Biography Project – Anne Frank

 

Anne Frank was a Jewish child growing up in Holland during World War 2. When the Nazis invaded Holland on May 10, 1940 it was impossible to leave Holland so Anne and her family had no choice but to go into hiding.

 

Childhood/Early Life

Anne Frank was born on June 12, 1929. She was born in Germany and lived there from when she was born to the age of 4. At the time Anne Frank was born, Germany was having economic problems (the result of World War 1). In 1933 when Anne was 4, Adolf Hitler rose to power and started to discriminate Jews, soon Anne’s father realized that Germany was no longer a safe place to raise his family. So, he decided to move his family to Holland. Anne and her sister Margot were enrolled at Montessori School. But then, the Germans invaded Holland. Anne and her family were no longer safe.

During the time of German occupation Anne had to wear a yellow star to show she was Jewish. Anne was also forced to leave her beloved Montessori School and go to one just for Jews. Anne’s 13th birthday was coming up. This would be the last birthday she would ever celebrate. For her birthday she got her diary, the one that has become so famous over the past 50-60 years. The happy times didn’t last. Less than a month after Anne’s birthday There was a letter from the Germans saying that Margot had to work in a German factory. Now the family had only 1 choice; they had to go into hiding.

Early in the morning of June 6, 1942  Anne’s mother woke her up and told her to dress in 2 undershirts, 3 pairs of pants, a dress, a skirt, a jacket, a summer coat, 2 pairs of stockings, sturdy shoes, a woolen cap and a scarf. Anne did what she was told. She had no idea where she was going. The hiders were joined by 4 other people, Peter Van Daan, Mrs. Van Daan, Mr. Van Daan and Dr. Albert Dussel. They also had helpers. They were Miep Van Santen, Elli Vossen, Mr. Kraler and Mr. Koophuis. In the hiding place (known now as the Secret Annex) Anne had to whisper and tiptoe in the Secret Annex. For such a lively young girl it was terrible. Everyone in the Secret Annex was getting on everyone’s nerves. In the evening everyone gathered around the radio to hear news about the war. Miep and Elli did their best to make life better for the people in the Secret Annex. The hiders all wished for something. Anne wished to go back to school. The 8 hiders had many close calls. Once in April, 1944 a burglary really frightened everyone. The police had come to investigate the burglary and they rattled the secret door. The 8 hiders sat in the pitch dark and waited. Someone even suggested they get rid of the forbidden radio and burn Anne’s diary. Luckily the hiders didn’t get caught. In 1944, Anne and Peter Van Daan started to hang out together to relieve the bordism. Soon they developed strong crushes on each other. Everyday the hiders went around their daily business wondering if/when they would be discovered. The about the news about the war was getting better and Anne started to fantasize that maybe she would be able to go back to school soon. But then, on the morning of Friday, August 4, 1944, Anne and the others were discovered. People think that someone guessed Jews were hiding on the premises and betrayed them to the Nazis. They gathered their belongings and went first to the Gestapo headquarters, then to the Westerbork prison camp, and the to the Auschwitz prison camp. Later, Anne and Margot were moved to the Bergen-Belsen prison camp. There, Anne became very sick with typhus. Luckily her friend Lies Goosen was also at that prison camp and actually had medicine and food because she got a passport to South America before she was arrested so, she sent 2 packages to Anne. Anne only caught 1. Soon after Margot died, after that Anne also became very ill and died shortly after. Anne died 2 months before the war ended and 3 months before her 16th birthday.

 

Challenges/Obstacles

Anne faced many challenges in her life. Her biggest one was hiding from the Nazis. Anne was very lively so the Secret Annex felt like prison for her. One of her other challenges was that she could not go to places like the public pool, movie theaters, certain shops and was even forced to leave her beloved Montessori School and go to a school just for Jews. Overall Anne’s challenge was being a Jewish girl growing up in Holland during World War 2.

 

Impact on the World

Although Anne died a long time ago, her diary lives on. Millions of people read Anne’s diary. It was printed in around 60 languages. Her diary explains the true horrors of World War 2 through the eyes a young, Jewish girl in hiding.

 

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