Free Study Guide for The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom

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The setting for this memoir begins in Haarlem, Holland, in 1937, and ends with Corrie ten Boom’s death in Orange County, California on April 15, 1983, her 91st birthday. In between, there are flashbacks to her youth in Haarlem where she was born in 1892, and explanations of the old and odd Dutch house where she grew up and lived most of her life, the Beje. Of course, there is also the year - February 28, 1944 through New Year’s Day, 1945 - that she spent in two Dutch prisons - Scheveningen and Vught - and one concentration camp, which was in East Germany - Ravensbruck.


Major Characters

Corrie ten Boom
The narrator of her own autobiography, she was a Dutch woman who went to prison for subversive activities against the Nazi occupation in Holland.

Betsie ten Boom
Corrie’s older sister, she was the most devout of a very religious Dutch family and foresaw Corrie’s ministry from her death bed.

Casper ten Boom
Corrie’s father, he was a very good, beloved member of the Haarlem community, where he had been a watch maker and repairer all his life.

Mama ten Boom
Corrie’s mother who died from a stroke, but not before exhibiting a miraculous recovery at Nollie’s wedding.

Minor Characters

Willem ten Boom
Corrie’s brother, he became an ordained minister in the Dutch Reformed Church and later opened a nursing home for elderly Jews. He worked in the underground movement, finding hiding places for Jews of all ages.

Nollie ten Boom van Woerden
Corrie’s younger sister, her insistence on honesty in all insistences nearly got the Resistance workers into trouble several times.

Peter van Woerden
Corrie’s nephew and Nollie’s son, he was a musical prodigy who played the national anthem. even though it was forbidden, on the great church organ, inspiring his countrymen.

Kik ten Boom
Corrie’s nephew and Willem’s son, he died in Bergen-Belsen after being captured by the Nazis for helping an American parachutist make it to the North Sea.

Tante Jans, Tante Bep, and Tante Anna
Mama’s sisters who all lived with the ten Booms in the Beje until their deaths.

The nickname of Herman Sluring who was a very wealthy Dutchmen and friend of the ten Boom family. He also worked for the Resistance movement in Holland.

The young man with whom Corrie fell in love, but who married another girl within his own social class. The loss of his love determines for Corrie that she will never marry.

Toos and Christoffels
Two employees of the watch shop who could not find jobs in other shops, but for whom Father found a place in his shop and in his heart.

Meyer Mossel
The Jewish man whose obviously Jewish appearance made it imperative that the ten Booms offer him a place to hide. He was nicknamed Eusie and the family soon came to love him.

Harry de Vries and his wife, Cato
A couple from mixed backgrounds (he was Jewish, but converted to Chritianity, and she was Christian), they came to the ten Booms early in the Occupation for help.

Otto Altschuler
A young German Youth who came to the watch shop to apprentice. Father eventually had to fire him for harassing Christoffels.

Lieutenant Rahms
A German soldier who helped Corrie, because he was sickened by the evil of which he was a part.

A prisoner at Ravensbruck who worked in the hospital, she gave Corrie the much needed vitamins and yeast compound to help keep them well, and she was the first to discover the miracle of Betsie’s face after she died.

Jan Vogel
The man from Ermelo who had collaborated with the Germans and caused the Beje to be raided, leading Corrie, Betsie, and Father to be imprisoned.

Mrs. Bierens de Haan
The wealthy woman in Haarlem who promised God that she would open her house to those in need of healing after the war, if her son came home safely.

“Mr. and Mrs. Smit”
The names given to everyone in the Resistance Movement so that no one could be tortured to give up any actual names.


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