I've heard that the contemporary KKK is a degenerate organization filled with rednecks and FBI informants, but what about the old KKK? The organization that actually meant something more than a bunch of stormweenies killing masses of innocent people, the original Klan that despised unions, enforced prohibition, and put jews and blacks in their place?
tl;dr redpill me on the KKK
Have you seen The Birth of a Nation by DW Griffith? It's supposedly the most racist, vile movie ever made, but it portrays the KKK as saviors of the south. The 20s KKK shown on Boardwalk Empire was influenced my this movie.
There are several different generations of the KKK.
Its first incarnation being made up of mostly Confederate veterans who thought it would be funny to scare freed blacks by pretending to be ghosts & riding on horseback and basically be a college frat house. This eventually escalated into violence against freed slaves and working against Reconstruction efforts. The fraternity was disbanded officially in the 1870s but some chapters continued on, although their influence was minimal.
The second generation arose in the early 20th century. As said earlier, the film Birth of A Nation helped fuel its growth. It was this era that the Klan created its most infamous and enduring image. It also held the most political power during this era, with politicians across dozens of states being supported or pledged to the Klan. This Klan dwindled in power by the end of the 20s, after numerous scandals tarnished its image. Internal corruption and greed brought its downfall.
Related to the second gen Klan, there was the Black Legion in Ohio and Michigan who were more violent than most other Klan chapters. They actually broke off from the main Klan and became their own organization, killing as many as two hundred blacks in a four year period.
The Klan has a pretty neat history, but they weren't really a noble brotherhood or anything like that. They were basically real life trolls who loved trolling blacks, generally with robes and sharp objects.