Self-guided Frankfurt, Germany
Anne Frank Reflective Walk (Drive)
The Anne Frank DIY tour is extra and included with the pdf print-out version of the Frankfurt guide for sale below.
Note: The updated 2011 guide is no longer available for download (The updated 2012-2013 guide will be released at a later date)
Buy the colorful pdf file download of this Frankfurt guide (including Frankfurt International Airport and the do-it-yourself Anne Frank Reflective Walk) for a nominal US$2.95 (pdf file format, 4 mb, 22 pages, 2 maps).
Purchase: Upon purchase, a link to the guide together with its password will be sent to your email Inbox. To purchase the guide, click the Add To Cart button that will direct you to the PayPal site (credit cards okay).
Go to the Harriman Travel Books Store for more do-it-yourself destination guides.
(See Comments at the bottom of the page and feel free to add one of your own!)
The following entry belongs to my "Tomb-Lovers, Who's Buried Where?" destination guide that I haven't yet had the time to publish on this site. It is a brief synopsis of Anne's brief but brilliant life, and relevant to any travel guide featuring Frankfurt, Germany.
Frank, Anne (b. June 12, 1929 — d. March 1945). A young German-Jew who became world renown for her living-room diary, Anne Frank’s grim situation in Nazi-occupied Europe typified the near hopeless plight of the Jews, putting a face on the Holocaust. Annelies Marie, the youngest and second daughter of Edith and Otto Frank, was born in Frankfurt am Main on June 12, 1929. In 1933, after Hitler’s rise to power, the Franks fled Germany to escape the anti-Semitic National Socialist regime. They arrived in Amsterdam hoping the worst was over. Anne was 4 years old. On May 10, 1940, Hitler’s troops smashed across the Dutch frontier, and within a few days they seized Amsterdam—the Jewish persecution in Holland is about to begin. The following two years were traumatic and frightening for the Frank family as the Nazis tightened the noose around Holland’s Jewish population by imposing numerous anti-Semitic laws and initiating surprise roundups. Anne’s only mental escape was the diary she received on her 13th birthday from her father, into which she penned her deepest thoughts to an imaginary girlfriend named Kitty about her family, friends, future and budding adolescence. To give you a clearer picture of the times, Anne writes in her diary on June 20, 1942: “After May 1940 good times rapidly fled: first the war, then the capitulation, followed by the arrival of the Germans, which is when the suffering of the Jews really began. Anti-Jewish decrees followed each other in quick succession. Jews must wear a yellow star, Jews must hand in their bicycles, Jews are banned from trams and are forbidden to drive. Jews are only allowed to do their shopping between three and five o’clock and then only in shops which bear the placard ‘Jewish shop.’ Jews must be indoors by eight o’clock and cannot even sit in their own gardens after that hour. Jews are forbidden to visit theaters, cinemas, and other places of entertainment. Jews may not take part in public sports. Swimming baths, tennis courts, hockey fields, and other sports grounds are all prohibited to them. Jews may not visit Christians. Jews must go to Jewish schools, and many more restrictions of a similar kind.”
To elude deportation, the Franks went into hiding on July 6, 1942. Anne brought her diary. Months before, Otto Frank had created a “secret annex” above his office (in the center of Amsterdam at 263 Prinsengracht) to conceal his wife and two daughters, if necessary. For 25 months, the Franks and another four Jews were holed up in the Secret Annex, which could only be accessed via a cleverly built moveable bookcase (that swung open on hinges like a door). Their only lifeline was a small group of confidants and Miep Gies, a family friend and one of the central figures in Anne’s diary.
(Excerpt from Anne’s diary, October 1, 1942: “We are as quiet as baby mice. Who, three months ago, would ever have guessed that Quicksilver Anne would have to sit still for hours—and, what’s more, could?”)
The Franks fugitive-like status came to an end on August 4, 1944, when their hiding place was betrayed. They were subsequently corralled onto a cattle train bound for Auschwitz (Anne and her sister Margot were later deported to Bergen-Belsen). After the arrest, Miep Gies searched the Secret Annex and found Anne’s diary. She saved it with the hope of returning it to Anne after the war. Sadly, Otto was the only member of the Frank family to survive the Nazi death camps. After his return, Miep Gies handed the precious diary to a shattered Otto Frank. “Here is your daughter Anne’s legacy to you,” Miep said.
Anne Frank was an inquisitive, intelligent, and spirited young lady. She was all of 15 years old when she perished (from typhus) in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, some three weeks before its liberation by the British Army. Anne’s life has been immortalized through her candid diary and the preservation of the Secret Annex as a museum. With nearly 1 million visitors per year, the “Anne Frank House” (www.anne-frank.org) is one of Amsterdam’s biggest attractions. Anne’s diary (first published in Dutch on June 25, 1947) has been translated into more than 65 languages, selling 30 million copies worldwide; (in 1952 its English title was released as “The Diary of a Young Girl”). In 1955, Anne’s story was directed into a successful stage play, followed by a three-time Oscar-winning film in 1959 (Best Cinematography, Best Art Direction, and Shelley Winters for Best Supporting Actress), and on May 3 the following year the Secret Annex officially opened as a museum.
Anne Frank is buried in a mass grave at Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, 23 km northwest of the medieval town of Celle. Her sister, Margot, is with her. Note: To learn more about Anne and see where she was born, set off on my Anne Frank Reflective Walk, do-it-yourself tour (included with the pdf print-out version of the Frankfurt guide for sale above). Alas, with sad eyes I write this addendum, Miep Gies has recently passed away “after a brief illness” on Monday January 10, 2010. She was 100 years old, the last of Anne’s helpers.
Frank, Margot (b. Feb 16, 1926 — d. March 1945). Anne’s older sister, who suffered the same unimaginable fate!
Click here for Frankfurt Museums.
Click here for Frankfurt Entertainment, Eats and Shopping.
Click here for Accommodations Frankfurt.
Click here for Introduction Frankfurt.
Click here for Frankfurt Airport.
Click here for do-it-yourself Frankfurt.
(This page was last updated June 2011.)
PLEASE take a moment to let me and others know your thoughts about Frankfurt, or the information on this page, or perhaps you have a question about a particular sight. Simply type in your comment below and click "Post as" (note that you can login via your Facebook or Twitter account in which case we'd get to see your avatar). To finish, this is an open message board, thus please refrain from using foul language or disrespecting others. Thank you, Brett Harriman