Annelies Marie Frank was born on June 12, 1929 in Frankfurt, Germany where her family lived at the time. Anne was born Jewish. Her mother, Edith, and her father, Otto, had another daughter, Margot, born in 1926. Shortly after Anne’s birth, the Frank family moved to a stucco duplex in the suburbs of Frankfurt addressed 307 Marbachweg. They lived in the first two floors on the right half. With help from their housekeeper, Kathi Stilgenbauer, Edith took care of her precious, colicky baby with some breathing problems. Anne’s grandmothers, Rosa Hollander and Alice Frank, came to visit frequently. This young baby, would one day grow up to write a powerful diary that would influence many, but to start she had a simple childhood, with a world of change around her.When Germany lost World War I, every country wanted them to pay back their debt for the cost of the war. They owed thirty-two billion dollars that they did not have. All of Germany began to suffer with hunger, job loss, and other hardships. Germany’s National Socialist German Worker’s Party, or Nazis, began to rise against communists. They elected Adolf Hitler as their leader. Jews became the target of the frustration faced by the Germans. They needed to find someone to blame. Jewish people were a tight religious group. The economy was crashing, and all fingers were pointed at the Jews.At young ages, Margot and Anne were very sheltered. They had many neighbors that they befriended and they lived simply. In 1929, Kathi Stilgenbauer moved out to get married. By this time, there were a lot of men patrolling the streets from the Nazi parties pushing around and threatening the local Jews. With everything falling apart, more and more people begin to listen …
…ly knew they could not be seen carrying suitcases, so they had to pile on as much clothing as possible to go to their destination. Before they left, Margot and Miep rode bicycles over to the hiding spot to open it up. The family followed on foot with shopping bags and their coats still wearing the yellow star of David.The Frank family went into hiding expecting to be away for a short period of time. No one could predict how long the war would last. All events in Anne Frank’s childhood led up to the famous story of the young Jewish girl living in the secret annex, who wrote a diary of the tragic times and events around her. The story and diary of Anne Frank will live on for generations to come, and continue to inspire all.
Hermann, Spring. Anne Frank: Hope in the Shadows of the Holocaust. Berkeley Heights: Enslow Publishers Inc, 2005.