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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2014

Where did the German Klaus family come from? What is the German Klaus family crest and coat of arms? When did the Klaus family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Klaus family history?

The roots of the Klaus family are found in the ancient German state of Bavaria. Klaus is one of the most common styles of German surname, that of patronymics and matronymics - names derived from the given names of the father or mother of their original bearers. Klaus is derived from the medieval given name Klaus, which is a shortened form of the personal name Niklaus or Nicholas.The given name Nicholas, which means people's victory, was popular among Christians throughout Europe in the Middle Ages.

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Many cultural groups lived in the German states in medieval times. Each had its own dialect and traditions, and unique variations of popular names. Low German, which is similar to contemporary Dutch, was spoken in Westphalia. German names are characterized by additions such as regional suffixes and phrases that tell something about the origin or background of its original bearer. Further contributing to the variation in German names was the fact that there were no spelling rules in medieval times: scribes recorded names according to their sound. The recorded spelling variations of Klaus include Klaus, Klauss, Claus, Clauss, Klauhs, Clauhs, Klausing (Westphalia), Klauser (Switzerland), Clausing, Clauser, Klausen, Klaussen, Clausen and many more.

First found in Bavaria, where the family contributed greatly to the development of an emerging nation and would later play a large role in the political conflicts of the area. The family branched into many houses, many of which acquired estates and manors throughout the surrounding regions, where they played significant roles in the social and political affairs.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Klaus research. Another 247 words(18 lines of text) covering the year 1755 is included under the topic Early Klaus History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 31 words(2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Klaus Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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German settlers were among the most common to come to North America between the mid-17th and mid-20th centuries. Poverty and religious persecution drove many Bavarians to make this long trek. tenant farmers were also enticed by the prospect of owning land. From east to west, these German immigrants populated the United States, settling in Pennsylvania, Texas, New York, Illinois, and California. Ontario and the prairie provinces of Canada also provided homes to many. Early settlers bearing the Klaus surname or a spelling variation of the name include:

Klaus Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Bernhart Klaus, who came to New York City in 1709 with his wife and four children
  • Henrich Klaus left the Palatinate for England with his wife and two daughters in 1709
  • Bernhart Klaus, who arrived in New York in 1709
  • Michael Klaus, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1746

Klaus Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Johann Valentin Klaus, who arrived in America in 1844
  • Joseph Klaus, who landed in America in 1845
  • Konrad Klaus, who landed in Texas in 1845
  • Sophie Klaus, who arrived in Galveston, Tex in 1845
  • Johann Klaus, who landed in Texas in 1846


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  • Elmer Erwin Klaus (b. 1921), distinguished American scientist and educator
  • Billy Klaus, American baseball player
  • Frank Klaus (1887-1948), German-American boxer and 1913 Middleweight Champion
  • Kenneth Richard Klaus, successful American musician and composer in Baton Rouge, and was State President of the String Teacher's Association
  • William Joseph "Billy" Klaus (1928-2006), American Major League Baseball player
  • Josef Klaus (b. 1910), Chancellor of Austria from 1966 to 1970
  • Václav Klaus (b. 1941), President of the Czech Republic


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  1. Götze, Alfred. Familiennamen im badischen Oberland. Heidelberg: C. Winter, 1918. Print.
  2. Bahlow, Hans (Edda Gentry trns). Dictionary of German Names . Madison, Wisconsin: Max Kade Institute, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-924119-35-7).
  3. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  4. Tobler-Meyer, Wilhelm. Familiennamen der Ostschweiz. Zürich: 1894. Print.
  5. Oswald, G. Lexicon der Heraldik. Leipzig: 1984. Print.
  6. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  7. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  8. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  9. Rolland, and H.V. Rolland. Illustrations to the Armorial general by J. B. Rietstap 6 volumes in 3. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1976. Print.
  10. Gottschald, Max. Deutsche Namenkunde unsere Familiennamen nach ihrer Entstehung und Bedeutung. München: J.F. Lehmanns Verlag, 1932. Print.
  11. ...

The Klaus Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Klaus Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 27 September 2013 at 11:44.

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