Book cover of Knights of the Golden Circle: Secret Empire, Southern Secession, Civil War  by David C. Keehnby David C. Keehn

Based on years of exhaustive and meticulous research, David C. Keehn’s study provides the first comprehensive analysis of the Knights of the Golden Circle, a secret southern society that initially sought to establish a slave-holding empire in the “Golden Circle” region of Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central America. Keehn reveals the origins, rituals, structure, and complex history of this mysterious group, including its later involvement in the secession movement. Members supported southern governors in precipitating disunion, filled the ranks of the nascent Confederate Army, and organized rearguard actions during the Civil War.

The Knights of the Golden Circle emerged in 1858 when a secret society formed by a Cincinnati businessman merged with the pro-expansionist Order of the Lone Star, which already had 15,000 members.

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