February 24, 1920: The Nazi Party is founded.

The original Nazi Party was founded in 1919 as the German Workers’ Party (DAP), shortly after the end of the first World War. Initial membership was only a few dozen, and the party was one of many many parties across the political spectrum seeking to gain influence in post-World War I Germany; each group offered its own solution, and the solution offered up by Anton Drexler’s nationalist group was only one of, again, many. In late 1919, Adolf Hitler was sent to spy on a party meeting, but he was afterwards invited to become a member himself after Drexler witnessed firsthand Hitler’s raw oratory skill. Adolf Hitler, member #55, rose quickly within the ranks of the party.

On February 24, 1920, the German Workers’ Party went public and issued its “National Socialist Program” or the 25-point Programme, the political agenda upon which the DAP and the future NSDAP were based. It promoted points of both socialist and nationalist ideals, including the termination of the terms of the Treaty of Versailles, equal rights for citizens, restricted immigration, freedom of religion, the nationalization of industry, no citizenship for Jews, racial purity and other points. Soon after Adolf Hitler delivered the program, the German Workers’ Party became the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei) - or Nazi Party, for short. Nationalism and socialism were both popular philosophies in the unstable environment of post-World War I Germany, and the addition of both terms to the party name (despite Hitler’s hostility toward certain socialist ideals) maximized its appeal to the masses. The German Workers’ Party ran on an antisemitic agenda; its founder was an antisemite; its new chairman (Hitler) was an antisemite; and so the new National Socialist German Workers’ Party, despite its points on equal rights, was explicitly antisemtiic to the core. National socialism sought to eliminate class conflict by achieving solidarity as a nation and unity against a common enemy - “international Jewry” and “Jewish Bolshevism”. 

The once tiny German Workers’ Party, under its new leader, blossomed; within a decade, it was the second-largest party in the Reichstag. In 1933, Adolf Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany and initiated his party’s complete takeover of the German government. 

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    February 24, 1920: The Nazi Party is founded. The original Nazi Party was founded in 1919 as the German Workers’ Party...
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