. He then left town with the money. The local units operated like many fraternal organizations, occasionally bringing in speakers. The state and national officials had little or no control over the locals and rarely attempted to forge political activist groups.{{Fact|31 Mar 2008|date=March 2008}}
The revival of the Klan was sparked by events in 1915:
* The film ''[[The Birth of a Nation]]'' was released, mythologizing and glorifying the first Klan.
* [[Leo Frank]], a Jewish man accused of the rape and murder of a young white girl named [[Mary Phagan]], was tried, convicted and lynched near [[Atlanta]] against a backdrop of media frenzy.
* The second Ku Klux Klan was founded in Atlanta with a new anti-immigrant, anti-Catholic, and anti-Semitic agenda. The bulk of the founders were from an Atlanta-area organization calling itself the Knights of Mary Phagan that had organized around the Frank trial. The new organization emulated the fictionalized version of the Klan presented in ''The Birth of a Nation''.
[[Image:The-clansman-cropped.jpg|thumb|left|150px|An illustration from ''[[The Clansman]]'': "Take dat f'um yo equal&mdash;"]]
Director [[D. W. Griffith]]'s ''The Birth of a Nation'' glorified the original Klan. His film was based on the book and play ''[[The Clansman]]'' and the book ''[[The Leopard's Spots]]'', both by [[Thomas Dixon, Jr.|Thomas Dixon]]. Dixon said his purpose was "to revolutionize northern sentiment by a presentation of history that would transform every man in my audience into a good [[Democratic Party (United States)|Democrat]]!" The film created a nationwide Klan craze. At a preview in [[Los Angeles, California|Los Angeles]], actors dressed as Klansmen rode by as a promotional stunt. At the later official premier in Atlanta, members of the Klan rode up and down the street in front of the theater. In some venues, enthusiastic southern audiences fired their guns into the screen.<ref>Dray 2002.</ref>
Much of the modern Klan's iconography, including the standardized white costume and the lighted cross, are derived from the film. Its imagery was based on Dixon's romanticized concept of old [[Scotland]], as portrayed in the novels and poetry of Sir [[Walter Scott]]. The film's influence and popularity were enhanced by a widely reported endorsement by historian and U.S. President [[Woodrow Wilson]].
[[Image:President Woodrow Wilson portrait December 2 1912.jpg|thumb|right|President Wilson]]
''The Birth of a Nation'' includes extensive quotations from Woodrow Wilson's ''History of the American People'', for example, "The white men were roused by a mere instinct of self-preservation ... until at last there had sprung into existence a great Ku Klux Klan, a veritable empire of the South, to protect the Southern country." Wilson, on seeing the film in a special [[White House]] screening on [[February 18]] [[1915]], was widely reported to have said, "It is like writing history with lightning, and my only regret is that it is all so terribly true."<ref>Dray 2002, p. 198. Griffith relayed the comment to the press, where it was widely reported. In subsequent correspondence, Wilson discussed Griffith's filmmaking in a highly positive tone, without challenging the use of his statement.</ref> Given Wilson's views on race and the Klan, his statement was seen as supportive of the film, and the word "regret" was taken to refer to [[Reconstruction]]. Later correspondence with Griffith, confirms Wilson's enthusiasm. Wilson's remarks immediately became controversial. Wilson tried to remain aloof, but finally, on [[April 30]], he issued a [[non-denial denial]].<ref>Wade 1987, p. 137.</ref> His endorsement enhanced the film's popularity and influence. It helped Griffith to defend the film against legal challenges by the [[NAACP]]. The film, in turn, helped spark the creation of the second Klan in the same year. However, historian Arthur Link quotes Wilson's aide, Joseph Tumulty, who said, "the President was entirely unaware of the nature of the play before it was presented and at no time has expressed his approbation of it." <ref>Letter from J. M. Tumulty, secretary to President Wilson, to the Boston branch of the NAACP, quoted in Link, Wilson.</ref>
[[Image:FrankLynchedLarge.jpg|thumb|left|170px|The lynching of [[Leo Frank]]]]
Another event that influenced the Klan was sensational coverage of the trial, conviction and lynching of a Jewish factory manager named Leo Frank. In lurid newspaper accounts, Frank was accused of the rape and murder of [[Mary Phagan]], a girl employed at his factory. After a trial in Georgia in which a mob surrounded the courtroom daily, Frank was convicted. Because of the violent mob surrounding the court house, the judge asked Frank and his counsel not be present when the verdict was announced. Frank's appeals failed. Supreme Court Justice [[Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.|Oliver Wendell Holmes]] dissented from other justices and condemned the mob's intimidation of the jury as failing to provide [[due process]]. After the governor commuted Frank's sentence to life imprisonment, a mob calling itself the Knights of Mary Phagan kidnapped Frank from the prison farm and lynched him.
[[Image:stone-mountain2.jpg|thumb|right|212px|The Confederate memorial at [[Stone Mountain]], site of the founding of the second Klan; work was begun in 1923 and was completed in 1970.]]
The Frank trial was used skillfully by Georgia politician and publisher [[Thomas E. Watson]], the editor for ''The Jeffersonian'' magazine. He was a leader in the recreating the Klan and was later elected to the U.S. Senate. The new Klan was inaugurated in 1915 at a meeting led by [[William J. Simmons]] on top of [[Stone Mountain]]. A few aging members of the original Klan attended, along with members of the self-named Knights of Mary Phagan.
