Estonian History

Historical Events

  • 1217-09-21 The Estonian tribal leader Lembitu of Lehola was killed in a battle against Teutonic Knights
  • 1220-08-08 Sweden is defeated by Estonian tribes in the Battle of Lihula
  • 1343-04-23 St. George's Night Uprising in Estonia
  • 1582-01-15 Russia cedes Livonia & Estonia to Poland, loses access to Baltic

Gregory Conquers Julius CaesarGregory Conquers Julius Caesar

1918-02-15 Estonia, Latvia & Lithuania adopt Gregorian calendar
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Pope Gregory XIII with the calendar that was to make his name
Pope Gregory XIII with the calendar that was to make his name
  • 1918-02-24 Estonia declares independence from Russia
  • 1918-12-16 German troops evacuate Finland, give over Kiev in the Ukraine to revolutionary forces and pull back from Estonia as Bolshevik forces move in
  • 1920-02-02 Estonia declares its Independence from Russia (Dorpat Peace)
  • 1920-02-02 Tarto/Dorpat peace treaty: USSR recognizes Estonian independence
  • 1920-02-24 Peace treaty gives Estonia independence
  • 1921-09-22 The League of Nations accepts membership of independent Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania
  • 1922-04-29 1st official International Weightlifting Federation Champ in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1925-02-12 Estonia bans communist Party
  • 1929-02-09 USSR, Estonia, Latvia, Poland & Romania sign Litvinov's Pact, providing for renunciation of war among its signatories
  • 1934-03-12 Acting President Constantine Päts commits coup in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1934-09-12 Estonia, Latvia & Lithuania signs Baltic Entente, against USSR

  • 1939-09-28 Estonia accepts Soviet military bases
  • 1940-06-17 USSR occupies Estonia
  • 1940-07-21 Soviet Union annexes Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania
  • 1940-08-06 Estonia is annexed into Soviet empire
  • 1940-08-25 Lithuania, Latvia & Estonia incorporated into Soviet Union
  • 1941-06-14 Estonia loses 11,000 inhabitants as a consequence of mass deportations into Siberia
  • 1943-09-15 Concentration Camp Vaivara in Estonia opens
  • 1944-09-26 Soviet forces occupy Estonia
  • 1946-05-08 Estonian school girls Aili Jõgi and Ageeda Paavel blow up the Soviet memorial that preceded the Bronze Soldier in Tallinn
  • 1988-09-11 1/3 of population argues for Estonia autonomy
  • 1988-11-16 Estonia declares sovereignty in internal affairs
  • 1990-05-08 Reindependence Day of Estonia
  • 1990-12-01 Lithuania, Estonia & Latvia hold their 1st joint session
  • 1991-03-03 Latvia & Estonia vote to become independent of the USSR
  • 1991-08-20 Estonia formally declares its independence from the USSR
  • 1991-09-02 US officially recognizes independence of Estonia, Latvia & Lithuania
  • 1991-09-06 USSR recognizes the independence of the 3 Baltic republics (Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania)
  • 1991-09-17 UN admits Estonia, Latvia, Lithuiania, North & South Korea, Marshall Islands & Micronesia
  • 1992-06-28 The Constitution of Estonia is signed into law
  • 1994-08-31 Last Russian soldiers leave Estonia & Latvia

  • 1994-09-26 Estonia government of Laar flees
  • 1994-09-28 909 people die when an Estonian ferry capsizes & sinks in Baltic sea
  • 1995-03-05 Estonia Centrumlinkse Coalition party wins parliamentary election
  • 2001-05-12 46th Eurovision Song Contest: Tanel Padar, Dave Benton and 2XL for Estonia wins singing "Everybody" in Copenhagen
  • 2002-11-21 NATO invites Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia to become members.
  • 2002-12-13 Enlargement of the European Union: The European Union announces that Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia will become members from May 1, 2004.
  • 2003-09-14 Estonia approves joining the European Union in a referendum.
  • 2004-03-29 Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia join NATO as full members
  • 2004-05-01 Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia join the European Union, celebrated at the residence of the Irish President in Dublin.
  • 2004-06-28 Estonia, Lithuania and Slovenia join the European Exchange Rate Mechanism
  • 2006-05-09 Estonia ratifies the European Constitution.
  • 2007-03-04 Estonian parliamentary election: approximately 30,000 voters take advantage of electronic voting in Estonia, world's 1st nationwide vote where part of the vote casting allowed by remote electronic voting
  • 2007-04-27 Estonian authorities remove the Bronze Soldier, a Soviet Red Army war memorial in Tallinn, amid political controversy with Russia.
  • 2007-12-21 The Schengen Agreement area increases to include 9 European Union member states; Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia on land and sea borders.
  • 2008-09-08 Latvia joins its northern neighbor Estonia in recession as GDP falls 0.2% in the second quarter from the first quarter, when it fell 0.3%; property markets and construction have suffered in both Baltic states
  • 2013-02-20 Estonia becomes the first country to establish a national system of fast chargers for electric cars
  • 2014-03-26 Taavi Rõivas becomes Prime Minister of Estonia

