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Listed Under:  Smith, Alfred

Times Picayune

Klan Summons Smith Champion to Stand Trial

Citation Information:"Klan Summons Smith Champion to Stand Trial," The Times Picayune. v. 92. n. 285. November 4, 1928.

Former Florida Sheriff Renounces Membership in Order

Miami, Fla, Nov. 3.—The Miami Daily News said today that the local Ku Klux Klan had called upon one prominent Miami member to stand trial before the order and that several others had "drawn it's fire" for their activities in support of the campaign of Governor Al Smith, Democratic presidential nominee.

Copies of what purported to be correspondence exchanged by the acting cyclops of John B. Gordon Klan No. 24 and Louis A. Allen, former sheriff of Dade county, were made public. This showed the "solemn summons of the fiery cross," to Mr. Allen to stand trial for a "major offense" and the latter's reply renouncing his membership.

He was charged with having "openly and notoriously championed the candidacy of the one man above all others who is hostile to every principle of the klan," and "that in working for and aiding the election of Alfred Emanuel Smith as president of the United States, he has forfeited every right that he has to be a klansman."

In his reply, Mr. Allen was quoted as having declared he was "forced to the conclusion that membership in your organization controverts the essence of American citizenship," signing himself a "nonklan American."

Charges of a similar nature were said to have been made against Fred Pine, former county solicitor, by a klan delegation which visited his office. He ordered the visitors out, branding the klan as ""he most unpatriotic and un-American organization" in existence today.

Others members listed as having drawn the klan's disapproval of their activities in behalf of Governor Smith were Robert R. Taylor, county solicitor; Ross Williams, an attorney, and E. B. Letherman, circuit court clerk.