Simmons was inspired by the original Klan's "Prescripts," written in 1867 by Confederate veteran George Gordon to try to create a national organization.<ref> ''The Ku Klux Klan and Related American Racialist and Antisemitic Organizations: A History and Analysis'' by Chester L Quarles, Page 219. The second Klan's constitution and preamble, reprinted in Quarles book, states the second Klan was indebted to the original Klan's Prescripts.</ref> The Prescript stated the Klan's purposes:<ref>The quote is from the 1868 Revised Precept, from Horn, 1939.</ref>
* First: To protect the weak, the innocent, and the defenseless from the indignities, wrongs and outrages of the lawless, the violent and the brutal; to relieve the injured and oppressed; to succor the suffering and unfortunate, and especially the widows and orphans of the Confederate soldiers.
* Second: To protect and defend the [[Constitution of the United States]] ...
* Third: To aid and assist in the execution of all constitutional laws, and to protect the people from unlawful seizure, and from trial except by their peers in conformity with the laws of the land.
"The Klan's resurgence in the 1920s partially stemmed from the extreme militant wing of the temperance movement. In Arkansas, as elsewhere, the newly formed Ku Klux Klan marked bootleggers as one of the groups that needed to be purged from a morally upright community. In 1922, 200 Klansmen torched saloons that had sprung up in Union County in the wake of the oil discovery boom. The national Klan office ended up in Dallas, Texas, but Little Rock was the home of the Women of the Ku Klux Klan. The first head of this female auxiliary was a former president of the Arkansas WCTU."<ref>Lender et al 1928, p. 33.</ref>
The KKK’s "support for [[Prohibition in the United States#National Prohibition|Prohibition]] represented the single most important bond between Klansmen throughout the nation" <ref>Prendergast 1987, pp. 25-52, 27.</ref> and there was much interaction and overlap in membership between the Klan and other prohibition supporters. For example, a top leader of the Klan, Edward Young Clarke, raised funds for both the Klan and the [[Anti-Saloon League]].<ref>Barr 1999, p. 370.</ref> He was a flawed leader and indicted in 1923 for violations of the [[Mann Act]].<ref>{{cite news |first= |last= |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=A Wizard's Indictment |url=http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,846485,00.html |work=[[TIME]] |publisher= |date=March 10, 1923 |accessdate= }}</ref>
[[Image:William-joseph-simmons2.jpg|thumb|right|150px|[[William J. Simmons|William Joseph Simmons]] founded the second Ku Klux Klan in 1915.]]
A significant characteristic of the second Klan was that it was an organization based in urban areas, reflecting the major shifts of population to cities in both the North and the South. In Michigan, for instance, 40,000 members lived in Detroit, where they made up more than half of the state's membership. Most Klansmen were lower to middle-class whites who were trying to protect their jobs and housing from the waves of newcomers to the industrial cities: immigrants from southern and eastern Europe, who tended to be Catholic and Jewish in numbers higher than earlier groups of immigrants; and black and white migrants from the South. As new populations poured into cities, rapidly changing neighborhoods created social tensions. Because of the rapid pace of population growth in industrializing cities such as Detroit and Chicago, the Klan grew rapidly in the U.S. [[Midwestern United States|Midwest]]. The Klan also grew in booming Southern cities such as Dallas and Houston.
<ref name="Jackson">Jackson, 1992.</ref>
For some states, historians have obtained membership rosters of some local units and matched the names against city directory and local records to create statistical profiles of the membership. Big city newspapers were often hostile and ridiculed Klansmen as ignorant farmers. Detailed analysis from [[Indiana]]<ref>Moore 1991.</ref> show the rural stereotype was false for that state:
{{cquote|Indiana's Klansmen represented a wide cross section of society: they were not disproportionately urban or rural, nor were they significantly more or less likely than other members of society to be from the working class, middle class, or professional ranks. Klansmen were [[Protestantism|Protestants]], of course, but they cannot be described exclusively or even predominantly as [[fundamentalism|fundamentalists]]. In reality, their religious affiliations mirrored the whole of white Protestant society, including those who did not belong to any church.}}
The Klan was successful in recruiting, but the membership turned over rapidly. Still, millions joined, and at its peak in the 1920s, the organization included about 15% of the nation's eligible population.
[[Image:Burning-cross2.jpg|thumb|left||[[Cross burning]] is said to have been introduced by [[William J. Simmons]], the founder of the second Klan in 1915.]]
In reaction to social changes, the Klan adopted anti-Jewish, anti-Catholic, anti-Communist and [[anti-immigrant]] slants. The social unrest of the postwar period included labor strikes over low wages and working conditions in many industrial cities, often led by immigrants, who also organized unions. Klan members worried about labor organizers and socialist leanings of some of the immigrants, which added to the tensions. They also resented upwardly mobile ethnic Catholics.<ref>[http://mailer.fsu.edu/~mjones/rosewood/rosewood.html Maxine D. Rogers, ''et.al.'', ''Documented History of Rosewood, Florida in January 1923'', ''op.cit., p.6], accessed 28 Mar 2008</ref> At the same time, in cities Klan members were themselves working in industrial environments and often struggled with working conditions.