Famous Birthdays


Person of interestFabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen

1779-08-20 Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen, Russian explorer who discovered the continent of Antarctica, born in Osel, Estonia (d. 1852)

  • 1792-02-28 Karl Earnest Ritter von Baer, Estonian German embryologist
  • 1843-12-24 Lydia Koidula, Estonian poet, born in Vändra, Estonia (d. 1886)
  • 1864-04-30 Juhan Liiv, Estonian poet (I Saw Estonia Yesterday), born in Allatzkiwwi, Governorate of Livonia, Russian Empire (d. 1913)
  • 1865-10-22 Kristjan Raud, Estonian painter and one of the founders of the Estonian National Museum, born in Kirikuküla, Vinni Parish, Estonia (d. 1943)
  • 1874-02-23 Konstantin Päts, Estonian PM (1921-23, 1932-33), dictator (1933-40)
  • 1876-04-22 Georg Lurich, Estonian wrestler and strongman of the early 20th century, born in Väike-Maarja, Governorate of Estonia, Russian Empire (d. 1920)
  • 1878-01-30 Anton Hansen Tammsaare, Estonian author (Truth and Justice), born in Vetepere, Governorate of Estonia, Russian Empire (d. 1940)
  • 1878-02-28 Artur Kapp, Estonian composer (d. 1952)
  • 1878-08-02 Aino Kallas, Finnish writer (White Ship, Estonian Tales), born in Kiiskilä, Viipuri Province, Grand Duchy of Finland (d. 1956)
  • 1878-11-01 Konrad Mägi, Estonian painter, born in Hellenurme Manor, Elva Parish, Governorate of Livonia (d. 1925)
  • 1881-11-12 Olev Siinmaa, Estonian architect (d. 1948)
  • 1882-09-28 Mart Saar, Estonian composer, born in Hüpassaare, Viljandi County (d. 1963)
  • 1883-03-27 Marie Under, Estonian author and poet, born in Tallinn, Russian Empire (d. 1980)
  • 1883-08-19 Leonid Kulik, Russian Minerologist who led the first research expedition to study the Tunguska meteor site, the largest impact event in recorded history, born in Tartu, Estonia, Imperial Russia (d. 1942)
  • 1884-02-12 Johan Laidoner, Estonian military commander (d. 1953)
  • 1888-03-24 Viktor Kingissepp, Estonian Bolshevik politician (d. 1922)
  • 1890-01-13 Jüri Uluots, Estonian Prime Minister (d. 1945)
  • 1891-01-09 August Gailit, Estonia, writer (Ekke Moor)
  • 1891-02-04 Yuri Losmann, Estonia, marathon runner (Olympic-silver 1920)
  • 1891-06-04 Erno Rapee, American conductor and composer (Radio City Music Hall), born in Narva, Estonia (d. 1945)
  • 1893-10-23 Ernest Julius Öpik, Kunda, Estonian Astronomer and Astrophysicist known for his studies of meteors and the structure and evolution of the cosmos
  • 1896-07-02 Lydia Mei, Estonian artist who specialized in watercolors and still lifes, born in Hiiumaa, Estonia (d. 1965)
  • 1898-07-14 Ivan Triesault [Johann Constantin Treisalt], Russian actor (Cry of the Werewolf, Black Parachute), born in Reval, Russian Empire (d. 1980)
  • 1898-10-21 Eduard Pütsep, Estonian wresler and Olympic medalist (d. 1960)
  • 1899-11-15 Avdy Andresson, Estonian statesman (d. 1990)
  • 1900-03-07 Evald Aav, Estonian composer (Vikerlased), born in Tallinn (d. 1939) [OS 22 Feb]
  • 1901-02-20 Louis I Kahn, Estonia, architect (Bryn Mawr dormitory) [or Dec 20]
  • 1902-08-18 Adamson-Eric, Estonian painter, born in Tartu, Estonia (d. 1968)
  • 1903-01-10 Voldemar Väli, Estonian wrestler, born in Kuressaare, Estonia (d. 1997)
  • 1903-02-22 Ain-Ervin Mere, Estonian Nazi (d. 1969)
  • 1903-03-16 Nikolai Lopatnikoff, Revel Estonia, composer (Variaioni Concertanto)
  • 1904-05-22 Paul Viiding, Estonian poet, born in Valga, Governorate of Livonia, Russian Empire (d. 1962)
  • 1908-02-12 August Neo, Estonian wrestler (d. 1982)
  • 1908-03-10 Kristjan Palusalu, Estonia, heavyweight wrestler (Olympic gold 1936)
  • 1908-06-24 Alfons Rebane, Estonian military officer (d. 1976)
  • 1915-11-28 Evald Okas, Estonian painter, born in Talinn, Estonia (d. 2011)
  • 1916-08-20 Paul Felix Schmidt, Estonian-German chess player, born in Narva, Estonia (d. 1984)
  • 1917-03-30 Els Aarne, Estonian composer, born in Makiivka, Russian Empire (d. 1995)
  • 1920-02-19 Jaan Kross, Estonian writer (d. 2007)
  • 1920-03-21 Georg Ots, Estonian singer (d. 1975)
