Secret societies have long intrigued the general public — who often wonder how much influence the high-profile clubs have on modern politics.
From being accused to starting the American Revolution to allegedly being the root of building iconic structures like the Statue of Liberty, some societies seem to have a part in shaping the world’s history.
Here are some of the most known:
Skull and Bones
Founded as Order of the Skull and Bones in 1832, the club was started by William H. Russell after being inspired by a German secret society, according to The Atlantic.
The legendary Yale University organization boasts memberships of at least three of the United States presidents including William Howard Taft, George H.W. Bush, and George W. Bush, among other influential politicians.
The exclusive club invites only 15 seniors each year to swear an oath of secrecy. Duties include meeting twice a week in the crypt clubhouse with the skeletons to either socialize or debate relevant issues, according to the Atlantic.
But over the last decade, the club has shaped with the culture.
Previously known for only letting in privileged, heterosexual white men, Skull and Bones started recruiting influential people on campus of any race, religion, sexuality and gender, according to the magazine.
Arguably the most well-known secret society, the Freemasons is the oldest and largest modern fraternity.
The group is famous for the memberships of George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Mozart and Franklin Roosevelt.
The club was started in medieval Europe as a union for stonemasons, but eventually became a fraternity of men of various neighborhoods and profession, according to CBS. Conspiracy theories soon followed after the founding.
In the 1730s, Pope Clement XII passed a decree that still stands today prohibiting people from joining the Freemasons.
Now, with 1.3 million members in the U.S., members continue to secretly meet, and are involved in community service and raise $2 million for charity every day.