- Holocaust Survivors
- World War
Nicknamed the Beautiful Beast. Irma Grese was a concentration camp guard and one of the few women to be called to account for her crimes. She was hanged in 1945 at the age of 22.
The incredible Nancy Wake. She was a powerful WWII Nazi hunter and member of the French resistance. At one point she was #1 most wanted and most-hated by the Nazis. They called her "The White Mouse" because she always escaped them. Read about her--she is fascinating!
Revenge at Birkenau: Jewish dancer and actress shoots SS man Schillinger fatally and injures SS man Emmerich on 10/23/43 in the undressing room of crematorium II before she and her fellow women were to be gassed. She did a strip tease in front of the lecherous Schillinger in order to distract him and grab his gun. She shot both men after successfully grabbing it.
10 Things to Know About Anne Frank's The Diary of a Young Girl--I wouldn't open this page up and read it to students, but it would be good to look over prior to the unit each year so I could share a couple points with them.
Miep Gies, who hid Anne Frank and her family from the Nazis during WWII. She was also responsible for preserving Anne Frank's diary and delivering it to her father Otto Frank, who was the sole survivor in the family. Gies received many honors, including knighthood in the Netherlands. She died in 2010 at the age of 100.
COCO CHANEL WAS DEFINITELY A NAZI. Archival documents verify that Chanel herself was a Nazi spy, committing herself to the German cause as early as 1941, when she became a paid agent of General Walter Schellenberg, chief of SS intelligence. Why would Coco Chanel have sympathized with the Nazis?
During the violent months preceding the liberation of Paris, New Zealander Nancy Wake killed a German guard with a single karate chop to the neck, executed a woman who had been spying for the Germans, shot her way out of roadblocks and biked 70 hours through perilous Nazi checkpoints to deliver radio codes for the Allies. In spite of Hitler she lives to be 98.
Irma Grese, the "Hyena of Auschwitz," a vicious, sadistic guard who was described by one interviewer as "the worst human being I have ever encountered." She was hanged at the age of 22 alongside other sadists from Auschwitz and Belsen.
This is Gisella Perl, a a successful Jewish gynaecologist in Sighet, Romania in the 1930s and 40s. She was taken to Auschwitz in 1944, where she treated women with kindness and compassion. She was asked to report all pregnant women to Josef Mengele- better known as the Angel of Death. When she discovered what was done to them (medical experimentation and torture, ending with often being thrown alive into the crematoriums) she vowed that there would never again be a pregnant. read on...
On the 70th Anniversary of the Execution of Sophie Scholl, 22 February 1943 - Sophie Scholl was a German woman executed by the Nazis for distributing anti-Nazi pamphlets. Prison officials, in later describing the scene, emphasized the courage with which she walked to her execution. Her last words were: "How can we expect righteousness to prevail when there is hardly anyone willing to offer themselves up individually for a righteous cause? Such a fine, sunny day, and I have to go."
Margot Woelk, food taster for Hitler: "For more than half a century, Margot Woelk kept her secret hidden from the world, even from her husband. Then, a few months after her 95th birthday, she revealed the truth about her wartime role: Adolf Hitler's food taster. Woelk, then in her mid-twenties, spent two and a half years as one of 15 young women who sampled Hitler's food to make sure it wasn't poisoned before it was served to the Nazi leader in his 'Wolf's Lair' in what is now Poland."
Christine Granville was a British WW2 spy. Her feats included acting as a courier in Nazi-occupied Europe, parachuting into France in support of the Allied invasion and rescuing three of her comrades from certain execution. She was said to be Winston Churchill’s favorite spy. Men found her irresistible, and she did very little to resist them.
France was liberated in 1944, and women accused of having been collaborated with Nazi personnel, are humiliated in public. This may seem like a war crime to todays’ audience, but during a time when people were overjoyed at seeing the Nazis leave, this image would have evoked feelings of victory.
The remains of the church in which 247 women and 205 children were trapped and killed by the Nazis. The middle window behind the altar is the one through which the only survivor Marguerite Rouffanche escaped