Here are some interesting tidbits and factoids about the Skull & Bones secret society. Remember that they're rumours and that's all they are; it is impossible to verify things like this and even if I could you would still have no reason to trust me.

  • The granddaddy of all fraternities, Phi Beta Kappa, was founded in 1776 as a secret society and went public in the 1820s. Skull & Bones was supposedly a chapter formed at Yale University in 1780, that remained secret.
  • Skull & Bones started accepting women as members in 1992.
  • The order was once known as the Brotherhood of Death. Some say it was founded as Chapter 322 of a German secret society.
  • It was founded in 1833 by General Willian Huntington Russel and Alphonso Taft. It was incorporated as the Russel Trust Association in 1856.
  • Some sources say the order only exists at Yale, others believe there are chapters at other Ivy League universities as well.
  • Each year exactly 15 new recruits, all students in their senior year. Upon initiation each is given a new name.
  • At any time about 500-600 members are alive and active. The order meets annually at Deer Island in the St. Lawrence River.
  • The number 322 pops up frequently when reading about the order. For example, the Inner Temple of the headquarters is also known as Room 322.
  • The society building at Yale is adorned with skulls, both human and animal. A persistant rumour claims that the order is in possession of the skull of Geronimo, which has upset some of the Apache people.
  • There are two other secret societies at Yale; the Scroll & Key and Wolf's Head.
Then there are some things we can be more or less certain of: Finally, a list of books and articles on the subject, blatantly ripped from (
  • "An Introduction to the Order", Anthony Sutton, Veritas Publishing 1988
  • "America's Secret Establishment: An introduction to The Order of Skull & Bones", Anthony Sutton, Liberty House 1986
  • "The Last Secrets of Skull and Bones", Ron Rosenbaum, Esquire Magazine, September, 1977
  • "Yale Society Resists Peeks Into Its Crypt", David W. Dunlap, New York Times, 11/4/88
  • "Skull and Bones -- Bush's Boy's Club", Peggy Alder-Robohm (researcher), Covert Action Quarterly No. 33 (Winter 1990)
  • "Skeleton in His Closet", John Schrag, Willamette Week, September 19-25, 1991
  • "The Cyclopedia Of Fraternities", Albert Stevens, ed., E. B. Treat and Company 1907
  • "Who's Who of the Elite", By Robert Gaylon Ross, Sr., RIE 1995

It was a nice Spring day in New York. I was waiting for my affianced at a small bar near the Cathedral of St. John the Divine while he was at a conference on Anthro-archeo-religious studies, or somesuch, talking with one of the other participants, who had introduced himself as being from Pennsylvania.

"You come from New Haven, right?"

"Mn." I said, taking a sip from my Chardonnay.

"I was there a few years ago. I found people there to be very -- conservative."

"How so?"

"Stuffy. Formal."

"In what way?"

"I mean -- you said you took classes at Yale... isn't that where the Bushes went?" I could see the look in his eyes.

I sighed. I could have given my favorite riposte, or several: "Yes, I suppose it's the fault of the Marxists. The Anarchists keep trying to oust them, but..." or "Actually, I'm a libertarian." Instead I demurred, murmuring, "no, not really, perhaps I could get you something from the buffet?"

I knew where his fantasy went.

New Haven, Connecticut, home and hearth of the American Conservative Establishment, concieved and built as a playground of the wealthy and a breeding ground for the powerful. A town square ringed about with extravagant temples of Mammon, office buildings containing various think tanks, and of course, Yale University whose Gothic spires rise high over the city. There, the offspring of only the richest, most staunchly conservative families are allowed to study in an environment promoting total devotion to the rigid traditions of the past, while feeding their self-esteem with the most luxurious appointments imaginable.

