The Anne Frank House

Anne Frank is one of the most renowned and most discussed Jewish victims of the Holocaust. Acknowledged for the quality of her writing, her diary has become one of the world's most widely read books, and has been the basis for several plays and films. Annelies Marie Frank is born on June 12, 1929 in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. She is the second daughter of Otto Frank and Edith Frank-Holländer. Her sister Margot is then three years old. The family is Jewish and German. The Frank and Holländer families have lived in Germany for centuries.


Anne’s father works at his family’s bank. Her mother takes care of everything at home. It is a carefree period for Margot and Anne. They have many friends in the neighbor-
hood where they live. However, their parents are worried. Adolf Hitler and his party have made the Jews the scapegoat for all of Germany's social and economic problems. The
anti-Semitism in the country grows

At the beginning of 1933, the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP or Nazi party) comes to power in Germany. Adolf Hitler, the leader of this party, becomes Chancellor. He is responsible for the new government. Before very long, there is discrimination against Jews. Germany changes from a democracy into a dictatorship. Anne’s parents no longer feel safe. Otto Frank’s bank is also in financial trouble because of the worldwide economic crisis. Otto and Edith Frank decide to leave Germany.

Otto Frank goes to the Netherlands in the summer of 1933. He has the opportunity to set up a company in Amsterdam that sells Opekta. This is a product used by housewives to prepare home-made jam. During that period, Anne and Margot stay with Grandmother Holländer who lives in Aachen Germany. Their mother commutes to and from Amsterdam to find the family a place to live there.

The Frank Family feels free and safe, until the German Army invades the Netherlands on May 10, 1940. The Occupation of the Netherlands begins on May 15, 1940. The discrimination against the Jews begins then as well: Jews may not own their own businesses, Jewish children have to go to Jewish schools, all Jews have to wear a yellow star, and countless other restrictions. There are even rumors that the Jews will be packed off to Germany…


On June 12, 1942, Anne Frank celebrates her 13th birthday. She receives a diary as a present. It is her favorite gift. She begins writing in it immediately: “I hope I will be able to confide everything to you…and I hope you will be a great source of comfort and support.”

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