50 Bizarre Groups You Should Know About – Part 2

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26Saint Gallen Group

The Saint Gallen Group is a group of liberal-minded bishops and cardinals that held yearly secret meetings from 1996 to 2004 to discuss church policy and were rumored to try to block Benedict XVI from being elected as pope.


27. In the "Pagan's Motorcycle Club", women are not allowed to walk alone, and are referred to as either "old lady" or "the property of". Also, women that are "shared" are referred to as "pets" and the men aren't allowed to marry them.


28. The "God Committee" was a group of 7 American citizens who were chosen in 1961 to decide who would receive dialysis. A lawyer, minister, banker, housewife, state official, labor leader, and the surgeon had to choose who in their community would live as dialysis machines had just been invented.


29. The "Wide Awakes" was a youth organization which was formed in the 1860s by the Republican Party, which introduced many to political participation and called itself the newfound voice of young voters. They used popular social events, an ethos of competitive fraternity, and even comic books to increase participation.


30. The 'Circle of Tchaikovsky' was a literary society which was formed in 1868 to share knowledge and books that were banned in the Russian Empire. It included the first volume of Das Kapital by Karl Marx. The circle however opposed violent revolutions and believed fighting for political freedom was pointless.


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31Diggers

In the 17th century, the 'Diggers' were a group of proto-socialists in England who would take over common land and start growing crops for the benefit of the people.


32. The Red Frogs is a volunteer group in Australia whose purpose is to fight against alcohol abuse in young people. They take their name from an Australian sweet, which they give to people to help them sober up.


33. During the American Civil War, Southern Unionists and Quakers formed a secret society known as the 'Red Strings'. Red Strings aided deserters, spies, escaped prisoners and passed intelligence on Confederate forces to Union authorities. After the war, they actively opposed the KKK.


34. The 'European Spreadsheet Risks Interest Group' is a group that compiles a list of 'horror stories' involving errors in spreadsheet manipulations that have had unintended consequences at the level of scientific publishing and public policy.


35. The 'Hawaiian League' was a secret society of businessmen and lawyers who overthrew the Kingdom of Hawaii. Members of the league were mostly non-native Hawaiians and U.S./British/German lawyers and business people. They forced Hawaii to adopt a constitution in their favor and ended the monarchy.


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36Knights of the Golden Circle

'The Knights of the Golden Circle' was a secret society that wanted to found a new, pro-slavery country called the 'Golden Circle' which would have consisted of the US South, Mexico, Central America, Cuba, Haiti, the DR, parts of South America, and the Caribbean.


37. The "Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives program," or "monuments Men and Women" was a group that comprised of over 400 military personnel and civilians who tracked down, preserved, and returned the fine art and other artifacts that were stolen by the Nazis.


38. A fascinating group of people called the "Wandervogel" rebelled against Authoritarianism in Germany until the nazis forced them to disband while borrowing some of their ideas about nationalism and nature.


39. The so-called 'Sewing Circle' was an underground group of lesbian and bisexual Hollywood actresses, which was alleged to have included Marlene Dietrich, Lili Damita, Dolores del Rio, Claudette Colbert, and many others. The group would meet at each other's homes for 'lunch, conversation, and possibilities.'


40. The 'Edelweiss Pirates' were a proto-hippie youth group in Germany who fought Nazis as they frolicked through the countryside playing guitars and singing Anti-Nazi folk songs at campfires. They sheltered escaped concentration-camp prisoners and Allied soldiers in a program of armed resistance.


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41Magic Circle

The "Magic Circle" is a fight-club-styled secretive group that shuns any magician that is found to reveal their "magic".


42. The Supreme Royal Circle of Friends of the World (Royal Circle of Friends) was an African-American fraternal organization founded in 1909 in Arkansas. It supplied insurance and was dedicated to the moral, physical, social, and economic welfare of its members. Here both the men and women were equal members.


43. A group of people known as 'Cagots' were persecuted for centuries in France. They did not differ racially or religiously from the rest of the population. Historians still aren't sure why this group of people was hated so much.


44. In the 15th-Century Germany gingerbread was taken so seriously that one had to belong to a gingerbread guild in order to bake it. In fact, the Gingerbread Guild entirely controlled the production of gingerbread in the country.


45. In 1915, the Boy Scouts created a secret society with its own symbols, handshakes, and private rituals. It was eventually named "Order of the Arrow" and was inspired by Native American and Masonic culture. Their society was also influenced by the poem "Hiawatha" and the novel "Last of the Mohicans."


46Tea Club and Barrovian Society

JRR Tolkien once formed a semi-secret society called the T.C.B.S. The initials stood for Tea Club and Barrovian Society, alluding to their fondness for drinking tea in Barrow's Stores near the school and, secretly, in the school library. After leaving school, the members stayed in touch, and, in December 1914, they held a council in London at Wiseman's home. For Tolkien, the result of this meeting was a strong dedication to writing poetry.


47. The "Triple Nine Society" is a high IQ club for those with an IQ score at or above the 99.9th percentile.


48. There is an organization called the 'Foundation for the Protection of the Traditional Cheese of Cyprus.' It was formed to get the European Union to give the "Halloumi Cheese," a special status as a geographically protected cheese made only in Cyprus.


49. The person who graduates last in the class during the United States Military Academy at West Point graduation ceremony each year is called "the goat," joining an exclusive club whose member also once included Civil War hero General George Custer.


50. Rat Pack was a group of entertainers who were friends in the 1950s. When one performed in Vegas, others would often come without an official booking and perform at the first one's show. Hotel marquees would read "Dean Martin, Maybe Frank (Sinatra), Maybe Sammy (Davis, Jr.).”

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