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On this day in History, 12 June 1942, a young Jewish girl living in Amsterdam receives a diary on her thirteenth birthday. The diary would later become one of the most famous diaries ever written. “The Diary of Anne Frank”.
Her parents gave her a diary with a red checked cover, her favorite present. “I hope I will be able to confide everything to you, as I have never been able to confide in anyone, and I hope you will be a great source of comfort and support”, Anne wrote in her diary the same day. Today marks what would have been Anne Frank’s 84th birthday.
A month after receiving the diary, she and her family went into hiding from the Nazis in rooms behind her father’s office. For two years, the Franks and four other families hid, fed and cared for by Gentile friends. The families were discovered by the Gestapo, which had been tipped off, in 1944. The Franks were taken to Auschwitz, where Anne’s mother died. Friends in Amsterdam searched the rooms and found Anne’s diary hidden away.
Anne and her sister were transferred to another camp, Bergen-Belsen, where Anne died of typhus a month before the war ended.
Anne’s father survived Auschwitz and published Anne’s diary in 1947 as The Diary of a Young Girl. The book has been translated into more than 60 languages.