The latest special exhibition, Interrex – Gustaf Mannerheim and Finland 1919, was opened in the summer of 2019, on the hundredth anniversary of the Finnish constitution. On December 12, 1918, cavalry general Gustaf Mannerheim was appointed regent of Independent Finland. The new leader realised his term would be short and therefore got down to business in an energetic way, accompanied with a large amount of media attention. Among the main goals were changing the foreign policy course from the German trend to the Entente and Nordic direction, and stabilizing the domestic political situation, moving from war to peacetime, establishing statehood and creating a whole governmental system. As the uncertain international situation prevailed, Mannerheim still drew attention to Russia and maintained relations with men of the former empire.
Creating a new government included many practical tasks, but also a great deal of symbolism. The regent listened to both the masses and the high society. Even though the constitution was republican, Finland got a general which background, customs and wishes were monarchist, as head of state. Mannerheim was even considered an uncrowned king, an intermediate king who brought the grandeur and credibility of a great world to the homeland.
This hypothesis was introduced by original material, photographs, archival material, and artefacts from 1919, mostly from the museum's own collections. The central theme rose to be the work-filled daily life of the regent with the assistance of adjutants and many of the tasks that Mannerheim took over in a short period.
At the moment the museum is preparing an exhibition which will open in fall 2020 – history is filled with themes and ideas!