No, I'm not related to Gustav Mahler (1860-1911, at right), the famous Austrian classical music composer. My "Mahler" ancestors came to the U.S. in 1881 from Germany's Hanover province, settling eventually in suburban Chicago. You can learn plenty about Gus and his impressive compositions by searching the Internet under his name, or check out the International Gustav Mahler Society. The ancestry of my late mother, Mary Vencill Curnutte, is a polyglot of 18th-century French, Scot, Irish, English, Norwegian, Dutch, and Basque origins. Mom was born and raised in Texas, where I was born in 1951.
Looking for other Richard Mahlers? There are plenty of us! Find the deceased director of pornographic movies (real name Roger Watkins — search site under "Richard Mahler"), the esteemed Manhatten endocrinologist specializing in diabetes, the financial advisor on Staten Island, the family law mediator in Australia, and the U.S. Navy veteran with posted self-illustrated memoirs . I don't sell real estate in Pennsylvania, distribute earth-moving equipment in Canada, play professional sports, practice law or go to college in Florida, run for Congress in the Carolinas, get dismissed from juries in Wisconsin, or teach school Down Under. But we're an impressive lot, aren't we? Let me hear from you! (Mayb we can start an International Richard Mahler Society.)