"The Ku Klux Klan" And its role during the aftermath of the Great Depression

Essay by woofcatHigh School, 10th gradeA, October 2006

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"The Original Ku Klux Klan was created in an 1865 meeting in a law office by six Confederate veterans in Pulaski, Tennessee"(World Book Encyclopedia). "The name was taken from the Greek work Kuklos meaning (circle) and was originally intended to undermine the Republican government leaders re-constructive efforts in the south in 1867."( Encarta Encyclopedia 2003) This work towards ending discrimination against African Americans , Jews, and Muslims resulted with the Emancipation Proclamation and former slaves gaining states of civil equality as well as political power.

Klan members irrationally believed in white supremacy and the individuality of white womanhood embodied in their declaration of Principles with a supreme leader called a Grand Wizard assisted by the Genie with other officials of the Klan empire being the Grand Dragon of the Realm assisted by eight Hydras, the Grand Titan and six Furies, the Grand Cyclops of the Den and two nighthawks. Klan's men wore robes or sheets and hooded masks.

"Nathan Bedford Forrest, Confederate General; later, first Grand Wizard of the first Klan."(World Book Encyclopedia)

Klansmen intimidated and frightened African Americans by burning crosses on or near victims houses, Kidnapping, flogging, mutilating and killing. Despite years of work towards ending discrimination and such activities by Klansmen it wasn't until May 17, 1954 that social segregation in Public schools ended with the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that such segregation was unconstitutional. Renewed attempts at violence and recruitment by Klansmen attracted only the fringe elements of society becoming more a status movement instead of a resistance movement.

Towards the end of the 1950's resistance to integration in Public schools diminished throughout the south. The Klan shifted their focus on the opposition to civil rights programs led by Martin Luther King. They became notorious for their racial violence and intimidation as well as bombings as...