Very little is known about the Rattler's past, other than he was formerly a resident of East Germany who made his way to the United States. Sidewinder took interest in him, and invited him to join the Serpent Society. The Rattler accepted, and took part in a trial mission alongside fellow Serpents Anaconda and Cobra. Interference led to a confrontation with Captain America, but Anaconda decided to battle him on her own. The Rattler and Cobra escaped and returned back to Sidewinder, claiming they were utilizing teamwork as Anaconda told them to leave.
The Rattler then joined the rest of his allies in the battle against MODOK, though he was taken out of the battle quite early. Later, the Rattler and his teammates Diamondback, Death Adder, and Cottonmouth were sent to investigate the Porcupine's claim that he defeated Captain America. They were able to trick the Serpent Society, but the hero had a very difficult time battling all four criminals at once. Rattler, alongside Death Adder and Cottonmouth, were eventually defeated and imprisoned. However, Sidewinder intervened and set them free after a few hours.
During the Viper's invasion of the Serpent Society, the Rattler willingly switched sides and helped her overthrow Sidewinder. Unfortunately, the Rattler and his fellow serpents were defeated by Captain America and the Rattler regretted teaming up with a self-serving villain such as the Viper. At Diamondback's trial, the Rattler voted guilty, and later battled Captain America. He was quickly defeated, and sent back to prison.