June 25, 1947: Anne Frank’s diary is published.
In June of 1942, a young girl named Anne Frank received a diary for her thirteenth birthday. Two days later, she would begin a chronicle of her experiences under the Nazi regime - a chronicle that would soon be read by millions of people around the world. Anne and her family (plus four other people) went into hiding in the secret annex behind her father’s office building in Amsterdam - the Achterhuis - shortly after she received the diary. They managed to hide for two years with the help of ordinary Dutch citizens like Miep Gies and her husband before they were betrayed to the Nazis in August of 1944, and subsequently deported in September. Anne and her sister Margot both died in Bergen-Belsen in 1945, only weeks before the camp was liberated; their mother, Edith, died in Auschwitz of starvation; the family that had stayed with the Franks in the Achterhuis, the van Pels, all died in camps as well.
The only survivor out of the original eight was Anne’s father, Otto Frank. It was he who had Anne’s diary published after the war, and, in 1952, an English-language version was published as well, under the title The Diary of a Young Girl; since then, Anne Frank’s diary has been published in over sixty different languages.
In 1946, one Dutch historian wrote of the not-yet-published book:
This apparently inconsequential diary by a child, this ‘de profundis’ stammered out in a child’s voice, embodies all the hideousness of fascism, more so than all the evidence of Nuremberg put together.