Robert Hampton

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30th March 2014

A Frank Discussion
Posted by at 10.16pm | Out and About | No responses

Anne Frank HouseOne of the first places that Ian and I visited in Amsterdam was the Anne Frank House.

Thanks to her diary, Anne Frank has become one of the most well-known of the millions of people murdered by the Nazis. Her family fled from Frankfurt to Amsterdam in 1933 to escape Nazi persecution, only to find themselves trapped when Germany invaded the Netherlands in 1940. In July 1942, as the German occupiers began rounding up Dutch Jews to send to their deaths, Anne’s father Otto decided to take matters into his own hands. He organised a hiding space in the warehouse of his business. In this “Secret Annexe” – a series of small rooms accessible through stairs hidden behind a bookcase – the family lived for over two years. Eight people holed up in a tiny space, unable to go outside or even open the curtains, and remaining completely quiet during the day in case the employees in the warehouse below heard them.

The plan ultimately failed; the Frank family was betrayed by person or persons unknown, and they were arrested in August 1944. Soon after, they were sent to concentration camps. Of the eight house residents, only Otto Frank survived.

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