School Uniform: German Military Schools

Figure 1.-- This snapshot photograph showns boys at what we believe to be a military school. The Christmas tree tells us the season. They are about to have some sort of feast, but it may not be Christmas Day. you would think the bpys would go home for Christmas. Strangely, two boys have white jackets and one boy wears a sailor blouse. Note the military figure in the wall portrait. We assume it id President Hindenburg who was elected in 1925. The snapshot of the boys was reportedly taken in 1927.

Brandenburg and subsequently Brandenburg-Prussia was a relatively poor German principality. The ruling family's origins lay with the Teutonic Knights, a martial order. Frederich Wilhelm, the Great Elector, helped forge the military tradition of Prussia. He made Prussia a state primarily designed to support an army. This was in part necessary for Prussia to maintain itself in a region surounded by more powerful states. Prussia in 1717 established a school and Cadet Corps in Berlin to instruct officers. This is the earliest formal military school we know about. Prussia became the core which the German Empire was built around. Germany in the last half of the 19h century and first half of the 20th century had the most powerful army in the world. Thus it is understandable that their might be a number of military schools in the country. Quite a number of important German officers attended military schools as boys. We also note that German statesman Ottom von Bismarck attended a military school as a boy. We know, however, very little about these schools. I believe that military schools were more common in Germany than elsewhere in Europe. Strangely they appear to have been most common in America, the reasons for which we do not fully understand. Many biographies of well know Germans before 1945 mention attending military schools. Discipline was very strict at these schools, especially the Prussian schools. Many of the most prestigious schools were in Prussia. We do not yet have detailed information on these school and would be interested in any information that readers may have.


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Created: 11:41 PM 6/2/2008
Last updated: 11:41 PM 6/2/2008