Book began with Duluth memorial
Hatle’s interest in the KKK was piqued when she was writing an editorial in advance of the Clayton Jackson McGhie Memorial in Duluth, which was dedicated to the memory of three black men who were beaten, tortured and hanged in downtown Duluth for a crime they didn’t commit. In Hatle’s research of the June 15, 1920, event, she came across photographs of floats from Klan parades in Minnesota, and it led her down a rabbit hole.
She conducted a great deal of research at historical societies and in newspapers for an article for Minnesota History Magazine, and then numerous families began contacting her saying they had ancestors who were KKK members and offered their stories.
That’s when Hatle knew she had a book in the works.
“If newspapers put anything in (about the Klan), that usually meant they supported it,” Hatle said.
The KKK’s presence in Minnesota was predominately from 1920-1925, but it existed until about 1930, with the Great Depression putting a period on the second-wave movement.
“The Ku Klux Klan in Minnesota” can be purchased at historypress.net and amazon.com.