The study deals with the history of the German Youth Hostel Federation (DJH) from its establishment to the point that it was subject to forcible coordination (Gleichschaltung) carried out by the Hitler Youth in 1933. It analyses continuities and discontinuities on both a programmatic level and with regard to the DJHs staff during the transition from Empire to Republic to Nazi dictatorship. The goal is to investigate the question of whether the Federation and its leading officials shared a responsibility in enabling the Nazi regime to establish itself.The Youth Hostel Federation arose from the reform movements of the Wilhelmine Empire. By establishing youth hostels, its founder mainly aimed at nationalist goals, which were shared by the majority of the leading DJH officials. On the surface, however, the Federation adapted to the changing political framework. In 1933, the Federations leading figures were willing to collaborate with the Hitler Youth because they assumed that they shared the ideology of the National Socialists, as well as for opportunistic reasons. Their participation, however, was no longer welcome. This study was based on the following sources: correspondence within the estate of the Foundations founder, DJH publications, and documents from state archives. It wants to contribute to research on the preconditions and framework of the National Socialists rise to power, as well as the history of German nationalism, especially in its liberal and racial (völkisch) shape. To this end, a multitude of the following methodological approaches was applied: the history of ideas, individuals, structures and discourses.