(ISJM) On July 20th Dutch news reported reported that a shed in the vicinity the former Westerbork transit camp, near Groningen in the Netherlands, where Anne Frank worked before her deportation to Bergen-Belsen, was destroyed by fire.(for more on Westerbork also click here)
According to DutchNews.nl, the shed, has,
been used for storage on a farm in Veendam since 1957, was about to be dismantled and taken back to Westerbork to form part of the permanent exhibition there. 'It was an extremely important piece of war heritage,' said Dirk Mulder of the Westerbork memorial centre in the Telegraaf. 'There are no more barracks at Westerbork, so this is a great loss.'Anne Frank was imprisoned and worked at Westerbork in the late summer of 1944 after her Jewish family was captured in their Amsterdam hiding place - now known worldwide as the Anne Frank House.
According to Mulder, Anne Frank and her sister Margo worked there for about four weeks in a factory dismantling batteries.
According to DutchNews.nl:
The memorial centre had been in talks with the owner of the barracks for 15 to 20 years, the paper said. 'He was aware of the historic value of the shed and did not want any money for it,' said Mulder. 'But he needed storage space and did not get a permit to build a replacement. He finally did get permission.'
Police will begin an investigation into the cause of the fire once asbestos released in the blaze has been cleared up, the paper said.
Mulder said he was aware of one other barracks still in its original condition which is currently being used to house pigs.
During the Nazi occupation of Holland, more than 100,000 Jews were deported to concentration camps from Westerbork.