Guide to the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), Realm of California
Special Collections & Archives
18111 Nordhoff St.
Northridge, CA, 91330
Phone: (818) 677-2832
Fax: (818) 677-2589
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Overview of the Collection
Collection Title: Ku Klux Klan (KKK), Realm of
Physical Description: 0.21
Language of Materials:
Abstract: During the 1910s, the Klan, which had
been defunct since the concluding decades of the 19th century, was revived in Atlanta,
Georgia and spread across the country within a decade. The Klan's revival was due
in part to urbanization and industrialization. Many Klansmen in the 1920s – 1940s were
lower to middle class whites who sought to protect their jobs and neighborhoods, both
from black migrants moving out of the South and new immigrants arriving in industrial
cities, particularly those from Southern and Eastern Europe who tended to be Catholic
and Jewish. This collection of materials from the Realm of California primarily includes
by-laws, correspondence, and publications.
The Ku Klux Klan is a far-right organization which advocates extremist reactionary
currents such as white supremacy and white nationalism, and is opposed to immigration.
The first Ku Klux Klan, founded in 1865 in Pulaski, Tennessee, was primarily made up of
Confederate veterans of the American Civil War and operated under a decentralized
structure in which local chapters and bands were highly independent. The first Klan was
essentially defunct by the late 19th century.
In 1915, the second Ku Klux Klan was founded by William J. Simmons in Atlanta, Georgia.
By the 1920s, social tensions brought on by rapid industrialization and increased
immigration in urban areas had set the stage for the Klan's expanding popularity.
Unlike the first Klan, the second Klan was a centralized fraternal organization, with a
national and state structure, which had rapidly spread from the South to the Midwest and
Western states. The purification of politics, anti-Catholicism, the enforcement of
prohibition, and nativism formed the nucleus of the second Klan's objectives and
goals, summed up by their credo, "One Hundred Percent Americanism." Membership
in the second Klan appealed to lower, working, and middle class white Protestants from
urban areas, who's fears and concerns over jobs and housing played into the
By 1924, at the height of the second Klan's popularity, membership rose to
6,000,000, but by 1930 it had dropped to 30,000. Throughout the early 1940s financial
difficulties, chronic internal conflicts, external opposition, and the exposure of
criminal behavior had diminished the organization's power and appeal. In 1944, the
Internal Revenue Service filed a lien for $685,000 against the Klan, which led to the
closure of the organization's home office and subsequent dissolution of its
This collection is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
Ku Klux Klan (1915-) --
Genre/Form of Material:
Nativistic movements --
Conditions Governing Use:
Copyright for unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s)
of this collection has not been transferred to California State University,
Northridge. Copyright status for other materials is unknown. Transmission or
reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond
that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners.
Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of
the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.
Conditions Governing Access:
The collection is open for research use.
For information about citing items in this collection consult the appropriate style
manual, or see the
Citing Archival Materials
Scope and Contents
Ku Klux Klan (KKK), Realm of California Records
includes correspondence and membership cards from Fresno and Los Angeles, newspaper and
pamphlet literature, and Ku Klux Klan or related publications. In many cases,
individuals named in the correspondence and membership cards have been blacked or cut
out. The collection is arranged alphabetically.
Box 1, Folder 1
By-Laws of the Ku Klux Klan,
Box 1, Folder 2
C.E. Snelson, Grand Dragon - Correspondence,
Box 1, Folder 3
C.W. Taylor, State Commander - Correspondence.
Box 1, Folder 4
California Fiery Cross, Vol. 1, No.
1924 April 21
Box 1, Folder 5
Citizenship - Robert Burnett
Box 1, Folder 6
Constitution and Laws of the Ku Klux Klan, Constitution and Laws of the
Women of the Ku Klux Klan,
Box 1, Folder 7
Dr. Samuel Green, Grand Dragon - Correspondence,
Box 1, Folder 8
Edward Young Clarke, Imperial Wizard Pro-Tem - Correspondence,
Box 1, Folder 9
G.W. Price, Imperial Representative, Realm Of California -
Box 1, Folder 10
James M. Harvey, Imperial Night Hawk - Correspondence,
Box 1, Folder 11
Junior Order United American Mechanics, Los Angeles
Box 1, Folder 12
Kourier Magazine, Vol. 2, Nos. 11,
1926 October, 1926 November
Box 1, Folder 16
T.C. Moore, Fresno Klan - Correspondence
Box 1, Folder 17
To All Klansmen - Greeting
Box 1, Folder 18
Western Citizen, Vol. 1, No. 6,
1924 March 24