kevin asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 2 months ago

Is it true that during the 1920's 1 in 3 white Americans was a member of the KKK?

I read on Wikipedia that during the 1920s about 33% of all the white American American population was a member of the ku klux klan.

why did so many white Americans in the southern united states felt the need to join this terrorist organization?

also why does America see Saudi Arabia as an ally but Iran as an adversary?

anyone know?


10 Answers

  • garry
    Lv 5
    2 months ago

    where they , thinks your history is wrong .

  • 2 months ago

    Not even close.  Maybe more like 3.3%.  In Canada, it's greatest support was in the province of Saskatchewan, where it peaked in 1925 with "over 25,000 members."  The province had a population of about 760,000 at that time, so this represented 3.4% of the population.    

  • 2 months ago

    You read incorrectly.

    The Wikipedia page points out that at peak, the KKK had 3,000,000–6,000,000[1] members, (peaked in 1924–1925).

    At that time, the US had a population of 115 million.

    As of 1920, the US White population was 94,820,915

    Six million is NOT a third of 94 million.

  • 2 months ago

    One should always take membership numbers of controversial organizations with a grain of salt.  Most will inflate their claims, including people who once were in the neighborhood during a meeting or mailed a letter the same day they had a letter in a local newspaper.  My mother's family in Evansville, Indiana (just over the river from former slave state Kentucky) did see Klan marches and rallies, but nowhere near 15% of white men.

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  • Anonymous
    2 months ago


    In the early 1920s the KKK "claimed" to be 15% ( about 1 in 7) of  "eligible" Americans. 


    "At its peak in the mid-1920s, the organization claimed to include about 15% of the nation's eligible population, approximately 4–5 million men."

  • 2 months ago

    It was probably not that high, but a lot of people belonged to the KKK in the 1920s.

  • 2 months ago

    Absolutely not.  For one thing, the KKK was mostly limited to the former slave states, known as "the South."  

    It might be that a third of White Southerners belonged, because at the time a lot of socializing was done at KKK meetings. They didn't have TV after all. They didn't spend ALL their time harassing Blacks.  They would have all kinds of normal group activities.  

    Your questions about Saudi and Iran are quite a jump! But okay.  First, "allies" doesn't necessarily mean "friends."  It means they get along well enough for some mutual benefit.  

    Both countries technically neutral during WWII, but Russian and British troops did occupy parts of Persia, now called Iran, and had a devastating effect on the economy.  However, in 1942 the Allies made a treaty with Iran and recognized their independence and supported the Shah's government.  Now, the Shah was a dictator, and was opposed by a lot of Iranian people. Iran was then an ally of the US in that there were economic and diplomatic relations.  This ended in 1979 when the Ayatollah Khomeini and his followers overthrew the Shah, took over the government, and invaded and took over the US Embassy in Tehran.  Now it is a firm custom of all countries that they do not invade the Embassy of another nation in their territory.  Invading the US Embassy is an invasion of US soil, and a cause of war.  The US did not start a shooting war with Iran, but there have been no diplomatic relations since then.  We may technically be described as in a state of war, like the US and North Korea.  Iran does give aid and covert military support to the enemies of some US allies in the region.

    As for Saudi, they managed to maintain their independence and were not significantly invaded.  Saudi is a Kingdom, actually a dictatorship too, with many human rights problems, but they are not invading other countries.  We have plenty of differences with Saudi, and contrary to popular belief, the US buys little or no oil from Saudi.  But we have diplomatic relations and are at least not fighting.  

  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    I am going to say no, because we are talking about something regional here. The Boston chapter of the KKK has always been able to meet at a card table. This is not to say there has never been racism in Boston, just that wearing bedsheets and burning crosses was never cool in the more populated areas of North America. I say North America, because the KKK was actually very popular in some parts of Canada in those days. 

    In historical terms, the KKK was once a potent force and not just buffoons. I am not endorsing them at all, but back in the day they were part of the Catholic vs. Protestant conflict just as much as the race conflict. 

    Here is the thing, the latter day KKK are obviously a bunch of assholes. We don't talk about the historical KKK in the Canadian context because Protestant vs. Catholic conflicts seems archaic nowadays. 

  • 2 months ago

    I'm not surprised.

  • 2 months ago


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