In mid-1944, Anne’s parents gave her a diary as her thirteenth birthday present. She was very excited to have her first diary and began to write in it right away. However, no one had any way of knowing that she would only be writing as a free person for two weeks. After older sister Margot received a “Call-Up Notice” from the Nazi regime in Germany to what was a so-called “work camp,” the Frank family began moving themselves into the Secret Annex that Otto Frank and his colleagues set up. They successfully hid in the Secret Annex, and so the diary becomes her record of growing up, her record of the understanding of the war, and her understanding her own family. The diary runs for roughly two years, and then stops just before the Franks were arrested. After the dust settled, Miep Gies, a friend of the Franks, scooped up the scattered pages and saved them for Anne.

After the war, as he came to realize that his children would not come back, Otto began to read the diary and to discover a daughter that he said he hardly knew he had. Her thoughts, feelings, emotions, and secrets came to light, including her having written very clearly in her diary that she wanted to be able to publish and of becoming a writer. Otto did what he could to find publishers to fulfill her wish, succeeding with the first copies of The Diary of a Young Girl hitting shelves in 1947. The Diary of Anne Frank continues to be one of the most widely read books in the world.

This website presents an investigation of the 2010 case of censorship in Culpeper County, Virginia involving the Definitive Edition of The Diary of Anne Frank. It was assigned to students to read, but a parent voiced a complaint due to homosexual themes and sexually explicit passages. The parent did not fill out the required complaint form. The school made the decision to pull the Definitive Edition from use, causing public backlash. The school later allowed the Definitive Edition to be checked out from the school library but did not assign it to the students. Explore our website for specifics about the case and the research done.



Culpeper County
Challenged Passages
Anne’s Story