Klan groups lynched and murdered Black soldiers returning from [[World War I]] while they were still in military uniforms.<ref name = "Franklin-R&H">Franklin 1992, p. 145.</ref> The Klan warned Blacks that they must respect the rights of the white race "in whose country they are permitted to reside."<ref name ="Franklin-R&H"/> The number of lynchings escalated, and from 1918 to 1927, 416 African Americans were killed.<ref>[http://mailer.fsu.edu/~mjones/rosewood/rosewood.html Maxine D. Rogers, ''et.al.'', ''Documented History of Rosewood, Florida in January 1923'', ''op.cit., p.7], accessed 28 Mar 2008</ref>
In Florida, when two black men attempted to vote in November 1920 in Ocoee, Orange County, the Klan attacked the black community.{{fact}} In the ensuing violence six black residents and two whites were killed, and twenty five black homes, two churches, and a fraternal lodge were destroyed.<ref>[http://mailer.fsu.edu/~mjones/rosewood/rosewood.html Maxine D. Rogers, ''et.al.'', ''Documented History of Rosewood, Florida in January 1923'', ''op.cit., p.7], accessed 28 Mar 2008</ref>
Although Klan members were concentrated in the South, Midwest and west, there were some members in New England, too. Klan members torched an [[African American]] school in [[Scituate, Rhode Island]].<ref>{{cite news |first=Robert L. |last=Smith |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=In the 1920s, the Klan ruled the countryside |url=http://www.projo.com/specials/century/month4/426nw1.htm |work=The Providence Journal |publisher= |date=April 26, 1999 |accessdate= }}</ref>
In the 1920s and 1930s, a violent and zealous faction of the Klan called the [[Black Legion (murder cult)|Black Legion]] was active in the [[U.S. Midwest|Midwestern U.S.]]. The Legion wore black uniforms and targeted and assassinated [[communism|communists]] and [[socialism|socialists]].{{Fact|date=March 2008}}
In southern cities such as [[Birmingham, Alabama]], Klan members kept control of access to the better-paying industrial jobs but opposed unions. During the 1930s and 1940s, Klan leaders urged members to disrupt the [[Congress of Industrial Organizations[[ ([[CIO]]), which advocated industrial unions and was open to African-American members. With access to dynamite and skills from their jobs in mining and steel, in the late 1940s, some Klan members in Birmingham began using bombings to intimidate upwardly mobile blacks who moved into middle-class neighborhoods. "By mid-1949, there were so many charred house carcasses that the area [College Hills] was informally named Dynamite Hill." Independent Klan groups remained active in Birmingham and were deeply engaged in violent opposition to the Civil Rights Movement. <ref>Diane McWhorter, ''Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama, The Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution'', New York: Touchstone Book, 2002, p.75</ref>
===Political influence===
[[Image:klan-sheet-music.jpg|right|thumb|200px|Sheet music to "We Are All Loyal Klansmen," 1923]]
The Klan had major political influence in several states and was influential mostly in the center of the country. The Klan spread from the South into the Midwest and Northern states, and into Canada where there was a large movement against Catholic immigrants.<ref>{{cite news |first=Kevin |last=Weedmark |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=When the KKK rode high across the Prairies |url=http://www.world-spectator.com/archives.25.html |work=Moosomin World-Spectator |publisher= |date= |accessdate= }}</ref> At its peak, Klan membership exceeded four million and comprised 20% of the adult white male population in many broad geographic regions, with 40% in some areas. Most of the membership resided in Midwestern states.
The KKK controlled Southern legislatures and the governments of Tennessee, Indiana, [[Oklahoma]], and [[Oregon]].{{Fact|4 Apr 2008}} In Indiana, Republican Klansman [[Edward Jackson]] was elected governor in 1924.
In another well-known example from the same year, the Klan decided to make [[Anaheim, California]], into a model Klan city. It secretly took over the City Council, but the city conducted a special recall election and Klan members were voted out.<ref>[http://www.anaheimcolony.com/klan.htm It's been seventy years since Anaheim booted the Klan], reprinted from the ''[[Los Angeles Times]]''</ref>
Klan delegates played a significant role at the path-setting [[1924 Democratic National Convention]] in [[New York City]], often called the "[[Klanbake]] Convention." The convention initially pitted Klan-backed candidate [[William Gibbs McAdoo]] against [[Catholic]] New York Governor [[Al Smith]]. After days of stalemates and rioting, both candidates withdrew in favor of a compromise. Klan delegates defeated a Democratic Party platform plank that would have condemned their organization. On [[July 4]] [[1924]], thousands of Klansmen celebrated victory on a nearby field in [[New Jersey]] by burning effigies of Smith and by burning crosses. {{Fact|4 Apr 2008
In some states, such as Alabama, the KKK demonstrated work for political and social reform.<ref>Feldman 1999.</ref> The state's Klansmen were among the foremost advocates of better public schools, effective [[prohibition]] enforcement, expanded road construction, and other "[[Progressivism|progressive]]" political measures. In many ways these reforms benefited lower class white people. By 1925, the Klan was a political force in the state, as leaders like [[J. Thomas Heflin]], [[David Bibb Graves]], and [[Hugo Black]] manipulated the KKK membership against the power of the Alabama "Big Mule" industrialists and Black Belt planters who had long dominated.
Black was elected senator in 1926 and later became a Supreme Court Justice. In 1926, with Klan support, a former Klan chapter head named [[Bibb Graves]] won the Alabama governor's office. He pushed for increased education funding, better public health, new highway construction, and pro-labor legislation. Because the Alabama state legislature refused to redistrict until the 1960s, however, even the Klan was unable to break the planters' and rural areas' hold on power.
