Scrapbookpages Blog

February 21, 2016

Otto Frank, father of Anne Frank, felt guilty about not saving his famous daughter

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 9:40 am
Anne Frank at age 13

This photo of Anne Frank photo at age 13 was used in news article

Otto Frank, who died on August 19, 1980, at the age of 91, is back in the news because he revealed, several years ago, that he felt guilty about not saving his wife and daughters during the Holocaust. There is no mention, in the recent news story, about HOW Otto might have saved his family, nor of how he managed to save himself.

Otto Frank and his family hid in an attic in Amsterdam during World War II, and saved themselves until the war was nearly over. Eventually, the family was betrayed by someone who revealed their hiding place to the Nazis.

Front door into the building where Anne Frank hid from the Nazis

My photo of the front door into the building in Amsterdam where Anne Frank hid in the attic

The whole family was sent to the infamous Auschwitz-Birkenau camp, after their hiding place was discovered.

Soon after he arrived at Auschwitz-Birkenau, Otto Frank had himself put into the camp hospital, claiming that he was too sick to work. He stayed in the hospital until the camp was liberated by Soviet soldiers on January 27, 1945.

I blogged about Otto Frank, and his stay in the camp hospital, on this previous blog post:  https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2014/06/01/how-does-the-story-of-anne-frank-prove-the-holocaust/

Later, Otto Frank apparently felt guilty because he did not advise the rest of his family to voluntarily put themselves into the hospital at Auschwitz-Birkenau so that they would not have to work, and would get better food, as he did, because he was  supposedly sick.

After less than two months in the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp, Anne and her sister Margot were transferred to the Bergen Belsen exchange camp in Germany in October 1944.  We know that the train carrying Anne and Margot to Bergen-Belsen was a “sick transport” because the Red Cross was asked to monitor the train along the way.

You can read about Otto Frank in this news article: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/anne-franks-dad-otto-told-7407747

Begin quote from news article:

The guilt that Anne Frank’s father felt after his two daughters and wife died in the Holocaust has been revealed by a former penpal.

The letters were sent to an Australian woman, who said Otto Frank told her of his turmoil following the deaths of Anne, Margot and Edith who all died in 1945 – just weeks before the end of the Second World War. [Anne, Margot and Edith all died of typhus at Bergen-Belsen]

Writing to 19-year-old Anne Finlayson in 1965, Mr Frank told her he blamed himself for the fate of his wife and two daughters and that he should have done more to protect them.

Anne was inspired, like many others, to write to the Holocaust survivor following the publication of The Diary of Anne Frank in 1947.

Anne’s diary entries spread across the globe after she began to write as a 13-year-old Jew hiding from the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands in a secret annexe of her father’s factory in Amsterdam.

The guilt that Anne Frank’s father felt after his two daughters and wife died in the Holocaust has been revealed by a former penpal.

The letters were sent to an Australian woman, who said Otto Frank told her of his turmoil following the deaths of Anne, Margot and Edith who all died in 1945 – just weeks before the end of the Second World War.

Writing to 19-year-old Anne Finlayson in 1965, Mr Frank told her he blamed himself for the fate of his wife and two daughters and that he should have done more to protect them.

Anne [Finlayson] was inspired, like many others, to write to the Holocaust survivor [Otto Frank] following the publication of The Diary of Anne Frank in 1947.

Anne’s diary entries spread across the globe after she began to write as a 13-year-old Jew hiding from the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands in a secret annexe of her father’s factory in Amsterdam.

End quote from news article

Here is the full story on the family of Otto Frank:

In February 1942, the Nazis had began rounding up all the Jews in Germany and the occupied countries for evacuation to the East in what the Nazis called “The Final Solution to the Jewish Question.”

Knowing that his family would soon be deported, Otto Frank began preparing a hiding place in the annex with a two-year supply of food and other essentials. Five months later, Anne and her family suddenly disappeared, leaving behind notes saying that they had gone to Switzerland, which was a neutral country during World War II. Otto Frank’s brother actually did escape from occupied France to Switzerland, but Otto Frank wanted to remain in Amsterdam because he had a thriving business there.

