“I keep my ideals, because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart.” ~Anne Frank
We all read her book in school. The story of a teenage girl hiding from Nazis. Anne Frank was born into a loving middle class family on June 12, 1929 in Germany. Though she only lived to be 15 years old, her legacy has lived on.
In 1933 her family fled to Amsterdam. Where for seven years they led a lovely life. Anne and her sister attended school. Otto owned a business but then in 1940 Germany invaded Netherlands. They attempted to flee Europe as refugees to the United States but were denied entry. At the time the United States were allowing in very few Jews under the fears that they may be Nazi spies. The family went into hiding into a back area of Otto Frank’s office when Margot Frank received a summons to go to a concentration camp.
For two years the Frank family, the Van Pels family and a single man shared the small space. Bringing the total to eight people. They could not go outside, or talk to anyone outside. They were reliant on Otto Frank’s former business partners. Anne, who dreamt of being a journalist, wrote a detailed account of her life in the Secret Annex. She also started to write her own novel about their time there, but tragedy strikes before she can finish.
In 1944 someone tipped the Gestapo off as to the whereabouts of the Frank family. Everyone was taken to concentration camps and split up. Anne Frank died in 1945 just weeks before the liberation along with her sister and mother. Of all of the eight people that were taken in only Otto Frank survived. It is still unclear as to who turned them in. However, in 2002 a theory was put forth that a former business associate of Otto’s was the culprit. He was known for turning in Jews for profit and had fallen on hard times and in need of a large pay out.
“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” ~Anne Frank
If you are interested in reading more about Anne or other similar stories here are my recommendations for you:
- Diary of Anne Frank. Anne’s story as told by her.
- Eva’s Story. Otto Frank eventually remarried. His second wife Elfriede Geiringer was also a concentration camp survivor. Eva’s story is about her daughter who died in the concentration camps as well.
- Number the Stars I believe this was the first ever historical fiction that I ever read. It’s the story of a young girl whose Jewish best friend moves into her home as they family tries to protect her from the Nazis.