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June 12

Anne Frank

“The nicest part is being able to write down all of my thoughts and feelings,” Anne Frank wrote about her diary. “Otherwise I’d absolutely suffocate.”

Anne Frank. Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-122925;

1942: History in Her Own Words
Anne Frank begins keeping a diary
Anne Frank’s diary, kept while her family was in hiding from the Nazis during World War II, is one of the most heartbreaking narratives to emerge from the Holocaust. Her journal is by turns funny, sad, and hopeful.

She received the diary on this day, her 13th birthday, and immediately began recording her innermost thoughts, as well as the astonishing story of her family’s hidden apartment in a building in Amsterdam. Through the unbearable tension of nearly two years, when the hidden occupants had to stay utterly quiet so the workers below would not grow suspicious, Anne Frank’s diary was a rare source of comfort for her.

She and her family were discovered in August 1944; all but her father perished in Nazi concentration camps.
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