Margot Frank

Margot Betti Frank (February 16, 1926 – February or March 1945)[2] was the elder daughter of Otto Frank and Edith Frank and the elder sister of Anne Frank. Margot's deportation order from the Gestapo hastened the Frank family into hiding. According to the diary of her younger sister, Anne, Margot kept a diary of her own, but no trace of Margot's diary has ever been found. She died in Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.[3]

Margot Frank
Margot Frank,May 1942.JPG
Margot Frank, May 1942
BornFebruary 16, 1926
DiedFebruary or March 1945 (aged 18–19)
Cause of deathTyphus
NationalityGerman until 1941; stateless from 1941[1]
EducationLudwig-Richter School
Known forOlder Sister of Anne Frank
Parent(s)Otto Frank
Edith Holländer
RelativesAnne Frank (sister)
Buddy Elias (cousin)
Jeker School in Amsterdam - The elementary school of Margot Frank

Early life and educationEdit

Margot Betti Frank, named after her maternal aunt Bettina Holländer (1898–1914), was born in Frankfurt, Germany, to Jewish parents, Otto and Edith, and lived in the outer suburbs of the city with her parents, Otto Frank and Edith Frank-Holländer, and also her younger sister Anne Frank, during the early years of her life. [4] Edith and Otto were devoted parents, who were interested in scholarly pursuits and had an extensive library; both parents encouraged the children to read. At the time her sister Anne was born, the family lived in a house at Marbachweg 307 in Frankfurt-Dornbusch, where they rented two floors. Margot and Anne played almost every day in the garden with the children in the neighborhood. They all had different backgrounds; Catholic, Protestant or Jewish. They shared a curiosity about each other's religious holidays. Margot was invited to the communion celebration of one of her friends, and the neighbors' children were sometimes invited to the Frank's celebration of Hanukkah. [5] In 1931 the family moved to Ganghoferstrasse 24 in a fashionable liberal area of Dornbusch called the Dichterviertel (Poets' Quarter). Both houses still exist.[6]

In the summer of 1932, the Nazis' paramilitary wing – Sturmabteilung (SA) – marched through the streets of Frankfurt am Main wearing swastika armbands. These Brownshirts, as they were called because of the color of their uniforms, loudly sang: “When Jewish blood spurts from the knife, things will go well again”. Upon hearing this, Anne's parents Edith and Otto discussed their concerns with each other. It was impossible for them to leave their homeland immediately because making a living abroad was of course an issue.[7]

Margot attended the Ludwig-Richter School in Frankfurt until the appointment of Adolf Hitler on January 30, 1933, to the position of chancellor in Germany brought an increase of anti-Jewish measures, among which was the expulsion of Jewish schoolchildren from non-denominational schools. In response to the rising tide of anti-semitism, the family decided to follow the 63,000 other Jews who had left Germany that year and immigrate to Amsterdam in the Netherlands.[8] Edith Frank and her daughters moved in with her mother in Aachen in June 1933 until Otto Frank found accommodation in Amsterdam. Margot and her mother left Germany to join him on December 5, 1933, followed by Anne in February 1934. Margot was enrolled in an elementary school on Amsterdam's Jekerstraat, close to their new address. Despite initial problems with the Dutch language, Margot went on to become a star pupil. She achieved excellent academic results until an anti-Jewish law imposed a year after the 1940 German invasion of the Netherlands demanded her removal to a Jewish lyceum. There she displayed the studiousness and intelligence which had made her noteworthy at her previous schools and was remembered by former pupils as virtuous, reserved, and very obedient. Margot had a large circle of friends and enjoyed rowing and playing tennis in her spare time. In her diary, Anne recounted instances of their mother suggesting she emulate Margot, and although she wrote of admiring her sister in some respects for being handsome and clever, Anne sought to define her own individuality without role models. Margot is also shown to have a much better relationship with their mother, and had a much more modest and tolerant nature as opposed to Anne, who was determined and often spoke her mind.[citation needed]

Although her sister Anne also took Hebrew classes at a later point, Anne was, like her father, not as much interested in the Jewish tradition as Margot. Margot followed the example of her mother, who became involved in Amsterdam's Liberal Jewish community. She took Hebrew classes, attended synagogue, and in 1941 joined a Dutch Zionist club for young people who wanted to immigrate to Palestine to found a Jewish state, where, as Anne Frank described in her diary, she wished to become a midwife.[9]

On July 5, 1942, she received a notice to report to a labor camp and the next day went into hiding with her family in a secret annex of a house. They were later joined by four other Jewish refugees and remained hidden for two years until they were betrayed on August 4, 1944.[10]

Stolperstein for Margot Frank at the Pastorplatz in Aachen, Germany

Arrest and deathEdit

Along with the other occupants of the hiding place, Margot Frank was arrested by the Gestapo on 4 August 1944, and detained in their headquarters overnight before being taken to a cell in a nearby prison for three days. From here they were taken by train, on 8 August, to the Dutch Westerbork concentration camp. As the Frank family had failed to respond to Margot's call-up notice in 1942 and had been discovered in hiding, they (along with Fritz Pfeffer and the Van Pels family) were declared criminals by the camp's officials and detained in its punishment block to be sentenced to hard labor in the battery dismantling plant. They remained there until they were selected for Westerbork's last deportation to Auschwitz on September 3, 1944.[11] Bloeme Evers-Emden, an Amsterdam native who had know Margot and Anne from the Jewish Lyceum, recalled that Margot and Edith were selected for a transport to the Libeau labor camp in Upper Silesia, while Anne was prohibited from joining because she had developed scabies; Margot and Edith decided to stay with Anne, and Bloeme went on without them.[12] While Edith was left behind, Margot and Anne were transferred to Bergen-Belsen concentration camp on October 30, where both contracted typhus in the winter of 1944.[13]

