German Propaganda Archive Calvin University


Background: This is a collection of Nazi posters from 1939-45. Other pages have posters from 1920-1933 and 1933-1939. Many are taken from photographs made by Dr. Robert D. Brooks at the German Federal Archives. The images are thumbnails. Clicking will bring up a larger image.

I have gathered the remainder from a wide range of sources. By far the most extensive collection of posters available is that of the German Federal Archives. They have over a thousand on-line. The University of California Library has nearly 300 posters on-line. The University of Minnesota library also has a large collection, and has given me permission to use some of its posters.

This page is part of a larger site on German propaganda during the Nazi and East German eras.

Nazi Posters: 1939-1945

Hitler Youth Poster 1. The text of this 1940 poster reads: “Youth Serves the Führer. All 10-year-olds into the Hitler Youth.” Membership in the Hitler Youth had become mandatory in 1936.
Nazi War Poster 2. This poster was released in summer 1940. German morale reports found that it was effective. The text translates as: “Smash the Enemies of Greater Germany!” A literal translation would be: “Into Dust with All Enemies of Greater Germany.” This is a reference to Heinrich von Kleist’s The Prince of Homburg. In that play, a desperate Brandenburg, progenitor of Prussia, is saved from overwhelming threat from invading Swedes by the virtue of its campaigners, as well as its ruler. The final line of the play: “Into the dust with all enemies of Brandenburg.” This information was provided by Andreas Ehlers of Hamburg. The poster is courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Eternal Jew Poster 3. This 1940 poster advertises the worst of the Nazi anti-Semitic films, “The Eternal Jew.”
Dutch anti-Semitic poster 4. This poster advertises the Dutch version of the 1940 anti-Semitic film The Eternal Jew.
Nazi anti-Semitic poster 5. The caption: “The Jew: The inciter of war, the prolonger of war.” This poster was released in late 1943 or early 1944. The artist was Hans Schweitzer (“Mjölnir”). Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
1933 Nazi Agricultural Poster 6. This poster dates to early in the war. A farmer smashes the blockade. The Allied blockade of Germany during World War I had seriously hurt the war effort. The poster claims that Germany’s food supply is secure in the new war. The text: “Farmer! You are a soldier in the battle of production.” Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
SS recruiting poster 7. This is an SS recruiting poster. I’m not sure of the date. It says one can join at 18, and sign up for shorter or longer periods of service. It gives the address of the recruiting office in Munich. Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Nazi War Poster 8. This poster advertises a county rally of the Nazi Party from 1941 (a miniature version of the Nuremberg rally). A woman plows the field while her husband fights on the front.
Nazi Blackout Poster 9. This poster, which I think is from 1940, urges Germans to obey the blackout regulations. The text translates as: “The enemy sees your light! Black out!”
Kohlenklau 10. This 1940 poster was part of the Nazi energy conservation campaign. The figure in black, the “coal thief,” was the symbol of wasted energy. The text translates: “There he is again!He’s always hungry, his sack is always empty. Greedily he skulks around the oven, the stove or the dripping faucet. He sneaks around the window, the door or the light switch, stealing what he can. He steals from armaments production, which needs every little bit he steals from city and countryside. Catch him! Read more about it in the newspapers.”
Nazi War Poster 11a. The caption of this 1940 poster translates: “Victory is with our Flags.” 650,000 copies were distributed.
Nazi War Poster 11b. This was a poster was issued in January 1941. The translation: “Front and Homeland: The Guarantee of Victory.”
Nazi War Poster 11c. The text of this early 1941 poster: “The front speaks to the homeland.” This was used by local party organizations to promote meetings at which soldiers fresh from the front spoke of their experiences.
Nazi War Poster 11d. This poster was used by local Nazi groups to adavertise a meeting. It was issued in early 1941. The text: “Raise the flag. Germany will determine the future.”
Nazi War Poster 11e. When in September 1940 the Soviets took over Bessarabia, most of the ethnic German inhabitants chose to be resettled in Germany. This poster advertised a slide lecture on the matter. Party local groups could fill in the details.
Nazi Recruiting Poster 12. This poster is 1942 or after, since one soldier is wearing a decoration first issued in 1942. The text translates as: “Infantry: The Queen of the Services.”
Nazi Victory Poster 13. This is another WWII production poster from the winter of 1940-1941. The text translates as: “You are the front!” Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Nazi War Poster 14. This poster is probably from 1941. It’s a rather interesting one. The top translates as “Germany Must Die!” It exploits a 1941 book published in the U.S. by Theodore N. Kaufman titled Germany Must Perish,which advocated, among other things, the sterilization of the entire German population and the dismemberment of Germany as a nation. The map shown in the poster is in fact Kaufman’s proposal to distribute German territory to its neighbors. Although Kaufman was insignificant (he published his book himself), the Nazis presented it as official Allied policy, and claimed Kaufman was an influential advisor to Roosevelt.
Nazi War Poster

14a. This was a poster that could be filled out at the local level telling people where to bring things for collection.

