Your Fatherland is in Danger, Register!


This poster, produced in Germany shortly after the end of World War I, was used to recruit volunteers to the Garde-Kavallerie-Schützen-Division (Horse Guards Rifle Division), one of the German Freikorps units formed after the national defeat of November 1918. It depicts a German infantryman holding a grenade in one hand and a rifle in the other. He stares at the viewer; in the background are a barbed wire fence and flames rising into the sky. The text urges men to enlist, and explains the benefits of serving, including field pay, a daily supplement of five German marks, field rations, and free clothing and lodgings. The Freikorps were paramilitary units formed throughout Germany after World War I, recruited from disaffected and unemployed army veterans. With the tacit support of the weakened central government in Berlin, they played a major role in putting down the communist uprisings of 1918–19 and later contributed to the rise of the far right in Germany. Established in December 1918, the Garde-Kavallerie-Schützen-Division was involved in the suppression of the January 1919 Spartacist uprising (named after the Roman slave revolt of the same name) in Berlin, and was especially notorious for hunting down and murdering communist leaders Rosa Luxembourg and Karl Liebknecht.

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

Dinse and Eckert, Berlin


Title in Original Language

Dein Vaterland ist in Gefahr, melde dich!


Type of Item

Physical Description

1 print (poster) : lithograph, color ; 102 x 94 centimeters



  1. Eric Waldman, The Spartacist Uprising of 1919 and the Crisis of the German Socialist Movement (Milwaukee: Marquette University Press, 1958).

Last updated: November 14, 2017