OC Pioneers Who Were Klan Members: Albert O. Nelson, Placentia Constable

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Placentia usually gets the short shrift in the county's history, even though there was no city that had more of a plantation mentality at the height of King Citrus than this town. Most of the city was orange groves back in the day, with most of the Mexicans working as pickers and most of the gabachos either owning the citrus groves or working in another industry. Mexicans were literally relegated to the other side of the tracks, in the area south of what's now Chapman Avenue, a divide that's still evident today.

The city's power structure openly derided the Mexicans that kept the city humming--and who could blame them for their uppity ways when a Klucker like Albert O. Nelson was the head law man in town?

The grand irony in Nelson belonging to the Klan, of course, was that his father was an immigrant--from Denmark, a country and race acceptable to the KKK. Mexicans? Not so much.

Tune in every Monday around 5 p.m. for the latest entry exposing Orange County city fathers who were Klan members!

Previous entries:

Earl G. Glenn, Santa Ana Postman/Record-Breaking Cyclist
Arnold F. Peek, Santa Ana Butcher
William A. Culp, Brea Schools Board of Trustees President
Harry E. Inskeep, Fullerton Justice of the Peace
Arthur E. Koepsel, Chair of the OC Republican Party Central Committee
Frederick Bastady, Buena Park Citrus Rancher/School Board Member
Charles C. Kinsler, Brea Fire Chief/Clerk/School Board Member/Pioneer
Alvin L. Hitchcock, Orange County Chief Deputy Clerk
George W. Cullen, Brea Schools Clerk
Walter S. Gregg, County Statistician/Aid Commissioner
Forrest Hurst and Ben Blanchard, Brea Councilmembers
Evrit S. Boice, La Habra's First Mayor
Morris W. Martenet, Jr., Anaheim Councilmember, Owner of Martenet Hardware
William F. Espolt, Jr., La Habra Banker/Citrus Grower
Perry Woodward, Deputy County Assessor, Failed Supervisorial Candidate
George Annin, Fullerton Police Officer, Councilmember
Harry E. Becker, Mayor of Brea
Francis Allen Kidder, Santa Ana Father and Son
Leslie C. Rogers, Santa Ana City Marshal
Earl Sechrist and Burton Young, Brea and Yorba Linda Ministers
Rollin Marsden and Roy Davis, Fullerton Councilmembers
William French, Fullerton's First Deputy Police Officer
Rudolph Kroener, Co-Owner of Former Gas Station that's Now Orange's Filling Station
William E. Fanning, Brea Schools Pioneer, Namesake of Fanning Elementary
Jesse L. Hunter, San Juan Capistrano Innkeeper, Owner of Mexican Restaurant
John A. Leuzinger, Brea Mayor, Founder of Brea Electric
Newton E. Wray, SanTana Rancher, Failed City Council Candidate
Samuel F. Hilgenfeld, Buena Park Minister, Founder of Anaheim's Hilgenfeld Mortuary
Elmer E. Heidt, OC's First Scout Executive for Orange County Boy Scouts Council
James W. Newell, Fullerton-area Miner/Mason
Garland C. Ross, Santa Ana dentist, batted against Walter Johnson
Ferris F. Kelley, San Juan Capistrano Postmaster
Clyde Fairbairn, Longtime Olive resident/nice guy
Charles McClure, Brea's first police chief
John F. Pieper, Tustin feed-store owner, councilmember
William Starbuck, Fullerton school trustee, druggist
Hoyt Corbit, Yorba Linda pioneer, fan of Richard Nixon
Lucien Proud, La Habra mayor/school trustee
Albert Hetebrink, Fullerton rancher
Henry W. Head, Orange County godfather
Dr. Roy S. Horton and Marshall Keeler, Santa Ana Unified trustees
Sam Jernigan and Jesse Elliott, Orange County sheriffs
Herman Hiltscher, Fullerton bureacrat

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16 comments
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909Jeff
909Jeff

Mexicans were literally relegated to the other side of the tracks, in the area south of what's now Chapman Avenue, a divide that's still evident today. Are you kidding?  North of Chapman to the 91 and west of the 55 is predominantly Mexican.  So is the El Modena area. 

