Thursday, February 24, 2011
Knights of the Golden Circle. Possible names.
Fort Smith Military History Examiner
The Knights of the Golden Circle while being active in both the North and the South had some major names that are connected with the organization. The rumors and conspiracy that swarm around some of the men that will be named in this article are just that rumors fo.r the time being. Why is this important to the Fort Smith, Arkansas area? The answer to that question is very simple. Men like Albert Pike, Jesse James,Frank James, and General Ben McCulloch were known to be in the area during the Civil War.
Albert Pike was a Confederate officer and served at the Battle of Pea Ridge. In Bob Brewer's work Rebel Gold Pike is sighted as being the brains behind the Knights of the Golden Circle instead of George Bickley who is thought to have founded the group. An open mind is key to the study of Pike because the K.G.C. was heavy into the use of Masonic symbols. Pike was a Master Mason and the possiblity looms that he at least wrote some of the codes for the K.G.C. Pike may have been against slavery but the possiblity looms that he may have been more heavily involved in the K.G.C. than what most historians are willing to give him credit for.
With Jesse and Frank James it is no mystery why their names are linked with the K.G.C.. Jesse and Frank were both in favor of taking the fight to the Federal forces and both served in guerrila forces. Jesse and Frank are known to have robbed several stagecoaches here in Arkansas and the idea was to use and bury as much money as they could so the South could rise again. K.G.C. leadership knew that starting another war was simply not possible after the Civil War so most were going to take their time and wait to strike when the time was right. Their is simply not enough none right now as to what the James boys were up to but again Bob Brewer has cracked the code of the K.G.C. and has identified James symbols in the treasure sites he has discovered.
General Ben McCulloch was another K.G.C. leader and in Texas was in charge of the surrender General Twigg's U.S. forces. McCulloch. At the outbreak of the war the K.G.C. leadership clamied to have numbers near the 65,000 mark. McCulloch met his end at Pea Ridge but he was another member of the K.G.C. The number of members that were known and thought to be members are secondary when it is possible that the clear numbers of people in the organzation are simply not know. Anger was still deep in the South and anyone could have been a part the K.G.C..
For more information read:
Keehn, David Strong Arm of Secession The Knights of the Golden Circle in tthe Crisis of 1861 North and South Vol 10 Num6
Brewer, Bob Rebel Gold 2003 Simon & Schuster New York, New York