Kaarel Eenpalu

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Kaarel Eenpalu
[Note 1]
Kaarel Eenpalu.jpg
13th State Elder of Estonia
In office
19 July 1932 (1932-07-19) – 1 November 1932 (1932-11-01)
Preceded byJaan Teemant
Succeeded byKonstantin Päts
Acting Prime Minister of Estonia
In office
24 April 1938 (1938-04-24) – 9 May 1938 (1938-05-09)
PresidentKonstantin Päts
Preceded byKonstantin Päts
As President-Regent
Succeeded byhimself
as Prime Minister
7th Prime Minister of Estonia
In office
9 May 1938 (1938-05-09) – 12 October 1939 (1939-10-12)
PresidentKonstantin Päts
Preceded byhimself
as Acting Prime Minister
Succeeded byJüri Uluots
Personal details
Born(1888-05-28)28 May 1888
Vesneri Parish (now Tartu Parish), Kreis Dorpat, Livonia, Russian Empire
Died(1942-01-27)27 January 1942
Kirov Oblast, Soviet Union
Political partyEstonian People's Party

Kaarel Eenpalu (until 1935 Karl August Einbund) (28 May [O.S. 16 May] 1888,[1] in Paju talu, Vesneri Parish (now Tartu Parish), Kreis Dorpat, Governorate of Livonia, Russian Empire – 27 January 1942, in Kirov Oblast, Russian SFSR, USSR) was an Estonian journalist, politician and head of state, who served as 7th Prime Minister of Estonia.


Eenpalu was educated at the Hugo Treffner Gymnasium in Tartu. Between 1909 and 1914 he studied law at Tartu University and later graduated from Moscow University.


From 1910 to 1912 and in 1915 he was member of the editorial board of the Postimees ("The Postman") daily in Tartu, in 1918 editor of Postimees, in 1920 editor-in-chief of Tallinna Teataja ("The Tallinn Gazette") daily, and in 1924 editor-in-chief of the Kaja ("Echo") newspaper.


Eenpalu at the head of the procession of Julius Kuperjanov's funeral in Tartu, 1919.

Eenpalu was active in World War I, serving as a battery commander in the First Estonian Artillery Regiment in 1917 and 1918. During the Estonian War of Independence in 1918–1919, he first commanded the Tartu High School students' battalion, and then a battery in the Second Estonian Artillery Regiment.

Political career[edit]

Eenpalu was a member of the Estonian Constituent Assembly (Asutav Kogu, 1919–1920), member of the unicameral parliament (Riigikogu, 1920–1937), member of the lower house (Riigivolikogu) of the bicameral parliament since 1938), and held a series of high government offices in the independent Republic of Estonia in 1918–1940. In 1919–1920 he was State Controller. In 1920, 1921–1924, and 1924–1926 he held the position of the Minister of Internal Affairs, and can thus be considered a founder of the Estonian Police. From 22 June 1926 to 19 July 1932 and from 18 May 1933 to 29 August 1934 he was Speaker of the III, IV and V Riigikogu.[2] From 19 July to 1 November 1932 he was the head of state (Riigivanem, literally "Elder of State"). In 1934–1938 he was again Minister of Internal Affairs, and in 1938–1939 he was the Prime Minister of Estonia.


After the Soviet Union occupied Estonia on 17 June 1940, Eenpalu, along with a number of other leading Estonian politicians, was arrested in July 1940 and subsequently deported to Russia. He died in 1942 in a Soviet prison camp in Vyatka (Vyatlag), Kirov (Vyatka) Oblast.



Kaarel Eenpalu was married to women's activist Linda Eenpalu. They had three daughters: Helmi-Aino (1917), Virve (1919), Tiiu-Hilja (1921) and Mai-Linda (1923). Politician Anne Eenpalu (born 1954) is Kaarel Eenpalu's granddaughter.


  1. ^ Kaarel Eenpalu was named Karl August Einbund until 1935, when he Estonianized his name.


  1. ^ "Karl August Einbundi sünd" (in Estonian). Histrodamus. Retrieved 8 June 2013.
  2. ^ "Riigikogu juhatus". Riigikogu.
Preceded by Auditor General of Estonia
Succeeded by
Preceded by Speaker of the Riigikogu
Succeeded by
Preceded by State Elder of Estonia
Succeeded by
Preceded by Speaker of the Riigikogu
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Prime Minister of Estonia
Succeeded by