Anne Frank House
For decades now, The Diary of Anne Frank has found itself of the list of top international bestsellers. The story of this young girl who went into hiding with her family during World War II has since become the voice of Dutch Jews during this time, a voice that has fascinated millions for the best part of a century.
Anne’s story of turning from a girl into a young woman during the years that she was in hiding is a tale which has resonated with young girls all over the world, and it is often wondered by many what she might have thought if she had known how much her words have meant to so many people.
The hiding place is located in an empty section of the building owned by Otto Frank’s company. While business continues, as usual, in the front part of the building, there are people hiding in the annex out back.
“The Annex is an ideal place to hide in. It may be damp and lopsided, but there’s probably not a more comfortable hiding place in all of Amsterdam. No, in all of Holland.”
The business on Prinsengracht 263 is in the area where many small companies are located. There is a tea company located on the left and a furniture company on the right of the Secret Annex.
The hiding place at 263 Prinsengracht is relatively spacious. There is enough room for two families. This is unusual given that parents and children who go into hiding are frequently separated from each other. Most hiding places are small spaces in damp cellars or dusty attics. People hiding in the countryside are sometimes able go outside, but only if there is no danger of them being discovered.
Anne rewrote her diary after she found out that diaries would be collected after the war, and 20 of the 215 loose sheets she used for this are displayed here in the Diary Room. On top of that, Anne also wrote a ‘Favourite Quotes Book’, and ‘Tales Book’ which are both on show here. As you can see, Anne’s writing ability and determination went far beyond just the personal diary that we all know about, and there is no doubt in many people’s mind that had she lived beyond the war she would have become a great writer and journalist.