Anton Drexler was a Munich locksmith and member of the völkisch agitators who, together with journalist Karl Harrer, founded the German Workers' Party (DAP) in 1919. At the behest of Adolf Hitler who had joined the party shortly afterwards, Drexler changed the name to the National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP) early in 1920. Hitler finally wrested control of the party from Drexler in the autumn of 1921, and Drexler had to content himself with the post of honorary chairman.
Drexler was also a member of a völkisch political club for affluent members of Munich society known as the Thule Society. His membership in the NSDAP ended when it was temporarily outlawed in 1923 following the Beer Hall Putsch, in which Drexler had not taken part. He was elected to the Bavarian state parliament for another party in 1924 and had no part in the NSDAP's refounding in 1925. He rejoined only after Hitler had come to power in 1933. He received the party's "blood badge" in 1934 and was still occasionally used as a propaganda tool until about 1937, but was never again allowed any real power. He was largely forgotten by the time of his death.