  • 1920-08-03 Elmar Tampõld, Estonian-Canadian architect, born in Kärdla, Estonia (d. 2013)
  • 1921-03-12 Ülo Jõgi, Estonian freedom fighter (d. 2007)
  • 1922-02-18 Juhan Smuul, Estonian author, born in Muhu, Estonia (d. 1971)
  • 1928-05-10 Arnold Rüütel, Estonian president
  • 1930-08-15 Ageeda Paavel, Estonian freedom fighter
  • 1931-04-01 Illse "Ita" Ever, Estonian actress (Miss Marple- "Chyornykh drozdov"), born in Paide, Järva County
  • 1931-05-25 Aili Jõgi, Estonian freedom fighter, born in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1932-10-15 Jaan Raats, Estonian composer, born in Tartu, Estonia
  • 1933-02-28 Rein Taagepera, Estonian politician
  • 1935-09-11 Arvo Pärt, Estonian composer, born in Paide, Järva County
  • 1936-12-08 Brad Jurjens, Estonian director (The Bank Job), born in Viljandi, Estonia
  • 1937-06-07 Neeme Järvi, Estonian-American conductor (Gothenburg Symphony 1982-2004, Detroit Symphony 1990-2005), born in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1937-09-04 Mikk Mikiver, Estonian actor and director, born in Tallinn, Estonia (d. 2006)
  • 1943-03-20 Naima Neidre, Estonian graphic artist
  • 1944-02-29 Ene Ergma, Estonian politician
  • 1945-09-13 Andres Küng, Swedish-Estonian politician and journalist, born in Ockelbo, Gävleborg County, Sweden (d. 2002)
  • 1947-12-09 Jaak Jõerüüt, Soviet-born Estonian politician (Minister of Defence 2004-05), born in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1949-03-03 Jüri Allik, Estonian psychologist
  • 1949-06-11 Benjamin Vasserman, Estonian graphic artist, born in Sovetsky, Kirov Oblast, Russia
  • 1953-06-24 Ivo Lill, Estonian artist
  • 1953-11-22 Urmas Alender, Estonian singer (d. 1994)
  • 1953-12-14 René Eespere, Soviet-born Estonian composer, born in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1958-01-27 Kadri Mälk, Estonian artist and jewelry designer
  • 1959-10-16 Erkki-Sven Tüür, Estonian composer
  • 1960-04-22 Mart Laar, Estonian statesman
  • 1962-06-11 Erika Salumäe, Estonian cyclist who won first Olympic gold medal for Estonia (1992), born in Pärnu, Estonia
  • 1962-09-13 Tõnu Õnnepalu, Estonian poet and author, born in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1962-10-14 Jaan Ehlvest, Estonian chess player
  • 1963-04-24 Tõnu Trubetsky, Estonian punk rock musician, born in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1965-10-14 Jüri Jaanson, Estonian rower
  • 1965-12-13 Marko Mäetamm, Estonian artist, born in Viljandi, Estonia
  • 1966-08-27 Juhan Parts, Prime Minister of Estonia
  • 1966-12-17 Kristiina Ojuland, Estonian politician
  • 1967-08-10 Mart Sander, Estonian singer and actor
  • 1968-02-04 Marko Matvere, Estonian actor
  • 1970-06-25 Erki Nool, Estonian decathlete (Olympic Gold 2000), born in Võru, Estonia
  • 1971-05-27 Kaur Kender, Estonian author
  • 1972-02-03 Mart Poom, Estonian football player
  • 1977-02-23 Kristina Šmigun, Estonian cross-country skier, born in Tartu, Estonia
  • 1977-09-27 Andrus Värnik, Estonian javelin thrower
  • 1978-02-12 Silver Meikar, Estonian human rights activist and politician, born in Tartu, Estonia
  • 1978-07-02 Jüri Ratas, Estonian politician
  • 1978-09-14 Carmen Kass, Estonian model (estimated to have been the second-highest-paid model in the world in 2002), born in Talinn, Estonia
  • 1980-01-30 Pavel Ponomaryov, Russian-Estonian actor, born in Saint Petersburg, Russia
  • 1980-10-27 Tanel Padar, Estonian singer (46th Eurovision Song Contest winner), born in Uhtna, Estonia
  • 1981-05-26 Eda-Ines Etti, Estonian singer
  • 1981-11-03 Sten Pentus, Estonian auto racer (Formula Baltic 2000), born in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1983-12-10 Katrin Siska, Estonian singer
  • 1984-01-18 Maarja Kivi, Estonian singer, born in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1984-02-06 Piret Järvis, Estonian singer, born in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1985-09-26 Lenna Kuurmaa, Estonian singer (Vanilla Ninja), born in Tallinn, Estonia
  • 1987-03-16 Tiiu Kuik, Estonian model
  • 1989-01-13 Triinu Kivilaan, Estonian singer

