IN MEMORY OF LINDA SCHAITBERGER
HOW THIS WEBSITE CAME ABOUT
This website was created by Linda Schaitberger, who died in April 2013. Fortuitously, a few months before that I contacted her, and I am reproducing in their entirety and verbatim the email exchanges I saved from September 2012.
Some touch upon technical aspects of this site, and Linda lamented “that I did it so terribly incorrectly.” She had used a Yahoo! Sitebuilder program, which fixed every element at an absolute position on the screen. The page elements were competely out of order; the first element on a page could be at the bottom of the source file. This made it impossible to update the site. Adding a line, changing font or resizing an image produced either large gaps or elements on top of each other.
Hence over a dozen programs had to be written to process several hundred web pages at once. Numerous runs had to be made. After this long and complex operation, the web pages can now be updated. They follow their normal, natural flow, with each element taking up as much space as needed. The site is far from perfect, but there are so many things that need doing...
When one is skilled one learns very quickly that there is never any shortage of work for nothing. I think there were a couple of donations, which served as encouragement, but otherwise no-one was paying me for these weeks of work, nor now for maintaining yet another legacy site.
This page has been added, belatedly, on seeing some caluminous accusations about which no more will be spoken. Except that it may truly be said that ‘No good deed goes unpunished.’
----- Original Message -----
Simon, I am honored. You may use any part of the site you wish.
The painful part is that I did it so terribly incorrectly! I am not computer savvy, and I never expected it to grow to such a size or I would have footnoted and done the citations correctly. But it's too late now and I don't have the stamina to do it all again.
I did it on Yahoo Site Builder and it often displays poorly on Macs. I will go to the page in question and try to fix it, but I'm a bit at sea there.
Thanks for the compliment. Linda Schaitberger, Maine
From: Simon Sheppard
Still using the duff keyboard but taking a pause from my other work.
Possibility that I and/or a co-worker could re-work the site for you so that it prints properly, scores higher in the search engines, etc.
Could you build up enough stamina to do some content revision? Not immediately, but as a project to be scheduled for the future. I'm in the middle of publishing two books myself.
I have, however, done this sort of thing many times before. Two immediate queries:
1. What does "exulanten" mean?
I suspect the main body of the site would be better organized by date (immediately apparent historical context) and many of the images could do to be larger (even perhaps, if possible, print quality).
Basically I'm prepared to put some work into it if you are. As I often say, there's no shortage of "work for nothing" but I haven't come across such a worthwhile project for a long while. Your site, as far as I'm aware, is the only one of its kind.
I could host the site for you also, if that would help.
----- Original Message -----
Dear Simon, thanks for writing. Here's the deal: I'm an old woman. You may have the site. Gratis. Seriously. I offer you any way I can to help facilitate that, but you would need to change the name "exulanten". Perhaps you can use it as a guide and pluck from it what you will and twist and turn it to suit your needs, and I don't care, it's all that's just fine with me. I can no longer maintain it. It wore me out and I'm mad at myself for doing it incorrectly. I wrote as I learned instead of approaching it seriously.
Here is how it started. I am a German American. I began this by doing research on my family history for my grandchildren, and I wanted to learn more about my ancestor, Joseph Schaitberger, who was the spiritual figurehead of the Salzburg Protestant Exiles (the "exulanten") in the early 18th century. This led to exulanten.com
Because of the deep shame my parents felt about their Germanic heritage growing up in the WW One years, all of the family history had been purged, and all I had to go on was a clue. My great grandfather had brought a pipe to American when he immigrated here in 1847 with a figure obviously incarcerated a dungeon surrounded by priests forcing him to read something, and the name "Joseph Schaitberger" was carved into the ball and chain on his feet.
Thus, I began a journey back in time, and was able after several years to have the whole history of my family and my surname. That being accomplished, it troubled me that so much of the family lore had been so feverishly discarded and I tried to find out why. This led to www.exulanten.com/hysteria
Well, that was so utterly mind boggling and disgusting that both of those topics indirectly led me into East Prussia! Guess what? www.exulanten.com/hell
But of course, there were complications. All of the nice little genealogical groups certainly didn't want to hear my version of either world war's history, so I attempted to feebly separate the three sites without spending money on 3 separate websites since I'm poor as a church mouse.
Then my adult kids thought I was a raving fanatic when I befriended folks like South African Boer folk and old East Prussians living in the states and other characters regarded as unsavory or abnormal. Finally, the horrible reality of all I learned descended upon me like a curtain in a hearse, so I turned to writing silly fiction which I hope to self publish to Kindle this winter.
The thing about the species (other than Krauts) being exterminated was I believe some life form around Helgoland, and I'll have to dig deep in my notes to find it, but I will. Definitely, the wild plants and flowers, especially in the alps, also took a hit, perhaps "Wode". Have to check.
