Etty Hillesum house named Amsterdam monument
The Amsterdam office of mayor and aldermen decided to name the home where Jewish writer Etty Hillesum wrote her journals during the Second World War a municipal monument, in order to protect the building from being demolished, the city announced.
Various heritage associations and civil society organizations petitioned the municipality to stop plans to demolish and rebuild the house on Gabriel Metsusstraat. In April, district Zuid started the procedure to designate the building as a municipal monument. The office of mayor and aldermen agreed, which means that the property cannot be demolished.
"Etty Hillesum's diaries are not only personal documents, but also province important insight into how Jews in Amsterdam were discriminated against and persecuted during the Second World War," alderman Touria Meliani for Monuments and Archeology said. "The house where Etty Hillesum lived and worked is an important heritage for Amsterdam and therefore deserves protection."
Hillesum kept her diaries in the house in Amsterdam Zuid from March 1941. She was murdered in Auschwitz in 1943. In 1981 a selection from these diaries were compiled and published as the book ‘Het verstoorde leven’. The book has since been translated into multiple languages.
According to the city, the former coach farm with horse stable for households in Zuid is unique in its kind. "The facade, with the front door from the thirties and the windows from which Hillesum looked out on Museumplein, remind us of the time when the writer lived there," the city said in a press statement.