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Clifford Gaiser. It now is time to head back to Newton for the Muddy Creek Cousins Feast. On the way, I drop by again, and this time Clifford is in. When I told him I was interested in his ancestors, his reply was something like, "Oh, you're looking for the horse thieves in my family!" I laughed and told him he must be the right guy because my dad's attitude about exploring ancestry always was, "I don't want to know. I might find a horse thief!"

It doesn't take too long to figure out that Clifford and I are second cousins, by virtue of both being great grandchildren of Jacob and Sarah Gaiser.

Clifford's grandparents are the John Franklin Gaiser and Elizabeth Ewert, who are buried at Prairie Lawn between my grandparents I. B. & Lizzie Gaiser Good and Sarah Petry Gaiser, mother of John Franklin and Lizzie. Another long-standing mystery solved, but where is their father Jacob?

Clifford is a pleasant and helpful guy, but not much of a historian, so he refers me to a cousin Barbara Thomas, also in Newton.

Muddy Creek Cousins. Now, it's on to meet the Muddy Creek Cousins at Curtis C's, also in Newton. This is a small group in the Newton/Hesston area who recently has discovered that they all are descendants of [an error occurred while processing this directive]. The most recent discovery is that this includes siblings Nancy Pauls and Courtney Hiebert, who also are first cousins of siblings John Good and Meredith Mauck through their mother's Schmidt family. The Ralph Schmidt I met on Sunday is another one of these Schmidt cousins.

This evening the group includes Marge and Ed Harms, Bert and Ivan Bontrager, Mel and Nancy Pauls, Courtney and Beverly Hiebert, John and Jan Good, and me. During his one-year teaching career, Courtney was my shop teacher in high school. We didn't break any new historical ground, but we had a fine time.

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