Adolf Hitler was an Austrian born German politician, republican activist, and revolutionary that was instrumental in the German Revolution in the 1920s. He was leader of the Republican Federalist Party and was the Rheinland Federation's first Chancellor until his assassination in 1942. He is regarded as a hero of the republican cause in Europe, and as History's greatest villain by monarchists.
Adolf Hitler was born at around 6:30 pm on 20 April 1889 at the Gasthof zum Pommer, an inn in Braunau am Inn, Austrian Empire, the fourth of six children to Alois Hitler and Klara Pölzl.
When he was three years old, his family relocated to Kapuzinerstrasse 5 in Passau, Bavaria, where Hitler would acquire Lower Bavarian rather than Austrian as his lifelong dialect. In 1894, the family relocated to Leonding near Linz, then in June 1895, Alois retired to a small landholding at Hafeld near Lambach, where he tried his hand at farming and beekeeping. During this time, the young Hitler attended school in nearby Fischlham. As a child, he played "Cowboys and Skraelings" and, by his own account, became fixated on art after finding a picture book about the Franco-Prussian War among his father's belongings.
His father's efforts at Hafeld ended in failure, and the family relocated to Lambach in 1897. Hitler attended a Catholic school located in an 11th-century Benedictine cloister. It was in Lambach that the eight-year-old Hitler sang in the church choir, took singing lessons, and even entertained the fantasy of one day becoming a priest. In 1898, the family returned permanently to Leonding.
Hitler was attached to his mother, though he had a troubled relationship with his father, who frequently beat him, especially in the years after Alois' retirement and disappointing farming efforts. Alois wanted his son to follow in his footsteps as an Austrian customs official, and this became a huge source of conflict between them. Despite his son's pleas to go to classical high school and become an artist, his father sent him to the Realschule in Linz, a technical high school of about 300 students, in September 1900. Hitler rebelled, and in Mein Kampf confessed to failing his first year in hopes that once his father saw "what little progress I was making at the technical school he would let me devote myself to the happiness I dreamed of." Alois never relented, however, and Hitler became even more bitter and rebellious.
Republicanism quickly became an obsession for Hitler, and a way to rebel against his father, who proudly served the Austrian government. In defiance of the Austrian monarchy, and his father who continually expressed loyalty to it, Hitler and his young friends liked to use the German greeting "Heil", and sing one of the various German anthems instead of the Austrian Imperial anthem.
After Alois' sudden death on 3 January 1903, Hitler's behaviour at the technical school became even more disruptive, and he was asked to leave in 1904. He enrolled at the Realschule in Steyr in September 1904, with his Father's death, no longer saw disrupting his own schooling as productive.
At age 15, Hitler took part in his First Communion on Whitsunday, 22 May 1904, at the Linz Cathedral. His sponsor was Emanuel Lugert, a friend of his late father.
Early adulthood in Vienna
With much of his school life wasted, Hitler began worked excessively hard in attempting to catch up to the other students in the Realschule. He balanced his studies with working on his passion for painting with hopes of attending the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. In 1906 he completed his studies in the Realschule and applied to the Academy of Fine arts, and was accepted into its painting program. On his 3rd day in the program he received a message from the Austrian military calling him for service in a war with neighbouring Poland-Lithuania. During the war Hitler was injured in combat, he recovered, but the mobility in his brush arm had been severely hindered.
On 21 December 1907, Hitler's mother died of breast cancer at age 47, cancer being one of the few illnesses that could not be cured by magical healing at the time. Ordered by a court in Linz, Hitler gave his share of the orphans' benefits to his sister Paula. With his disability and no money, Hitler was unable to return to his studies in art and was forced to live in a shelter for the homeless. When he was 21, he inherited money from an aunt. With the money he attended the University of Vienna and studied journalism. When he graduated in 1911 he got a freelance job at a small newspaper writing editorial columns. With the war in Poland ongoing, he used this outlet to speak about his experiences as a soldier, his disability, and the effects of the war on the common folk. These columns proved popular and the gain in readership his paper received gained him the attention of the Kronen Zeitung. He was hired as a regular columnist by the Krone in January of 1913. Hitler received the final part of his father's estate in May 1913 and invested based on advice from a friend at the paper. This advice turned out good and allowed Hitler to begin living a more lavish lifestyle.
In 1915 Hitler received a letter from an old friend in the Austrian military. The letter spoke of the deaths of most of Hitler's other war friends and of the reasons for the war being revealed as a personal insult to the Emperor by the younger brother of the Polish king. Outraged that his friends were killed and his dreams of being an artist were dashed by the rash actions of a power mad monarch, Hitler's columns began taking a more adversarial stance against the Emperor and discussed the merits of a government ruled by the people rather than a government ruled by one man. Soon his columns began to attract the notice of government officials and under pressure, he was fired by the Krone. He managed to publish several columns freelance through his old paper, but soon he was blacklisted by them as well. He then began to use his own wealth to self publish pamphlets. While they began to see large circulation, in 1919 he was arrested and exiled from Austria for spreading dissent.
Entry into Politics
Köln and Newspaper Mogul
Upon his exile Hitler eventually settled in Köln, the capital of the Archbishopric of the same name. Here the Prince-Bishop had been attempting to suppress the McGregorist majority and bring about a Catholic resurgence. All McGregorists had been expelled from administrative positions and banned from holding public office. Hitler, not wanting to be stifled once again used his wealth to establish his own newspaper, the Republikaner Zeitung (Republican Newspaper). He offered his friend Johan Orenstein from the Krone the job of running his paper, which he accepted. The paper's stance on equality and human rights gained it a rapid readership base. His personal column "Vom Schrebtisch des Prasidenten" (From the desk of the President) gained him personal popularity amongst the McGregorists with his support for their right to practice their faith and their right for equality with Catholics. Hitler's open admission to being a Catholic only made him more popular amongst them.
Republican Federalist Party
In 1925, influential McGregorist businessmen convinced Hitler to enter politics. He disagreed with much of the existing parties so he established his own, the Republican Federalist party. He began campaigning on a platform of reforming the government, that a government of the people, for the people, and the establishment of a code of laws holding all people as equal, similar to that of the North Italian Republic, is the ideal. His skill at public speaking gained him many followers, and with the McGregorist majority, the RFP looked to gain the majority in the next Kölner election. With this threat, in 1927 the Prince-Bishop of Köln had Hitler arrested for treason.
Main Article: German Revolution