Each student is allowed to bring up to three servants from home (many have a valet/maid, chauffeur or secretary (who may also carry books, etc.) and private chef (these are naturally allowed to wear family livery) to live in their familial dorm suite, richly appointed with priceless antiques and a full set of required textbooks, specially printed and leather-bound by the University press -- these quite naturally include bookplates engraved with the family arms. Just as naturally, breakfast is in bed, and dinner is taken in the suite's library, though frequent hunts (with horse and hounds) in the surrounding forests provide the flesh for many a lavish feast; annual banquets often feature food from endangered species, "harvested" whilst on safari during Spring Break. While Rolls-Royce, Lincoln and Cadillac limousines are common, private coaches (drawn by splendid pairs and teams) are de rigeur for the many cotillions and balls held throughout the year. Yet this is only the shining tip of the deadly iceberg: Yale students are often called upon to perform dangerous and even lethal stunts to prove their mettle and to ensure the eugenic purity of their kind, their deaths hushed up by an all-powerful Establishment.

Central to the university is the Tomb, headquarters to the mighty Skull & Bones, shunned and feared by many as "The Society of Death". There, fifteen young men, selected from the best of the junior class, are selected to undergo even more severe tests: wrestling in mud, grilled about their inmost secrets, branded, beaten, and made to masturbate in a coffin, as part of a ritualistic psychological conditioning, meant to brainwash them into unquestioning fealty to the Order. Then, they are dubbed knight, instructed in worship to the goddess Eulogia and in neo-Nazi doctrine, and told to never tell anyone anything about what goes on inside the Tomb, on pain of exposure and death, yet to never take off their Club pin, even while bathing or swimming. They are also told that they must excel in their fields, tithe their income, and to help out each other. The rest of the year, they're given the instruction needed to run the world, hold lavish banquets, and take turns with the Bones whore, who herself is eaten at the end of the year, and her bones added to their collection, which includes Geronimo's skull, Tibetan bowls, and bones belonging to Madame Pompadour.

Upon graduation they are each given a check of $15,000, as well as employment offers as investment bankers, and law firms sympathetic to the Order, and on marriage, a grandfather clock. While they will make sacrifices to the Order throughout their lives, The Order will also ensure them financial security throughout their lives, thus ensuring that they will never have to sell their secrets to survive. They are also given access to Deer Island, a lush resort in the St. Lawrence River, where a bevy of young women are kept for Bonesmen's private pleasure.

Their schemes seem to have worked...they are the men behind the Federal Reserve, the Bilderburgs, and, of course the Bush administration. They conceived the CIA, and both Time/Life and Newsweek were started there. They've impoverished the university through their appropriation of funds, and their corporate arm, the Russell Trust, secretly owns most of the land in Connecticut. And, and, and, well, they're eeeeevillll.......

Oh, do get a grip. They're a fraternity. No, there are other "secret societies" {called more properly, senior societies) than Scroll and Key and Wolf's Head, there are Book and Snake, Berzelius, and several other minor players -- at one time there were as many as eighteen. Their membership, far from being selected solely from the wealthy, includes my mom's childhood bud, Ted Shay, who in '51 was Yale's finest hockey player ever -- actually, they select people according to a formula that pretty much ensures a cross-section, in miniature, of the graduating class (only one member each year can be a "legacy", and both the class valedictorian and the junior deemed most likely to flunk out senior year are are one hellraiser, one puritan, one minority can see how the places get filled up quickly). Their initiation is fairly mild, if you count being picked up bodily, shaken around, and yelled at, a hazing. Connubial Bliss, or the relating of sexual histories does occur during the year, as do debates, both frivolous and serious, and the relating of autobiographies, one per week, with a follow-up later on that same week. But these are less to be seen in the context of future blackmail as the original aims of the society which was to promote rhetoric and good public speaking -- 322, the society's Inner Chamber was so named to honor the ancient orator Demosthenes. Yes, they do own a building, and it is furnished with bones, morbid paintings, and the like. But remember, these are college kids, and they weren't too different back in the 19th century as now -- most of the inside is fairly ragged-looking. (The same can be said of most of the University -- while I am writing to you now from a room with a ceiling picked out in gold leaf, most students around me look like a diverse campus anywhere, and most are on scholarship. They eat at a cafeteria, and live in rooms little better than monk's cells.) Even Deer Island is a ruin. Yes it's true that an awful lot of Bonesmen got to be rich and famous eventually. But statistically, if you choose fifteen students every year from a good school anywhere, at least a few will be noteworthy.

Or, you can just not believe me. I don't think that fellow in New York would...

Actually, there is one secret society older than Skull & Bones, outside of Yale...but that's another story...

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