See Part I for the beginning of this story.
After leaving the Martin Fast family for five years since I didn't know what to do on it, I recently decided to take another look at it. Whenever I find records of Fasts in West Prussian church books, even if they don't seem to be related to me, I put them in a database. I'm always adding new records to this database, so I have a giant Excel spreadsheet with over 1100 records that I can sort by first and last name.
A couple months ago, I took another look at the database, and I found something very interesting:
So I checked the locations of the villages in Kartenmeister and plotted them in Google Earth using the latitudes and longitudes from Kartenmeister. The villages of Kurau, Schönbaum, Schlobitten, Windeck, and Robach turned out to be widely scattered in East and West Prussia, but they were all out of the main Mennonite area. (I couldn't identify a village called Gross Stein - line #594.) Here's a map of the villages:
Based on the dates of the baptisms and marriages from 1801 to 1820, the father Martin Fast could be the same person. Intriguing, but still not very strong proof.
I asked Glenn Penner what he thought of this, and he had just recently extracted records from the Schönbaum Lutheran church book on LDS microfilm #208392. He gave me a couple records that related to Martin Fast! Read on to Part III to see what I found next.