These Are The 10 Cities In West Virginia With The Most KKK Members


We measured the places in the Mountain State where there have historically been the most Klaverns per capita.

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Do you live in one of the most racist cities in West Virginia?

We all watch the news with horror when we hear about a hate crime that happens not that far away from us. Whether it’s the ‘white vs. black’ hate crime that we are so used to being part of America’s culture, or today’s hate crime (gay bashing), it never seems to end.

Hate groups can be hard to measure, because typically, there’s no record of where they exist. But there is data on where there were distinct Klaverns of the Ku Klux Klan in each state. We wanted to get the facts straight and dug into the data in order to identify the most racist cities in West Virginia.

The result is the following list of the most racist cities in the Mountain State:

  1. Matoaka
  2. Keystone
  3. Northfork
  4. Piedmont
  5. Logan
  6. Mullens
  7. Hinton
  8. Wellsburg
  9. Follansbee
  10. Ravenswood

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers. Or, if this is not up your alley, read about the most redneck towns in West Virginia.

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How we calculated the most racist cities in West Virginia

While there are surveys and public polls on what places might be the most racist, we didn’t want to rely on speculation and opinion. Instead, we looked at the hard numbers from where KKK organizations have existed.

Specifically, we analyzed research out of Virginia Commonwealth University that mapped the Klans in each area and gave a history of their recruitment from 1915-1940.

This report is an analysis of the locations of historic KKK organizations divided by the number of people who currently live there.

There were a total of 26 cities with at least 1 Klavern in West Virginia during the time period of reference.

A quick history lesson on the KKK

What is the KKK? In a nutshell, the KKK was formed back in 1865, and there have been three separate movements, all three of which were supposedly ‘purification movements’ in America. The 1865-1870s movement sought to overthrow Republican state governments.

The second movement (1915 – 1944) saw millions of members of the KKK form, which was opposed to immigration into America, especially against Catholics and Jews.

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The most memorable movement of the KKK started in the 1950s, which was involved in the Civil Rights movement, and which targeted the black population in America.

The number of active members of the KKK is much smaller these days.

At the Klan’s height, there were 35 active Kalverns in West Virginia.

The cities below are the places where there were Klans back in the day, and where the number of Klans per the current population is high. Meaning, the number of racist members of the community has historically been the highest, according to the math.

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1. Matoaka


Population 2014: 252
Klaverns: 3

2. Keystone


Population 2014: 246
Klaverns: 1

3. Northfork


Population 2014: 358
Klaverns: 1

4. Piedmont


Population 2014: 867
Klaverns: 1

5. Logan


Population 2014: 1,896
Klaverns: 2

6. Mullens

Mullens, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 2,020
Klaverns: 2

7. Hinton

Hinton, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 2,615
Klaverns: 1

8. Wellsburg

Wellsburg, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 2,763
Klaverns: 1

9. Follansbee

Follansbee, West Virginia

Source: Flickr

Population: 2,949
Klaverns: 1

10. Ravenswood

Ravenswood, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 3,853
Klaverns: 1

There You Have It

When you’re looking at the places in West Virginia with the highest number of KKK Klaverns per capita back in the day, this is an accurate list.

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Below is a chart which lists all cities in West Virginia with KKK organizations from 1915-1940.
For more West Virginia reading , check out:

Detailed List Of The Most Racist Cities In West Virginia

City Rank Population No. of Historical Klaverns
Matoaka 1 252 3
Keystone 2 246 1
Northfork 3 358 1
Piedmont 4 867 1
Logan 5 1,896 2
Mullens 6 2,020 2
Hinton 7 2,615 1
Wellsburg 8 2,763 1
Follansbee 9 2,949 1
Ravenswood 10 3,853 1
Grafton 11 5,179 1
Keyser 12 5,350 1
Princeton 13 6,387 1
Clarksburg 14 16,437 2
Oak Hill 15 8,270 1
Moundsville 16 8,960 1
Parkersburg 17 31,195 3
Bluefield 18 10,465 1
St. Albans 19 10,939 1
Wheeling 20 28,129 2
Morgantown 21 30,133 2
Martinsburg 22 17,508 1
Beckley 23 17,529 1
Weirton 24 19,523 1
Huntington 25 49,053 1
Charleston 26 50,911 1

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