What is the Bohemian Grove?

Bohemian Grove is an old growth redwood grove located along the Russian River near the Sonoma County town of Monte Rio.  It is owned by the exclusive Bohemian Club in San Francisco, and is available for member use throughout the year, and hosts the annual two week mid-Summer encampment, called by member, President Herbert Hoover, “The greatest men’s party on earth.”

Who goes there?

The club and annual encampment were founded by newspaper editors and other creative spirits from San Francisco over 130 years ago.  Early attendees included Bret Hart, Mark Twain and Jack London.  Over time, especially when the club experienced down financial times in the Depression years, more wealthy members were sought who could pay premium rates.  Reduced rates are still available for entertainers and other “men of use”.

Over the years, it has become an increasingly exclusive gathering of U.S.Presidents, Senators, Secretaries of State and other cabinet members, Joint Chiefs of Staff, international heads of state, University of California Regents, CEOs of the world’s largest corporations, including banks and mortgage lenders, utilities, weapons manufacturers, telecommunications companies and media companies like Time-Warner and Metromedia.

For a more detailed summary, a work in progress, click the “Men of the Grove” button, or the “Resources” button will take you to a wealth of information at sonomacountyfreepress.com, or see the article posted on the “Outlaw Elite” at http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2012/03/01/18708527.php

Why worry? Isn’t it just a giant frat party for rich executives?

While the Bohos like to downplay the gathering as harmless pranksterism, a look at the above links will go a long way toward helping understand the concerns of people who worry that this gathering is too elite to be so secretive. It is a lethal cocktail of politicians and their wealthiest supporters getting regular, off-the-record face time together.

Aren’t they prohibited from conducting business at the encampment?

The encampment’s motto is “Weaving Spiders Come Not Here”, and there are anecdotes of members having their “homework” ripped from their lap and thrown in to the grove lake.  But it really comes down to how one defines “conducting business”.  Is Henry Kissinger “conducting business” when he discusses international relations or global finance? He is on record doing so as a speaker at a number of “Lakeside Chats”.  What is even of more concern is what he is saying off the record in one-on-one conversations to the presidential candidates and other political and business leaders who go there.

The literature is abundant that regular, informal gatherings like at the grove leads to bonding at least deep enough to allow business calls to be made and, more importantly, returned.  We do not know how deeply Dr. Ernest Lawrence discussed his theory for splitting the atom with UC Regents as a guest of then UC President, Robert Gordon Sproul.  Bohemian Grove literature confirms enough information was passed to inspire the seed money for what would become Lawrence Berkeley Labs and the Manhattan Project, whose first meeting was held at the Grove.  Was it “business”?  Apparently not by Grove standards!

What is the Lakeside Talk?

The Lakeside Talks are talks given each day during the encampment by members and invited guests on various topics. Week-day speakers often involve scientists or other experts giving talks on nature, history  and other talks of lesser import (although not always!).  Week-ends are reserved for higher ranking speakers, Fed Chairmen, ambassadors, cabinet members, politicians, talking of more important issues.  These talks are secret, for Boho ears only, although over the years we have been able to get speaker lists and other information out, and a lot of that information is available at sonomacountyfreepress.com.  There is a growing call for these speeches to be made public.

Is it true the atomic bomb was developed at Bohemian Grove?

According to Wikipedia, Robert Gordon Sproul was a member of the Bohemian Club, and he sponsored Lawrence’s membership in 1932. Through this club, Lawrence met William Henry Crocker, Edwin Pauley, and John Francis Neylan. They were influential men who helped him obtain money for his energetic nuclear particle investigations.[2]

Ernest Lawrence’s use of the Grove’s river clubhouse for a Manhatten Project planning meeting in September of 1942 is well documented.  Less well known is who exactly attended this meeting and the prideful publication of its history in Bohemian Club library notes.

The atom bomb made this particular meeting at the Grove world famous, but it was not an isolated case of business and government planning through Bohemian club facilities.  This was but one in a long series of historical business-related activities done in the context of a Bohemian corporate family network.  The Club takes pride in this event, and members often tell new guests this story while at the Grove.

Participants at the Grove meetings of September 13 and 14, 1942:

E.O. Lawrence,  U.C. Radiation Lab
Donald Cooksey,  U.C. Radiation Lab
Robert L. Thornton,  U.C. Radiation Lab
Robert Oppenheimer,  U.C. Physics Department
James B. Conant, President of Harvard
Lyman Briggs, Dir, Nat’l Bureau of  Standards
Eger V. Murphree,  Chemist, Director of  Arthur H. Compton  Dean, Dept of Physical Chicago & Consultant to G.E.
Lt. Col. Kenneth Nichols, U.S. Army
Major Thomas Crenshaw, U.S. Army
   (Bohemian Club  Library notes #7  1960)


I’ve heard it is a satanic cult worshiper of Moloch. Is that true?

There is plenty of room for concern about this gathering, and what it portends for the fabric of society with its secrecy and the malevolent appearing and sounding “Cremation of Care”.  This annual rite opens the encampment each year. With its trappings of red, hooded robes, torch bearers and acolytes, and a High Priest leading the cremation of a coffin said to contain the “Dull Cares of the Marketplace” at their forty foot tall Owl alter, let it suffice to say the visuals are disturbing.

Claims have been made by sensationalistic media mongers like Alex Jones and others of babies being sacrificed at the Owl

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alter by Moloch initiates.  This has opened a floodgate for ever more speculative realms of secret societies and their role at the grove.

Secrecy begets speculation.  With an organization this powerful whose highest value is holding secrets (the patron saint of Bohemia endured execution rather than divulge the contents of the Queen’s confession to the King), speculation is inevitably rampant.  And many of us would rather not make the categorical statement that nothing as scurrilous as human sacrifice has EVER taken place there- boys will be boys!

But we do know enough about what actually goes on there to raise the hair on people’s neck, so why speculate?  Speculation only plays in to the media’s ability to discredit the facts of the situation.  Media distortions are the hardest wall to get past in trying to educate the public to any issue this threatening to the 1%, who own much of the mainstream media.

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