Everything you wanted to know about Skull & Bones, but were afraid to ask by Kris Milligen
Skull by M.C. Escher
"To seek out that which was lost..."
The story begins at Yale, where, three threads of American social history, - espionage, drug smuggling and secret societies intertwine into one.
Elihu Yale was born near Boston, educated in London, and served with the British East India Company eventually becoming governor of Fort Saint George, Madras, in 1687. He amassed a great fortune from trade and returned to England, in 1699. He became known as quite a philanthropist and upon receiving a request from the Collegiate School, in Connecticut, he made a donation and a gift of books. After subsequent bequests, Cotton Mather suggested the school be named Yale College, in 1718.
A statue of Nathan Hale, stands on Old Campus at Yale University. There is a copy of the statue in front of CIA's Langley, Virginia, headquarters. Another copy of the statue is in front of Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, where George H.W. Bush("48), another "spy" from Yale went to prep school and joined a secret society at age twelve.
Nathan Hale, along with three other Yale graduates, was a member of the "Culper Ring", one of America's first intelligence operations. Established by George Washington, it was successful through-out the revolutionary war, except for Nathan, who was found out. After speaking his famous regrets, he was hanged in 1776. Ever since the republic, and Yale was here before there was a republic, the relationship between Yale and the "Intelligence Community" has been unique.
In 1823, Samuel Russell, established Russell and Company for the purpose of acquiring opium in Turkey and smuggling it to China. Russell and Company bought out the Perkins(Boston) syndicate in 1830 and moved the primary center of American opium smuggling to Connecticut. Many of the great American and European fortunes were built on the "China"(opium) trade. One of Russell and Company's, Chief of Operations, in Canton was Warren Delano, Jr., grandfather of Franklin Roosevelt, other Russell partners included John Cleve Green(financed Princeton), Abiel Low (financed construction of Columbia.), Joseph Coolidge(His son organized United Fruit and grandson, Archibald C. Coolidge, was a co-founder of the Council on Foreign Relations.) and the Perkins, Sturgis and Forbes families.
William Huntington Russell("33), Samuel's cousin, went to Germany, in 1831-32, to study. Germany was a hot-bed of ideas. The "scientific method" was being applied to all forms of human endeavor. Blaming the defeat of Prussian forces by Napoleon in 1806 on soldiers only thinking about themselves in the stress of battle, Prussia took the principles set forth by John Locke and Jean Rosseau and created a new educational system. Johan Fitche, in his Address to the German People, declares that the children will be taken over and told what to think and how to think it. Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel took over, Fitche's chair, at the University Of Berlin, in 1817, and was a professor there until his death in 1831. Hegel was the culmination of the German idealistic philosophy school of Immanuel Kant.
To Hegel, the world is a world of reason. The state is Absolute Reason and the citizen can only become free by worship and obedience to the state. The state is the "march of God in the world" and the "final end". This "final end has supreme right against the individual, whose supreme duty is to be a member of the state". Both Fascism and Communism have their philosophical roots in Hegellianism.
Hegellian philosophy was very much in vogue, during Russell's time in Germany. When Russell returned to Yale, in 1832, he formed with Alphonso Taft("33), a senior society. According to information acquired from a break-in to the "tomb", in 1876, "Bones is a chapter of a corps in a German University. . . . General Russell, its founder, was in Germany before his Senior Year and formed a warm friendship with a leading member of a German society. He brought back with him to college, authority to found a chapter here." So, William H. Russell, valedictorian of his class and fourteen others became the founding members of "The Order of Scull and Bones". It is only at Yale.
It is very secretive. Fifteen juniors are "tapped" each year by the seniors, for next year's group. Each initiate is given $15,000 and a grandfather clock. The group that is geared more to the success of its members in the post-collegiate world than a campus fun-house. The family names of Skull & Bones roll off the tongue like an elite party list - Lord, Whitney, Taft, Jay, Bundy, Harriman, Weyerhaeuser, Pinchot, Rockefeller, Goodyear, Sloane, Stimson, Phelps, Perkins, Pillsbury Kellogg, Vanderbilt, Bush, Lovett and on..
