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Turcheneske, John Anthony / The Ku Klux Klan in northwestern Wisconsin

Chapter 1: introduction ,   pp. 1-21 PDF (8.0 MB)

Page 1

Chapter 1 
There appeared on the American scene during the decade of the twenties a
new phenomeno bent on making the United States safe for Americans. Reorganized
by William J. Simmons in 1915, the Ku Klux Klan made little headway until
after the First World War.1 A factor in the affairs of many states of -,he
Union, few communities went unscathed as a result of the Klan's preachments
of hatred and bigotry, Wisconsin was no exception in seeing many of its communities
suffer a rending of the social fabric., What follows, then, is the story
of what happened to several localities in northwestern Wisconsin when the
Knights of the Ku Klux Klan first made its appearance in that section of
the state. 
Desiring to maintain a veneer of legitimacy, the Ku 
Klux Klan made its first attempt at incorporating itself in early 1925.2
The then State Attorney General of Wisconsin, 
'Frank Bohn, "The Ku Klux Klan Interpreted," The American Journal
of Sociology, x-'x (January, 1925)72etter of Herman L. Ekern to Fred R. Zimmerman,
April 20, 1925, as found in the Walker D. Wyman Papers, Mss, P, The Area
Research Center, Wisconsin State University, River Falls, Wisconsin (hereafter
cited as Wyman Papers, Box 10. It should be noted that the Klan was operating
in Wisconsin several years prior to incorporation. The earliest established
date for Klan activity in northwestern Wisconsin would be the Spring of 1924.,

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