AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Going through some old books in his father’s antiques shop in Naarden near Amsterdam, Paul van den Heuvel stumbled upon a postcard sent and signed by Anne Frank in 1937 to a friend.
“I just found it in a box, which probably came from an Amsterdam flea market,” Van den Heuvel, a teacher, told Dutch television on Wednesday.
Anne Frank’s Jewish family fled Nazi Germany in 1933 and settled in Amsterdam. During World War Two the Nazis occupied the Netherlands and began deporting Jews to the death camps in 1942, prompting the Frank family to go into hiding in a secret annex in a canal-side house.
The Anne Frank museum, which includes the attic hideaway and now a top destination for visitors to Amsterdam, confirmed the postcard’s authenticity.
“We have seen similar cards sent by Anne and this one fits within the series,” a spokeswoman for the Anne Frank museum said. “This is an original written by Anne and we don’t have much of that.”
Anne sent the postcard to her friend Sanne Ledeman in December 1937 when Anne was staying with her grandmother during a visit to Germany’s Aachen.
It shows a Christmas bell and clover and the words “Viel Glueck im neuen Jahr,” or “Much Luck in the New Year” and was signed Anne Frank.
Anne’s diary of her years in the secret hiding place were later published by her father. She died in a concentration camp in 1945, shortly before the end of the war.
Reporting by Harro ten Wolde