A look at the circumstances surrounding what came to be known as the Ku Klux Klan.
As an illustration of the character of the men sent to the convention, Samuel Hale, a brother of United States Senator Hale, one of the few Union men and later Republicans resident in Sumter county, wrote Senator Wilson in January, 1868, a letter protesting against recognition by Congress of radicals in the south, in which he said that the men who sat in the convention and framed the constitution were, "so far as I am acquainted with them, worthless vagabonds, homeless, houseless, drunken knaves"; that the Sumter delegates were a negro and two whites--Yordy and Rolfe. Rolfe, he said, left his family in New York and had not seen them for four years, during which period he had led an immoral life with negroes; that he was known as the "Hero of Two Shirts," having left at a hotel in Selma, as security for an unpaid hotel bill, his carpetbag containing only two shirts: that his name was not signed to the constitution which he helped to frame because he was too drunk to write it. These men and
An interesting "balanced" account of the Civil War reconstruction in Alabama written by a Southern gentleman. He goes out of his way not to portray blacks as animals, and only mentions Southern womanhood once, but it's hard not to see his bias. A white man kills a black man and is arrested; the witnesses can't be found. A black man is accused of a murder and arrested, and the Klan breaks him out of jail then hangs and shoots him. All as it should be.
The Klan is basically a peaceful organization, practising military drills and chastising dishonest officeholders until they resign and are replaced by the more fitting Southern whites. When this is accomplished in 1870, the Klan disbands.
Some people will find this more believable than others. I'm one of the others.