'Jugend und Volk' 1937

Updated: Sep 26, 2020

The three photograph grouping here show a pre war 1937 Gymnastics and sports ceremony in a hall. Taken notably from the position of someone in the crowd, watching the performance. Possibly knowing someone taking part.

The first photograph shows all the people who participated in the event, this being seen in a range of ages from adults to children. The children being members of the HitlerJugend, Bund Deutscher Mädel. The adults seen apart of the Heer. All are seen lined up, standing tall and proud. Some of the band members can be seen standing on the stage towards the front, the rest of the band seen just below them in the photograph. The 5 Heer musicians can be seen standing proudly and to attention like the rest on stage. Two brass players of the trumpet can be seen either side of a drummer seen in the middle resting his sticks on the centre of each drum. The Heer Musicians seen with a shoulder piece that denotes them to be musicians, this being called a "Schwalbennester" (Swallows Nest). The swallows nest being a shoulder piece that can be seen on both shoulder. The NSDAP Party flag can be seen throughout all of the photographs as it hangs in the centre of the stage. The large banner a reminder of who is hosting and organising the event as well as what brings these people together. The event being to bring people together and show support for the NSDAP. The event likely to also be run by the KDF (Kraft Durch Freude) also known as Strength Through Joy, was an organisation based on bringing people together and through this showing the strength of the German people, regardless the class. The KDF hosting events like what is seen he. Being remembered and photographed by man as a reminder of the occasion.

The second photograph shows men on the left and younger boys on the right with their exercise balls. Also standing proudly, whilst showing muscularly fit athletes. They boast the strength of the German youth. They stand waiting to perform.

The final photograph shows the men involved in the event testing their strength and endurance by performing on the bar, this is seen by a man spinning on the bar. Also seen whilst this gymnastic display is happening ar men standing in line behind the bar, watching and waiting for their chance to perform. Seen to the right can be seen women, watching on the right hand side.

Whilst all of these photographs are taken, it is highly likely that the band would be playing, creating an ecstatic atmosphere to accompany the gymnastic display.

Events and Activities such as this were very common in Germany at the time, as they showed off the military strength and might of the Reich as well as encouraging others to join and giving the younger people enthusiasm to try harder. Fitness was an essential part of being apart of the Wehrmacht as well as the NSDAP. Both the Wehrmacht and NSDAP giving awards in recognition of good fitness and sports.

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