Margarete Boden was born the daughter of landowner Hans Boden and his wife Elfriede Popp. Margarete had three sisters and a brother. In 1909, she attended the Höhere Töchterschule (Higher Girls School) in Bromberg. Margarete trained and worked as a nurse during the First World War followed by a stint at a German Red Cross hospital at the war’s end.
After the war she had a short marriage that produced no children. During this time she was able to operate and direct a private nursing clinic in Berlin thanks to the financial help she received from her father. She first met her second husband, Heinrich Himmler in 1927 during one of his lecture tours and remained thereafter in written contact. She was very impressed by his romantic style of writing and his apparent profound love for her. The blonde, blue-eyed nurse perfectly matched the Nazi ideal of the perfect German woman. Himmler was a rising star in the Nazi Party and soon was a member of Adolf Hitlers bodyguard unit called the "Schutzstaffel" (Private Echelon) commonly known as the SS. Although she was seven years older, she and Himmler married in July, 1928. The couple had one daughter, Gudren and later adopted a son named Gerhard von der Ahé , son of an SS officer who was shot and killed in 1933. Gerhard was basically ignored by Himmler but he joined the SS in 1945 and was captured by the Russian's. He was released from being a Russian prisoner in 1955 and returned to Germany were Mara picked him up and brought him to her home.
Shortly before she married Margo sold her interest in her clinic to one of the doctor's who worked there. She wrote to Himmler telling him she had sold it to the doctor and spoke derogatorily of him as being a Jew.
Marga was known to be a hard woman who would rule the family home. She was not known to be gregarious in nature and did not fit in with the SS or Nazi party wives' circles. It was common knowledge that she and Lina Heydrich, the wife of Reinhard Heydrich, who was Himmler's second in command in the SS, loathed each others company. Marga stayed at home most of the time running the household affairs and tending to the Himmlers' various enterprises (that subsequently failed such as live stock raising). He was away from the home most of the time due to his varied time consuming responsibilities as head of the SS and as a member of Adolf Hitler's inner circle. He would write letters and call at least once a week and frequently had his daughter flown down to see him as he was quite the adoring father to her. The Hitler Youth leader, Baldur von Schirach said Himmler was "henpecked" meaning he did what ever Margo said.
In 1936 Hedwig Potthast was hired as a personal secretary in the Reichsfuhrer's headquarters . In 1938 she became Himmler's personal secretary. They became romantically involved and she bore Himmler, a son and a daughter. Potthast resigned her office in 1941. Margo learned of their affair and children in 1941 as well but opted to not divorce Himmler as she feared what it would do to her daughter. She and Himmler lived a strained relationship afterwards and were basically separated. She had kept busy working with the German Red Cross off and on since 1914. During World War II she even went to Poland with the Red Cross and saw a great deal of the devastation there and was known to remark about the Jews. For her services and leadership in that organization, she was promoted to the rank of Oberst (colonel).
Margo and their daughter Gudren last saw Himmler in early April, 1945. Himmler died in British custody on April 5th, from crushing a cyanide capsule between his death. Margo died at age 73 unrepentent for being a member of the Nazi Party and her anti-antisemitism.
Heinrich Luitpold Himmler
1900–1945 (m. 1928)
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