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Site Feedback - We'd Like To Hear From You!

Since we started this family website in 2000, we've received quite a bit of interesting feedback (mostly positive, some negative or bizarre) from visitors. We thought that it might be helpful and educational to share some of these comments. Of course, we'd love to get your feedback on our website as well - we just have a short feedback form that we'd like to ask you to complete. Or, please click here to send us email if you need an immediate response.

Barely Edited Site Feedback From 2005

This page holds some of the best feedback, including some of the more provocative sorts, that we received in 2005 - the sixth year of our family website. We also have separate pages for the best comments that we've received each year.

bulletFeedback and comments in 2006
bulletFeedback and comments in 2005
bulletFeedback and comments in 2004
bulletFeedback and comments in 2003
bulletFeedback and comments in 2002
bulletFeedback and comments in 2001


Found the story fascinating. Loved the part about the traveling nursery. We had a number of fruit trees in the backyard of our home in Garthwick (near Portland) along the Willamette R. By far the largest was a huge cherry tree. I was born in 1947, 100 years after that trip. Both my great grandparents went out to Oregon on the Oregon Trail but at later times (1850) I really can't imagine the trials pioneers went through to stay alive even in a large group like that. I loved the story of the cannon being shot off, that is remarkable. My great grandmother was 9 yrs old riding her pony to Oregon, and at one point was stolen by Indians when the wagons were slowed by dust and she rode ahead. After 3 days the Indians brought her back and offered to trade ponies for her. I learned an awful lot from the recollections of your ancestor. Thanks so much for putting this on the web. 


A search for solutions to otters under homes brought up your website where you mentioned solving a similar problem by sealing up your crawl space. We first noticed the essence of otter last year and have been unsuccessful at keeping this determined critter out from under our house. He burrows under the edge of the foundation to gain entry (the house is on post and pillar with just a wood skirt). We even resorted to professional trapping that was unsuccessful and discovered that otters do not return to their dens every day. In fact we have found that if disturbed he/she can stay away for long periods of time, days, weeks, months and perhaps this isn't even the same animal. At any rate we would appreciate any suggestions you might have and details of how you sealed your crawl space. The smell is driving us out.

[Our reply: Good luck...]


I am writing from the Embassy of Greece in Washington regarding your grandfather’s autobiography and in particular, his mention of my hometown, Domvrena. I was very moved to read it and I wonder whether you know of any photographs at the time and where his archives would be. I would like to do some research regarding my hometown during and after WWII and I would appreciate it if you could tell me where I could look. Thank you very much and I hope to hear from you soon


I am so happy to find Dr. Munk's autobiography online that I have to tell someone. Dr. Munk was a political science professor at Portland State in the mid-60s and there I took a course from him in International Relations. I was, like most of my fellow students, deeply impressed by his erudition, his personal history, his connections to world figures and the clarity of his thought. I had heard he was something of a celebrity and so was surprised at how approachable he was and how willing to spend extra time with his students. His kindness and generosity of spirit were evident. I believe he gave me "A" grades, but beyond that he once gave me a memorable ego-boosting compliment when he told me that I reminded him of the students he had taught at Reed College, and that he thought I would have done well there. That single remark meant more to me than any other academic kudos I gathered.


THANK YOU!!!!! for posting your grandfather's memoirs. My grandfather was born and raised in Czechoslovakia and left in around 1948. He experienced the day that Hitler's troops came in and when the Soviet Union invaded. I am of both Czech and Slovakian decent and am doing a research paper on Hitler's invasion. I needed to find a primary resource which describes the atmosphere of the country leading up to and including the invasion,.... that's how I found your family's site. I will be using some of your grandfathers words in my paper. I have tried to encourage my grandfather to write his memoirs but he doesn't think that people would care to read it... Again I thank you for posting your grandfathers memoirs....


I was putting together a montage of pictures of Lithuania and came across your website.  My own (gentile-Jewish) story is way too complex as most of them seem to be.  Suffice it to say, I found your comments most interesting.


I really enjoyed your photography and overall professional web site. I read now how others are inspired and impressed with your family history. This is a real eye opener for me on how to build a better web site. Mostly I just loved the wildlife photos, but I also found true respect for the person who took and posted them.


I just finished reading Frank Munk's memoirs called "My Century and My Many Lives". I have to say that I read it completely without a stop since I discovered it yesterday on the Internet. As a young Czech living in London, I was looking for some historical data on the 1939 events and, through Google, I got to your website and the mentioned biography. I must admit that I did not hear the name of your grandfather before and I really regret that his memoirs are not better known in the nowadays Czech Republic and that I don't have a chance to send this email to him personally. Unfortunately there are not many individuals still living in Czechia who have a direct experience with the first republic and the memoirs written by your grandfather would certainly find its readers in this country.

