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American Consular Service, U.S. Embassy Helsinki

U.S. Embassy Helsinki 1962; Jalmari Aarnio © Helsinki City Museum

U.S. Embassy Helsinki 1962; Jalmari Aarnio © Helsinki City Museum

Over five years ago, the staff of the Consular Section at the U.S. Embassy in Helsinki were engaged in a house cleaning exercise which revealed the existence of a true historical gem: an old book whose spine included the imprint ‘Miscellaneous Record Book – American Consular Service.’ The first page of the book included an entry which read as follows:

Miscellaneous Record Book Vol. 4
Opened October 19th 1937
Signed: L. Randolph Higgs, American Consul

The book includes a variety of diverse historical entries: a sketch/overview of the consular legation in Helsinki since its inception, listings of consular staff from 1850-1956, an account of legation activities during World War II, and a list of contracts signed by the Legation and Finnish businesses. The book also reveals the inner workings and perceptions of the American Legation in a perilous time for the Finnish nation: 1939-1940. American consular agents created diplomatic records which were completed in a meticulous fashion and with great attention to detail.

The US Embassy is extremely proud to present the contents of Volume 4 to the Finnish public. Of course, the discovery of Volume 4 raises the question about the whereabouts of other volumes but we hold out a slim hope that other treasures will be found at the U.S. Chancery and Annex buildings located at 14 Itäinen Puistotie in Helsinki.

Please follow the links on the right to access the contents of Volume 4.