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You're Reading Stone Mountain To Dallas - The Untold Story Of Roy E Davis



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CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO

 

The year 1960 was a time of change. The entertainment industry was thriving, especially in the realm of television. The Flintstones premiered on ABC[391] for the first time, and the Wizard of Oz began its first in a long line of annual reruns on CBS.[392] Elvis Presley had just received honorable discharge from the United States Army,[393] and within a few weeks recorded Are You Lonesome Tonight?[394] As the television set became more common throughout the country, it provided a wealth of information and influence to the American public.

The Nixon-Kennedy debate was the first televised presidential debate,[395] and as a result most Americans could examine their candidates with a personal attachment. Though William Branham had been preaching since the fifties that the television set had a Communistic Sprit, it was difficult for church members not to get excited about seeing the two presidential candidates sling insults on live television. For the first year in the history of America, television began to surpass printed journalism as the main source of daily news. When something happened on television, it now affected the entire country at the exact same time. Branham began to intensify his condemnation of any who owned a television set[396], but curiosity got the better of most of his listeners.

Recording industries began to specialize in black rhythm and blues music, primarily through the work of the newly renamed Atlanta, Georgia group: Gladys Knight and the Pips.[397] Motown Records incorporated in 1960[398], and America was suddenly filled with music from African Americans. Combined with the sit-ins by black students in North Carolina, this new development immediately triggered protests throughout the Southern United States. Segregationists were infuriated.

Because of this, the presidential election of 1960 came at a very decisive time in American history. Not only was the war of the races becoming very heated through the work of white supremacy groups and the enforcing of integration, the country was fully engaged in an even more heated Cold War with the Soviet Union.[399] Russia had just taken lead in the arms race by launching a Sputnik satellite[400], and Fidel Castros revolutionaries had intensified fear of Communism spreading throughout the entire Western Hemisphere. France began testing its first atomic bomb[401], and fears of WWIII were starting to spread once more.

It was a very decisive time for the Ku Klux Klan, as well. Kennedy, a Catholic and strong supporter of equality for African Americans[402], was a threat to the Invisible Empire. If he was elected, this threat could spell the end for their power and political influence. Though they were severely disjointed, all sects of the Klan began focusing their energy on stopping the common threat. Immediately before the election, Imperial Grand Dragon Roy E. Davis wrote a letter to the editor of the Dallas Morning News, and it was published.

 

Back Turned On South - To The Dallas News:

 

Your editorials supporting Vice President Nixon for president are stimulating. I have been a supporter of the so-called Democrat party all my adult life. I did not even vote for Hoover when Governor Smith was trying to get into the White House. I did not vote!

 

It is difficult to understand how any voter can say when and if he votes for Kennedy-Johnson he is voting for the continuation of the once-Democratic party. He is repudiating all the great fundamentals which were outstanding but which have been repudiated by those who call themselves Democrats.

 

R. E. DAVIS.

3311 Glenhaven, Dallas[403]

 

After Kennedy was elected, the Ku Klux Klan lashed out like a wounded snake. Forming coalitions and new organizations, many groups started to break down the lines of separation and rally towards the common goal: to stop President Kennedys policies of change any way possible.

William Branham began claiming prophetic revelation on the events that were unfolding, convincing masses of people that the election of a Catholic was signaling the apocalypse.

I saw the United States as one smoldering, burnt-over place. He said. It will be near the end. I predict that this will take place.

Branham picked up a piece of paper and showed it to the crowd. He pointed to some writing on the page, though none in the audience could see it from their distance.

That's what the Lord showed, he said, but I predict this will take place before 1977. Upon this prediction, I base, because of the onrushing slaughter that's coming now, how fast that it was moving, how long it'll take till this nation meets its place.

Now, look what happened now. He said. Franklin D. Roosevelt took America to England's tea party. That's right. Germany never picked on us; we picked on them, and threw the whole world into a war a world war. The Germans built the Maginot Line, which thereany veteran here knows what she took there at the Maginot Line.

Women, given the right to vote, he said, and elected President-elect Kennedywith the woman's vote! The wrong man! which will finally be to full control of the Catholic church in the United States. Branham paused for effect.

Then the bomb comes that explodes her. There's seven things predicted, and five of them has already happened. So you can judge yourself how far away we are. We're near the end! He held up the paper again and pointed to the writing.

If these five things happened, these other two things are bound to happen. It's just got to happen! Not a soul in the audience moved, all starting solemnly at the Pentecostal preacher.

I do not think that Mr. Kennedy will have much effect now, he said, because he'll make a wonderful president in order to bring in the others to get a scene set just like they have in England, like they did Mexico, like they did everywhere else, like that.

And the American people, so unstable, not spiritually; they're smart, but too smart for their own good. Several people in the crowd shouted amen.

