Hjalmar J. Procopé

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Hjalmar J. Procopé
Hjalmar J Procope.jpg
Foreign Minister of Finland
In office
31 May 1924 – 31 March 1925
Preceded by Carl Enckell
Succeeded by Gustaf Idman
In office
17 December 1927 – 21 March 1931
Preceded by Väinö Voionmaa
Succeeded by Aarno Yrjö-Koskinen
Personal details
Born 8 August 1889
Helsinki
Died 8 March 1954(1954-03-08) (aged 64)
Political party Swedish People's Party
Spouse(s) Mary Ek (m. 1916–26)
Anna Margaretha Norrmén (m. 1927–39)
Margaret Katherine Mary Shaw (m. 1940–49)
Brita Leila von Heidenstam (m. 1949–54)
Occupation lawyer

Hjalmar Johan Fredrik Procopé (8 August 1889 – 8 March 1954) was a Finnish politician and a diplomat from the Swedish People's Party. Procopé was a minister in several cabinets in the 1920s and 1930s.

Hjalmar Procopé was born on August 8, 1889 to Major General Carl Albert Fredrik Procopé and Elin Hedvig Vendla von Törne. After matriculating in 1907, Procopé studied law at Helsinki University (then the Imperial University of Finland). He graduated in 1914 and received the title of varatuomari (Master of Laws trained on the bench) in 1916. Between 1915 and 1922 Procopé worked as attorney in Helsinki. He worked in the Finnish embassy in Berlin from spring 1918 to his resignation in the end of the same year. Procopé was a Member of the Finnish Parliament (Eduskunta) from 1919 to 1922 and 1924 to 1926. His political party was the Swedish People’s Party.[1]

Hjalmar Procopé served as minister on several occasions:

In between of his two first terms as Minister of Foreign Affairs, Procopé served as ambassador of Finland in Warsaw 1926-1927. After his career as minister he worked as CEO of Finnish Paper Mills’ Association (Suomen Paperitehtaiden Yhdistys) from 1931 to 1939. Procopé was awarded the special title of Minister (ministeri) in 1931.

Hjalmar Procopé served as ambassador of Finland in Washington D.C. during the war years 1939-1944. According to Finnish National Archive researcher Kauko Rumpunen, Franklin Roosevelt warned Procopé about the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact and its contents on August 28, 1939. Prior to this Procopé had received information about the pact from other sources and he informed Finland with a telegram on August 23, 1939, the day the pact was signed. Roosevelt’s warning officially arrived in Finland a month after the meeting between Roosevelt and Procopé as part of a routine report. This report was not taken entirely seriously by the government of Finland, partly due to the fact that Roosevelt never revealed the original source of the tip, a subordinate of Joachim von Ribbentrop.[9]

During the Winter War (30 November 1939 – 13 March 1940) Procopé used the sympathy of Americans to benefit the interests of Finland. The political situation changed in late summer 1944 when Finland and Nazi Germany became enemies. Hjalmar Procopé was put into awaiting posting and he resigned from the service of the Foreign Ministry in November 1945.

Procopé was the defense counsel of President Risto Ryti during the War-responsibility trials 1945-1946 and at the same time the defense leader of all defendants of the trials. During his last years Hjalmar Procopé participated in anti-communist activities in Finland.

Journalist and poet Hjalmar Procopé was a cousin of diplomat Hjalmar Procopé. Procopé’s son Victor Procopé was a Member of the Parliament.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Hjalmar Procopé". Parliament of Finland. Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  2. ^ "Erichin hallitus". Valtioneuvosto (Finnish Government). Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  3. ^ "Cajanderin II hallitus". Valtioneuvosto (Finnish Government). Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  4. ^ "Ingmanin II hallitus". Valtioneuvosto (Finnish Government). Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  5. ^ "Sunilan I hallitus". Valtioneuvosto (Finnish Government). Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  6. ^ "Mantereen hallitus". Valtioneuvosto (Finnish Government). Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  7. ^ "Kallion III hallitus". Valtioneuvosto (Finnish Government). Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  8. ^ "Svinhufvudin II hallitus". Valtioneuvosto (Finnish Government). Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  9. ^ "Finns did not believe Roosevelt's warning on German-Soviet pact". Virtual Finland. Retrieved 2007-11-19. 
Political offices
Preceded by
Carl Enckell
Foreign Minister of Finland
1924-1925
Succeeded by
Gustaf Idman
Preceded by
Väinö Voionmaa
Foreign Minister of Finland
1927-1931
Succeeded by
Aarno Yrjö-Koskinen