William Russell went on to become a general and state legislator in Connecticut. Alphonso Taft was US Attorney General, Secretary of War, (a post many "Bonesmen" have held,) Ambassador to Austria and Ambassador to Russia, (another post held by many "Bonesmen"). His son, William Howard Taft("87), is the only man to be both President of the U. S. and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. The order "flourished" from the very beginning. There was dissension from some professors, who didn't like the secrecy and exclusiveness. And there was backlash from students, showing concern about the influence "Bones" was having over Yale finances and favoritism shown to "Bonesmen".
In October of 1873, Volume 1, Number 1, of The Iconoclast was published in New Haven. It was only published once and was one of very few openly published articles on Skull & Bones, until an article in Esquire, September, 1977. From The Iconoclast : "We speak through a new publication because the college press is closed to those who dare to openly mention "Bones" ". . . . "Out of every class Skull and Bones takes its men. They have gone out into the world and have become in many instances, leaders in society. They have obtained control of Yale. Its business is performed by them. Money paid to the college must pass into their hands, and be subject to their will.
No doubt they are worthy men in themselves, but the many, whom they looked down upon while in college, cannot forget to give money freely into their hands. Men in Wall Street complain that the college comes straight to them for help, instead of asking each graduate for his share. The reason is found in a remark made by one of Yale's and America's first men: "Few will give but Bones men and they care far more for their society than they do for the college." . . . "Year by year the deadly evil is growing. The society was never as obnoxious to the college as it is today, and it is just this ill-feeling that shuts the pockets of non-members. Never before has it shown such arrogance and self-fancied superiority.
It grasps the College Press and endeavors to rule it all. It does not deign to show its credentials, but clutches at power with the silence of conscious guilt. To tell the good which Yale College has done would be well nigh impossible. To tell the good she might do would be yet more difficult. The question, then, is reduced to this - on the one hand lies a source of incalculable good. On the other a society guilty of serious and far- reaching crimes. It is Yale College against Skull and Bones!!
We ask all men, as a question of right, which should be allowed to live?" At first the society held its meetings in hired halls; in 1856, the "tomb", a vine-covered, windowless, brown-stone hall was built. This is where they hold their "strange, occultish" initiation rites and meet each Thursday and Sunday. A group calling itself "The Order of File and Claw", on September 29, 1876, broke into the "tomb". They found lodge-room 324 "fitted up in black velvet, even the walls being covered with the material." Upstairs was lodge-room 322, "the 'sanctum sanctorium' of the temple. . .is furnished in red velvet" and on the wall a pentagram. In the hall are "pictures of the founders of Bones at Yale, and of members of the Society in Germany, when the chapter was established here in 1832." There is another interesting scene in the parlor, to room 322.
From The Hall Of Skull And Bones :
"On, the west wall hung , among other pictures, an old engraving representing an open burial vault, in which, on a stone slab, rest four human skulls, grouped about a fools cap and bells, an open book, several mathematical instruments, a beggar's scrip, and a royal crown. On the arched wall above the vault are the explantory words, in Roman letters, "We War Der Thor, Wer Weiser, Wer Bettler Oder, Kaiser? and below the vault is engraved, in German characters, the sentence; "Ob Arm, Ob Beich, im Tode gleich."
The picture is accompanied by a card, on which is written, "From
the German Chapter. Presented by D. C. Gilman of D. 50"."
Daniel Coit Gilman('52), along with two other "Bonesmen" formed a troika still influencing American life, today. Daniel Gilman, Timothy Dwight('49)and Andrew Dickinson White('53) soon, after their initiation in Skull and Bones, went to study philosophy in Europe, at the University of Berlin.
Gilman returned from Europe and incorporated Skull and Bones as Russell Trust, in 1856, with himself as Treasurer and William H. Russell as President. He spent the next fourteen years in New Haven consolidating power of the order.
Gilman, was named assistant librarian in the fall of 1856 and was appointed Librarian at Yale in 1858. He, then, with political maneuvering, acquired funding for Yale's science departments(Sheffield Scientific School), and was able to get the "Morrill Land Bill" introduced, passed and finally signed by President Lincoln, after being vetoed by President Buchanan.
This bill, "donating public-lands for State College for agriculture and sciences", is now known as the Land Grant College Act. Yale was first among all schools to get the federal land scrip and grabbed all of Connecticut's share, at the time. Yale was pleased and made Gilman a Professor of Physical Geography.
Daniel was the first President of the University of California; helped found, and was the first president of John Hopkins.