Famous Deaths

  • 1217-09-21 Lembitu of Lehola, Estonian soldier
  • 1876-11-28 Karl Earnest Ritter von Baer, Estonian/German embryologist, dies at 84
  • 1886-08-11 Lydia Koidula, Estonian poet (b. 1843)
  • 1920-01-20 Georg Lurich, Estonian wrestler and strongman of the early 20th century, dies at 43
  • 1922-05-04 Viktor Kingissepp, Estonian Bolshevik politician (b. 1888)
  • 1925-08-15 Konrad Mägi, Estonian painter, dies at 46
  • 1939-03-21 Evald Aav, Estonian composer, dies at 39
  • 1940-03-01 Anton Hansen Tammsaare, Estonian author (Truth and Justice), dies at 62
  • 1942-01-27 Kaarel Eenpalu, Estonian Prime Minister (b. 1888)
  • 1942-10-01 Ants Piip, Estonian Prime Minister (b. 1884)
  • 1943-05-19 Kristjan Raud, Estonian painter and one of the founders of the Estonian National Museum, dies at 77
  • 1945-01-09 Jüri Uluots, Estonian Prime Minister (b. 1890)
  • 1948-03-29 Olev Siinmaa, Estonian architect (b. 1881)
  • 1952-01-14 Artur Kapp, Estonian composer (b. 1878)
  • 1960-08-22 Eduard Pütsep, Estonian wrestler (b. 1898)
  • 1960-11-05 August Gailit, Estonian writer (Ekke Moor), dies at 69
  • 1962-06-27 Paul Viiding, Estonian poet, dies at 58
  • 1963-10-28 Mart Saar, Estonian composer, dies at 81
  • 1968-02-19 Georg Hackenschmidt, Estonian professional wrestler (b. 1878)
  • 1969-04-05 Ain-Ervin Mere, Estonian Nazi (b. 1903)
  • 1971-04-13 Juhan Smuul, Estonian author, dies at 49
  • 1974-03-17 Louis I Kahn, Estonia/US architect, dies at about 73
  • 1975-06-05 Paul Keres, Estonian chess player (b. 1916)
  • 1975-09-05 Georg Ots, Estonian singer (b. 1920)
  • 1976-03-08 Alfons Rebane, Estonian military commander (b. 1908)
  • 1980-09-25 Marie Under, Estonian author and poet, dies at 97
  • 1982-08-19 August Neo, Estonian wrestler (b. 1908)
  • 1983-11-23 Juhan Muks, Estonian artist (b. 1899)
  • 1984-08-11 Paul Felix Schmidt, Estonian-German chess player, dies at 67
  • 1985-09-10 Ernest Julius Öpik, Estonian astronomer and astrophysicist known for his studies of meteors and the structure and evolution of the cosmos, dies at 91
  • 1994-09-28 Urmas Alender, Estonian singer and musician (b. 1953)
  • 1995-06-14 Els Aarne, Estonian composer, dies at 78
  • 1997-04-13 Voldemar Väli, Estonian wrestler, dies at age 94
  • 2002-12-10 Andres Küng, Swedish-Estonian politician and journalist, dies at 57
  • 2004-02-28 Andres Nuiamäe, Estonian soldier (b. 1982)
  • 2005-01-12 Edmund S. Valtman, Estonian-born cartoonist (b. 1914)
  • 2006-01-09 Mikk Mikiver, Estonian actor (Friends, Comrades) and director, dies at 68
  • 2006-03-04 Edgar Valter, Estonian illustrator/cartoonist (b. 1929)
  • 2006-03-14 Lennart Meri, former president of Estonia (b. 1929)
  • 2007-05-14 Ülo Jõgi, Estonian freedom fighter (b. 1921)
  • 2007-12-27 Jaan Kross, Estonian writer (b. 1920)
  • 2010-11-12 Karl Plutus, Estonian jurist and centenarian (b. 1904)
  • 2010-12-24 Eino Tamberg, Estonian composer (Joanna tentata), dies at 80