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Preliminary Inventory of the Kaarel Robert Pusta papers
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Collection Details
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  • Collection Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Historical Note
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms

  • Collection Summary

    Title: Kaarel Robert Pusta papers
    Dates: 1918-1964
    Collection Number: 64002
    Creator: Pusta, Kaarel Robert, 1883-.
    Collection Size: 20 manuscript boxes (8 linear feet)
    Repository: Hoover Institution Archives .
    Stanford, California 94305-6010
    Abstract: Correspondence, speeches and writings, memoranda, reports, printed matter, and photographs, relating to Estonian politics and diplomacy, Soviet-Baltic States relations, the League of Nations, international law, and Estonian émigré politics.
    Physical Location: Hoover Institution Archives
    Languages: Estonian, French, English

    Administrative Information


    Collection is open for research.
    The Hoover Institution Archives only allows access to copies of audiovisual items. To listen to sound recordings or to view videos or films during your visit, please contact the Archives at least two working days before your arrival. We will then advise you of the accessibility of the material you wish to see or hear. Please note that not all audiovisual material is immediately accessible.

    Publication Rights

    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Kaarel Robert Pusta papers, [Box number], Hoover Institution Archives.

    Acquisition Information

    Acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives in 1964.


    Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. To determine if this has occurred, find the collection in Stanford University's online catalog at http://searchworks.stanford.edu/ . Materials have been added to the collection if the number of boxes listed in the library catalog is larger than the number of boxes listed in this finding aid.

