Church Book I-XVI: Evangelical Lutheran

About the Author

Orion A. Rudolph was born in June 1938 at the family farmstead eight miles northwest of Fredonia, North Dakota. He attended country school one mile from the farmstead in grades one through four. He attended grades five through eight at Fredonia city grade school, and also attended Kulm High School, Kulm, North Dakota.

Rudolph served in the United States Navy for four years, and after being discharged from the navy in 1963, he married his high school sweetheart. They set up their home in Aberdeen, South Dakota. During this time, Orion and his wife, Delores, raised two girls.

Rudolph worked for a trucking firm doing office work until 1969, when he began attending Northern State University in Aberdeen for four years, graduating in 1973. Following his graduation, Rudolph and his wife moved to Ashley, North Dakota where he worked at an implement parts store for 19 years.

It was in the year of 1985 when tragedy struck the Rudolph family. Their oldest daughter was killed at 19 years of age in a tourist helicopter crash at Keystone, SD during a return air flight around Mount Rushmore.

Rudolph also compiled two family histories: Rudolf Rudolph, Descendants of Johann Georg Rudolf and Hoffmann-Hoffman, Descendants of Johann Georg Hoffmann. These family histories are both catalogued in the GRHC archives.

When asked why he got involved with this large project, Rudolph said, "Spiritual drive...the more I got involved, and with Dorothea's encouragement, the more spiritual drive I had for this project." He wants the books to be accessible in the English language so future English speaking generations can read these books.

About the Translator

Dorothea Ziegler nee Bergstedt grew up in the German-Russian community of Ashley, North Dakota. Her father, the Rev. Diedrich Bergstedt came directly from Germany, while her mother was an American-born German who could speak both German and English. She said, "My dad taught me very good phonics. We spoke German at home all the time. I was through the eighth grade and we hardly talked anything in English." Ziegler’s dad, a Lutheran Pastor, had parishes in the area east of Ashley, and also Dunn Center and Dodge, North Dakota. Her dad was the pastor in this east of Ashley area during the time period 1922-1933. The little churches in this area are all dissolved.

She attended country grade school just a mile south of the country parsonage where the parents lived. After she finished the eighth grade she went to Fargo, North Dakota to attend high school there. She attended two years of Bible school in Fargo. Then two years of nurses training school. She practiced nursing for 23 years at Fargo and Dickinson, North Dakota and Waterloo, Iowa. In addition to the nursing profession, she was also a professional wife, mother, and homemaker. She also transcribes German language into English which she enjoys doing.

Permission to use any images from the GRHC website may be requested by contacting Michael M. Miller