I’ve posted several previous pieces about Klan activities in the area. In the early days the members were easily accepted because of their positions on civic and moral issues. It was only after violence and racism became the norm that members and their supporters started hiding their identities. I don’t know if the editor of the paper was a member or just a supporter, but most of his editorial comments are certainly positive. I do wonder if some of his math was a bit exaggerated! I can’t imagine five thousand people in the middle of a pasture being able to hear a speaker, much less “listen breathlessly”. And what were the other five thousand doing? Anyway, just the fact that there was a crowd and 100 new members joined is interesting.
The Caddo Herald
August 1, 1924
Klan Ceremonial is witnessed by 10,000
The public Klan Ceremonial held Monday night in the pasture of Mose Downing was attended by the largest crowd ever gathered in Bryan County. The event was advertised as public, and the curious public was there to witness and to be convinced that all the evil said about the Klan was not true.
The crowd was estimated at more than ten thousand people. Seventeen hundred autos entered the gate and fully three hundred wagons and buggies were there. Estimated at five to a vehicle there would be more than ten thousand. People brought their wives and children.
Eight beeves and a thousand loaves of bread were served. Ice water was in plenty.
Speaking was had before the mystic ceremony, and more than five thousand people listened breathlessly to the speaker as he told of the aims, purpose and accomplishments of the Klan.
Sixty men were inducted into citizenship of the Klan, and forty ladies were initiated into the Ladies Klan.
The next meeting was held between Bokchito and Bennington, where a large crowd assembled and witnessed another ceremony.