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The purpose of the Reichskolonialbund was to claim back the overseas colonies that Germany had lost as a result of the Treaty of Versailles. Whether the organizations that joined it did so freely, or were forced to do so in the name of Gleichschaltung, is a subject of much discussion. After the German defeat in World War I, the first efforts in that direction can be traced back to 1923. As a result, the Koloniale Reichsarbeitsgemein-schaft (KORAG), was established in 1925. This led to the foundation of the preliminary Reichskolonialbund in 1933. This establishment was made in two steps, the second one being its incorporation (Gliederung) into the Nazi Party structure, therefore many references give two different years for its foundation, 1933 and 1936. The Reichskolonialbund was estab-lished on June 13th 1936 by the former governor of German East Africa, Dr. Heinrich Schnee and led by Ritter von Epp. Its alleged purpose was to ‘…”keep the population informed about the loss of the German Imperial colonies, to maintain contact with the former colonial territories and to create conditions in opinion favorable to a new German African Empire.” At any rate, the foundation of the RKB was marred with difficulties, for only two months after its establishment Rudolf Hess decreed its disband-ment. The decree was revoked, however, in November the same year after long-winded negotiations. As part of the Nazi triumphalistic designs for the Third Reich, the Reichskolonialbund was intended to take over the role of the then-disbanded Deutsche Kolonialgesellschaft (DKG), the German Colonial Company. Since Germany had no colonies, the Reichs-kolonialbund was mainly engaged in mostly virulent political agitation.The agitation was conducted largely in Germany through newspapers, maga-zines, conferences and “Colonial Exhibitions” and through pamphlets like the one that is offered for sale here. This activity was meant to keep open the “Koloniale Frage” (“Colonial Question”) and to gather funds for the organization. The most important regular weekly publications of the Reichskolonialbund between 1937 and 1943 were Kolonie und Heimat and the Deutsche Kolonialzeitung, the former organ of the German Co-lonial Company. The RKB also printed colorful posters for the advance-ment of its cause. The Reichskolonialbund had its own youth organization, the Kolonialjugend, which was incorporated as a wing of the Hitler Youth. Its members wore the regular Hitler Youth uniform with Reichskolonial-bund badges and insignias. The youth regularly staged rallies and collec-ted money for the colonial cause during the events organized by the Reichskolonialbund. Adult members of the Reichskolonialbund also wore a uniform during parades and rallies. Its design was inspired in the Schutztruppen uniforms of the German Imperial Era. The Reichskolo-nialbund even held two parlamentary sessions during its heyday, the first one was in Bremen in May 1938 and the last one in Vienna in May 1939. The decline of the Reichskolonialbund began with the begin of World War Two, when the Nazi State focused on other priorities, foremost of which was the search for a Lebensraum in the East of Europe. Finally in 1943 the Reichsleiter Martin Bormann pressed for the dissolution of the Reichskolonialbund because of “kriegsunwichtiger Tätigkeit” (“activity irrelevant to the war”). Hence the Reichskolonialbund was swiftly dis-banded by virtue of a decree of the Führer in 1943.

The four-page pamphlet, published by one of the less known Third Reich organizations, is in very good condition. We were able to find one dozen of these pamphlets, perhaps published and never distributed. Please inquire for the price of the entire lot.

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