It was founded by students in Freiburg im Breisgau in 1986 as a reaction to as what they saw as the dominance of the leftist 68' generation among university teachers. In 1993 it moved its headquarter to Potsdam, near Berlin, and to Hohenzollerndamm in Berlin in 1995. In 1994, a printing site for the JF in Weimar was attacked by far-left terrorists with a firebomb and damage totaling 2.5 million marks. The paper moved to Berlin a few years later, where it is still published today.
The Junge Freiheit has a big section for Politics, one for Culture and for Foreign Affairs. Economics are underrepresented. Opinions and commentaries are also a major part of the paper. There are some authors who contribute regular columns. Every week the paper has an interview with some prominent politician, author, scientist or artist. Junge Freiheit has a circulation of around 35,000 copies today.
In 1995, the Office for Protection of the Constitution in North Rhine-Westphalia first listed the Junge Freiheit as far-right and extremist in their publications. The paper went through all courts suing the Office based on the right of Free Speech. The paper's lawyer in this case was Alexander von Stahl, former German attorney-general and FDP politician. Finally, in 2005, the German Constitutional Court ruled in favour of the paper which can not be called right-wing-extremist by the State Offices for the Protection of the Constitution without proof.