Margot Frank died in February or March 1945 at the age of 18 or 19 due to typhus. A few days later, Anne died due to the same illness.[14] Janny Brandes-Brilleslijper and her sister Lientje buried them together in one of the camp's mass graves; in August 1945, once she came back to the Netherlands and recovered from typhus, Janny wrote to Otto Frank and informed him that both of his daughters had died.[15]

Otto Frank was the only one to survive out of the eight people who went into hiding. When he returned to Amsterdam he was given Anne's diary by Miep Gies, which he later published as a remembrance to her. Along with Anne, Margot Frank also wrote a diary during their time in hiding (Anne mentioned her sister's diary in her own) but Margot's diary was never found.[16] However, many authors wrote fan-based diaries of Margot such as the novel The Silent Sister by Mazal Alouf-Mizrahi. Letters written by both Frank sisters to American pen pals were published in 2003.[17] Buddy Elias (1925–2015) was Anne's first cousin and last surviving close relative.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Müller 1999, pp. 128–130
  2. ^ "Margot Frank". Archived from the original on 2018-01-02. Retrieved 2018-03-05.
  3. ^ Rittner, Carol (1998). Anne Frank in the world: essays and reflections. M.E. Sharpe. p. 111. ISBN 978-0-7656-0020-2.
  4. ^ "Margot Frank - Anne Frank Fonds". Retrieved 2020-09-24.
  5. ^ Rol, Ruud van der. (1993). Anne Frank, beyond the diary : a photographic remembrance. Verhoeven, Rian., Langham, Tony (Translator),, Peters, Plym,, Quindlen, Anna. New York, N.Y., U.S.A.: Viking. ISBN 0-670-84932-4. OCLC 27186901.
  6. ^ Heidermann, Horst (2002), "1847: Ein "Anti-Musik-Verein" im Wohnhaus der Familie Heine", Heine-Jahrbuch 2002, Stuttgart: J.B. Metzler, pp. 221–226, doi:10.1007/978-3-476-02889-1_11, ISBN 978-3-476-01925-7, retrieved 2020-09-24
  7. ^ Verhoeven, Rian. (2019). Anne Frank was niet alleen : het Merwedeplein, 1933-1945. Amsterdam: Prometheus. ISBN 978-90-446-3041-1. OCLC 1129599223.
  8. ^ Rol, Ruud van der. (1993). Anne Frank, beyond the diary : a photographic remembrance. Verhoeven, Rian., Langham, Tony (Translator),, Peters, Plym,, Quindlen, Anna. New York, N.Y., U.S.A.: Viking. p. 21. ISBN 0-670-84932-4. OCLC 27186901.
  9. ^ "Margot Frank - Anne Frank Fonds". Retrieved 2020-09-24.
  10. ^ Barnouw, David; Van Der Stroom, Gerrold, eds. (2003). The Diary of Anne Frank: The Revised Critical Edition. New York: Doubleday. p. 21. ISBN 0-385-50847-6.
  11. ^ "The final transport from Westerbork to Auschwitz". Anne Frank Website. 2019-09-03. Retrieved 2021-03-23.
  12. ^ Lindwer, Willy (1988). The Last Seven Months of Anne Frank. Netherlands: Gooi & Sticht. p. 129. ISBN 978-0-385-42360-1.
  13. ^ Prins, Erika; Broek, Gertjan. "One day they simply weren't there any more…" (PDF). Anne Frank House.
  14. ^ Lindwer, Willy (1988). The Last Seven Months of Anne Frank. Netherlands: Gooi & Sticht. p. 74. ISBN 978-0-385-42360-1.
  15. ^ Lindwer, Willy (1988). The Last Seven Months of Anne Frank. Netherlands: Gooi & Sticht. pp. 83–84. ISBN 978-0-385-42360-1.
  16. ^ "Margot Frank". Anne Frank Stichting. Retrieved 30 October 2015.
  17. ^ "Anne Frank and her Iowa Penpal". Archived from the original on 2013-12-09. Retrieved 2014-03-16.

Further readingEdit

  • Anne Frank. The Diary of Anne Frank: The Revised Critical Edition, edited by David Barnouw and Gerrold Van der Stroom, translated by Arnold J. Pomerans, compiled by H. J. J. Hardy, second edition, Doubleday, 2001.
  • Willy Lindwer. The Last Seven Months of Anne Frank, Pan Macmillan, 1989.
  • Jeroen De Bruyn and Joop van Wijk. Anne Frank: The Untold Story. The hidden truth about Elli Vossen, the youngest helper of the Secret Annex, Bep Voskuijl Producties, 2018.
  • Rubin, Susan Goldman. Searching for Anne Frank: Letters from Amsterdam to Iowa, Abrams, 2003.
  • Miep Gies and Alison Leslie Gold. Anne Frank Remembered, Simon and Schuster, 1988.

External linksEdit