===Resistance and Decline===
Many groups and leaders, including prominent Protestant ministers such as Reinhold Niebuhr in Detroit, spoke up against the Klan. To blunt attacks against Jewish Americans and conduct public education, the Jewish Anti-Defamation League was formed after the lynching of Leo Frank. When one civic group began to publish Klan membership lists, the number of members quickly declined. The [[National Association for the Advancement of Colored People]] carried on public education about Klan activities and lobbied against Klan abuses in Congress. After its peak in 1925, Klan membership began to decline rapidly in most areas of the Midwest.<ref name="Jackson"/>
In Alabama, KKK vigilantes, thinking they had governmental protection, launched a wave of physical terror in 1927, targeting both blacks and whites for violating racial norms and perceived moral lapses.<ref>Rogers et al, pp. 432-433.</ref> The state's conservative elite counterattacked. Grover C. Hall, Sr., editor of the ''[[Montgomery Advertiser]]'', began a series of editorials and articles attacking the Klan for their "racial and religious intolerance." Hall won a [[Pulitzer Prize]] for his crusade.<ref>Rogers et al, p. 433.</ref> Other newspapers kept up a steady, loud attack on the Klan as violent and "un-American." Sheriffs cracked down. In the [[United States presidential election, 1928|1928 presidential election]], the state voted for the Democratic candidate Al Smith, although he was Catholic. Klan membership in Alabama dropped to less than six thousand by 1930. Small independent units continued to be active in Birmingham, where in the late 1940s, members started a program of bombings against the homes of upwardly mobile African Americans. KKK activism increased against the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s. (see below.)
When the Grand Dragon of Indiana and fourteen states, [[D. C. Stephenson|David Stephenson]], was convicted of the rape and murder of [[Madge Oberholtzer]], the Klan declined further. Stephenson was convicted in a sensational trial. According to historian Leonard Moore, a leadership failure caused the organization's collapse:<ref>Moore 1991, p.186.</ref>
{{cquote|Stephenson and the other salesmen and office seekers who maneuvered for control of Indiana's Invisible Empire lacked both the ability and the desire to use the political system to carry out the Klan's stated goals. They were disinterested in, or perhaps even unaware of, grass roots concerns within the movement. For them, the Klan had been nothing more than a means for gaining wealth and power. These marginal men had risen to the top of the hooded order because, until it became a political force, the Klan had never required strong, dedicated leadership. More established and experienced politicians who endorsed the Klan, or who pursued some of the interests of their Klan constituents, also accomplished little. Factionalism created one barrier, but many politicians had supported the Klan simply out of expedience. When charges of crime and corruption began to taint the movement, those concerned about their political futures had even less reason to work on the Klan's behalf.}}
Imperial Wizard [[Hiram Wesley Evans]] sold the organization in 1939 to [[James Colescott]], an Indiana [[veterinarian]], and Samuel Green, an Atlanta [[obstetrician]], but they were unable to staunch the exodus of members. The Klan's image was further damaged by Colescott's association with [[Nazism|Nazi]]-sympathizer organizations, the Klan's involvement in the 1943 [[Detroit Race Riot (1943)|Detroit Race Riot]], and efforts to disrupt the American war effort during [[World War II]].{{fact|date=April 2008}} In 1944, the [[Internal Revenue Service|IRS]] filed a lien for $685,000 in back taxes against the Klan, and Colescott was forced to dissolve the organization in 1944.
[[Image:Kkk1928.jpg|thumb|right|250px|Ku Klux Klan members march down Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C. in 1928.]]
After WWII, folklorist and author [[Stetson Kennedy]] infiltrated the Klan and provided information to media and law enforcement agencies. He also provided secret code words to the writers of the ''[[Superman (radio)|Superman]]'' radio program, resulting in episodes in which [[Superman]] took on the KKK. Kennedy's intention to strip away the Klan's mystique and trivialize the Klan's rituals and code words may have contributed to the decline in Klan recruiting and membership.<ref>{{cite news |first=Richard |last=von Busack |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=Superman Versus the KKK |url=http://www.metroactive.com/papers/metro/07.02.98/comics-9826.html |work=MetroActive |publisher= |date= |accessdate= }}</ref> In the 1950s, Kennedy wrote a bestselling book about his experiences, which further damaged the Klan.<ref>Kennedy 1990.</ref>
The following table shows the change in the Klan's estimated membership over time.<ref>{{cite web |url=http://www.aaregistry.com/african_american_history/2207/The_Ku_Klux_Klan_a_brief__biography |title=The Ku Klux Klan, a brief biography |accessdate= |author= |date= |work= |publisher=[[The African American Registry]] }} and {{cite web |url=http://www.georgiaencyclopedia.org/nge/Article.jsp?id=h-2730 |title=Ku Klux Klan in the Twentieth Century |accessdate= |author=Lay, Shawn |date= |work=[[The New Georgia Encyclopedia]] |publisher=[[Coker College]] }}</ref> (The years given in the table represent approximate time periods.)