Gilman was first president of the Carnegie Institute and was involved in the founding of the Peabody, Slater and Russell Sage Foundations.
His buddy, Andrew D. White, was the first president of Cornell University(which received all of New York's share of the Land Grant College Act), U. S. Minister to Russia, U. S. Ambassador to Berlin , Chairman of the American delegation to the first Hague Conference, in 1899, setting up international judiciary and first president of The American Historical Association.
Timothy Dwight, a professor at Yale Divinity School, was installed as president of Yale in 1886. All presidents, since, have been either "Bonesmen" or related to them and their interests.
This trio, was also responsible for the founding of the American Economic Association, American Chemical Society and the American Psychological Association and have proceeded through their influences on, Thomas Dewey and Horace Mann, to have an enormous impact on education through today.
Antony Sutton pointed out in his book the ability of this very secret society to build up both vertical and horizontal "chains of influence" that ensure continuity for their "conspiratorial" schemes.
The Whitney-Stimson-Bundy- links are a vertical "chain".
W. C. Whitney('63),(Married Flora Payne of Standard Oil Paynes) was Secretary of the Navy and his attorney was Elihu Root. Root hired Henry Stimson('88), out of law school. Stimson took over from Root as Secretary of War in 1911, appointed by his fellow Bonesman William Howard Taft. Stimson later became Coolidge's Governor-General of the Philippine Islands, Hoover's Secretary of State and Roosevelt's and Truman's Secretary of War.
Hollister Bundy('09), was Stimson's special assistant and point man in the Pentagon for the Manhattan Project. He brought along his two sons, also members of Skull & Bones, William Bundy('39) and McGeorge Bundy('40), who were very active in governmental and foundation affairs.
The two brothers, from positions in the CIA, Department of Defense and State and as Special Assistant to Presidents Kennedy and Johnson, could have had significant impact on the flow of information and intelligence during the Vietnam "War".
William went on to be editor of Foreign Affairs, the influential quarterly of the Council on Foreign Affairs(CFR).
McGeorge became president of the Ford Foundation.
Another interesting group of "Bonesmen", is the Harriman/Bush crowd.
Averil Harriman('13), "Elder Statesman", of the Democratic Party and his brother Roland Harriman('17) were very active members. Matter-of-fact, four of Roland's fellow "Bonesmen" from the class of 1917 were directors of Brown Brothers, Harriman including Prescott Bush('17), George's father.
The two investment bank firms, Guaranty Trust and Brown Brothers, Harriman were both dominated by members of Skull and Bones, since the turn of the century. The two firms were involved in the financing of Communism and Hitler, showing the Skull & Bones affinity for using the Hegellian ideas of the historical dialectic. Using controlled conflict, thesis versus anti-thesis to create synthesis. A synthesis of their making and design, where the state is absolute and individuals are granted their freedoms by obedience to the state - A New World Order.
Money and maneuvering, from "Bonesmen" and their allies, helped the Bolsheviks prevail. And in defiance of federal laws and bureaucrats, the cabal, financed industries, set-up banks and developed oil and mineral deposits in the fledgling U. S. S. R.
Later, Averil Harriman, as minister to Great Britain in charge of
Lend-Lease for Britain and Russia was responsible for shipping in entire factories and some people say nuclear secrets, plutonium and U. S. dollar printing plates.
In 1932, the Union Banking Corporation of New York City had four
directors from the ('17 ) cell and two Nazi bankers associated with Fritz Thyssen, who had been financing Hitler, since 1924.
From George Bush; The Unauthorized Biography :
"President Franklin Roosevelt's Alien Property Custodian, Leo T. Crowley, signed Vesting Order Number 248[11/17/42] seizing the property of Prescott Bush under the Trading with Enemy Act. The order, published in obscure government record books and kept out of the news, Note #4 explained nothing about the Nazis involved; only that the Union Banking Corporation was run for the "Thyssen family" of "Germany and/or Hungary" -- "nationals ... of a designated enemy country."
By deciding that Prescott Bush and the other directors of the Union Banking Corp. were legally "front men for the Nazis", the government avoided the more important historical issue: In what way "were Hitler's Nazis themselves hired, armed, and instructed by" the New York and London clique of which Prescott Bush was an executive manager? . . . . .
