To celebrate our 10th anniversary, our team chooses the historical figure whose story inspires them.
This month, All About History celebrates its 10th anniversary. For ten years we’ve been bringing you thrilling tales of kings and queens, ancient armies, world wars and so much more! To celebrate, the team at All About History have each chosen a historical hero whose story inspires them. For our latest Q&A with a member of the team, we hear from our Production Editor, Rachel Terzian.
Please introduce yourself.
Hello! My name is Rachel Terzian and I am the magazine’s Production Editor. I have worked in the world of publishing since 2016, and am very fortunate to have been involved on a large range of magazine titles over the years!
Can you tell us a little bit about your role on the magazine?
My core role is to proofread and sub-edit the magazine’s content written by our history experts, and also support the incredibly important fact-checking process.
Who is your historical hero?
My historical hero is Corrie ten Boom, who was a Dutch watchmaker born in Haarlem in 1892. Along with her family, including her father Casper and sister Betsie, Corrie helped to save an estimated 800 lives from the Nazis.
Why are they historically important?
Corrie ten Boom’s story is one of selflessness; as part of the Dutch resistance during WWII, she and her family opened their home (situated above Casper’s watch shop) to Jews and other members of the resistance effort, with their strong Christian faith at the centre of their actions. As can be read about in her book ‘The Hiding Place’ (also adapted into a film in 1975), Corrie’s room featured a fake wall that hid a secret room for housing the refugees. Buzzers were installed around the house that could be rang to allow refugees to hide in the secret room in times of danger. When it was safe to do so, the refugees would then be sent to a network of safe houses until they could flee abroad. Corrie secretly procured ration books for the refugees, and also helped facilitate the difficult rescue of 100 Jewish babies from a nursery that was soon to be raided by the Nazis.
Corrie and her sister were eventually sent to the Ravensbrück concentration camp where they endured horrific conditions, leading to the death of Betsie. Corrie was released in December 1944. Throughout these awful trials, Corrie and her sister relied upon their strong faith in God to endure the terrible hardships and support their fellow prisoners.
What is it about their life that inspires you?
I am greatly inspired by Corrie ten Boom due to her heroic actions, bravery, selfless attitude, willingness to risk her life for others, and persistent strength through horrific trials. Upon her release from the concentration camp, she established a rehabilitation centre to help fellow camp survivors, and travelled around the world to tell her inspiring story, spread the gospel, and share an important message of love and faith.