Third Reich Emblems - Flags Banners and Standards


With the demise of the Weimar Republic Hitler lost no time in replacing the 'schwarz, rot und gold' flags.

Schwarz Rot und Gold - Flag of the Weimar Republic

At the end of the Great War, to form a continuity between the anti-autocratic movement of the 19th century and the new democratic republic, the old black, red and gold tricolour was designated as the national German flag in the Weimar Constitution in 1919.
DVNP POster  - 1932
This change was not welcomed by many people in Germany, who saw this new flag as a symbol of humiliation, following Germany's defeat in the War.
In the Reichswehr (Army), the old colours continued to be used in various forms.
Many conservatives wanted the old colours to return, while monarchists and the far right were far more vocal with their objections, referring to the new flag with various derogatory names.
As a compromise, the old black-white-red flag was reintroduced in 1922 to represent German diplomatic missions abroad.
Many nationalist political parties during the Weimar period - such as the German National People's Party and the NSDAP - used the imperial colours.


After the creation of the Third Reich on 30 January 1933, the black-red-gold flag was swiftly scrapped, and a ruling on 12 March established two legal national flags: the reintroduced black-white-red Imperial Tricolour, and the flag of the NSDAP.

Imperial Tricolour

On 15 September 1935, one year after the death of Reich President Paul von Hindenburg and Hitler's elevation to the position of Führer, the dual flag arrangement was ended, with the exclusive use of the NSDAP swastika flag as the national flag of Germany.
The new flag law  was announced at the annual 1935 Party Rally in Nuremberg

NSDAP Swastika Flag

In 'Mein Kampf' Adolf Hitler describes how he personally designed the NSDAP flag, and defined the symbolism of the swastika flag: 'the red represents the social idea of the Nazi movement, the white disk represents the national idea, and the black swastika, used in Aryan cultures for millennia, represents the mission of the struggle for the victory of the Aryan man, and, by the same token, the victory of creative work.'

Reichskriegsflagge - 1935-1938

Designed personally by Adolf Hitler, this flag served the 'Heer' (Army) and the Luftwaffe (Airforce) as their War Flag, and the Kriegsmarine as its War Ensign (the National Flag serving as Jack).
This flag was hoisted daily in barracks operated by units of the Wehrmacht combined German military forces, and it had to be flown from a pole positioned near the barracks entrance, or failing this, near the guard room or staff building.
New recruits in the latter part of World War II were sworn in on this flag (one recruit holding the flag and taking the oath on behalf of the entire recruit class with the recruits looking on as witnesses - before, this was done on the regimental colors).

The design of the Third Reich Reichskriegsflagge fused elements of the new Third Reich National and Party Flag (swastika and red background) with that of the old Imperial Reich War Flag (four arms emanating from off-center circle and Iron Cross in the canton).
The Imperial German War Flag, which was slightly changed two times during the Wilhelmine Period, was in common use in World War I.
It continued to have Prussia's national colours of black and white, the eagle of Prussia, the Nordic cross, with the German imperial black-white red tricolour in the upper canton with an Iron Cross.
In 1919, the flags of Imperial Germany were scrapped and replaced by those of the Weimar Republic: black-red-gold tricolour.
'Persönlicher Standard für Adolf Hitler als Führer und Kanzler der Deutschen Nation'

The personal standard of Adolf Hitler was designed after Reichspräsident Paul von Hindenburg died on 2 August 1934.
Adolf Hitler abolished the title "Reichspräsident" and in its place instituted the title of "Führer" which henceforth could only be used when referring to him personally.
Hindenburg used a personal standard consisting of a black eagle on a square gold background edged by a border of black, white and red bands.
Hitler decided on 19 August 1934 to adopt a personal standard for himself, which was called 'Persönlicher Standard für Adolf Hitler als Führer und Kanzler der Deutschen Nation'.
As he was also Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces it was somewhat later known as Standarte des Führers und Obersten Befehlshabers der Wehrmacht.
The flag was designed by Hitler personally.
It was made in two forms: a normal cloth flag (which flew at the Reichs Chancellery when he was present), and a 'solid' type which was used on his car, at rallies, and other political events.
Both types were also used at his residence at Obersalzberg.

SS Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler

The SS-formation Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler ("LSSAH") used a variant of the Führerstandarte as their regimental and battalion color that was introduced in September 1940 after the German victory over France.



Sturmabteilung Flagge

The Sturmabteilung - (literally Storm Detachment), functioned as the original paramilitary wing of the NSDAP.
It played a significant role in Adolf Hitler's rise to power in the 1920s and 1930s.
The SA were known in contemporary times as "Brownshirts" (Braunhemden) from the color of their uniform shirts.
The term Sturmabteilung predates the founding of the Nazi Party in 1919.
Originally it was applied to the specialized assault troops of Imperial Germany in World War I.
Instead of large mass assaults, the Sturmabteilung were organised into small squads of a few soldiers each.
The first official German Stormtrooper unit was authorized on 2 March 1915 to develop tactics that could break the deadlock on the Western Front.
After the war, a permanent group of party members who would serve as the 'Saalschutzabteilung' (meeting hall protection detachment) for the DAP, gathered around Emil Maurice (who was later asked by Hitler to create the SS).
The leadership of the SA passed from Maurice to the young Hans Ulrich Klintzsch in this period.
He had been a naval officer and a member of the Ehrhardt Brigade.
Under their popular leader, Stabschef (Staff Chief) Ernst Röhm, the SA grew in importance within the power structure of the NSDAP.
In the early 1930s, the SA expanded to approximately 400,000 men.

Oberster SA-Führer Standard

The leader of the SA was known as the Oberster SA-Führer, translated as Supreme SA-Leader. The following men held this position:

Emil Maurice (1920–1921)
Hans Ulrich Klintzsche (1921–1923)
Hermann Göring (1923)
None (1923–1925)
Franz Pfeffer von Salomon (1926–1930)
Adolf Hitler (1930–1945)[

Flag of the SS

SS Fanfarentuch - Trumpet Banner

The 'Schutzstaffel' (SS) - (Protection Squadron") was a major paramilitary organization under Adolf Hitler and the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei - (National Socialist German Workers' Party - NSDAP) in the Third Reich.
It began with a small guard unit known as the 'Saal-Schutz' (Hall-Protection), created on the orders of Adolf Hitler by Emil Maurice, and made up of NSDAP volunteers, to provide security for party meetings in Munich.
In 1925, Heinrich Himmler joined the unit, which had by then been reformed and given its final name.
Under his direction (1929–45), it grew from a small paramilitary formation to one of the most powerful organizations in Germany.
for more emblems and badges of the SS go to:

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