Open Tuesdays through Saturdays 1:00pm – 4:00pm; Daily Docent Tours at 1:30pm

Beatrix Margolis

Beatrix was born in Berlin, Germany in 1921.  Her family belonged to a reform temple and she attended Sunday school.  When she began high school, anti-Semitism was growing. Her father was arrested in either 1937 or ‘38 but returned home shortly after. During Kristallnacht, Beatrix was out in the streets and saw people carrying buckets of red paint and painting “X”s on the doorposts of Jewish professionals’ offices and businesses. Beatrix was terrified and returned home as fast as she could. Her father’s business was destroyed that night, and the event changed him—he became beaten and bitter.

After this incident, Beatrix realized she needed to get out of Germany. She sought the help of a family friend who worked with the Jewish Distribution Committee and, in 1939, obtained a visa to England where she lived with her cousin and his family. Beatrix discovered that her parents and brother went to the United States in 1941, and she joined them two years later.

At first, Beatrix had difficulty finding a job because she was considered an “enemy alien.” Eventually, Beatrix found employment a doctor’s office in Cincinnati and went to college at night. She married her husband in 1946 and they had four children.

In 1992, Beatrix and her daughter returned to Berlin where they were begged for forgiveness by the Berlin municipality. This experience helped ease her bitterness, and she expressed that the war helped her to become an independent person.

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