Two Girls from Amsterdam

On this #HolocaustRemembranceDay, let us honor two little girls from Amsterdam. Anne Frank (whose name is now known worldwide) lived on the Merwedepleen; Ali Isaac lived around the corner in the Jekerstraat. As it happens, both had older sisters named Margot.

To avoid the Nazi occupiers of Holland, Anne went into hiding for two years (and kept a diary that would become famous); Ali evaded capture as well. Both were ultimately discovered, and both ended up at Bergen Belsen during the freezing Hongerwinter of 1944-45. Along with thousands of others, Anne perished (typhus). But Ali somehow survived, and 18 months after the war ended she was able to rejoin her sister (my mother) in the USA.

Statue of Anne Frank on the Merwedepleen in Amsterdam.
The original Dutch version of Anne Frank’s diary
Alice Elisabeth Isaac in 1943, photographed by Annemie Wolff. Copyright held by her granddaughter, Monica Kaltenschnee.

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