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September 1: The Diary of Anne Frank

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Anne Frank’s “Diary of a Young Girl” is one of the most-read nonfiction books in the world. It has been translated into more than 70 languages since first published in Dutch in 1947.

The diary tells Anne Frank’s story as she, her parents, sister and four other Jews hid for two years in the back of her father’s office building in Amsterdam, until Nazis arrested them in 1944. Anne died in 1945 in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp; she was 15. Her father, Otto Frank, was the only one of the eight people in hiding to survive World War II.

Anne Frank’s diary became available in public libraries with the publication of an English-language version around this date in 1952. A Bismarck Tribune librarian columnist described the book as “a poignant diary kept by a young Jewish girl hiding out from the Gestapo….”

In December of 1952, the Richland County Farmer Globe noted that Anne Frank’s diary was one of many books recently added to the Leach Public Library in Wahpeton in time for readers to check out during the holidays.

In neighboring Minnesota, the Minneapolis Morning Tribune published 18 installments of the diary in October of 1952. The newspaper called her diary “one of the most moving and unusual stories that anyone, anywhere, has managed to tell about World War II.”

Stage and film adaptations soon followed. The Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre presented “The Diary of Anne Frank” in January of 1959. In July of 1952, a national article ran in the Mandan Pioneer predicting that “the wistful tale of Anne Frank will capture readers for many years to come.”

Dakota Datebook by Jack Dura


  • Mandan Daily Pioneer. 1952, July 26. Page 2: Hope from rubbish heap
  • The Bismarck Tribune. 1952, September 2. Page 7: New books at the library
  • Minneapolis Morning Tribune. 1952, October 1. Page 21: Meet Anne Frank
  • Minneapolis Morning Tribune. 1952, October 22. Page 13: Anne Frank’s diary
  • Mandan Daily Pioneer. 1952, November 17. Page 5: City library notes national book week with new selections
  • Richland County Farmer Globe. 1952, December 23. Page 36: Holiday readers find new books
  • The Concordian. 1958, December 19. Page 5: ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ scheduled by F-M Theater
  • Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre. FMCT Full Production History:
  • Anne Frank House. The publication of the diary:,the%20other%20for%20the%20US.

Dakota Datebook is made in partnership with the State Historical Society of North Dakota, and funded by Humanities North Dakota, a nonprofit, independent state partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in the program do not necessarily reflect those of Humanities North Dakota or the National Endowment for the Humanities.

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