Don’t forget! Raw material from old material. Metal—paper—leather—rags—bottles, etc.”

Source: Der Hoheitsträger, August 1941

Nazi War Poster

14b. Another poster encouraging donating old items.

Collections during war should not be a donation, but rather must be a sacrifice! The extent of sacrifice determines the greatness of victory.”

The name of the local party group could be filled in.

Source: Der Hoheitsträger, August 1941

Nazi War Poster 15. This anti-Semitic poster in Russian is probably from 1941. A visitor tells me it can translated as follows: “Get the Jewish-Bolshevist warmongers out of Europe!”
Nazi War Poster 16. This anti-Semitic poster is in Ukrainian. A visitor to the site provides this translation: “Satan has taken off his mask.”
Parole der Woche 18. This link leads to 21 of the weekly Parole der Woche posters, a wall newspaper issued between 1936 and 1943. My collection has examples from 1941 and 1942.
Nazi poster against complainers 19. This link leads to six posters against complainers, a campaign used in Gau Steiermark (Austria) in the spring of 1942.
Nazi Courtesy Poster 19a. This poster was issued around March 1942. The Nazis launched a “courtesy campaign” to reduce some of the frictions of the war. Goebbels introduced the campaign with an article titled “A Word to All.” In this poster, an entitled woman leaves a shop with nothing in her bag. The shopkeeper tells her that he tries to treat everyone in a friendly manner, but gossipers and hoarders can take their business elsewhere. The poster is from the Landesarchiv Baden-Württemberg, which has another poster from the campaign as well.
Nazi War Production Poster 20. This poster was issued around May 1942. The text translates as: “Work as hard for victory as we fight!”
Poster 21. A Mjölnir poster is also from around May 1942. The caption: “One battle, one will, one goal: Victory at any cost!” The poster is by “Mjölnir,” Goebbels’ artist from Berlin, whose real name was Hans Schweitzer (1901-1980), and the theme is a takeoff on one of his pre-1933 posters. Hans Schweitzer survived the war and had a successful career as a graphic artist after 1945, though I doubt he used his pen name... Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
1942 map poster 22. This poster is from late 1942. The text at the bottom: “The New Europe cannot be defeated.” The rest of the text explains that the plans of British plutocrats and their American allies, as well as the Jews behind them, have failed.
Hitler Poster 23. This is another common World War II poster. The caption: “Adolf Hitler is victory!” It was withdrawn from circulation after the defeat at Stalingrad.
1943 Poster 24. 30 January 1943 was the 10th anniversary of the Nazi seizure of power. This poster suggests that the 1943 battle against the world is the continuation of the battle that led to Nazi victory in 1933. The caption: “30 January 1933-1943. One Battle! One Victory!” The theme is a takeoff on one of Mjölnir’s pre-1933 posters. This poster was withdawn after Stalingrad.
Nazi air raid warden poster 25. A poster to recruit air raid wardens. Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Victory or Bolshevism poster 26. This Mjölnir poster appeared in February 1943, just after the defeat at Stalingrad. It was part of a major propaganda campaign with the theme “Victory or Bolshevist Chaos.” The party’s propagandists were told to make sure the poster was posted by itself rather than next to other posters. The text translates as: “Victory or Bolshevism.” Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Nazi Clothing Drive Poster 27. The Germans worked to gather as much old material for the war effort as possible. This poster is for a 1943 clothing drive. The text translates as: “Get rid of old cloth and shoes!
Nazi Paper Drive Poster 28. This 1943 poster promotes a paper drive.
Nazi Harvest Poster 29. This poster is from 1943. It was issued by the Reichsarbeitsgemeinschaft Schadenverhütung, an organization that promoted safety. The caption: “Protect the harvest. It ensures victory!” A careless farmer ignites a fire that, without the prompt intervention of a second person, could have led to disaster.
Germany’s Mission 30. This poster was distributed in occupied Europe and satellite countries from 1942 onwards. It was part of the Nazi attempt to persuade occupied Europe that it was part of a common European crusade against Bolshevism.
1943 anti-Semitic poster 31. The Nazis conducted two major anti-Semitic campaigns during the first half of 1943. I think that this one was issued during the first of them in February, just after the defeat at Stalingrad. The text: “The slogan for 1943: Unstoppably onward until final victory!”
