Joseph Berchtold (March 6, 1897 – August 23, 1962), was a former stationery salesman, succeeded who Julius Schreck as Reichsführer SS in 1926. He was the last surviving person to hold that rank and the only one to survive under it during World War II.
Berchtold served in the First World War and held the rank of second lieutenant at the end of the war. In 1920 he joined the NSDAP. He was considered to be more dynamic than his predecessor, but was still unable to keep the Party organizers at bay. After much in-fighting he resigned in 1927 and was replaced by his deputy Erhard Heiden.
Berchtold 1924 was District Director of the Nazi party in Carinthia in Austria and there was leader of the SA. After the readmission of the Nazi party banned as a result of the coup in Germany (February 20, 1925) he was again in 1925 party member (membership no. 964). In April 1926, Berchtold returned to Germany. On 15 April 1926, he took over the leadership of the Munich SA. He was at the same time as successor to Julius Schreck "Director" of the SS, an Office which was known as the "Reichsführer-SS" from 1 November.
He was from 1928 to 1945 as SA leader on the staff of the Supreme SA leadership (OSAF). In the following years, Berchtold operated primarily as a journalist and propagandist: from January 1, 1927 to January 1933 he was from Editor, Chief of the service from January 1933 to February 1943 January 1938 in addition Deputy main writer of "Völkischer observer". In 1928, he founded the journal "The Storm trooper"; until January 1938, he was the main writer of the paper, which was published by the Supreme SA leadership. He was also the author of various Nazi publications and staff of additional magazines.
More posts in the Third Reich were of secondary importance: from March 1934 Berchtold was Councilman of the town councillor in Munich, then from 1 October to the end of the war. He belonged to the meaningless Reichstag from 29 March 1936. On 15 November 1935, he was appointed to the Reich culture Senator, from 6 March 1936, he belonged to the "culture of SA". From 29 April 1940 he served as a captain of the reserve on a temporary basis in the Wehrmacht. After the war ended in 1945, Berchtold was temporarily in Allied detention.
Joseph Berchtold died on August 23rd, 1962 in Herrsching, Germany.