Intelligence swings backward sometime and backfires. So we find out we'rewe're right on the verge. That's right. Women's vote! Did you notice the rallies on the television? Nixon supporters were pretty near all men. All of them wanted to kiss Kennedy (the women), jumping astraddle the cars and everything like that, jumping up and down! [404]

While William Branham prepared the crowds to rally against Kennedy, Roy shifted his focus from Dallas, Texas to Shreveport, Louisiana. For six straight months, Roy held membership drives held meetings in the Odd Fellows halls, and in other secret locations. More than a thousand had signed up in Shreveport alone, and the Original Knights of the Ku Klux Klan was expanding through Louisiana by opening new charters. [405],

Later that year as Davis rallied to gain new members, Branham came to Shreveport to strengthen the resolve through religious campaigning. Starting Thanksgiving Day in 1960, Branham joined Kidson to begin a Shreveport campaign of new converts to his version of fundamentalist faith.[406] This time, he began a new strategy of comparing President Kenney to Ahab of the Old Testament, comparing the First Lady to Jezebel, and stressing the urgency for this nation to send an Elijah to storm the White House and stop the idolatry of Catholicism.[407] Branham returned a few months later in 1961 to strengthen that resolve. Then Branham left Shreveport for Beaumont, Texas, and continued that theme.[408]

While Branham pushed the Klan agenda through religious themes, Roy Davis continued to promote new membership through the news media. He told the media that blacks were turning the white mans government into a mongrel government, and that the Klan is not going to let them do it regardless of what this statement may imply.[409] This time, he decided to use a publicity stunt that would shock the nation. He decided to invite newspaper journalists to a secret meeting of the Ku Klux Klan just outside of Shreveport.[410]

But immediately before the meeting with the media, the Shreveport Klan started receiving negative publicity. Several men in white robes surrounded the home of Democratic Representative Overton Brooks, and burned a cross in his front lawn.[411]

 

 

Put this on, said a voice from behind a white hood. He handed the reporter a black cloth and motioned for him to cover his eyes. You are free to report anything you see at the meeting, but we ask that you give no details to your readers about the trip there and back.

Okay, said the reporter. He took the blindfold and wrapped it around his eyes. After the man in the white hood was satisfied that he could not see, they opened the door to the sedan and sat down in the back seat.

The reporter sat in the back of a Ford automobile between two men in white hooded robes. It was driven by another man in a white hooded robe, and was followed by another sedan with two men in white robes. They took off slowly, then merged onto a highway and headed a few miles out of town. The reporter could hear the change in pavement briefly, and then recognized when the automobile exited the highway and turned onto a side road. After about five minutes, the vehicle turned onto a dirt road, and continued on dirt roads for the rest of the journey.

He could feel the dirt change to grass as the car pulled onto an open field and the vibration of the dirt road ceased. One of the men in white hoods reached over and untied his blindfold. He rubbed his eyes and leaned forward. In front of him were several white robes moving around as they set up folding chairs. Beyond them, the reporter could see smoke rising from a barbecue pit, and two men were carrying a table with white dishes stacked on it. They started to slide a bit when the table leaned, and one of the men steadied the with his hand.

Five men in front of the folding chairs stood out from the crowd. Unrobed and unmasked, their black suits blended in with the night sky. Four of them were unpacking instruments while one was twisting a pole onto what appeared to be a microphone stand.

When the vehicle came to a stop, the men stepped out of the vehicle and stretched. The reporter straightened his tie and looked around, surprised that the event looked more like a fair than a hidden meeting of a secret society. He took a deep breath to smell the barbecue, and his mouth began to water. He looked down at his watch, and noted that the trip had taken about an hour.

We got a good band here tonight, one of the men said. Youre in for a real treat. The reporter nodded his head and continued to look around.

The area was surrounded by trees on all sides, save the opening that they entered from. Behind the trees on the right-hand side, he could see a small dirt trail leading towards a hill behind the trees, and six men in robes were coming towards the meeting from the trail. Instead of white, these men wore crimson red robes with white emblems. He started counting the robes. Though it was difficult to count as they scurried around, it appeared that there were more than sixty men in white robes plus the five who were now tuning their instruments.

One of the red-robed figures walked up to the microphone and tapped it a few times. The reporter turned as he tapped it, and noticed that his Leaning forward into it, he began to speak.

Brethren, we have a special guest in our presence, he said, stretching his left arm to point at the reporter. Lets give him a big welcome! He started clapping his hands, and the others joined in.

And we have another big surprise for you tonight, he said as he turned around to the men holding bluegrass instruments. I think you all will enjoy the Misty Water Bluegrass Band! The crowd clapped their hands again, and the band started playing.

Behind the band, a few men began to lift a fifteen-foot-tall cross upright. It fell into a hole about a foot when it was fully upright, and the reporter started walking over to watch. The robed men stepped back from the cross as another man stooped down and struck a match. Before long, the cross was ablaze.

As the band played, a crowd of white robes started congregating around the barbecue. The reporter walked over towards the wonderful smell as men started walking towards him carrying plates. His mouth watered even more as he passed them, eyeing the pork barbecue, green beans, corn-on-the-cob, and cornbread. Before long, he was seated with the others, watching the bluegrass band play cheerful melodies under the night sky.

After about an hour of music, the band transitioned into Gospel songs, and to the amazement of the reporter, several men in white robes joined in singing. One of the men in red robes walked to the front, and he leaned over to sing into the microphone. His voice was not nearly so pleasant as the leader of the band, and not quite in tune. But it sounded joyful.

After the music, the man in the robe started preaching. The reporter was not religious, but imagined the sermon must have sounded similar to speeches given by other ministers in town. At least until the end, when the man in the red robe started speaking very harshly against President Kennedy and the Catholic Church. It made him feel a little uncomfortable, but then, he knew their political bias before coming to the meeting.

After the sermon, the other men in red robes took turns at the microphone, giving updates on the growth of the Louisiana charters and describing plans for charitable contributions to the community both financially and through physical labor. Though he didnt really expect anything scandalous to occur during the meeting, the reporter was surprised at how little there was to report. He had covered events at the county fair that could produce more interesting material.