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

Chapter 10: Conclusion,   pp. 187-191 PDF (1.9 MB)

Page 189

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allegiance to the Pope. As if this were not dangerous enough, the Catholics
were to murder off their Protestant neighbors once the Pope gave the signal
for doing so. Other attempts at discrediting the Catholics were the accusations
charging the priests and nuns with gross immoralities. Cornell and Hudson
well illustrate this situation. The Klan tent burning affair near Hudson
indicates rather well the Catholic reaction to the Klan's prejudice against
them. Yet the Klan fell into a trap of its own making in that it became a
victim of its own antiCatholic prejudice from an unlikely source--the American
Legion in Ellsworth. The Sheriff Baker episode is indicative of an element
of reaction against the Klan's anti-Catholic prejudice as attached to a yellow
decorative fringe on the American Flag. 
For all its efforts in attempting to gain a lasting 
foothold in the life of northwestern Wisconsin, the T7lan's life-span in
this area was relatively short-lived--a little short of two years with peak
activity in 1926. Before the Fall of 1926 was over, the Klan had ceased to
be a viable factor in this section of the state. True, the Klan was quite
effective in disrupting community life and arraying people against each other.
But in the long run, the Klan was a failure. 
There appear several reasons for this. In devising and implementing its devious
philosophy, the Klan had one fatal flaw. It attemptedtfool all of the people
all of 

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