- A secret society "is a club or organization whose activities, events, and inner functioning are concealed from non-members. The society may or may not attempt to conceal its existence. The term usually excludes covert groups, such as intelligence agencies or guerrilla insurgencies, that hide their activities and memberships but maintain a public presence. The exact qualifications for labeling a group as a secret society are disputed, but definitions generally rely on the degree to which the organization insists on secrecy, and might involve the retention and transmission of secret knowledge, denial of membership or knowledge of the group, the creation of personal bonds between members of the organization, and the use of secret rites or rituals which solidify members of the group."
The Enigmatic Art of America’s Secret Societies
"Secret Societies have been around since who knows when. They were there at the beginning of the United States -even George Washington was a freemason. But the "Golden Age of Fraternalism" was in the mid-19th century. These fraternal organizations were exclusionary by nature, but the excluded groups, minorities and women, formed their own clubs. They had secret rituals, uniforms, and artwork. Elaborate, detailed artwork, much of which is presented in the book As Above, So Below: Art of the American Fraternal Society 1850-1930. You can see a collection of the imagery from the book, including photographs, sculpture, banners, magic lantern slides, paintings, and more at Atlas Obscura."
- Top 10 Secret Societies
"This is a list of 10 of the most famous and popular secret societies or alleged secret societies."