With its founding in 1897, the FVdG also started the newspaper Einigkeit (Unity) as its official organ. As the FVdG, came into conflict with the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) more and more from 1903 on, anarchists, especially Fritz Köster and Andreas Kleinlein gained influence in the union federation. After the SPD and the FVdG completely severed relations in 1908, the founding of another organ directed against the press of the SPD to convince workers to leave the party and join the FVdG was considered. The question was discussed at the FVdG congresses in 1908 and 1910 and the unionists decided to start Der Pionier.
The first issue appeared in the fall of 1911 and the newspaper was published on a weekly basis from there on. As it was edited by the anarchist Fritz Köster, Der Pionier used a much more aggressive tone than Einigkeit. By 1912, it had a circulation of 4,500 copies.
During World War I, which the FVdG rejected, both Einigkeit and Der Pionier were suppressed. On August 5, 1914, Der Pionier published article written by Max Winkler and Fritz Kater, the head of the FVdG. This article reaffirmed the FVdG's antimilitarism in the face of the SPD-affiliated unions' collaboration with the German state. This became Der Pionier's last issue.