List of Estonian exile and émigré organizations

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List of Estonian exile and émigré organizations


The first significant wave of Estonian emigrants abroad occurred after the failure of the 1905 revolution in Estonia, which saw the arrival of over 60,000 people into the USA by 1920 according to some government estimates. This led to the formation of many Estonian American socialist and communist organisations.[1]

The next wave came after the annexation of Estonia by the Soviet Union, up to 70,000 people fled Estonia to the West.[2] Around half of these people sought refuge in Germany and the remainder sought refuge in Sweden. With the end of the war, many ended up in displaced persons camps. Later, many of these emigrated to the United States, the UK, Canada and Australia. This exile community formed many organizations, most of these were cultural.

Government in exile[edit]

International organizations[edit]

  • Estonian World Council, (Ülemaailmne Eesti Kesknõukogu)
  • Baltic World Conference
  • The Baltic Council, (Balti Nõukogu)

Political parties of the pre-war era with continued existence in exile[edit]

  • Estonian Socialist Party's Foreign Association (Eesti Sotsialistliku Partei Välismaa Koondis)
  • United Peasants' Party (Ühendatud Põllumeeste Erakond), from 1962 on: Estonian Democratic Union (Eesti Demokraatlik Unioon)

Anti-communist organizations[edit]

  • Eesti Vabadusliit was formed in Berlin on February 5, 1945 by SS-Obersturmbannführer Harald Riipalu, and Ain-Ervin Mere.[3] The organization later operated in Sweden, also using the Swedish name Estniska frihetsförbundet.
  • World Legion of Estonian Liberation, (Ülemaailmne Eesti Vabadusvõitlejate Liit)
  • Committee for Free Estonia
  • Anti-Bolshevik Bloc of Nations
    • Estonian Liberation Movement (Eesti Vabadusliikumine)
    • Union of the Estonian Fighters for Freedom (Eesti Vabadusvõitlejate Liit)

National organizations[edit]

United Kingdom[edit]

  • London Estonian Society (Londoni Eesti Selts), (founded in 1921)
  • Estonian Relief Committee (Eesti Vabastuskomitee), (established in 1944)
  • Association for Estonians in Great Britain (1947)
  • The Baltic Association in Great Britain

United States[edit]


  • Estonian National Congress in Sweden (Rootsi Eestlaste Liit)[5]
  • Eesti Komitee
  • Eesti Kultuuri Koondis Rootsis
  • The Baltic Committee in Sweden, (Balti Komitee Rootsis)


  • Estonian Central Council in Canada or Eestlaste Kesknõukogu Kanadas (EKN)

Estonia Houses[edit]

United Kingdom[edit]

  • Estonian House, London, (Londoni Eesti Maja)
  • Bradford 'Eesti Kodu' Club, opened in 1956
  • Estonian House Club, Leicester (Leicesteri Eesti Maja), opened in 1960, was visited by President Lennart Meri in 2000.[6]

Newspapers and magazines[edit]

