Ku Klux Klan
In 1926, the College of William and Mary accepted and used a flagpole donated by the Ku Klux Klan, but President Julian A. C. Chandler repudiated KKK politics in his remarks during the ceremony. "College presidents sometimes face difficult decisions, knowing that whatever they decide, someone will be angry. Such was the case for William and Mary President Julian Chandler in 1926 when the Ku Klux Klan offered the College a U.S. flag and a flagpole. The Klan, notorious for its anti-black activities in the late 1800s, had revived in the 1920s, broadening its hatred to encompass immigrants and Catholics. Despite his dislike of the KKK, Chandler decided to accept their gifts for reasons he explained in a letter to Richmond newspaper editor Douglass Southall Freeman. More than 5,000 people attended the presentation ceremony. Chandler used his speech to lecture the KKK on the virtues of tolerance and diversity. Included here is some of the reaction, pro and con, to Chandler’s actions."
Material in the Special Collections Research Center
- "Flagpoles," University Archives Subject File Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library, College of William and Mary.
- Office of the President, J.A.C. Chandler Records, Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library, College of William and Mary.
- The Flat Hat.
- Conflict and Controversy from the exhibit "A Most Thriving & Growing Place": Williamsburg Before the Restoration.
To search for further material, visit the Special Collections Research Center's Search Tool List for an overview of the Special Collections Database, W&M Digital Archive, Flat Hat-William & Mary News-Alumni Gazette index, card catalogs, and other tools available to help you find material of interest in William & Mary Libraries Special Collections Research Center.
|A Note About The Contents Of This Wiki|
|The information available in this wiki is the best available from known documents and sources at the time it was written. Unfortunately, many of the early original records of William & Mary were destroyed by fires, military occupation, and the normal effects of time. Information in this wiki is not complete as new information continues to be uncovered in Swem Library's Special Collections Research Center and elsewhere. Researchers are strongly encouraged to use the Special Collections search tools for their research as the information contained in this wiki is by no means comprehensive.|