Many other Jewish families in Amsterdam also went into hiding, trusting that their Dutch neighbors and business associates would not betray their hiding places to the police. Approximately 25,000 Dutch Jews hid during the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands which began after the Germans defeated the Dutch in May 1940 in the early part of World War II.

Those unfortunate Dutch Jews who did not go into hiding were sent to the transit camp at Westerbork, from where they were then transported by train to Auschwitz, the infamous killing center, located in what is now Poland, where millions of Jews perished in the gas chambers. Many of the 160,000 Jews in the Netherlands were refugees, like the Franks and their friends in the annex, who had escaped from Germany after Hitler and the Nazis came to power in 1933. Westerbork was originally a refugee camp for German Jews who were regarded as illegal immigrants in the Netherlands after they escaped over the border from Nazi Germany before the war.

I have a section, on my website, about the house where Anne Frank hid:  http://www.scrapbookpages.com/AnneFrank/AnneFrank01.html

 

11 Comments »

  1. In 1933, when not granted USA Visa owing a bit of money Otto Frank could look for Palestine or a South America state. But, as many other people he did not aspect Nazi Germay to start war and attack and defeat West Europe states. In 1940 it had been almost to late.

    Comment by Wolf Murmelstein — February 22, 2016 @ 8:53 am

    • Otto couldn’t immigrate cause he owed money? Who did the money go to? Banks,mortgage company. I’ve never heard of someone denied a visa because of debts. Then again I’ve never had any reason to apply for a visa. What would’ve happened if the visa people didn’t catch the debts and he made it to America and they caught after he was already in America ? Would they boot him out? Couldn’t he have qualified for political asylum? I got a guy that works for me who’s from Guatemala. He split from there cause the guy running the show down there don’t like Mayans . He was bumping Mayans off left and right. So he left the country and came to America under political asylum

      Comment by Tim — February 23, 2016 @ 6:16 am

  2. I received your blog yesterday 21 February 2016 and was surprised about Otto Frank. I thought he died quite some time ago and indeed:

    *Otto Heinrich Frank*(Frankfurt am Main ,12 mei 1889 –Bazel ,Zwitserland ,19 augustus 1980 ) was een Duits-Nederlands-Zwitserse koopman. Hij was de vader vanAnne Frank . Otto Frank was het enige lid van het gezin Frank dat deTweede Wereldoorlog overleefde.

    But something tat may interest you, if you did not read about it. It was very recently in the Dutch press: The Anne Frank Foundation applied for an extension of the copyright of The Diary on the grounds that part of the book was written after Anne’s death by Otto Frank. If approved this would stretch the copyright much further.

    Dr Kim

    Op 21-02-2016 om 18:40 schreef Scrapbookpages Blog: > WordPress.com > furtherglory posted: ” Otto Frank, who is still alive and kicking, > after all these years, has revealed that he feels guilty about not > saving his wife and daughters during the Holocaust. There is no > mention of HOW Otto could have saved his family, nor of how he managed > to save” >

    Comment by Muysenburg2 — February 22, 2016 @ 4:04 am

    • You must have read my blog post about Otto Frank before I made a correction and added the information about the death of Otto Frank. Read it again and you will see that I have updated it.

      Comment by furtherglory — February 22, 2016 @ 4:22 am

  3. Okay. Long as we’re talking about this young lady,I’ve a question. I read her diary was bogus. The German BKA forensically examined the original manuscript. They said a better part was written in “ball point pen”. A hand writing expert examined the hand writing. He said everything was written by the same hand. Just not Anne Franks hand. One side is lying. Which one is it?