{| class="wikitable"
|align="right" |4,000,000
| align="right"|6,000,000
| align="right" |30,000
| align="right" |5,000
==Later Klans, 1950 through 1960s==
The name "Ku Klux Klan" began to be used by several independent groups. Beginning in the 1950s, individual Klan groups began to resist the [[American Civil Rights Movement (1955-1968)|Civil Rights Movement]] by bombing houses in transitional neighborhoods and the houses of activists, as well as by physical violence, intimidation and assassination. In Birmingham, Alabama, during the tenure of Bull Connor, Klan groups were closely allied with police and operated with impunity. There were so many bombings of homes by Klan groups that the city's nickname was "Bombingham". In states such as Alabama and Mississippi, Klan members had alliances with governors' administrations.<ref name ="McWhorter"/>
Many murders went unreported and unprosecuted. Continuing disfranchisement of blacks meant that most could not serve on juries, which were all white. According to a report from the [[Southern Regional Council]] in [[Atlanta]], the homes of forty black Southern families were bombed during 1951 and 1952. Some were social activists whose work exposed them to danger, but most were either people who refused to bow to racist convention or were innocent bystanders, unsuspecting victims of random terrorism."<ref>Egerton 1994, pp. 562-563.</ref>
Among the more notorious murders by Klan members:
* The 1951 Christmas Eve bombing of the home of [[NAACP]] activists [[Harry Moore|Harry and Harriette Moore]] in Mims, Florida, resulting in both their deaths.<ref>[http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/45a/454.html "Who Was Harry T. Moore?"] — ''The Palm Beach Post'', 16 August, 1999</ref>
* The 1957 murder of [[Willie Edwards]], Jr. Klansmen forced Edwards to jump to his death from a bridge into the [[Alabama River]].<ref>{{cite news |first=Major W. |last=Cox |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=Justice Still Absent in Bridge Death |url=http://www.majorcox.com/columns/edwards1.htm |work=[[Montgomery Advertiser]] |date=March 2, 1999 |accessdate= }}</ref>
* The 1963 assassination of [[NAACP]] organizer [[Medgar Evers]] in Mississippi. In 1994, former Ku Klux Klansman [[Byron De La Beckwith]] was convicted.
* The 1963 [[16th Street Baptist Church bombing|bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama]], which killed four black girls. The perpetrators were Klan members [[Robert Chambliss]], convicted in 1977, Thomas Blanton and [[Bobby Frank Cherry]], convicted in 2001 and 2002. The fourth suspect, Herman Cash, died before he was indicted.
* The 1964 murders of three civil rights workers [[Mississippi civil rights worker murders|Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner]] in Mississippi. In June 2005, Klan member [[Edgar Ray Killen]] was convicted of manslaughter.<ref>{{cite news |first=Kris |last=Axtman |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=Mississippi verdict greeted by a generation gap |url=http://www.csmonitor.com/2005/0623/p01s03-ussc.html |work=[[The Christian Science Monitor]] |publisher= |date=June 23, 2005 |accessdate= }}</ref>
* The 1964 murder of two black teenagers, Henry Hezekiah Dee and Charles Eddie Moore in Mississippi. In August 2007, based on the confession of Klansman Charles Marcus Edwards, James Ford Seale, a reputed Ku Klux Klansman, was convicted. Seale was sentenced to serve three life sentences.<ref>{{cite news |first=Jerry |last=Mitchell |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=Seale gets 3 life terms for '64 murders |url=http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2007-08-24-seale_N.htm |work=[[USA Today]] |date= |accessdate= }}</ref> Seale was a former Mississippi policeman and sheriff's deputy.<ref>{{cite web |url=http://news.findlaw.com/usatoday/docs/crights/usseale12407ind.html |title=Reputed Klansman, Ex-Cop, and Sheriff's Deputy Indicted For The 1964 Murders of Two Young African-American Men in Mississippi; U.S. v. James Ford Seale |accessdate=2008-03-23 |author= |date=January 24, 2007 |work= |publisher=}}</ref>
[[Image:Kkk-march-violence.jpg|thumb|right|160px|Violence at a Klan march in Mobile, Alabama, 1977]]
* The 1965 Alabama murder of [[Viola Liuzzo]]. She was a Southern-raised [[Detroit]] mother of five in the state to attend a civil rights march. At the time of her murder Liuzzo was transporting Civil Rights Marchers.
* The 1966 firebombing death of NAACP leader [[Vernon Dahmer]] Sr., 58, in Mississippi. In 1998 former Ku Klux Klan wizard [[Sam Bowers]] was convicted. Two other Klan members were indicted with Bowers, but one died before trial, and the other's indictment was dismissed.
There was also resistance to Klan violence. In a 1958 [[North Carolina]] incident, the Klan burned crosses at the homes of two [[Lumbee]] Native Americans who had associated with white people, and then held a nighttime rally nearby, [[Battle of Hayes Pond|only to find themselves surrounded]] by hundreds of armed Lumbees. Gunfire was exchanged, and the Klan was routed.<ref>Ingalls 1979; {{cite web |url=http://www.lib.unc.edu/ncc/ref/nchistory/jan2005/jan05.html |title=January 1958 -- The Lumbees face the Klan |accessdate= |author=Graham, Nicholas |date=January 2005 |work= |publisher=[[University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill]] }}</ref>
When [[Freedom Riders]] arrived in Birmingham, Alabama, the police commissioner Bull Connor gave Klan members fifteen minutes to attack the riders before sending in the police.<ref name="McWhorter"/> When local and state authorities failed to protect them, the federal government established more effective intervention.
While the FBI had paid informants in the Klan, for instance in Birmingham, Alabama in the early 1960s, their relations with local law enforcement and the Klan were often ambiguous. The head of the FBI [[J. Edgar Hoover]], appeared more concerned about Communist links to civil rights activists than about controlling Klan excesses.<ref name="McWhorter"/> In 1964, the FBI's [[COINTELPRO]] program began attempts to infiltrate and disrupt the Klan.