I would love for someone with more energy and time left on earth to take some of the facts and run with it. I get around 400 or 500 hits a day, which rather stunned me. The most popular page is www.exulanten.com/bingthree about the German POWs.
The only site which I cling to as purely my own and will never relinquish is exulanten.com (about the Salzburg exiles) because it is personal and precious to me. I did spend seven years on it all. UGH. It saps one of strength and tears.
Cheers. LInda in Maine
From: Simon Sheppard
I think you're recriminating yourself unjustly -- I'm familiar with the symptoms as I do it myself. I'm my biggest critic. The Catholics call it a "scrupulous conscience." There's nothing wrong with learning by doing. Indeed, the only way not to make mistakes is not to do anything. Yes, there are technical mistakes in your site, but you've done an incredible job with the content, and actually that's the most important part.
I have taken a copy of the site, for safety and backup, and to my surprise it is 1600 files and about 42MB. Now I understand why it took 7 years to do it. It's much bigger than I thought.
To make sure I understand correctly, exulanten.com consists of three separate parts:
1. The exulanten theme, the Salzburg exiles, yours and not to be touched;
The revision will consist of minor (e.g. typographical) corrections and reorganisation, optimizing for search engines and printing etc.
Re. the extinguished species, unfortunately we live in an insane age in which people can quite happily countenance their own extinction but get heated about the demise of some obscure rain-forest caterpillar. So in making the truth known, the best policy is 'attack on all fronts.'
So if you summon any energy to make amendments, corrections, additions, whatever to the site, don't let the fact that I've saved a copy stop you. I started to save the site manually but when I realized its extent I installed a program to do it automatically. I'll take further copies in the future, up to the time I can actually commit to the project (I have to get these two books out first). Someone else might be doing the bulk of the work, but I'll still have to show him what to do and how to do it.
I think I might use a slightly edited version of your email below as an introduction to the site, if that's OK. You're certainly a competent writer.
Incidentally, you might like to have a look at www.faem.com. This is a 'legacy' site I took on after Robert Frenz died. He was a great man, another of German heritage, and a couple of people who had been regular readers of his site contributed the cost of taking over his domain name (not easy!) and restoring the site. They paid the monetary costs and I contributed the work (and subsequent hosting). Much of it looks rather dated now but there are some wonderful anecdotes, particularly of his youth. The pages are randomly served, so just hit 'refresh' to get a new one, or find the menu.
Keep in touch.
----- Original Message -----
Simon, this is most refreshing. I hope you have fun with it as well. Yes, it is correct the Salzburg Exiles is all mine. I like it that way. It pisses off the priggish German/Austriuan academicians who snubbed me in regards to my research regarding these pitiful exiles. Beyond that, do what you want and will with the rest, and with my blessing. I do not want name recognition. As you know, it does nothing but cause problems
The Hysteria site is more appropriate for German Americans, but much can be gleaned from it in a philosophic sense, and you have great resources in Britain which chould further embellish it, the whole art of propaganda. The Great War was the utter ruination of a generation of white European males and benefited only a small handful of international bankers. That is the point, and the manipulation of their (our) all-too-honest psyches is what that galls me most. But you know all that.
"Hell" is what it is. Grim beyond words. Evil comes to mind. Who benefited from all this carnage? Yes, the same players as in the first war and they still are! I like that I indexed the bombed German cities since nobody else has bothered. It was grueling finding out facts. Every so often, even now, a rare German with a trace of intact gonads writes and tells me that their little city or town was also bombed into oblivion, and I go back in and rewrite it.
I do not hate the English. I actually like them, just as most Germans did/do. I do not consider Churchill or Harris or Portal typical Englishman any more than I consider Roosevelt a typical American. I honestly believe it's too bad the 20th century ever happened and that ALL of the leaders of that time would have served us better had they been consigned to the dust bin, for they all failed us miserably.
My friend Der Graf of Unheilig also has a backup of the site and the same privilege with it. My dear sir, we have an obligation, and if only one young mind is made aware of the truth, then it is all worth it.
To another point, and it's just a hint. If one goes to US Ebay and writes "Germany 1945" in the search bar, then clicks on "photographic images" on the little scroll bar on the left which pops up, one can find great contemporary A.P. Wire Photos. They're free.
I do not and will not consider anything you do with the site as a revision. It becomes yours at this point. Information is free, not mine or yours.
Lastly, I admire you, Simon. You have courage. I am not unfamiliar with your plight. I don't agree with some of your opinions, but absolutely respect people who stand by their convictions (obviously). Best of luck with this. It is, as I said, an honor. I think I will be pleasantly surprised to see what it can become in the hands of someone more qualified and experienced and younger.
All the best, Linda