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'Anne Frank: A History for Today' Putnam Museum exhibit to open Sept. 2

The exhibit documents the story of the young Jewish girl killed in the Holocaust. It's part of a wider community initiative looking to counter modern bigotry.
Credit: MGN

DAVENPORT, Iowa — The Putnam Museum and Science Center is set to open a traveling exhibit honoring the life and legacy of Anne Frank as part of a wider anti-bigotry initiative in the Quad Cities.

The exhibit, titled "Anne Frank: The History of Today", will open on Sept. 2 in tandem with the Out of Darkness: Holocaust Messages for Today initiative, supported by many Quad Cities businesses and organizations.

The installation tells the story of Anne Frank, a young Jewish who was killed in the Holocaust in 1945 after documenting her hidden life under Nazi occupation in a now-world-famous diary.

Items showcased by the exhibit include concentration camp uniforms, a flashlight used by Theresienstadt (a ghetto/concentration camp formerly located in the Czech Republic) guard, a Star of David patch and stories and artifacts from the Geiringer family, whose history is similar to the Franks'.

Putnam says the exhibit is important in inspiring kids and communities to stand up against bigotry, lies, antisemitism and inequality.

“Anne Frank’s story is so important for today,” said Christina Kastell, curator of history and anthropology. “Her story inspires girls and boys alike, telling them that they, too, can inspire others.”  

The exhibit is part of Out of Darkness: Holocaust Messages for Today; a Quad Cities community initiative creating programs and resources for both children and adults dedicated to, in its words, "promoting dignity, diversity, equity, democratic values, human rights, and the power of the human spirit that are so badly needed today."

The initiative is supported by many Quad Cities-area art organizations, colleges, libraries, museums, Jewish groups and more. 

“The Putnam is proud to be a partner in the Out of Darkness project during this important time in our region’s history,” said Rachael Mullins, president and CEO of Putnam. “We hope the community will find value in the exhibit as well as support the programming of all the collaborative partners over the coming months.”  

Admission to the exhibit is included with Putnam's general admission of $9 for adults and $8 for youth, seniors, college students and military.

For more information, visit the exhibit's page on the Putnam Museum website.

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