Jerry Thompson, a newspaper reporter who infiltrated the Klan in 1979, reported COINTELPRO's efforts were highly successful. Rival Klan factions accused each other's leaders of being FBI informants. [[Bill Wilkinson]] of the Invisible Empire, Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, was later revealed to have been working for the FBI.<ref>Thompson 1982.</ref> During Thompson's brief membership his truck was shot at, he was yelled at by black children, and a Klan rally he attended turned into a riot when black soldiers on an adjacent military base taunted the Klansmen. Attempts by the Klan to march were often met with counterprotests, and violence sometimes ensued.
[[Image:Lynching-of-michael-donald.jpg|thumb|left|150px|The lynching of [[Michael Donald]], 1981]]
Once African Americans secured Federal legislation to protect civil and voting rights, the Klans shifted focus to opposing court-ordered [[Desegregation busing|busing]] to desegregate schools, [[affirmative action]], and more open [[Immigration to the United States|immigration]]. In 1971, Klansmen used bombs to destroy ten school buses in [[Pontiac, Michigan]]. Klansman [[David Duke]] was active in South [[Boston, Massachusetts|Boston]] during the school busing crisis of 1974. Duke was leader of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan from 1974 until he resigned from the Klan in 1978.
After [[Michael Donald]] was lynched in 1981, his family filed a civil suit for damages against the United Klans of America (UKA). The jury's decision for the family led to the UKA's bankruptcy. This increased the trend to decentralization.<ref>{{cite web |url=http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAkkk.htm |title=Ku Klux Klan |accessdate= |author= |date= |work= |publisher=[[Spartacus Educational]] }}</ref> From his vantage point, the journalist Thompson related that Klan leaders who appeared indifferent to the threat of arrest showed great concern about a series of multi-million-dollar lawsuits filed by the [[Southern Poverty Law Center]]. These were filed after Klansmen shot into a group of African Americans. Klansmen curtailed activities to conserve money for defense against the suits. However, lawsuits were also used as tools by the Klan. They filed a libel suit to try to prevent publication of a paperback edition of Thompson's book. The publisher canceled.
[[Image:Mississippi White Knights in Poplarville.jpg|thumb|250px|Mississippi Klansmen rally in [[Poplarville, Mississippi]]]]
The present Ku Klux Klan is no longer one organization, but is made up of small independent chapters across the [[United States]].<ref>[http://www.adl.org/learn/ext_us/kkk/default.asp About the Ku Klux Klan], [[Anti-Defamation League]], 2002. According to the report, the KKK's estimated size then was "No more than a few thousand, organized into slightly more than 100 units."</ref> The formation of independent chapters has made the KKK groups more difficult to infiltrate and researchers find it hard to estimate their numbers.
KKK members have increased in recent years, with membership estimated at 5,000 to 8,000 among an estimated 179 chapters. The latest recruitment drives have used hot button issues like people's anxieties about illegal immigration, urban crime and same-sex marriage. <ref>{{cite web |url=http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/0209/p02s02-ussc.html|title=Anti-Immigrant Sentiments Fuel Ku Klux Klan Resurgence|accessdate= |author= Brad Knickerbocker|date=9 Feb 2007 |work= |publisher=''Christian Science Monitor''}}</ref>
The only known former member of the Klan to hold a federal office in the United States is Democratic Senator [[Robert Byrd]] of [[West Virginia]], who says he "deeply regrets" having joined the Klan over half a century ago, when he was about 24 years old.
[[Image:UWKT Klansmen.jpg|thumb|250px|right|Various ranks of the United White Knights of Texas]]
Some of the larger KKK organizations currently in operation include:
* Bayou Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, prevalent in [[Texas]], Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana and other areas of the Southeastern U.S.
* Church of the American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan<ref name="adl-ak-kkk">{{cite web |url=http://www.adl.org/backgrounders/american_knights_kkk.asp |title=Church of the American Knights of the KKK |accessdate= |author= |date=October 22, 1999 |work= |publisher=[[Anti-Defamation League]] }}</ref>
* Imperial Klans of America
* Knights of the White Kamelia
* Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, headed by National Director and self-claimed Pastor [[Thom Robb]], and based in [[Zinc, Arkansas]]. Claims to be biggest Klan organization in America today. It refers to itself as the "sixth era Klan" and continues to be a racist group.
[[Image:Cross Lighting 2005.jpg|thumb|250px|left|Klansmen and women at a [[cross burning]] in 2005.]]
Numerous smaller groups use the Klan name. Estimates are that about two-thirds of KKK members are concentrated in the former [[Confederate States]], with another third situated primarily in the Midwest.<ref>{{cite web |url=http://www.splcenter.org/intel/map/hate.jsp |title=Active U.S. Hate Groups |accessdate= |author= |date= |work=Intelligence Report |publisher=[[Southern Poverty Law Center]] }}</ref><ref name="adl-ak-kkk"/><ref name = "adl-kkk">{{cite web |url=http://www.adl.org/learn/ext_us/kkk/default.asp |title=About the Ku Klux Klan |accessdate= |author= |date= |work= |publisher=[[Anti-Defamation League]] }}</ref>
Although there are numerous KKK groups, the media and popular discourse generally speak of ''the'' Ku Klux Klan for expediency.
