Holocaust Victim. He was a German-Jewish refugee who hid with Anne Frank and her family during World War II. When the "Diary of Anne Frank" was published in 1947, Hermann van Pels name was changed in the book to "Hermann Van Daan." Hermann van Pels was born on 31 March 1898 in Gehrde, Germany. His parents were Aron and Lina Vorsänger van Pels. He had six siblings: Ida, Henny Marx, Gusti, Peter, Max, Meta, and Klara Neumann. On December 5, 1925, Hermann van Pels married Auguste Röttgen. Their only son, Peter van Pels, was born on November 8, 1926, in Osnabruck, Germany, near the Dutch/German border. Until 1933, Herman and his sister, Ida van Pels, helped operate the family meat seasoning business. However, as the Nazis consolidated their power and introduced more laws against the Jews, the van Pels family was forced to sell their business. In June 1937, Hermann, Peter, and Gusti moved to Amsterdam. Hermann van Pels and family lived at 34 Zuider Amstellan in Amsterdam with the Franks being their neighbors. Otto Frank hired Hermann van Pels in 1938 as a Herb and Sausage Production Specialist for his company, Pectacon. Soon the families became great friends. The German Army invaded Holland in May 1940, and as anti-Jewish measures escalated in occupied Holland, Hermann van Pels and Otto Frank began making plans to go into hiding. In July 1942, the van Pels and the Franks left their homes for 263 Prinsengracht where they would live for the next two years without going outside. They depended on friends (Miep Gies, Victor Kugler, Johannes Kleiman and Bep Voskuijl) for food and company. In August of 1944, an anonymous informant told the Gestapo where the Franks and the van Pels were hiding, and they were soon arrested. In September 1944, Hermann van Pels, his son Peter, and Otto Frank were taken to the Auschwitz concentration camp in German-occupied Poland. He was assigned hard labor until an injury to his hand forced him to stop working. Unable to work, he was selected for disposal in the gas chambers. In mid-October 1944, Hermann van Pels was gassed in the gas chambers at Auschwitz, and his remains cremated and scattered.
Bio by: GeneaProtector