Nazi War Production Poster 32. This poster was issued during the summer of 1943. The text translates as: “Build Weapons for the Front.” Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Nazi anti-gossip poster 32a. This poster was issued in November 1943. The text translates as: “We will win by battle and labor, not by senseless chatter.”
SS Recruiting Poster 33. This looks to be a late-war recruiting poster for the SS, a time at which the Nazis were recruiting younger and younger soldiers. The caption doesn’t translate directly, but means: “Enlist now!” A literal translation would be: “Especially you!”
SS Recruiting Poster 33a. This poster, dated 13 December 1943, announces that one Alfred Kurt Prescher has been executed for looting in Leipzig after a bombing attack. He had stolen a rucksack filled with tobacco items and 118 ration card points for tobacco.
Nazi War Production Poster 34. This poster comes from the World War II period. The text translates as: “Labor Comrade. You work with us. Keep up your strength!” Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Nazi Production Poster 35. The text reads: “Unshakable, determined to fight, certain of victory!” I think the slogan dates to October 1944, since it appears in a German newsreel from that month.
Nazi War Poster 36. This poster dates from 1942-1943. Allied bombing of German cities had increased to the level that children in cities were being sent to the countryside for safety. The German term Kinderlandverschickungtranslates as “sending children to the countryside.” The poster encourages parents to register their children aged 3-14 for the program, which was not compulsory.
Foreign broadcasts poster 37. This poster from fall 1943 also encourages silence. The caption: “Shame on you, chatterer! The enemy is listening. Silence is your duty.” This was probably in color, but the source I found it in was black and white.
Foreign broadcasts poster 37a. This poster criticizes hoaders. The text: “Hoarder, be ashamed of yourself.” The German term for a hoarder is Hamster.
Nazi War Poster 38. This 1944 poster is on the same theme. The text: “The air terror continues. Mothers, send your children to safety!”
Watch out for spies! 39. An anti-spy poster from a 1944 propaganda campaign. This was one of a series of at least twelve posters. Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Watch out for spies! 39a. This was a poster distributed to Nazi Party local groups for a meeting campaign in March 1944. The details of time and place could be filled in.
Foreign broadcasts poster 40. Before World War II began, Germans were allowed to listen to foreign radio broadcasts. This was banned once the war began, and by the end of the war people were executed for listing to enemy radio stations. In this poster, a Marxist-looking chap broadcasts from London, Moscow, and other enemy states, while a German listens in the darkness, trying to conceal his crime.
Poster 41. I am not sure of the date of this poster, but it looks to be late in the war. The text translates as: “Mothers! Fight for your children!” Note that the mother portrayed has four children, consistent with the Nazi goal of encouraging as many births as possible.
Volksturm Poster 42. This fall 1944 poster is by Mjölnir. The Volksturm was the Nazi attempt to call on the last reserves. Those too young or too old for regular military service were called into service. The caption translates as “For freedom and life.” Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Nazi poster in Russian 43. This poster, in Ukrainian, translates as: “Stand up to fight Bolshevism in the ranks of the Galicia division.” This is a recruiting poster for an SS division of Ukrainian nationals. Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Katyn Poster 44. Finally, several Nazi posters aimed at foreign audiences. This one (in Slovak) recalls the Russian massacre of Polish officers in Katyn Forest. Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
SS recruiting poster for Belgium 45. This is an SS recruiting poster distributed in Belgium.
Katyn Poster 46. This one is intended for Flemish speaking Belgians, urging them to join the SS Langemarck Division. The caption in red says: “Our anwer: Pick up your arms and fight!” The soldiers are attacking England, personsified by a Jew with the Union Jack.
Norwegian SS recruiting poster 47. An SS recruiting poster used in Norway. The translation (provided by Eirik Solberg): “Come with us north” at the top, and “The Norwegian Skihunter Batallion” at the bottom. Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.
Dutch SS recruiting poster 48. An SS recruiting poster used in the Netherlands: “For your honor and conscience! Against Bolshevism. The Waffen-SS calls you!” Courtesy of Dr. Robert D. Brooks.

Last edited: 2 August 2023

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