Knights of Peter Claver

The Knights of Peter Claver are one of the largestAfrican-American Catholic fraternal organizations. The Order is named for St. Peter Claver, the Spanish Priest who ministered to African slaves. Originally founded in Mobile, AL, the organization is now headquartered in New Orleans, LA.

The Knights divide themselves into six “divisions” – Knights of Peter Claver, Knights of Peter Claver Ladies Auxiliary, Junior Knights, Junior Daughters, 4th Degree Knights and Ladies of Grace. They state “Our purpose is to render service to God and His Holy Church, render aid and assistance to the sick and disabled, and promote social and intellectual association among our members.”

The Knights themselves (male members) wear a blue fez, with the initials “K.P.C.” and the emblem of the order. Along the brim is printed the name and number of the local Council of that the owner hailed from. The fez shown here is from San Francisco Council No. 120. The fez itself is pretty basic, with embroidery emblems and an internal sweatband. It probably dates from the 1970’s or later. The manufacturer is the D. Turin Company, of Florida.

Knights of Peter Claver Ladies Auxiliary

This fez hails from the Ladies Auxiliary division. It is constructed of white felt and has a white tassel. The emblem is a patch that has been added, while the name embroidered directly onto the piece. It was made by the D. Turin company in Florida and dates from the 1980’s or 90’s.