As far as anyone knows, Adolf Hitler did not have any biological children of his own. Throughout most of his adult life, it is not believed that he had any close relationships with women. On April 29, 1945, the second to last full day of his life, he married Eva Braun. Although they had known each other for a very long time, she did not become a permanent part of his life and regime until the middle of the 1930s.
By the time Hitler and Eva Braun were being seen together on a regular basis, Hitler had already established the Nazi Party and was embarking upon a plan to dominate Europe. It is not known precisely why the couple did not have children. However, what is known is that Hitler’s level of involvement with German youth was also part of his propaganda campaigns.
In many different regards, Hitler and his spokesmen, such as Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels, sought to create a Germany in which Hitler would be worshipped. Those who have ever seen the Christmas photography and footage of the giant Berlin Christmas topped by the Nazi swastika can easily imagine that the goal was to make Hitler a powerful “civil saint” that each German would look up to.
Perhaps this was part of the reason why Hitler did not have any children of his own. There has been much speculation on the topic, and not all of it can be confirmed or verified. However, this does not mean that Hitler was not part of the world of German children. On the contrary, he was very involved in the development of policies and organizations that drew in millions of German children.
All German adults at the time of Hitler’s reign were expected to be members of the Nazi Party, and this obligation also extended to children. In order to meet this obligation, boys would have to join the Hitler Youth and girls would join the League of German Girls, among other organizations.
As part of these organizations, German children would learn about Hitler and the Nazis. They would sing songs in praise of Germany and in praise of Hitler. It might be strange to imagine, but German children would also meet with senior Nazi leaders who would speak to them and encourage them to “do their part for the fatherland.”
Although Hitler had no children of his own, he sought to become a father figure to all so that he could count upon their undying loyalty to his terrible cause.
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Photo credit: fortinbras / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA