The Legacy of Anne Frank….in life….in death!
June 12, 1929, this week eighty five years ago, Anne Frank was born in Frankfurt Germany to Otto and Edith Frank. Anne’s older sister Margot and Anne had a happy life in Frankfurt to begin with, playing with other children, school and family outings, life was good. In 1933 Hitler took over Germany and being Jewish, the Frank’s were concerned. Another concern was the economic crisis that they were experiencing.
Anne, 3rd from left, Margot 4th from right
Margot and Anne Frank
Looking for an escape, Edith and the children followed Otto to Amsterdam where Otto sets up a business. Life is again good, the children attend school and all seems to be going well until on September 1st of 1939 Germany attacks Poland. Shortly after the Netherlands were also invaded and they were forced to surrender to the Germans. The Franks are amongst the many Jews who were restricted with their business and as individuals. Mr. Frank makes the decision to take his family into hiding thinking that this is the only way that they will stay together and survive. He tried to emigrate to America but this failed and so an annex inside of his business is prepared to keep the Franks in hiding until they are safe.
Eight people including the Frank’s and four other Jews go into hiding. Four of Otto’s employees helps them so that they will not be discovered. Living in conditions such as they were, they were in constant fear of being discovered.
“Not being able to go outside upsets me more than I can say, and I’m terrified our hiding place will be discovered and that we’ll be shot.”
In the annex, it was dark and damp as they had to keep their hiding place shut up so that they would not be discovered and arrested. The only place that they can get a little bit of fresh air is from a small window in the attic. They cannot let nearby neighbors see that they are living there as they would for sure be doomed. The Franks, as well as the Van Pels and later a man by the name of Fritz Pfeffer took refuge in the shelter from 1942-1944.
It was during their time of hiding that Anne began to write in a journal. As well as writing her feelings and the happenings in their small hide out, she also wrote short stories and quotes from other writers. On July 23rd, 1943 Anne wrote:
“”Margot and Mr. Van Pels wish, above all else, to have a hot bath filled to the brim, which they can lie in for more than half an hour. Mrs. Van Pels would like a cake, Pfeffer can think of nothing but seeing his Charlotte and Mother is dying for a cup of real coffee. Father would like to visit Mr. Voskuijl, Peter would go downtown, and as for me, I’d be so overjoyed I wouldn’t know where to begin. Most of all I long to have a home of our own, to be able to move around freely and have someone help me with my homework again, at last. In other words, to go back to school!”
They would never have their wishes realized however as on August 4th 1944, everyone in the secret annex was found and arrested. Mr. Frank is the only one to survive the fateful camps that they were all taken to such as the infamous Auschwitz. Anne ends up in the same barracks as her mother and sister but then they are seperated when Anne and her sister are taken to Bergen-Belsen.
At the young age of 15, in March 1945, Anne Frank dies.
The story does not end there. Anne Frank and her family, being in such a tumultuous situation and hiding for two years in the small annex with five other prisoners, there was fear, sadness, loneliness and many other emotions that were bestowed upon the hideout. The Anne Frank House still stands and is a museum where they have exhibits and give daily tours. It has been reported by numerous people that cold spots are constantly felt, and the apparition of a young girl is often seen looking outside one of the windows with a blank stare on her face. Some have reported a loud rumbling down the stairs leading to the basement which could be linked to an event that ocurred while Anne was still living in which a sack of uncooked beans was spilled down the stairs accidentally. This could be possibly what we call a residual haunting where events are recorded in time to replay over and over again.
I’m convinced that in some of the concentration camps such as “Bergen Belsen” that there is paranormal activity with the history as the picture below depicts looming in our minds. There are accounts of an unamed barrack in Germany, that was boarded up due to all of the paranormal activity that was encountered there. Stories of furniture being moved although the room was boarded up, when they did open the room, it was icy cold although the radiators were hot to the touch, and the chairs were stacked from floor to ceiling. Perhaps, this was one of the prisoners that experienced the horrors that Anne Frank experienced in the concentration camps. I’m sure that there are many holocaust victims that wander the realms around Germany and Amsterdam, searching for an answer to the unsettling lives that they lived. Perhaps one of the many spirits that lived the terror is Anne herself, searching for her family and what became of them.