Writings by Elisabeth Model
Scope and Contents
Writings by Elisabeth Model consists of Elisabeth’s biographical writings, correspondence, and family photo albums. “In Memoriam” depicts her husband Max’s anti-fascist activities in the Netherlands and his persecution by the Nazis. “Memories: People and Places” centers on her early life, family, and artwork. Both works include numerous details and anecdotes about their lives and the people with whom they interacted. The photo albums comprise half of the collection and document the vibrant life of the family.
Language of Materials
The collection is in English and German.
Conditions Governing Access
Open to researchers.
Conditions Governing Use
There may be some restrictions on the use of the collection.
Elisabeth (Lise) Model was born in Bayreuth into a family of artists in 1897, daughter of Isidor Dittmann (1854-1929) and Therese Dittmann (née Fleischer; 1865-1943). Isidor Dittmann owned a haberdashery. Elisabeth Model had four siblings: Alfred, Amalie, Julius, and her twin sister Julia (Meyer). In the 1920s, a common friend introduced her to Hermann Hesse, and they subsequently became friends.
Elisabeth studied sculpture in Munich under Professor Thor; in Paris under Moissi Kogan, and at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam under Professor Jurgens. She became a painter and a sculptor in her own right. While studying in Munich, she met her future husband Max Model, born February 3, 1895. Max was a banker for the Dresdner bank in Frankfurt and Mannheim. Elisabeth and Max Model got married on September 5, 1922, and they moved to Amsterdam, where they became Dutch citizens. They had two sons Wolfgang (Wolfe), born September 16, 1927, and Franz Peter Isidor Artur, born April 2, 1930, in Amsterdam.
Elisabeth, their two sons, and her sister Mali arrived in New York on June 21, 1941. Elisabeth’s mother, Therese, died in the Dutch Westerbork camp on June 22, 1942, and the children of Elisabeth’s brother, Heinz and Marion Dittmann, age 17 and 15 respectively, were sent to a labor camp and did not survive. Max Model died September 11, 1950. Elisabeth Model died November 12, 1993, New York, N.Y.
1 Linear Feet
The collection holds two autobiographical writings by the artist Elisabeth Model. One work centers on her husband’s persecution by the Nazis in Amsterdam, their narrow escape with their sons Wolfe and Peter, and her sister Mali to New York, and their life in the United States. Her second work focuses on her life in relation to various places and people that impressed her. Also included are family photo albums, some correspondence, and other documents that constitute addenda to the original Elisabeth Model Collection, AR 6306.
Arranged into two series by topic and document types.
- Series I: Manuscript, Scrapbook, 1947-1981
- Series II: Photo Albums, Newspaper Clippings, Correspondence, 1930-1947, 1994
The book Lowe, Jacques. Portrait: The Emergence of John F. Kennedy. McGraw-Hill, 1961 was removed from the archival collection.
Elisabeth Model’s scrapbook, photocopy “Memories: People and Places”, was removed to the archival collection AR 25899 C.
Materials were rehoused into acid-free box, folders, and envelopes.
- Amsterdam (Netherlands)
- Bayreuth (Germany)
- Emigration and immigration
- Hesse, Hermann, 1877-1962
- Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)
- Manuscripts (documents)
- New York (N.Y.)
- Photograph albums
- Theresienstadt (Concentration camp)
- Westerbork (Concentration camp)
- World War, 1939-1945
- Guide to Writings by Elisabeth Model
- Processed by Simona Sivkoff-Livneh
- Language of description
- Script of description
Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository
15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States