    Historical Note

    Born in Narva on 17 (29) of February 1883. In 1906 married Miss Ulrike W. Grünberg. Made public his childhood and youth memoirs in the book Kehra metsast maailma (From Kehra Forest into the World) , which was published in Tartu by Noor-Eesti Kirjastus in 1936, and reprinted by EMP publishers in Stockholm in 1960. It contains his memoirs from the time of the first revolutionary movement in Estonia in 1903-1904; his imprisonment in Russia; his voluntary exile in Paris and Bern where he made his debut as journalist and later continued this activity for the two Estonian newspapers, Kehra Virulane and Kehra Päevaleht; the period when he was in Poland and in the Caucasus during the First World War; and during which he acted as inspector for the Estonian Food Committee at the end of 1917; and from the time when in January 1918 he was elected a delegate of the Estonian National Council in Paris.
    The first part of Mr. Pusta's memoirs ends with his travels from the Ahvenanmaa Islands to Stockholm in the autumn of 1918, and to this day the completion of his memoirs has been postponed because of the demands made on him by his multifarious services to the Estonian Republic. He was a delegate to the Paris Peace Conference, an envoy to France, Italy, Belgium, Spain, Poland, Rumania, Czechoslovakia, and to the three Scandinavian countries. Chairman of the delegation to the Baltic Conference in Riga-Bulduri in the fall of 1920 and in Barcelona, Genoa and Hague from 1921-1922. From 1921 the Estonian delegate to the League of Nations. Estonian Foreign Minister from 1924-25, and chairman of the International Passport Conference in Genf in 1927.
    Concurrently with his diplomatic services Mr. Pusta has been an active contributor to the periodical presses of Estonia, France, Germany, Poland and the United States. Among his writings are special studies in the field of international law, especially in the area of the Baltic Sea and the Baltic States. A charter member of the Academie Diplomatique in Paris, he was chosen in 1923 to be a member of the International Institute of Law where up to the present time he has been the only representative from the Baltic States. As a member of the Council of Paneuropa Union since 1924, Mr. Pusta together with Coudenhove-Kalergi, Nicolas Politis, Paul Auer and Harry Hola proposed to Aristide Briand in 1927 the creation of a special commission at the League of Nations which would work toward the unification of Europe. He was a member of this commission for three years.
    In 1935 Mr. Pusta was invited to lecture at The Hague Academie de Droit about the statutes of the Baltic Sea. He lectured also for two years about Baltic problems at the Academie des Sciences Morales et Poltiques in Paris. In 1938 Mr. Pusta was sent by the Estonian government to Paris on a special mission. He left Paris together with his wife before the Germans invaded the city in June 1940 and went, via Vichy, Madrid and Lisbon to Washington where he was given diplomatic status. His daughter Aino (Mrs. Van Wagenberg), son Kaarel-Robert Jr. and later his mother-in-law Mrs. Leena Grünberg, who arrived as a refugee from Estonia, joined them in the United States. Mrs. Grünberg has since died at an advanced age in the home of the Pustas in Long Island. His son Kaarel-Robert Jr. served as a volunteer in the United States Air Force. He left the service at the end of the war with the rank of captain and entered the U.S. Information Service in the field of radio broadcasting.
    In Washington and in New York Mr. Pusta's activities centered around the area of Estonian information and in organizing and promoting cooperation between the representatives of captive nations. Together with the former chairman of the Russian Constituent Assembly Victor Tshernov, and others, he founded in Washington the Committee for Promotion of Democracy, was a member of the European Question Committee which had been formed during the war at Columbia University, was first a board member of the International League for the Rights of Man and is presently a member of the advisory committee of this organization. He is also a member of the following international and American institutions: International Law Association, American Society of International Law, Academy of Political Science in New York, and others. Mr. Pusta was for several years a voluntary worker for the Free Europe Committee. He is a regular contributor to the legal journal Kehra Internationales Recht und Diplomatie, in Hamburg. In addition he has published articles and treatises in various American journals and newspapers such as the New York Times, , Journal American, , Human Events, , The New Leader, The American Journal of International Law, Journal of Central European Affairs, and others. His monographs were published in Catholic Encyclopedia and in Funk and Wagnalls Encyclopedia in New York. A short biography of Mr. Pusta is included in the 1962 edition of Marquis, Who's Who in the East.
    While Mr. Pusta lived in Washington and in Long Island he participated actively in Estonian affairs in New York. He was the director of the World-Wide Estonian Society, was a founder of Estonian Aid, Inc., and of the St. Paul parish of the Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church in New York; he also served as president of the Estonian Journalistic Society in the United States, and as a board member for the International Society of Free Journalists. He was elected the first honorary member of the Society of Estonian Students in the United States.
    In 1952 Mr. Pusta was invited to lecture in the Free Europe College in Strsbourg, and later in the Universities of Madrid, Istanbul and Ankara. While he was in Europe he succeeded in re-establishing the Estonian delegations in Paris and Madrid. He has since been living in these two capitals, visiting also Belgium occasionally where he was earlier an accredited delegate. Mr. Pusta is a delegate to the Assembly of Captive Nations of Europe in Paris, a board member of the French-Balticum Society and the vice president of the International (Free) Federation of Deportees and Resistance Internees in Paris.
    In addition to the Cross of Liberty (Estonian) Mr. Pusta's decorations include the Grand Cross of Leopold the First (Belgium), the Grand Officer Legion of Honor (France), the White Rose of Finland, the Grand Cross Polonia Restituta (Poland), the Three Stars of Latvia, and other decorations.
    Of the first diplomatic representatives abroad who were appointed by the Estonian government in 1918 Mr. Pusta is the only survivor. On Mr. Pusta's anniversary his Parisian colleagues and co-workers Dr Johannes Leppik in Ryssby, Ambassador August Torma in London, Miss Elsa Saukas in Paris, and the former lieutenants William Tomingas and Alfred Sinisov in the United States can reminisce with him about the by-gone days of that time.
    Madrid, December 26, 1962.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    Correspondence, speeches and writings, memoranda, reports, printed matter, and photographs, relating to Estonian politics and diplomacy, Soviet-Baltic States relations, the League of Nations, international law, and Estonian émigré politics.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    League of Nations.
    International law.
    Estonia--Emigration and immigration.
    Baltic States--Foreign relations.
    Baltic States--Foreign relations--Soviet Union.
    Estonia--Foreign relations.
    Estonia--Foreign relations--Soviet Union.
    Soviet Union--Foreign relations--Baltic States.
    Soviet Union--Foreign relations--Estonia.