The [[ACLU]] has provided legal support to various factions of the KKK in defense of their [[First Amendment to the United States Constitution|First Amendment]] rights to hold public rallies, parades, and marches, and their right to field political candidates.
In a July 2005 incident, a [[Hispanic]] man's house was burned down in [[Hamilton, Ohio]], after accusations that he sexually assaulted a nine-year-old white girl. Klan members in Klan robes showed up afterward to distribute pamphlets. Various Klan rallies occur every year across the country.
== Vocabulary ==
Membership in the Klan is secret. Like many fraternal organizations, the Klan has signs which members can use to recognize one another. A member may use the acronym ''AYAK'' (Are you a Klansman?) in conversation to surreptitiously identify himself to another potential member. The response ''AKIA'' (A Klansman I am) completes the greeting.<ref>{{cite web |url=http://www.adl.org/hate_symbols/acronyms_KIGY.asp |title=A Visual Database of Extremist Symbols, Logos and Tattoos |accessdate= |author= |date= |work= |publisher=[[Anti-Defamation League]] }}</ref>
Throughout its varied history, the Klan has coined many words<ref>Axelrod 1997, p. 160.</ref> beginning with "KL" including:
* Klabee: treasurers
* Kleagle: recruiter
* Klecktoken: initiation fee
* Kligrapp: secretary
* Klonvocation: gathering
* [[Kloran]]: ritual book
* Kloreroe: delegate
* Kludd: chaplain
All of the above terminology was created by William Simmons, as part of his 1915 revival of the Klan. The Reconstruction-era Klan used different titles; the only titles to carry over were "Wizard" (or Imperial Wizard) for the overall leader of the Klan, "Night Hawk" for the official in charge of security, and a few others, mostly for regional officers of the organization.
==In Popular Culture==
*The opening scenes of [[Bad Boys II]] feature a Klan rally, including a cross burning.
*[[South Park]] character [[Eric Cartman]] has appeared dressed as a Klansman numerous times.
==See also==
* [[American Protective Association]]
* [[Christian terrorism]]
* [[Cross burning]]
* [[Grand Wizard]]
* [[History of the United States (1865-1918)]]
* [[Imperial Klans of America]]
* [[Jim Crow laws]]
* [[Johnny Lee Clary]]
* [[Klanbake]]
* [[Kleagle]]
* [[Kloran]]
* [[Knights of the Golden Circle]]
* [[Knights of the White Camelia]]
* [[Ku Klux Klan regalia and insignia]]
* [[Leaders of the Ku Klux Klan]]
* [[Notable alleged Ku Klux Klan members in national politics]]
* [[Silent Brotherhood]]
* [[The Leopard's Spots]]
* [[Timeline of racial tension in Omaha, Nebraska]]
* [[United Klans of America]]
* [[White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan]]
* [[Wide Awakes]]
* [[WKKK]], [[KKK auxiliaries]]
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== References ==
* {{cite book |title=The International Encyclopedia of Secret Societies & Fraternal Orders |last=Axelrod |first=Alan |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1997 |publisher=Facts On File |location=New York |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=Drink: A Social History of America |last=Barr |first=Andrew |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1999 |publisher=Carroll & Graf |location=New York |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=At the Hands of Persons Unknown: The Lynching of Black America |last=Dray |first=Philip |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=2002 |publisher=[[Random House]] |location=New York |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=Speak Now Against the Day: The Generation Before the Civil Rights Movement in the South |last=Egerton |first=John |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1994 |publisher=Alfred and Knopf Inc. |location= |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=Politics, Society, and the Klan in Alabama, 1915-1949 |last=Feldman |first=Glenn |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1999 |publisher=[[University of Alabama Press]] |location=Tuscaloosa, Alabama |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=Reconstruction: America's Unfinished Revolution, 1863-1877 |last=Foner |first=Eric |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1989 |publisher=Perennial (HarperCollins) |location= |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=Race and History: Selected Essays 1938-1988 |last=Franklin |first=John Hope |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1992 |publisher=[[Louisiana State University Press]] |location= |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=Invisible Empire: The Story of the Ku Klux Klan, 1866-1871 |last=Horn |first=Stanley F. |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1939 |publisher=Patterson Smith Publishing Corporation |location=Montclair, New Jersey |isbn= |pages= }}
:Horn, born in 1889, was a Southern historian who was sympathetic to the first Klan, which, in an 1976 oral interview, he was careful to distinguish from the later "spurious Ku Klux organization which was in ill-repute—and, of course, had no connection whatsoever with the Klan of Reconstruction days."
