Anne Frank Sapling Project Takes Root in 11 Sites throughout the United States
Saplings from the horse chestnut tree that inspired Anne Frank while her family hid from the Nazis in Amsterdam during World War II are about to take root in 11 sites throughout the United States.
The Anne Frank Sapling Project came to life in 2009, when The Anne Frank Center USA awarded 11 sites a sapling derived from the nearly 200-year-old horse chestnut tree that towered behind the Secret Annex, where Anne Frank and her family hid from the Nazis from 1942-44.
As Anne gazed out the attic window, the tree not only comforted her through their seasons in hiding, but stood as a symbol of all that she was missing in the outside world. Despite efforts to shore it up, the aged, diseased tree toppled in a windstorm in 2010.
The saplings arrived from the Netherlands in late 2009. Following a three-year quarantine imposed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, during which some were cared for by The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, on Jan. 18, 2013, all were released for planting, and will be delivered to their new homes for public dedication this year.
The 11 organizations participating in the Anne Frank Center USA Sapling Project are:
- Boston Common, Massachusetts
- Central High School, Arkansas
- The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, Indiana
- William J. Clinton Presidential Center, Arkansas
- Holocaust Memorial Center, Michigan
- Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial, Idaho
- Liberty Park, Commemorating 9/11, New York City
- Sonoma State University, California
- Southern Cayuga School District, New York
- Washington State Holocaust Resource Center, Washington
- The White House, Washington, D.C.
“The Dutch believe strongly in tolerance and international justice, so I’m proud the Netherlands is helping bring this project to life,” said Ambassador Rudolf Bekink. “These saplings will ensure that Anne Frank’s legacy lives on, and that future generations will continue to learn the lessons she can teach us.”
The project is made possible in part by public funds from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the Netherland-America Foundation and the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.
Learn more about the project by logging onto The Anne Frank Center USA’s website.