The Knights of the Golden Circle in Texas

How a Secret Society Shaped a State

The Knights of the Golden Circle in Texas
Randolph W Farmer
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The United States today is a divided nation and some say the country may be heading toward breakup, or possibly civil war. That has happened before and the result was disastrous. As many as 750,000 Americans perished during the Civil War. A study of the causes of our last Civil War may help to prevent another. The Knights of the Golden Circle (KGC) played a major role in starting the Civil War in the United States. Although intended to remain a secret organization of conspirators, it is perhaps the most well-documented conspiracy in United States history. The goal of the KGC was the creation of a new society separate from the United States dedicated to the preservation and expansion of slavery into Latin America. The KGC existed in almost every state in the Union, but nowhere was it as powerful and successful as it was in Texas. Several governors, many senators and military leaders were members, having taken an oath to support the organization and their fellow members. Most of the documents generated by the KGC were destroyed after the war ended as its members feared execution for treason. Not everything was destroyed, though. This book relies on documents created by the organization and its members that have not previously been used by researchers. Many members of this organization remained in positions of authority in state affairs after the abolition of slavery. This book goes far beyond previous published work in establishing the identities of the members of this organization who promoted and encouraged the most disastrous war in American history. Randolph W. Farmer is a native Texan from a family whose ancestors first came to Texas as early as 1817 when it was still a Spanish possession. He is the author of two previously published books on Texas history.
". . . the author has employed a wide variety of sources, many of which would be otherwise obscure, inaccessible, unavailable, or unfamiliar to most. The photographic section is helpful and informative and contains contemporary illustrations, portraits of prominent members, documents, K. G. C. badges, and other membership devices for further context. United States history has many stories that remain to be told. It is gratifying that authors and historians continue to dig for them for our edification. "-- "New York Journal of Books"
A native Texan born from a family whose ancestors first came to Texas as early as 1817 when it was still a Spanish possession, Mr. Farmer is the author of two previously published books on Texas history.