The Notable Finns Website Launched Urho Kekkonen - man and statesman
The National Library has launched a website entitled Kansalliset merkkihenkilöt, or "Notable Finns", dedicated to Finns who have played significant roles in the country's public and cultural life. The first part of the site deals with the former president Urho Kekkonen. The website is accessible at http://www.lib.helsinki.fi/merkkihenkilot/ukk/.
The site covers Kekkonen's literary output from 1914 to 1981 as well as the primary sources edited between 1997 and 2000. It does not include texts published after the president's death, nor the original manuscripts that are deposited with the Urho Kekkonen Archives.
Included are books, speeches, official and personal letters written by the president in his various roles (as opinion leader, editor-in-chief, sports director and statesman) over the years. They were written both under his own name and under one of his numerous pseudonyms.
The materials are available in full-text format via the DORIA digital document archive and ARTO, the reference database of Finnish articles. The DORIA archive is freely accessible to all. The ARTO Reference Database can be accessed free of charge in Finnish university, polytechnic and public libraries as well as many research institutions (for information on the priced use of the ARTO database, go to the Linnea Database Services web pages at http://www.lib.helsinki.fi/linnea/).
The process to make President Kekkonen's literary output available to the wider public started at the end of the 1980s. In 1992 the Ministry of Education struck a deal with the Otava publishing company to convert the Kekkonen materials into electronic format. To run the project, the Ministry of Education set up an editorial board with Doctor Ari Uino as the editor-in-chief. As planned, Kekkonen's writings were edited and published in print format between 1997 and 2000. At the same time the conversion of materials into electronic format went on.
In 2003 the Ministry of Education received the Kekkonen database from the Otava publishing company. The following year the Ministry of Education handed it over to Helsinki University Library, the National Library of Finland. In the Library the materials were catalogued on the ARTO Reference Database and stored in the DORIA digital document archive.
The National Library is grateful for the invaluable help it received from the Library of Parliament and the Urho Kekkonen Archives.
For further information please contact:
Systems Librarian Liisa Sten
Telephone +358 (0)9 191 44298, email liisa.sten(at)helsinki.fi
Systems Librarian Kaisa Paavilainen
Telephone +358 (0)9 191 44297, email kaisa.h.paavilainen(at)helsinki.fi
Information officer Tiina Salo
Telephone +358 (0)9 191 24082, email tiina.salo(at)helsinki.fi