More than 70 rare and intimate photographs from Otto Frank’s private family photo album—including many images of Anne Frank—will be included in a new special exhibit at the Dallas Holocaust Museum/Center for Education and Tolerance, opening December 1, 2012.
The exhibit, Anne Frank: A Private Photo Album, will be accompanied by a 28-minute award-winning documentary film, The Short Life of Anne Frank, which will be shown in the DHM/CET Theater. The exhibit and film, free with paid admission, will continue through March 31, 2013. The DHM/CET, located at 211 N. Record Street in the historic West End of Downtown Dallas, is open Monday-Friday, 9:30 am to 5 pm, and on weekends from 11 am to 5 pm.
The exhibit includes 71 of Otto Frank’s 400 photographs that originally filled four albums hidden in the annex. After the family was discovered and deported, the albums remained hidden in the annex. Miep Gies, one of the people who supported the family during their time in the annex, kept Anne’s diary and gave it to Otto Frank when he returned in 1945. He was the only member of his family to return. Anne and her sister, Margot, died of typhus at the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in March, 1945. Today, The Diary of Anne Frank is one of the most widely-used Holocaust resources worldwide with more than 31 million copies in print.
Long before Otto Frank would make the decision to hide his family from the Nazis and more than a decade before his daughter Anne would write one of the ten most read books in the world, he was a father who simply enjoyed snapping family photos with his Leica camera.
An amateur photographer, Otto Frank made his daughters, the older, Margot, and his younger born three years later, Annalies Maria (Anne), his most treasured photographic subjects at a time when most families used professional photographers for family photos. Because he loved being behind the camera, Otto rarely appeared in the photos.
Otto Frank’s photographs dutifully were mounted in albums and captioned by his wife, Edith, and later Anne Frank wrote captions as well, before the family sought refuge in the secret annex above Otto Frank’s office in Amsterdam in 1942.
Family vacations, visits with grandparents, and birthday celebrations, the Anne Frank: A Private Photo Album exhibit shows a seemingly ordinary family life through the eyes of a man whose youngest daughter would eventually capture in words what the isolation of living in hiding in order to avoid deportation was like for a spirited young adolescent girl. In their last photographs, before going into hiding, Margot and Anne were sixteen- and thirteen-years of age, respectively.
Anne Frank: A Private Photo Album was developed by the Anne Frank House and is sponsored in North America by the Anne Frank Center USA.