Anne Frank House: The Anne Frank House is located on the Prinsengracht Canal, close to the Westerkerk. Schools wishing to visit now need to book direct with the Anne Frank House rather than through an intermediary. During World War II Anne Frank took refuge from Nazi persecution with her family and four other people in hidden rooms at the rear of the 17th-century canal house. These rooms area now known as the Secret Annex (or Achterhuis). Initially transported to Auschwitz-Birkenau she was relocated as the Red Army approached. Anne and her sister Margot both died of typhus in Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp in February or March 1945. In 1947 her diary was published. The museum preserves the hiding place and has a permanent exhibition on the life of Anne Frank.
Homomonument: The Homomonument is a Memorial to those who have been subjected to persecution because of their homosexuality. Opened on September 5, 1987, it takes the form of three large pink triangles made of granite set into the ground so as to form a larger triangle on the bank of the Keizersgracht canal. The colour and shape of the stone is significant. The Nazis had a colour-coding system by which different types of prisoner could be identified. Pink triangles attached to prison clothing signified that the wearer was a homosexual.
Auschwitz Memorial: This monument was created by Dutch writer and artist Jan Wolkers, in memory of the many victims of Auschwitz. The monument is made up of broken mirrors and can be found in Wertheim Park in theold Jewish Quarter of Amsterdam. According to the artist, the mirrors represent the idea that “heaven is no longer unbroken since Auschwitz”. A memorial service is held at the monument every year on the last Sunday in January.
Hollandsche Schouwburg: The Hollandsche Schouwburg ("Theatre of Holland" in English) was situated in the heart of the old Jewish Quarter. It was used as a theatre from 1893 to 1942. The Nazi authorities closed it and then used it as an assembly point for the deportations of Jewish citizens. The Memorial to the Deportees stands on the site of the former theatre's stage.
Guard Tower at Kamp Vught: Kamp Vught in the Netherlands and Natzweiler in France, were the only concentration camps in occupied North-West Europe run directly by the SS. Other camps in the Netherlands such as those at Amersfoort and Westerbork were under the control of the SD (Sicherheitsdienst or Security Service). Construction in the woods at Vught started in May 1942 and was financed with stolen money, mainly from Dutch-Jewish families and businesses. The first 250 prisoners arrived at the camp before it was finished at the end of 1942. These prisoners came from the transit camp at Amersfoort. They arrived at the railway station in Vught and were marched off along the streets. The camp was one kilometre in length and 350 metres wide. Guard towers were built every 100 metres around the camp. Civilians were warned not to approach to close to the perimeter as they would risk being shot.
Barrracks: Prisoners at Vught were held in 29 barrack blocks. The first barracks were made of wood but later they were built of stone. A stone barrack was designed to house 240 prisoners but they were usually overcrowded. Each barrack block consisted of two wings. Each wing had a washing area with toilets, dining room and sleeping quarters. There was no privacy. Even between the toilets and the washing room there was no enclosure. In the sleeping quarters the prisoners slept on straw mattresses in 3-storey bunkbeds. Each prisoner received one blanket that often wasn’t cleaned and most blankets had already been used by several people.
Cell 115 (The Bunker Tragedy): On the night of 15th/16th January, 1944 a woman from Barrack 23B was locked up in the camp prison (the bunker). Other women protested. In response, the Camp Commandant, Adam Grünewald, had as many women as possible locked up in one cell as a punishment. Eventually, 74 women were pressed together in cell 115 which had a floor area of only nine square metres and hardly any ventilation. After 14 hours, the inmates were released from the cell. Ten women did not survive the night, dying of suffocation. The incident soon became known outside the camp. The Nazi authorities were not pleased that the news had leaked out. Grünewald was demoted to the ranks and was sent to the Eastern Front where he was killed in 1945.
Children's Memorial: The Children’s Memorial lists the names and ages of the 1,269 Jewish children who were deported in June 1943 to death camps in Poland. On arrival at their destination, the selection process would take place. All children under 15 years of age would be sent directly to the gas chambers, being deemed unfit for work.
Crematorium: The crematorium was located in a closed-off area of the camp. This site was off-limits to prisoners that did not work there. The building had a medical room and administration room as well as the incinerators. The medical room was used by the camp doctor to conduct autopsies on the deceased. The personal details of prisoners who died were recorded in the Sterbebuch (death book) which was kept in the administration room. The autopsy reports were also drawn up and filed in this room. Medical treatment in the camp hospital was undertaken by the prisoners themselves. A gallows were erected outside the crematorium. In September and October 1943, twenty-seven Belgian resistance fighters were hanged here.
Crematorium Oven: A crematorium was installed at Vught at the end of 1943. The bodies of prisoners who died or were executed at the camp were burned here in the incinerators. In all, 749 prisoners are known to have died in Vught due to disease, exhaustion and starvation. The first oven that was used was mobile. It was used until the crematorium building with two fixed ovens was built. These ovens were manufactured by a company called Topf & Söhne. This company also built the ovens for the other concentration and extermination camps. All the dead who had already been buried before the crematorium was operational were exhumed and their remains were cremated. The ashes from the ovens were put into two pits behind the crematorium.