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"The eye of the unknown hath seen and doth constantly observe all, white or black, who disregard this warning. 'Whatsoever thou sowest that shall you also reap.' Regardless of official, social or financial position, this warning applies to all living within the jurisdiction of this Klan.
"This warning will not be repeated.
"'Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin.'
"Hereafter all communications from us will bear the official seal of the Klan.
"KNIGHTS OF THE KU KLUX KLAN."
KU KLUX KLAN SHOOTS SHERIFF
The att.i.tude of members of the Ku Klux Klan toward officers of the law was demonstrated on October 1, 1921, in Lorena, Tex., when the Ku Klux Klan shot Sheriff Bob Buchanan of McLennan county, when he attempted to stop a parade of Masked Knights.
Without getting an official permit to hold the parade, the Ku Klux Klan announced that it would be held at 8:30 p.m. The sheriff notified the community that the parade was against the law and that he would not allow it. The word was carried to the Ku Klux Klan leaders.
Messages were sent back and forth, and the Ku Kluxers tried to scare the sheriff into a retreat. He refused to back down, however, and ended the negotiations by telling the Klansmen that they had to obey the law as well as other citizens.
The sheriff said there was a law against uncertain masked men who refused to divulge their ident.i.ty. He would agree to the parade if the names of the masked men were furnished to him. This the Klan leaders refused to do.
The Klansmen held a council of war at which the sheriff was denounced for daring to give them orders. They decided to show the people of Lorena that they were bigger than the sheriff or the law that he represented. The chief of the Klansmen gave the order for the parade to start.
With a posse of citizens and deputies, Sheriff Buchanan met the parade at the intersection of the main streets. Thousands of persons were out to witness the test of strength between the law and the Ku Klux Klan.
The sheriff approached a masked Klansman who carried a fiery cross. He attempted to seize the cross. There was a shot. A bullet hit the sheriff in the right arm. A general gun fight followed and ten persons were injured. The Masked Knights hurriedly departed, carrying one of their number who was wounded.
Sheriff Buchanan is hailed as a hero in Texas by the law-abiding element. The United States needs more public officials like him--men with the courage to stand by their oaths of office.
Since the Ku Klux Klan was organized night outrages in which masked men are involved have increased to a frequency not known in the United States since the years just following the Civil War, when the original Ku Klux Klan was active in the southern states against "carpet baggers" and Negroes.
A murder was committed on June 9, 1921, at Sea Breeze, Fla., by masked men who said they were Ku Klux Klan. They took Thomas L. Reynolds from his bed and punched and kicked him. Then one of the masked men shot him. He died later. Official investigation failed to involve the Ku Klux Klan.
WIZARD SIMMONS DENIES
In the case of Paul and Scott in Beaumont, Tex., an organization claiming to be the Ku Klux Klan admitted under a seal that it was responsible. In many other instances the masked riders have openly boasted that they were Ku Kluxers. In other cases they have worn regalia like that of the Ku Klux. Imperial Wizard Simmons has denied that the Ku Klux is responsible for any outrages. Whether he knows what he is talking about probably will be determined only by a Congressional investigation.
Meanwhile the people of the country have the big fact on which to form their judgment--namely, that since the Ku Klux has extended its membership and influence by influencing hundreds of thousands to get down on their knees and take the oath of "white supremacy," bands of night riders who take the law into their own hands have been carrying on these disgraceful marauding "parties" with a boldness that challenges public attention.
In Daytona, Fla., H.C. Sparkman, an editor, carried on a campaign against the Ku Klux Klan. On June 12, 1921, Sparkman received by mail a threat warning him that if he did not let the Ku Klux alone the Klan would take up his case and that he might be killed. In Pensacola, Fla., on July 8, 1921, a band of men wearing white robes like those of the Ku Klux Klan in their initiation ceremonies appeared at the store of Chris Lochas, a restaurant keeper, and while the chief of police was looking on gave him a written order to leave town because of certain charges. The warning was signed "K.K.K."
KU KLUX KLANSMAN KILLED
In the city of Atlanta, Ga., where the Ku Klux Klan is strongest a killing resulted from a raid by masked men on J.C. Thomas, who had a lunch room at 280- Decatur street. Thomas had received letters threatening him with violence unless he "let alone" a certain woman in his employ. On March 12, 1920, four men got Thomas to enter an automobile and drove him to a spot in a lonely neighborhood. There they took him from the car and told him that he was to be punished because he had not observed their warnings. When they started to strike Thomas, he took a knife from his pocket and killed Fred Thompson who was later identified as a member of the Ku Klux Klan.
The case of killing against Thomas was put before a grand jury but the jury refused to indict him. At the inquest into the death of Thompson, Homer Pitts was identified as the driver of the car in which Thomas had been kidnapped. Pitts was represented in the proceedings by Attorney W.S. Coburn. In the official list of Ku Kluxers there is a H.R. Pitts who is a kleagle at Fresno, Cal., and a W.S. Coburn who is a grand goblin with headquarters at Los Angeles, Cal.
100 OUTRAGES IN TEXAS
Texas, where the Ku Klux Klan is strong, has been the scene of nearly 100 unlawful punishments by masked men. In one case the initials "K.K.K." were branded on the forehead of a negro who was horsewhipped on the charge of having been found in a white woman's room.
Something the same treatment that was given Dr. Paul was handed out to J.S. Allen, an attorney of Houston, Tex., who on April 10, 1921, was whisked from a downtown street, driven to the country and tarred and feathered. The masked men then took him back to the city and threw him out of the automobile into a crowd. He was nude except for his coat of tar and feathers.