The Knights of the Ku Klux Klan

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matthew mckeon

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This slim volume was published in 1941, updated from 1921. The author is listed as Colonel Winfield Jones, a journalist, who Wikipedia assured was not a member of the KKK, but from Missouri(?).

The first part of the book retails the horrors of Reconstruction, where the Freedman's Bureau is compared with Stalin, and Nathan Bedford Forrest is highly praised.

Then we get to what was for them, current events. The revival of the Klan under the leadership of Colonel William Joseph Simmons. Simmons is also highly praised, although his colonel's rank was in a fraternal order called the Woodmen. After leading his organization into new heights, with charity to all, utterly without any nastiness at all, he is bought out by Hiram Wesley Evans, Texan dentist. I mean literally bought out, he was paid a large sum to turn over the Klan to Evans.

DC Stephenson, the Indiana Grand Wizard, rapist and murderer, is not mentioned for some reason.

The book changes direction suddenly. Abruptly, Simmons goes from hero to goat, while Evans is a new mastermind. Evans goes from success to success, but inexplicably the Klan falls apart. Evans quits to be replaced by Colescott, and the future seems bright as a burning cross.

Historically, the Klan riven by factions, scandals, and a consensus that they were a bunch of losers, craters with the Second World War, its anti Catholic, anti Jewish, and anti black message even less appealing with the defeat of the Nazis.

My review is actually more interesting than the book. Not recommended, although it does contain a Klan singalong, and a lot of words that don't usually start with K, starting with K.
 
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