Like Keyshawn Johnson would say  C'mon man! 

NG Coot
NG Coot

Mexican's were not "relegated" anywhere - it is called a social dynamic.

909Jeff
909Jeff

easy killer I was quoting Gustavo... 

 I run about 50/50 with Gustavo on these stories.  I used to fight him tooth and nail on everyone but its not worth the argument. I think he tends to embellish a little here and there.  The Klan in OC that he speaks about is "Klan Light" they were Klan in Uniform only.

I don't want to go back and look it up but there were one of these stories that he posted where a Mexican lady came on the message board and said that her father and the supposed klucker were good friends and that he helped their family out wherever he could.  Doesn't sound like the actions of a true klucker to me.

Carlashworth
Carlashworth

Then talk to Raquel Castro of Fullerton, here rink also gave her dad the down payment on his house and each of mr Castro's daughters $10,000 a piece

NG Coot
NG Coot

I think that GA is lying when he says that the OC Klan was on a quest for "white supremacy."  The 1920's OC klan were on a quest to rid OC of Catholics - like my grandfather and his family.  I guess my granddad could be on Gustavo's list as well.

909Jeff
909Jeff

Well I think he is arguing from a different perspective... and I can appreciate that. The facts are that these people where Klan members he has cited in the past which library to go to to get it, I think Anaheim or Fullerton... so from a historical perspective he's not lying.  But like I said before I think its an exercise in futility... A bunch of white farmers most of which were probably uneducated showed up to a few klan meetings... to which I say BFD...

It was a week ago that he responded to you that  the klans "Quest for white supremacy"? IT'S IN THEIR MEMBERSHIP CARD"  My response to Gustavo was simple, I posted the Mission Statement of Mecha of which he was a member in college which say's"As a nationalist movement we seek to free our people from the exploitation of an oppressive society that occupies our land" 

Now there is a clear difference in as much as mecha members never lynched anyone or burned crosses on anyone's lawns but then again neither did OC's Klan members. and remember the Klan in OC was 90 years ago Mecha still exists in OC, and are a society of people looking out for the interests of one race only.  Kind of a bit of the pot calling the kettle black.

 Do I think its a bit like spitting into the wind? Yeah but hey every week he posts a story and dummies like us come on here and opine... He's getting what he wants.  

My family goes back to the turn of the century in the OC.  My Great great grandparents come to the OC on a covered wagon and my Great Grandfather held public office in the 30's and my grandfather was a foreman / superviser at the Villa Park packing house.  I dont think their names would end up in one of these stories but then again how much do we really know about out ancestors.

NG Coot
NG Coot

No offense intended 909Jeff.

I realize that the "relegated" term was GA's.

I would like GA to stick to the facts and lay off the "embelishing" - perhaps we could get somewhere.  I don't hold out much hope for that happening.

Mike Hunt
Mike Hunt

I'm curious why you failed to mention what years the took place.

NG Coot
NG Coot

"The city's power structure openly derided the Mexicans .."

I look forward to the day that you will back up your accusations with facts - apparently that will not be today.

gustavoarellano
gustavoarellano

You stay quiet, apologist Catholic homophobe. Facts have been presented again and again, but your worthless ass wouldn't know a fact if it smacked you in the face. Pathetic...

NG Coot
NG Coot

A good journalist would back up assertions made in a particular article - but then again ......

gustavoarellano
gustavoarellano

And a good Catholic wouldn't make excuses for the Klan—have you confessed to your Savior about your stupidities? I make no assertions—only facts. Now, go back to hiding behind nicknames, coward.

Call Me Bwana
Call Me Bwana

 Replies like this only confirm how unfit you are to be editor of even a throw away advertiser like the OCweekly.  Cultivate some maturity if you want to be taken seriously in this country or return to  your own.

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