I really read with a keen interest the parts elaborating on the first republic period, the Nazi occupation, Benes, and the after war events. It is touching to see how much it resembles memories of my grandparents of Czech, Hungarian, Slovak and Jewish roots who lived through these times and told me about it. Very interesting is also the last part summarizing the development in the 1990's and a prediction of future political events in Central Europe that outlines the role of Germany and Russia in the nearest future. As someone who is sensible to the politics and especially to what is going on in Central Europe I cannot overlook what is going on in today's Russia and increasingly also in Germany, with the former turning into more and more dictatorship's regime, the latter quickly getting rid of any feelings of guilt for its WW2 past.

I left Prague in 2003 to finish my studies in London and after my graduation I co-founded a company which is focused on advisory on the capital markets in Eastern Europe. I am nevertheless traveling to Prague regularly and don't lose my contacts with this place. It is great to see how this place flourishes and attracts tourists and investors (as well as all Central Europe) after its accession to the EU, but it is also painful to realize that the recent 40 years of communism disrupted the social, political and economic links to the Masaryk's republic and people are less aware of the geopolitical threats related to the position of Czechia on the map of Europe. I may only agree with Frank Munk that hopefully all his worries will prove to be hollow and the united EU will bring some universal model of co-existence for all nations. I will however recommend your grandfather's memoirs to my many friends in Prague as I really believe that they bring lots of interesting facts and light on the Czech historical events. Thank you for posting this document on the website.


I have just read Chapter 11 of ["My Century and My Many Lives"]. I came to this website because I am simply trying to find out when Edvard Munk painted the Scream. I could call my old art history teacher from college days or make a trip to the library and look in an encyclopedia. But instead I am here on the internet. I have found that the internet does not let me find a simple answer most of the time. So often it would save me time by just picking up a reference book or dictionary or encyclopedia, but then I would not find places like this.

Two nights ago I watched a program on PBS about films of the Holocaust taken at the end of World War II. These films were intended to be presented years ago but were never finished. Today I was thinking about what I saw and I remembered The Scream. Until today I did not understand that painting. I still have not found the date, but have learned the Scream was stolen last summer and have found your family's  web site. I was born after WWII. I remember listening to my parents and others talk about the war years. Circumstances were such that they did not serve in the military in this war and did not have close family ties to Europe. I grew up in the middle of the USA. I read. I think. And I wonder about many things. I am not Jewish, but it does not matter what our back ground or faith is, we are together on this earth.

I am writing today to tell you why I found your writings. This chapter is amazing. I will be back another time to read more.


My journey to your website began when I 'googled' the Canon EOS 20D camera; I'm a freelancer making the move to digital photography. What a nice surprise your site turned out to be! Your photographs are gorgeous! And I certainly appreciate your recommendations on equipment. You helped solidify some of my 'hunches' in terms of equipment, and also steered me in some directions I hadn't considered. Great site! I've already added it to my favorites.


I'm a former corporate historian for the Grumman Aerospace Corporation. I read "The Ragens" memories with great interest because I also collect uniforms from the WWII period. For the last 20 years, I have had a 'mystery' WWII uniform of a Polish officer with the shoulder insignia consisting of a red arc with the letters UNRRA. Thanks to your site I found out that if stands for United Nations Relief Administration. My question is do you have any information on early members of this organization? This uniform is a WWII Polish officers uniform and bears the name Stanislaw Worowski. Is there any information on this officer in the Ragen papers. My desire is to preserve the personal history of this gentleman along with his uniform. Any help is greatly appreciated.

[If anyone out there knows something about this uniform or person, let me know and I will pass on the information to Peter.]


I love your website and appreciate you sharing with us your blind wine tasting dinner suggestions. We are planning to try one very soon and I am a little nervous. Do you have any ideas about simplifying this? The dinner will be catered and our wine choices will be same as one you chose. We would like to try one dinner with mostly white wines and I am not sure if that is possible. Thank you so much. Oh! One of our group is very interested in photography and mostly of birds. I can hardly wait to tell him about your bald eagle!

[Our reply: Just do it and have fun - don't worry about planning too much...]


Hi!!! I love all things on orcas and i especially love your website. My dream is that when i grow up i want to swim with orcas but im not sure if you can do that. Is it possible to swim with an orca? Could you please answer this question for me if you can i would be grateful.

[Our reply: Orcas have very sharp teeth and are often hungry. This video may give you pause...]


Which areas of our website did you visit? (Select all that apply.)

Books - Climbing and Outdoor Books
Books - Recommended Book Lists
Family History - Geer Family
Family History - Munk Family
Family History - Ragen Family
Photography - Bald Eagles
Photography - Orca Whales
Photography - Other Wildlife
Reunion Planning
Wine Tastings, etc.

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