Klansmen made to unmask themselves — after 30 years

“In 1923, a bill introduced in the state legislature to prohibit organizations from keeping their memberships secret or wearing masks in public posed a major challenge to the Klan’s North Carolina support base….The bill failed, a testament to the Klan’s political influence….

“[After a 1949 rally in Charlotte] both the Raleigh and Charlotte city councils adopted ordinances barring the Klan from appearing in public wearing masks or hoods….

“[In 1953] in the wake of the rash of floggings perpetrated by Thomas Hamilton‘s Associated Carolina Klans, the state… passed a law prohibiting members of ‘secret political societies’ from wearing disguises in public or burning crosses on private property without consent of the owner….”

— From “Klansville, U.S.A.: The Rise and Fall of the Civil Rights-Era Ku Klux Klan” by David Cunningham (2013)

 

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