    Comment by Tim — February 21, 2016 @ 11:32 am

    • Tim – here is a good overview http://www.annefrank.org/ImageVaultFiles/id_14671/cf_21/tenquestions_en.pdf

      “The origin of the “ballpoint myth” is the four-page report that the Federal Criminal Police Office (the Bundeskriminalamt or BKA) in Wiesbaden, which was published in 1980. In this investigation into the types of paper and ink used in the diary of Anne Frank it is stated that “ballpoint corrections” had been made on some loose sheets. The BKA’s task was to report on all the texts found among the diaries of Anne Frank, and therefore also on the annotations that were made in Anne’s manuscripts after the war. However, the Dutch investigation by the Forensic Institute in the mid-1980’s shows that writing in ballpoint is only found on two loose pages of annotations, and that these annotations are of no significance for the actual content of the diary. They were clearly placed between the other pages later. The researchers of the Forensic Institute also concluded that the handwriting on these two annotation sheets differs from the writing in the diary “to a far-reaching degree.” Photos of these loose annotation sheets are included in the NIOD’s publication (see The Diary of Anne Frank: The Revised Critical Edition, 2003, pages 168 and 170). In 1987, a Mr Ockelmann from Hamburg wrote that his mother had written the annotation sheets in question. Mrs Ockelmann was a member of the team that carried out the graphological investigation into the writings of Anne Frank around 1960.”

      Comment by srebrenica — February 21, 2016 @ 12:28 pm

      • Okay. That seemed kinda one sided. The people that wrote that are in the cheering section for Anne Frank. I’ll take this as being the ol man upstairs is the only one who knows the truth. The person that wrote this talks about free speech,yet read between the proverbial “lines” and they’re saying something else. They’re in so many words calling people that question Anne frank or the holocaust deluded ( something like that). They drag up the 6 million number ( which we now know is really 4) . Somebody comes along and writes a few other things and they toss those 4 papers in with the diary. The way I look at it ,if you’re gonna publish her diary,do it and leave this other crap out. Why didn’t they mention anything about this Jewish author named Meyer Levin. Said he was the true author of the book. They said he took Otto to court and he won a $50,000.00 award which the court told Otto. I’m just trying to understand what’s going on here. I thought I dealt with BS in Nam. That ain’t nothing compared to what this war provided us with.

        Comment by Tim — February 21, 2016 @ 3:00 pm

    • I wrote about the “ball point pen” theory on this blog post: https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2010/02/19/the-dairy-of-anne-frank-is-it-authentic/

      Comment by furtherglory — February 21, 2016 @ 1:08 pm

      • Okay. What about Meyer Levin. Said he was the true author of the book. Slapped a lawsuit on Otto and the courts awarded him $50,000 bones from Otto. They the language was to advanced for a 13 yr old. I’ve known a few kids that age that are quick thinkers. Far as I’m concerned,it’s very possible she was an intelligent little girl. She did say one thing that got me to thinking. She said,”when the war is over”. Sounds like she knew the Krauts would lose. What would she have done if she lived and the Krauts won? I don’t think she would’ve been able to publish her book. Now Srebrena posted something to read about this subject. In there it said in the that schools in the Mid East teach that Anne frank diary is bogus. If it’s that controversial to them,then I wouldn’t teach it all. Then again those are ragheads. Wipe them off the planet far as I’m concerned. I figure when you start to take away or add to ( like her daddy did),people are gonna start to question it . It said he omitted something that was “sexual” in nature from her diary. I don’t know what the hell a 13 yr old girl is doing thinking about anything sexual for. She should be thinking about getting “cooties” from the boys. When they start throwing that author Meyer Levin in the mix. It just gets confusing. I don’t know why she went back to amend her diary anyways. I’ve always thought a diary is about thoughts and feelings. Why would you need to change what you’re truly thinking? Sounds like this was meant to be a book all along. It should’ve been named,”Anne frank;my time in captivity “. I don’t know. That’s just my thought about it.

        Comment by Tim — February 21, 2016 @ 3:37 pm

  4. Correct me if I’m wrong but didn’t otto Frank died in 1980.

    JR

    Comment by jrizoli — February 21, 2016 @ 9:43 am

    • Yes, you are correct. The news story did not mention that Otto Frank is dead. The news story implied that he is still alive. I have corrected my blog post. Thanks a million for telling me that he died long ago.

      Comment by furtherglory — February 21, 2016 @ 10:52 am


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