Weird History

32 Photos Of Nazi Youths That Will Give You Nightmares 

Carly Kiel
53.8k views 32 items

 

The Hitler Youth was the sole official youth organization of Nazi Germany. Think there's something unsettling about children dressed up in uniforms to celebrate and impress one of the most evil people who ever lived? These creepy Hitler Youth photos present an overview of a particularly disturbing element of Nazi Germany. In early iterations, beginning in 1922, children across the country were recruited into the Hitlerjugend (HJ) to be indoctrinated in Nazi ideology.

By the end of 1933, when the Nazi Party took control of Germany, the HJ boasted more than two million members. Soon, the Reich outlawed all other youth organizations - including the Boy Scouts, on which the Hitlerjugend (HJ) was based. In 1939, all German youths were automatically conscripted at the age of 17. By 1941, all Aryans over the age of 10 were forced to participate. A significant majority chose not to participate in HJ, and some groups even vocalized and publicized their anti-Nazi beliefs. However, this protest often ended in executions. If not, it was sure that youth who were not members of the HJ would have a difficult time entering university or finding jobs.  It certainly wasn't the worst part of Nazi Germany, but still, the whole ordeal was downright nuts.

 

The Hitlerjugend (Hitler Youth) Was The Youth Organization Of The Nazi Party
The Hitlerjugend (Hitler... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 32 Photos Of Nazi Youths That Will Give You Nightmares
Photo:  Historical Picture Archive / Contributor/Corbis Historical
Partially Paramilitary, It Was Germany's Sole Official Youth Organization
Partially Paramilitary, ... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 32 Photos Of Nazi Youths That Will Give You Nightmares
Photo:  Historical / Contributor/Corbis Historical

In Germany, there were many youth organizations, namely ones based in the Catholic faith. Part of nazi Germany's kirchenkampf ("church struggle") campaign was to "strangle" the Catholic Church by weakening all of the organizations that supported the Church. The Hitler Youth, especially once it became compulsory, served to drag Catholic children away from participating in Catholic life.

Known As The HJ, The Hitlerjugend Was Made Up Of Male Youths Aged 14 To 18
Known As The HJ, The Hit... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 32 Photos Of Nazi Youths That Will Give You Nightmares
Photo:  Hulton Deutsch / Contributor/Corbis Historical
A Junior Branch (Deutches Jungvolk Or DJ) Admitted Boys As Young As 10
A Junior Branch (Deutche... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 32 Photos Of Nazi Youths That Will Give You Nightmares
Photo:  Historical / Contributor/Corbis Historical