A huge archive of documents relating to the tragic story of Anne Frank and her family will be sold on November 5 in New York.
The wartime materials were given to Austrian actor Joseph Schildkraut to aid his preparations in playing Anne's father, Otto Frank, in the 1955 theatre versions and the 1959 film, The Diary of Anne Frank. Otto was the only member of the Frank family to survive the second world war, after both he and his family were sent to Auschwitz in 1944 - Anne became the most prominent member after her diary was published in 1952.
Included in the archive are letters and documents originating from the start of the second world war that display Otto's attempts to gain the help of Nathan Straus, an American retailer and friend from his time spent at Germany's Heidelberg University, in rescuing his family. Also featuring are 50 letters by Otto Frank, Joseph Schildkraut and his wife Leonora, along with an amazing array of annotated vintage photographs and a handkerchief that was given by Otto Frank to Schildkraut that was carried onstage during his performances.
The Frank family went into hiding in July 1942 and managed to escape the Nazi forces for over two years in the secret rooms of Otto's office building in Amsterdam, before their location was eventually revealed by an informant in 1944. In one of the letters included in the sale, Mr Frank explains:
"My fate, during the period of hiding and after was, when compared with other fellow sufferers, a privileged one," he writes. "Both through being able to stay as long as I did with my own family … also in the Concentration Camp many of my comrades suffered more than I, since I was never subjected to personal torture."
The harrowing archive will be sold with a $20,000-30,000 estimate and will be joined at auction by a 1937 best supporting actor Oscar, which was presented to Joseph Schildkraut for his role in The Life of Emile Zola, and has been given a $40,000-60,000 valuation. Find out more about the currently booming market for Oscars and other movie awards.
Paul Fraser Collectibles has a superb item for collectors of memorabilia from the second world war - these two large photograph albums belonged to British general Sir Oliver Leese and provide a wonderful insight into the career of the future commander of the Eighth army.