* {{cite book |title=Hoods: The Story of the Ku Klux Klan |last=Ingalls |first=Robert P. |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1979 |publisher=G.P. Putnam's Sons |location=New York |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=The Ku Klux Klan in the City, 1915-1930 |last=Jackson |first=Kenneth T. |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1967 |publisher=[[Oxford University Press]] |locationNew York= |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=The Klan Unmasked |last=Kennedy |first=Stetson |authorlink=Stetson Kennedy |coauthors= |year=1990 |publisher=[[University Press of Florida]] |location= |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=Drinking in America |last=Lender |first=Mark E. |authorlink= |coauthors=James K. Martin |year=1982 |publisher=Free Press |location=New York |isbn= |page= }}
* {{cite book |title=Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything |last=Levitt |first=Stephen D. |authorlink= |coauthors=Stephen J. Dubner |year=2005 |publisher=William Morrow |location=New York |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama, The Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution |last=McWhorter |first=Diane |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=2001 |publisher=[[Simon & Schuster]] |location=New York |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=Citizen Klansmen: The Ku Klux Klan in Indiana, 1921-1928 |last=Moore |first=Leonard J. |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1991 |publisher=[[University of North Carolina Press]] |location=Chapel Hill |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=The Ku Klux Klan: An Encyclopedia |last=Newton |first=Michael |authorlink= |coauthors=Judy Ann Newton |year=1991 |publisher=Garland Publishing |location=New York & London |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite journal |last=Parsons |first=Elaine Frantz |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=2005 |month= |title=Midnight Rangers: Costume and Performance in the Reconstruction-Era Ku Klux Klan |journal=[[The Journal of American History]] |volume=92 |issue=3 |pages=811-836 |id= |url= |accessdate= |quote= }}
* {{Harvard reference | last=Prendergast | first=Michael L. | authorlink= | year= | chapter=A History of Alcohol Problem Prevention Efforts in the United States | editor-last=Holder | editor-first=Harold D. | editorlink= | title=Control Issues in Alcohol Abuse Prevention: Strategies for States and Communities | edition= | place=Greenwich, Connecticut | publisher=JAI Press | publication-year=1987 | volume= | pages= | id= }}.
* {{cite book |title=History of the United States from the Compromise of 1850 to the McKinley-Bryan Campaign of 1896 |volume= 7 |last=Rhodes |first=James Ford |authorlink=James Ford Rhodes |coauthors= |year=1920 |publisher= |location= |isbn= |pages= }}
:Winner of the [[Pulitzer Prize]].
* {{cite book |title=Alabama: The History of a Deep South State |last=Rogers |first=William |authorlink= |coauthors=Robert Ward, Leah Atkins and Wayne Flynt |year=1994 |publisher=[[University of Alabama Press]] |location=Tuscaloosa, Alabama |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=The man from Missouri; the life and times of Harry S. Truman |last=Steinberg |first=Alfred |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1962 |publisher=Putnam |location=New York |oclc=466366 |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=Louisiana Reconstructed, 1863-1877 |last=Taylor |first=Joe G. |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1974 |publisher= |location=Baton Rouge |isbn= |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=My Life in the Klan |last=Thompson |first=Jerry |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1982 |publisher=Putnam |location=New York |isbn=0399126953 |pages= }}
* {{cite book |title=White Terror: The Ku Klux Klan Conspiracy and Southern Reconstruction |last=Trelease |first=Allen W. |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1995 |publisher=[[Louisiana State University Press]] |location= |isbn= |pages= }}
:First published in 1971 and based on massive research in primary sources, this is the most comprehensive treatment of the Klan and its relationship to post-Civil War Reconstruction. Includes narrative research on other night-riding groups. Details close link between Klan and late 19th century and early 20th century Democratic Party.
* {{cite book |title=The Fiery Cross: The Ku Klux Klan in America |last=Wade |first=Wyn Craig |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=1987 |publisher=[[Simon and Schuster]] |location=New York |isbn= |pages= }}
:An unsympathetic account of both Klans, with a dedication to "my Kentucky grandmother ... a fierce and steadfast Radical Republican from the wane of Reconstruction until her death nearly a century later."
== Further reading ==
* {{cite book |title=Women of the Klan |last=Blee |first=Kathleen M. |authorlink=Kathleen M. Blee |coauthors= |year=1992 |publisher=[[University of California Press]] |location= |isbn=0-520-07876-4 |pages= }}
* {{cite web |url=http://www.gainesville.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070206/WIRE/702050325/-1/news |title=White supremacist groups flourishing |accessdate= |author= |date= |work= |publisher=[[The Associated Press]] }}
== External links ==
* [http://www.southernspaces.org/con_time.html#klan ''Klan Tableau,'']A film documenting William Christenberry's Klan Tableau in Washington, D.C. (Includes interview with Christenberry.)
* [http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=ku+klux+klan+a+secret+history&search=Search Ku Klux Klan: A Secret History], a TV documentary on the KKK.
* [http://reactor-core.org/original-kkk.html The History of the Original Ku Klux Klan] &mdash; by an anonymous author sympathetic to the original Klan.
* [http://www.splcenter.org/center/splcreport/report.jsp The Southern Poverty Law Center Report]
* [http://www.adl.org/learn/ext_us/KKK.asp?xpicked=4&item=18 The ADL on the KKK]
* [http://www.tkb.org/Group.jsp?groupID=62 MIPT Terrorist Knowledge Base for the KKK]
* [http://www.archive.org/details/ProceddingsOfTheSecondImperialKlonvocation Proceedings of the Second Imperial Klonvocation (1924)]
* [http://www.rickross.com/reference/kkk/kkk12.html In 1999, South Carolina town defines the KKK as terrorist]
* [http://www.lib.duke.edu/forest/Research/ohisrch.html A long interview] with Stanley F. Horn, author of Invisible Empire: The Story of the Ku Klux Klan, 1866-1871.
* [http://education.harpweek.com/KKKHearings/AppendixA.htm Full text of the Klan Act of 1871] ([http://education.harpweek.com/KKKHearings/AppendixB.htm simplified version])
* [http://ccpl.lib.co.us/KKK/KKK%20Essay.html The Protestant "Kluxing" of Cañyon City, Colorado] &mdash; (Cañyon City Public Library)
* [http://www.kkk.com/ The Ku Klux Klan website]
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Revision as of 22:06, 21 April 2008