"You saw those cars coming, and you knew who those men were. They wanted you to see them. They wanted you to be afraid of them."
- Lillie McKoy, former mayor of Maxton talking about the KKK
By the mid-1950's the Civil Rights Movement was gaining momentum and the KKK decided they had to fight back. Their campaign of terrorism swept through many of the southern states, but largely fell flat in North Carolina.
James W. "Catfish" Cole, the Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan in South Carolina, decided he was going to change that. Cole was an ordained minister of the Wayside Baptist Church in Summerfield, North Carolina, who regularly preached the Word of God on the radio. His rallies often drew as many as 15,000 people. As Cole told the newspapers: "There's about 30,000 half-breeds up in Robeson County and we are going to have some cross burnings and scare them up."
Cole made a critical mistake that couldn't be avoided by a racist mind - he was completely ignorant of the people he was about to mess with.
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Dr. Perry was a black doctor in Monroe, NC, and helped finance a local chapter of the NAACP. One night at a meeting, the word was received that the Klan threatened to blow up Dr. Perry's house. The meeting broke up and everyone went home to get their guns.