4. "New York Times," December 16, 1944, ran a five-paragraph page 25 article on actions of the New York State Banking Department. Only the last sentence refers to the Nazi bank, as follows: "The Union Banking Corporation, 39 Broadway, New York, has received authority to change its principal place of business to 120 Broadway." The "Times" omitted the fact that the Union Banking Corporation had been seized by the government for trading with the enemy, and the fact that 120 Broadway was the address of the government's Alien Property Custodian.
After the war, Prescott, went on to become a U. S. Senator from
Connecticut and favorite golfing partner of President Eisenhower. Prescott claims responsibility for getting, Nixon, into politics and takes personal credit for getting our favorite, Dick, as Ike's running mate in 1952.
There were so many "Yalies", in the OSS, that Yale's drinking tune, the "Whiffenpoof Song", became an "unofficial" song of the OSS. Many in the OSS were "Bonesmen" or belonged to the other Yale senior societies.
Robert Lovett('18), Harriman's childhood friend, had been tapped into Skull & Bones by Prescott Bush's cell of '17 and was a director at Brown Brothers Harriman.
"On October 22, 1945, Secretary of War Robert Patterson created the Lovett Committee, chaired by Robert A. Lovett, to advise the government on the post-World War II organization of U. S. intelligence activities. . .
The new agency would "consult" with the armed forces, but it must be the sole collecting agency in the field of foreign espionage and counterespionage. The new agency should have an independent budget, and its appropriations should be granted by Congress without public hearings.
Lovett appeared before the Secretaries of State, War, and Navy on November 14, 1945.
. . . Lovett pressed for a virtual resumption of the wartime Office of Strategic Services (OSS) . . . the CIA was established in 1947 according to the prescription of Robert Lovett, of Jupiter Island."
Yale, Professor of History, Gaddis Smith, said, "Yale has influenced the Central Intelligence Agency more than any other university, giving the CIA the atmosphere of a class reunion." And "Bonesman" have been foremost among the "spooks", virtually, building the CIA into a "haunted house".
F. Trubee Davison('18), was Director of Personnel at the CIA in the early years. Some of the other "Bonesmen" connected with the intelligence community are Sloane Coffin, Jr.('49), V. Van Dine('49), James Buckley('44), Bill Buckley('50), Hugh Cunnigham('34), Hugh Wilson('??),Reuben Holden('??), Charles R. Walker('??), "Yale's "unofficial" Secretary of War", Robert D. French('10), Archibald MacLiesh('15), Dino Pionzio("'0), CIA Deptuy Chief of Station during Allende overthrow; William and McGeorge Bundy, Richard A. Moore('3?), Senator David Boren('63), Senator John Kerry('??), and of course George Bush.
Bush tapped Coffin, who, tapped Buckley.
Some, other, prominent Bonesmen are Henry Luce('20), Time-Life; John Thomas Daniels('??), founder Archer Daniels Midland; Gifford Pinchot('89), President Theodore Roosevelt's chief forester; Frederick E.Weyerhaeuser('96); Harold Stanley('08), founder Morgan Stanley, investment banker; Alfred Cowles('13), Cowles Communication, Henry P. Davison('20), senior partner Morgan Guaranty Trust; Thomas Cochran('04) Morgan partner; Senator John Heinz("??); Pierre Jay("92), first chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York; George Herbert Walker, Jr.('27), financier and co-founder of the NY Mets; Artemus Gates('18), President of New York Trust Company, Union Pacific, TIME, Boeing Company; William Draper III(??), the Defense Department, UN and Import-Export Bank; Dean Witter, Jr.('??), investment banker; Senator Jonathan Bingham('??); Potter Stewart('36) , Supreme Court Justice; Senator John Chaffe('??); Harry Payne Whitney('94), married Gertrude Vanderbilt) investment banker; Russell W. Davenport('23), editor Fortune Magazine, created Fortune 500 list; Evan G. Galbraith('??), Ambassador to France and Managing Director of Morgan Stanley; Judge John Steadman('??), the Court of Appeals in the District of Columbia; Richard Gow('55), president Zapata Oil; Amory Howe Bradford('34), married Carol Warburg Rothschild and was general manager for the New York Times ; C. E. Lord('49), Comptroller of the Currency; Winston Lord('59), Chairman of CFR, Ambassador to China and a Clinton assistant Secretary of State, John Lilley('??), ambassador to China.
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