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Klaudt Family History

The Klaudt Indian Family History

The Klaudt Indian Family was a national and internationally known professional gospel singing, musical group from the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation located in North Dakota.  They came from the Arikara-Mandan Tribe of Indians.  They were noted as being the most diverse, unique group ever to travel and appear on Southern Gospel and Country Music Circuit.
Little Soldier and One Feather and Sun of Star are also descendants of Chief Sitting Bull.  As a little girl Lillian White Corn Little Soldier was taught music by the missionaries.

In 1925, young German Rev. Reinhold Klaudt (My Father) a cattle rancher was a horse riding circuit minister years and my mother Lillian White Corn Little Soldier was sent to music and bible school by the Church of God missions to Sevierville, Tennessee.   In 1929, Rev. Klaudt married Lillian White Corn Little Soldier.  This was the start of the famous music and ministry of the Klaudt Indian Family.  They had five children: Vernon, Ramona, Melvin, Raymond and Ken Klaudt.  At the age of 6 years old, each child was by Mom Klaudt and each became part of the musical group.  The family played upright bass, trumpet, trombone, tenor sax, baritone sax, piano, organ accordion and guitar.
The first 20 years was mostly spent up in the Northwest, West, Midwest and Canada.  Next, in the 1949 and for last 40 years the family moved and settled in Atlanta, Georgia and travel and performed in the southern and eastern states.  Nevertheless, the versatility of their unique sound of jazz, southern gospel, 5/4 part harmony, duets, trios, solos with instruments and appearing in our Native Indian regalia, needless to say this opened many doors and venues nationally and internationally. 

The Klaudt Family appeared on television gospel music shows.  The made appears at churches and gospel shows appeared coast to coast.  Early, the family performed at county and state fairs, professional sports games, county and state parks; blue grass and country concerts and even the Sliver Slipper in Las Vegas. 

Moreover, the family appeared at the National Gospel Quartet Convention in Memphis and Nashville.  Klaudt family worked as scheduled as 400 appearances. At one event the family met Elvis Presley back stage.  He enjoyed the Klaudt Family along with the other groups.  Elvis was influenced by gospel music. Family members achieved and pursued educational heights.
Family members received various degrees from the University of Indiana, Oglethorpe University, Atlanta, Lee University, Cleveland Tennessee, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia Southern, Statesboro, Georgia and Gwinnett County School System.  Others were successful in the insurance and real estate business.

In 1996, the family came out of retirement and it was the last time the family sang together with their 90 year mother, Mom Klaudt.  We sang as the Grand Ole Gospel Reunion Concert in South Carolina.  The family was given the gospel Music Pioneer Legend award by the by the American Music Historical Collectors Guild. 

In 2001, Mom Klaudt, Lillian White Corn Little Soldier Klaudt was inducted into the Southern Gospel Music Hall of Fame and The Family is the Museum in Dollywood Theme Park in Tennessee. 
In 2007, the family was inducted into the Atlanta Chapter of the Country Music Hall of fame.  IN 2008 the family was presented with the life time Achievement award by the Atlanta Society Entertainers.  The family developed a non-profit memorial foundation to give scholarships fo0r upcoming young gospel musicians and young minister that will give time on Indian reservations.
Some of the members now appear at special events.  Ken Klaudt the youngest brother is a Native American Historian, Motivational and Inspirational Speaker and works to helping the plight of Indian reservations.  He is also a member of the National Congress of American Indians and was elected as the Chief Commissioner of the Native American Indian Historical Games.
Thus, Ken performs vocally with professional instrumental backup and gives his testimony in fully Native American costumes.  Ken personally has performed musically for more than 50 years in Gospel Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.  He received a Gospel Music Award from the American Christian Broadcasters.  He has performed on stage with many well-known country and gospel artists.