An excerpt from my new book Morgantown to San Francisco, available on Amazon.com.
While running for the West Virginia House of Representatives in 1952, Robert Byrd said that he was no longer a member of the Klan. As a West Virginia University student in 1956, I heard Congressman Byrd give a speech at Morgantown’s First Baptist Church. Byrd pounded a Bible with his fist to illustrate that like an anvil, it had withstood the hammers of fascism, communism and such.
After the speech a man in the back of the chapel made a statement about the KKK. Byrd replied and admitted he had been a member of the Klan. He said that the Charleston Gazette had exposed this to try to ruin him. He went on to say that he was, “proud to have been a member of the Klan,” I heard him say that. Byrd had joined the Ku Klux Klan in 1942 and held the offices of Exalted Cyclops and Kleagle. Strange aside: Byrd was one of two West Virginia legislators to witness the first execution in the electric chair at Moundsville prison.
 Each local chapter, or Klavern, is led by an Exalted Cyclops.