Date of Award

Summer 7-10-1961

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

History

First Advisor

Davis, Edwin A.

Abstract

The twentieth century Ku Klux Klan in Morehouse Parish, Louisiana, was part of a movement in the United States which became widespread during the third decade of this century. In 1921 and 1922, the years of the establishment and growth of the Morehouse Klan, there occurred in that parish a wave of violence and intimidation attributed to the Klan. On August 24, 1922, five citizens of the parish were kidnapped by a mob of BIack-robed men, One of the victims was released unharmed, two were released after being severely beaten, and two were murdered and their bodies concealed for approximately four months.

Following the failure of the Morehouse Parish grand jury to bring indictments in the case, the governor of Louisiana ordered an open hearing into the case which began on January 3, 1923, At the conclusion of the state's investigation, the Morehouse Parish grand jury again failed to return indictments, Although the guilty parties were never prosecuted, the Ku Klux Klan in Morehouse Pariah was destroyed because of this incident, and the effect of the investigation was felt throughout the state and nation.

In the preparation of this manuscript, pertinent Louisiana and United States government publications were utilized. In addition, interviews were conducted with persons involved in the incident. Various Louisiana newspapers were used extensively because of the disappearance of the transcript of the open hearing from the Morehouse Parish Courthouse. These and other sources were examined in an attempt to present an accurate account of the Morehouse murder and their effect on the twentieth century Klan movement.

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