Hitler Youth flag
- Object Type
Standards (Identifying artifacts)
- Credit Line
- United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Milton Levinson
A Hitler-Jugend Organisationsfahne (Hitler Youth Organization flag).The Hitler-Jugend (HJ, Hitler Youth) was founded in 1926, as one of several youth organizations in Germany. It was a branch of the Nazi party’s paramilitary group, the Sturmabteilung (SA, also called Stormtroopers), until May 13, 1932, when it became an independent organization. Following Adolf Hitler’s appointment as Chancellor of Germany on January 30, 1933, the many other German youth organizations began to disband or merged with the HJ. The HJ divided its male members into two main groups: those between ages 10 to 14, and ages 14 to 18. Girls belonged to a parallel organization, the Bund Deutscher Mädel in der Hitler Jugend (BDM, or The League of German Girls in the Hitler Youth). Both groups were organized in a military structure, basing ranks on those of the SA. In March 1939, membership in the HJ and BDM became compulsory by law for all young people in Germany between 10 and 18 years old. The HJ served as a way for Hitler to indoctrinate German youth with Nazi ideology and train the boys as future soldiers. They participated in sports, hiked, camped, learned how to handle weapons, and practiced military drills. They often spent summers doing agricultural labor and were regularly present at Nazi Party rallies. In all activities, the HJ emphasized leadership and physical domination, and required all members to pass a series of athletic tests. After leaving the HJ, the young men were required to spend six months in the state labor service, followed by two years in the Wehrmacht (national armed forces).
Record last modified: 2020-04-15 10:32:03
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