Accession number: 2009.4

Type: object

Physical description: Beige material Hitler Youth jacket with swastika patch.
Double breasted with four pockets. Swastika patch sewn on left arm which
is 9.7cm (l) and 5.1cm (w).  

This jacket was worn by a young child as part of a Nazi youth group. The Hitler Youth fostered devotion to Hitler, race consciousness, and the allegiance pledge included a promise to serve both State and Fuhrer as future soldiers. Members would go to annual camps and do activities such as hiking and sports, they also actively participated in the war effort, filling roles left by men conscripted to the front such as postmen. The complete indoctrination of children into Nazi ideology was the ultimate goal, twinned with an ideologically driven school curriculum and propaganda which specifically targeted young people.

Uniforms enhanced the sense of belonging, importance, and the paramilitary nature of the organisation. Originally the Hitler Youth was the youth detachment of the SA and wore the same uniform, as part of the beginnings of a distinctive youth movement Kurt Gruber introduced the first Hitler Youth uniform of brown shirt and Swastika armband. Once the Nazis came to power in 1933 the uniforms became standardised. Boys continued to wear the Swastika armband along with brown hats and shirts, a black neckerchief and shorts, a brown jacket with four pockets, a belt, white or grey socks and marching shoes. A dark blue winter uniform was introduced in 1934. Girls in the League of German Girls (Bund Deutscher Mädel [BDM]) also wore uniforms consisting of a blue skirt, brown jacket, black neckerchief and a white blouse.

This item was purchased to support the build of the exhibition.

More information about the Hitler Youth


Sources:
Dearn, Alan (2006) The Hitler Youth 1933-1945 Oxford: Osprey Publishing.                            

Koch, Hannsjoachim Wolfgang (1975) The Hitler Youth: Origins and Development 1922-1945 New York: Cooper Square Press.

Lepage, Jean-Denis G.G (2009) Hitler Youth: 1922-1945: An Illustrated History North Carolina: McFarland and Company Inc.