Name City Country Years Published Frequency Comments
Adelaide Eesti Seltsi Teataja (Adelaide Estonian Club Gazette) Adelaide Australia 1958-1971 4 times per year
Ameerika Eestlane (Estonian of America) New York USA 1925 weekly
Amerika Eesti Postimees (Estonian Courier of America) New York USA 1897-1911 6 times a year
Baltimore Eesti Organisatsioonide Bülletään (Baltimore Estonian Organization Bulletin) Baltimore USA 1965- 10 times per year
Edasi (Forward) Leningrad Soviet Union 1917-1937  ?
Eesti Elu (Estonian Life) Toronto Canada 2001- weekly Website. Merged Vaba Eestlane and Meie Elu.
Eesti Hääl (Estonian Voice) London United Kingdom 1947- originally weekly, now monthly Website
Eesti Noortetöö Stockholm Sweden 1961-1984 4 times per year
Eesti Päevaleht (Estonian Daily) Stockholm Sweden 1959- originally daily, now weekly Website
Eesti Post (Estonian Post) Geislingen Germany 1945-1953 irregular For members of Geislingen displaced persons camp
Eesti Post (Estonian Post) initially Stockholm, later Malmö Sweden 1950-1975  ?
Eesti Rada Cologne Germany 1945- initially 1-2 times per week, later 6 times per year Website
Eesti Rahvusfondi Teated Stockholm Sweden 1947-1960 irregular
Eesti Sõna (Estonian Word) Berlin Germany 1941-1945 6 days per week
Elagu Melbourne Australia 1983-1988  ? For youths
Esto America New York USA 1983-1984 monthly
Kirjad Gaidjuhtidele Sävedalen Sweden 1958-1966 2 times per year For scout leaders
Kodumaa (Homeland) Tallinn Estonian SSR 1958-1991 weekly Published by VEKSA (The Society for the Development of Cultural Ties with Estonians Abroad) in Estonia and sent to Estonians in exile[2]
Kratt : Kotkajärve Teataja Muskoka Canada 1979-1988 4 times per year
Kultuuriside : Eesti Kultuurifondi teataja New York USA 1967-1996 1-2 times per year
Kündja Riga Russian Empire 1882-1891 originally weekly, then monthly
Lakewood Ekspress Lakewood, NJ USA 1997-1999 irregular
Laste Sõber : noorte kirik (Children's Friend) Västerås Sweden 1957-1980 4 times per year
Läti Eestlane (Estonian of Latvia) Riga Latvia 1928 weekly
Malevlane Helsinki Finland 1943-1944 irregular For Estonian volunteer soldiers in Finland
Meie Elu (Our Life) Toronto Canada 1950-2001 weekly Merged into Eesti Elu
Meie Kodu (Our Home) Sydney Australia 1949- weekly Website
Meie Post (Our Post) Stockholm Sweden 1962-1987 10-12 times per year
Mõttekriips : Eesti Üliõpilaskonna Sydneys häälekandja Sydney Australia 1955-1977 irregular For university students
Peterburi Teataja St Petersburg Russia 1908-1918, 1999- originally ?, now 4 times per year Called Pealinna Teataja in 1910, 1914-1917. Website
Rahva Hääl (Voice of the People) Moscow Soviet Union 1942-1944 irregular
Säde Leningrad Soviet Union 1927-1929 irregular
Sõnumid Detmold Germany 1946-1948 weekly
Stockholms-Tidningen eestlastele Stockholm Sweden 1944-1959 6 times per week
Teataja (Estonian Gazette) Stockholm Sweden 1944-2002 ranged from weekly to monthly Called Eesti Teataja from 1945-1953
Töömees (The Workman) Oakland USA 1907-1908 irregular
Uus Eesti (New Estonia) Stockholm Sweden 1973-1976  ?
Usk ja Elu (Faith and Life) Riga Russian Empire 1908-1917 weekly
Tuulemaa (Land of Wind) Stockholm Sweden 1960-1976 irregular
Uus Ilm (New World) USA 1909-1989 weekly until 1950, monthly afterwards Communist
Vaba Eesti Sõna (Free Estonian Word) New York USA 1949- weekly Website
Vaba Eestlane (Free Estonian) Toronto Canada 1952-2001 2 times per week Merged into Eesti Elu
Vabaduse Kuulutus : eestikeelse vaimuliku raadiosaate Vabaduse Kuulutuse informatsioonileht Toronto Canada 1958-1969 irregular
Valgus: evangeelne ajakiri (The Light: evangelical magazine) Örebro Sweden 1950-1954 6 times per year Moved to Toronto in 1955
Valgus: evangeelne ajakiri (The Light: evangelical magazine) Toronto Canada 1955-1993 6 times per year Moved to Tallinn in 1994
Välis-Eesti Stockholm Sweden 1944-1995 irregular
Virgats Adelaide Australia 1971- monthly
Võitleja (The Combatant) Toronto Canada 1952- originally monthly, now 4 times per year For veterans

The Estonian National Library has a digitized archive of many of these publications.[7]


  • Museum of Estonians Abroad[8]


  1. ^ Gale Encyclopedia of Multicultural America. 2nd ed. Vol. 1. Gale, 2000
  2. ^ a b ESTONIA (document ID 89-3-30) - available in Radio Free Europe Background Reports on Hungary, 1954-1989
  3. ^ Veebruari sündmused Archived 2008-03-19 at the Wayback Machine. (in Estonian)
  4. ^ Estonian American National Council
  5. ^ The Estonian National Congress in Sweden Archived 2007-07-16 at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ President of the Republic at the Estonia House of Leicester on March 11, 2000
  7. ^ "Digiteeritud eesti ajalehed" (in Estonian). Estonian National Library. Retrieved 3 November 2013. 
  8. ^ "VEMU". Museum of Estonians Abroad. Retrieved 3 November 2013. 


External links[edit]