The Nuremberg Rally was the annual party congress event held by the Nazi Party in Germany between 1923 and 1938. Designed to spread the Party’s propaganda message, after 1933 and Hitler’s rise to power, it was also used to demonstrate the power of the German state.

In this article, we’re going to take a look at the annual Rally in a little more detail.

Beginnings

The Nazi Party began in Munich and was initially most popular in southern areas of Germany. Nuremberg, which is Bavaria’s second city, soon became the Nazis’ place of choice for its events, due to its central and suitable location.

Notable rallies

After Hitler became German chancellor in 1933, Nuremberg Rallies became notable for their prestige and grandeur. In 1934, future Minister of War Albert Speer arranged a visually stunning light show at the ‘Rally of Unity and Strength’, which eventually won him favour in Hitler’s inner circle. A year later, the Nazis announced the resumption of conscription, as well as the Nuremberg Race Laws which renounced the German citizenship of all Jews living in Germany. The final Nuremberg Rally took place in 1938, just after the anschluss with Austria, and was themed around the idea of a ‘Greater Germany’. A year later, war was declared with Britain, and Nazi attention was diverted elsewhere.

Propaganda

Filmed footage of the Nuremberg Rallies, which were attended by vast swathes of the Party, was released as propaganda. The most famous films, including the highly innovative ‘Triumph of the Will’, were made by Leni Riefenstahl, with the backing of Joseph Goebbels, Hitler’s famous head of propaganda.

Today, when looking back at footage of the Nuremberg Rallies, we see a fanatical, yet despotic regime. The events stand as a warning to us never to repeat the history of that period.