This is a blog by John Vincent Palatine on Central European History. The blog and its posts feature direct keyword links to Wikipedia and/or the relevant original historical documents; source identification including ISBNs where available, custom headers relating to the subject of the article and extensive tagging for individual research. Your comments or questions are welcome and you are cordially invited to join our Facebook Group “History of the West“. The content of this blog approximately follows the themes and chronology of the author’s book „The Little Drummer Boy“ [English; ISBN 978-3-00-050788-5, German National Library:http://d-nb.info/107928706X] You may also read the complete “The Little Drummer Boy” here for free! There is also a German version of this blog – “Historia Occidentalis“. The posts are sorted thematically into the six categories listed in the main menu and as shown below.
Antiquity relates glimpses from the Roman Empire and its subsequent development up to the Carolingian divisions; Bourgeoisie delivers important milestones from the change of the medieval to the modern society. Adolf Hitler centres, naturally, on the themes of his youth and adolescence, the Road to War illuminates exactly what it describes, the road to the First World War, which then is related up to its revolutionary aftermath until 1923, the year of the Beer Hall Putsch, in Disaster. We also feature glances upon the subject of History and its masters, the Historians.
The blog thus follows the book in its organization, which begins with a survey of European Imperialism from Caesar to Bismarck (including a few looks into Central European history from the Roman Empire through the Middle Ages until about AD 1871) before switching to Adolf Hitler growing up in Austria.
Its main part opens with a historia – an investigation – into the state of Europe after the Congress of Berlin of 1878 – the evolution of the alliances Triple Alliance, Entente Cordiale and Triple Entente, followed by the developments which preceded the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo and the subsequent diplomatic tomfoolery which eventually brought the outbreak of the Great War of 1914. An analysis of major operations of the Great War and a look into the Russian Civil War of 1917 – 1924 concludes the central part.
Woven in the drama, young Hitler appears in glimpses, moving from Vienna to Munich in May 1913 and serving as Private First Class on the Western Front from 1914 – 1918. He surfaces again on the eve of the German Revolution in November 1918, which abolishes the monarchy and establishes the German Republic. After the short-lived experiment of the Bavarian Soviet Republic in the spring of 1919, he works as an agent for the shady Major Karl Mayr, head of Bavaria´s military intelligence unit.
In September 1919, Hitler visits a meeting of a small political party which counts about fifty members and calls itself “Deutsche Arbeiter Partei” (‘German Workers’ Party’, DAP). Despite the grim socialist label, the party is, in reality, a right-wing, authoritarian and nationalist group of petty bourgeois, who suffer from the want of new ideas or popular orators – deploring the loss of the war and the general unfairness of life while meeting in smoke-filled Munich beer cellars.
Adolf Hitler eventually joins the motley crew, of which he subsequently becomes chairman in 1921. On behalf of his adrenaline-filled sermons, the party gains local attraction and the legend of the “Führer” is born. Two years later, by November 8-9, 1923 he has enlarged the party to membership numbers approaching 20.000 in Munich alone and attempts to grab power over Germany in the Beer Hall Putsch …
[All posts © John Vincent Palatine © 2015 – 2019]