Nation: THE VARIOUS SHADY LIVES OF THE KU KLUX KLAN

IT started as something of a lark, just 100 years ago. On Dec. 24, 1865, in Pulaski, Tenn., six young ex-Confederate officers, looking for something to occupy their time, got together to form a club. Like college kids, they gave the club all the trappings of a fraternity—mysterious rites, initiations, secret words. For a name, they hit on the Greek word for circle, kyklos, gave it a few twists and came up with Ku Klux Klan. For kicks, they made robes and hoods out of bedsheets and pillowcases, and took to riding sheet-draped horses...

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