Anneliese, the perfect midget

Anneliese, the perfect midget

Anneliese, the perfect midget

This will be a many parter story, depending how much I can condense Anneliese’s life story she told me over the course of many years. 

She was a perfect midget, born in Germany in the early 1920’s, and this story will tell her life’s story, and  how we became best friends in Dallas in the 1970’s-1980’s.  Hold onto your hat.

In the 1960’s -1980’s, I was working for Dallas Power and Light Company. I had a part time job doing home repairs and remodeling. One afternoon in 1973, the phone rang, and this tiny baby like voice started speaking baby like talk to me. All I could understand was the Mr. Bale part. I thought it was a prankster, so I hung up. In a minute the phone rang again, and a ladies voice said, Mr. Bale, this is a friend of Anneliese Rolf.

My friend wants you to come to her home and give her an estimate on remodeling her home. She is a midget, and needs a lot of changes made to the house she just bought. 

So I made an appointment for later that afternoon. What a series of surprises I had waiting. I was about to meet the most intriguing and interesting person in my lifetime.

After talking with Anneliese for awhile, I began to understand her baby like voice. She was old for a midget, in her early 50’s. She was beautiful, perfect proportioned in every way. The lines in her face showed her age. Your dining room table is about 30 inches tall. Anneliese measured 32 inches tall. They sold dolls as big as Anneliese. I was blown away with her intelligence and wit and humor. She was one of a kind.  Her laughter was never ending.

That day began a many years long friendship with her. We became best friends, and over the years I documented her life’s story in a hand written journal. 

After she died, I wanted her story told to the world. One of the head writers at Dallas Morning News was a personal friend. He was interested, and took my journal and kept it for about a year. 

He mailed it back, said it was just too much. He suggested Readers Digest. Readers Digest said they did not accept stories directly  from writers anymore, they hired a contractor to ferret out and furnish stories.for them. The contractor said I could not furnish them necessary documented proof of her stories, especially about Adolph Hitler and Jack Ruby. So dear reader, you will just have to trust me to tell her story as honestly as I can. And since I’m honest, and Anneliese was the most honest person I ever knew, you can take it to the bank.

Anneliese was born in the early 1920’s on the edge of Berlin, not long after World War One. Her parents lived in a small village adjoining  Berlin. He mom was taller than average, her father and two brothers were over six feet tall. Anneliese was considered a freak by her family. Her mom was ashamed of her, and kept her secluded in their home. They lived on a street that had shops on the ground floor, and the families lived in the upstairs.  All the shops had upstairs balconies built over the sidewalks. 

That was as close as Anneliese got to the outside world during her growing up years. Her mom allowed her to sit on the balcony and watch the world go by.

Germany was going through trying times during the Great Depression of the 1930’s. 

The political upheaval taking place was violent. Anneliese said her family was fearful the new leader named Adolph was leading them into war. One day, some German soldiers came and took away her brothers. 

They were in their late teens, and forced into military service. She did not know it at the time, but she would never see them again.

Adolph loved parades. He was so self centered and parades really showed him off to the masses. The Rolf home was on the main highway through their village. There were parades almost monthly in and around Berlin, showcasing egotistical Adolph. 

He spotted Anneliese one day, and afterwards, tipped his hat at her whenever his parade passed by.  Sometimes it was just Adolph in his convertible, and a few other vehicles.

One day a strange lady came to their shop to talk with her mother. They were downstairs, but Anneliese could hear their conversation. Sounded like Anneliese was being sold into slavery. Bondage, they called it. 

Next time: Anneliese, the circus queen.

Roy Bale can be reached at