A Timeline of the Racist Skinhead Movement

CIRCA 1969
The original skinhead subculture explodes among urban, working-class youths in Britain, combining style elements drawn from white "Mods" and West Indian "Rudeboys." Though tinged with soccer hooliganism, traditional skinhead culture is not racist (to this day, there are black "trad" skins).

80s SkinEARLY 1980s
British skinhead scene factionalizes. White power skinheads develop a separate subculture based on the white nationalist music of Rock Against Communism bands like Skrewdriver, Skullhead, and No Remorse who opposed the "Rock Against Racism" concerts of anti-racist skins.


CIRCA 1982
Racist skinheads begin to appear in U.S. in significant numbers.

CIRCA 1986
Romantic Violence, also known as CASH (Chicago Area Skinheads), takes form as one of the first true racist skinhead gangs in the United States, followed in short order by the Confederate Hammerskins in Dallas.

Tom MetzgerFormer California Klan leader Tom Metzger forms the Aryan Youth Movement, a skinhead division of his white supremacist group White Aryan Resistance (WAR).

1988
Skinhead violence erupts across the United States, with scores of violent attacks and murders recorded over the next four years.

Tom Metzger and son John organize the first hate rock festival, Aryan Fest, which is held in Oklahoma.

Geraldo RiveraA flying chair breaks the nose of television talk show host Geraldo Rivera during a brawl between skinhead gang leaders and African-American activists on the set of "The Geraldo Rivera Show."

Members of the Confederate Hammerskins patrol Robert E. Lee Park in Dallas, beating any non-white they come across. The gang is ultimately linked to 40 crimes, including the vandalism of a Dallas synagogue. Police foil a plot by armed Hammerskins to destroy Jewish businesses on Nov. 9, the 50th anniversary of Kristallnacht, the Nazi pogrom also known as the "Night of Broken Glass."

Ethiopian immigrant Mulugeta Seraw is beaten to death by members of East Side White Pride, a Portland, Ore., gang with close ties to WAR.

1991
In June, more than 60 Aryan National Front (ANF) skinheads and Klansmen march through downtown Birmingham, Ala., in a dramatic show of force.

1992
In April, members of the skinhead gang ANF murder a homeless black man in Birmingham, Ala., after attending a Hitler birthday party.

Randal Krager1994
Skinhead gang leader Randal Lee Krager forms Volksfront in Oregon.

1995
Southern California skinhead Randall Rojas beats a homeless black man to death behind a fast-food restaurant.

Nathan Thill1997
Bruce Vander Jagt becomes the first American police officer killed in the line of duty by a racist skinhead when he's gunned down in Denver by 25-year-old racist Matthaus Jaehnig after a high-speed chase. The next week, a dead pig bearing Vander Jagt's name is dumped outside a Denver police substation, and Denver skinheads Nathan Thill and Jeremiah Barnum murder a West African immigrant they encounter at a bus stop. Thill later tells a reporter that he killed Oumar Dia because he was "wearing the enemy's uniform" -- his black skin.

1998
Independent Nazi Skins gang leader John "Polar Bear" Butler ambushes and kills two Anti-Racist Action members in the desert outside Las Vegas on the Fourth of July.

1999
Florida skinheads attack interracial couples, killing a woman and a child in two separate incidents.

Five ousted members of the Northern Region of Hammerskin Nation form a renegade outfit they call Outlaw Hammerskins.

Hammerskin Nation reorganizes and throws its first Hammerfest, the group's signature hate rock festival, in rural Bremen, Ga. More than 600 skinheads from across the country attend.

2000
While Hammerskin Nation remains the nation's largest skinhead organization, the number of HSN chapters drops from 27 to 19.

2001
Midland Hammerskin Shane McCormick (above) stabs a black man in a Missouri restaurant.

Hammerfest attendance drops to 220 as HSN's elitist posturing and relentless attempts to dictate the rules of skinhead culture in the U.S. breed widespread resentment.

2002
Skinhead Kevin A. Johnson beats a man to death outside the Courtesy Diner in St. Louis while spewing anti-Semitic epithets, although his victim is not Jewish.

The Outlaw Hammerskins implode due to infighting.

HSN's power continues to wane.

Hammerfest attendance dwindles to 150.

2003
The number of skinhead chapters nationwide more than doubles, due mostly to the rapidly increasing strength of independent, regional skinhead crews, most notably the Hoosier State Skins (Indiana and Illinois), the Ohio State Skinheads, and the Pennsylvania-based Keystone State Skinheads.

Kurtis MonschkeKurtis William Monschke, head of the Washington state chapter of Volksfront, helps three other racist skinheads use baseball bats and rocks to beat to death a homeless white man in Tacoma.

2004
Non-Hammerskin crews continue to evolve and unify.

Members of the Hoosier State Skins and Ohio State Skinheads -- including several former Outlaw Hammerskins -- form the Vinlander Social Club, also known as the Vinlanders, a skinhead "warrior clan" devoted to drinking, fighting, and a racist form of Odinism, a pagan religion once practiced by Norse Vikings.

2005
Council 28The Vinlanders host the first official Blood and Honour Council, a unity meeting of regional skinhead crews also known as the Council of 28 (B is the second letter of the alphabet, H is the eighth; hence, 28 stands for Blood and Honour). The council is attended by at least 60 members of more than a dozen white supremacist groups.

2006
Skinhead resurgence parallels rise in skinhead-related criminal activity.