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Horst Wessel postcard. Nürnberg Party Rally 1929

Horst Wessel im Gausturm Berlin
Nürnberg Parteitag 1929
✝ 23. Februar 1930.

Horst Wessel in the Gausturm of Berlin
Nuremberg Party Rally 1929
✝ February 23rd 1930.

Horst Ludwig Georg Erich Wessel (9 October 1907 – 23 February 1930) was a local leader in Berlin of the Nazi Party's "stormtroopers" – the Sturmabteilung or "SA" – who is best known for being made into a martyr for the Nazi cause by Joseph Goebbels after Wessel's murder in 1930.

Wessel first joined a number of youth groups and extreme right-wing paramilitary groups, but later resigned from them and joined the SA, the brownshirted street-fighting stormtroopers of the Nazi Party. He rose to command several SA squads and districts. On 14 January 1930, he was shot in the head by two members of the Communist Party of Germany (KPD). Albrecht "Ali" Höhler was arrested and charged with his murder. He was initially sentenced to six years in prison, but was forcibly taken out of jail and killed by the SA after the Nazis came to power.

Wessel's funeral was given wide attention in Berlin, with many of the Nazi elite in attendance. After his death, he became a major Nazi propaganda symbol in the Third Reich. The march he had written the lyrics to was re-named the "Horst-Wessel-Lied" ("Horst Wessel Song"), and became the official anthem of the Nazi Party. After Adolf Hitler came to power in 1933, the song became the co-national anthem of Germany, along with the first verse of the "Deutschlandlied" (also known as "Deutschland über alles").

Read all about him here:

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