The Radio Hobby in the Service of National Socialism, 1935–1945

  • Bruce B. Campbell
Part of the Palgrave Studies in the History of Science and Technology book series (PSHST)


This chapter looks at the remnants of the radio hobby during the Nazi Era and the Second World War, and shows how the Nazis feared hobbyists but still needed their expertise, allowing a handful of “ham radio” enthusiasts limited scope to pursue their interests, so long as they supported the regime and contributed to rearmament. Because of both technical change and political repression, the other radio clubs disappeared, but ham radio remained active and even grew during the Third Reich, albeit in a highly regimented form. As it turned out, even the Nazis needed hobbyists. Hams were used to hide and help secret rearmament, and even during the Second World War, they played a role as experts in radio technology.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bruce B. Campbell
    • 1
  1. 1.William & MaryWilliamsburgUSA

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