Anne Frank's Entire Diary on Display in Amsterdam
The exhibition opened Wednesday, marking 50 years since the Anne Frank House museum opened its doors to the public. The original red plaid diary that Anne began on her 13th birthday has been in the museum for several years, but this is just one of many of her writings. The first diary covered just six months of the 25 she hid with her family and four other Jews in a concealed apartment in Amsterdam. The diary has been read by millions of people and is part of many school curriculums.
According to USA Today, "on display are the three parts of the diary, a book of short stories she wrote called Tales from the Secret Annex, and a notebook of her favorite quotations." Two other school exercise books have been stored at the Netherlands War Documentation Center, the government war archives. Additionally, 360 loose pages of earlier diary entry revisions will be displayed 40 sheets at a time because of the papers' fragile state.
Although the diary and other papers have all been studied and published, this will be the first time visitors will be able to witness nearly the full collection in Anne's own handwriting in one place.
"The generation of people who experienced the war and Nazi persecution of the Jews is shrinking fast," said former Prime Minister Wim Kok during a ceremony at the 17th Century Western Church, just steps away from the museum, according to USA Today. "Their stories must be kept alive and passed on to new generations. The Anne Frank House is one of the places where that happens."
The Anne Frank House museum also launched a "Secret Annex Online," allowing people to tour the exhibition online.
The apartment where Anne lived was restored by Anne's father, Otto Frank, and opened to the public on May 3, 1960. Otto was the only survivor among the eight Jews who hid in the cramped attic.
Anne's diary chronicles her life from June 12th, 1942 until August 1st, 1944. Three days after the last entry, the house was raided and its occupants were deported to Germany. Anne died of typhus in the Bergen-Belson concentration camp in March 1945, just around two weeks before the camp was liberated. She was only 15-years-old.