Hall of Infamy?
Our story so far: A while back in an open-thread free-for-all, the issue of the SG Hall of Fame in Dollywood came up, specifically the number of HOF inductees whose commemorative bronze plaques had not secured a sponsor. Currently, sponsorship rates per plaque seem to be going for $2000 and of 114 inductees, 15 or so are still without an underwriter, comprising a so-called deadbeat list.
Some people find this state of affairs disrespectful and appalling, others think the HOF is effectively money changing in the temple of southern gospel memory, and others think the inductees and/or their heirs or estates need to pony up in recognition of the honor bestowed upon them.
All caught up, now? Good, because now things get interesting (or not … I’m working with the material I got here folks).
Comes then Melvin Klaudt, of the Klaudt Indian Family, who doesn’t really seem to have wanted his mother honored by the HOF in the first place, resented a $2000 invoice for her HOF plaque showing up in the mail, and wants her plaque to come down. Now.
My mother, Lillian Little Soldier Klaudt was inducted in 2004. She had a picture on a plaque for a couple of years. Unknowing to us, this was changed to a bust that cost $2,000. Our foundation, Klaudt Indian Memorial Foundation, was billed $2,000. for the bust after the fact. There is an ethical question besides a financial obligation attached to this. We, according to our 501 c 3 public charity IRS ruling couldn’t take the funds out of the foundation to pay it in the first place.
Finally, my mother has other more important spiritual things to lay at the feet of Jesus than a SGM hall of fame plaque.
Full disclosure of the $2,000. must be disclosed to the public who are excited to nominate somone deserving of this award. I seems like everything else, lets just buy us an award. SGM is eat up with awards. Every year there is a new one.
I beg the Hall to remove my mother from this honor and remove her name from the deadbeat list. She evidently does not deserve it.
Full comment here.
Tonight, Harold Timmons, of the Chuck Wagon Gang, wrote in, begging to differ with Klaudt:
While I do respect Mr. Melvin’s Klaudt’s opnion, I do challenge his position on asking that his Mother be removed from the SGM HOF wall for any reason. The Chuck Wagon Gang worked with the Klaudt Indian Family many times during the ‘60’s and even into the ‘70s at Constitution Hall in Washington, DC. The Klaudt Indian Family and The Chuck Wagon Gang were regular members of the highly syndicated TV series, “Bob Poole’s Gospel Favorites”. To me, the Klaudt Indian Family are unique unto themselves, as of Indian Heritage as well as involved in “Southern Gospel Music”. It was a board of directors who recognized Mrs. Klaudt and her contribution. It was the voters who agreed with the nominating committee, who in essence bestowed the honor of inducting Mom Klaudt into the SGM HOF. How on earth can anyone, even a family member, ask that Mrs. Klaudt removed for any reason?
Southern Gospel Music in some aspect works on a play “B” almost daily, and most certainly there could be a plan “B” in situations on the SGMA HOF list. This could be a family split of the dues due, or fans or friends, or even some businessmen.
Full comment here.
I really don’t have a dog in this fight. I’d much rather see the HOF focus more on bolstering its curatorial dimension in order to become a hub for the preservation and study of the music. But then again, that costs money and if selling HOF plaques is a way to raise money that supports a worthy, underlying cause, so be it.
In any event, though, one does have to wonder how hard the HOF is really trying to fund these plaques if, as Timmons says in his comment, da Gang was unaware “that no contributions had been received since [Anna Carter Gordon Davis’s] nomination” and only learned of the situation “by recently visiting this site.”
(For the record, and before Charlie Waller puts a check in the mail, I have decided to forgo my HOF Plaque Funding Broker’s commission.)Email this Post