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 The Republic of Lithuania, 1918–1940

 

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Re-establishment of Independence

World War I shattered the world and left the downfall of the European Monarchies as one of its most significant consequences. When Germans occupied the current Lithuanian territory in 1915 they were not certain what “Lithuania” was. However, they found out about that, as demands of the Lithuanian society members for the Independent State of Lithuania was getting increasingly louder. Thus, Europe rediscovered Lithuania at the end of the World War I upon concurrence of favourable circumstances both internally and externally, and particularly due to the political will of Lithuanians.

In the end of the 19th century, intelligentsia of rural origin played a major role in public activities. It was the starting point for the development of national ideology (“Aušra”, “Varpas”, “Apžvalga” and others) and particular Lithuanian political world. However, the objectives of the Lithuanian national liberation became more apparent during the revolutionary period of 1904–1906, along with the start of the discussions on the Lithuania’s autonomy within the Russian Empire[1]. The raising of the matter is linked to the Great Seimas of Vilnius, held in Vilnius from 4th to the 6th of December, 1905. This Seimas demanded autonomy for Lithuania: to allow Lithuania, which was included to the Russian Empire, to govern itself, to possess its own Lithuanian clerks, to use Lithuanian language in the institutions, to have Lithuanian schools, as well as to include the objective of the democratically elected Seimas and define the territory of Lithuania – ethnographic Lithuania with its capital Vilnius[2].

World War I resulted in profitable international circumstances and favourably adjusted the geopolitical situation for Lithuania to implement its goals in terms of autonomy, and the demand for the autonomy got louder during the War. Lithuanian intellectuals both inside and outside of Lithuania have worked in this direction, but the main fight took place in the territory of Lithuania. In the spring of 1916, the ambition of independence was replaced with the idea of independence, followed by a demand. In the summer of 1917, with the changing geopolitical situation in Europe and with an approach of the inevitable upshot of the Great War, Germany was concerned with the expansion of its political influence in the occupied territories, including Lithuania. Therefore, it established the Regional Council, an obedient advisory political body with limited powers. Active Lithuanian people (particularly the informal Political Department of the Lithuanian Society to Aid War Victims led by A.Smetona in Vilnius) decided to use this situation for the benefit of the statehood of Lithuania. Committee representatives have been sent to different places in Lithuania in order to invite influential, authoritative, active and politically conscious Lithuanians to Vilnius, including priests, farmers, intellectuals, landowners, etc. The people invited were from different social classes, of different education and political views. Lithuanian Conference was convened in Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, under such circumstances in end of summer and the beginning of autumn.

Lithuanian Conference, held on the 18th–23rd of September, 1917, was for an independent and democratic State comprised of ethnographic Lithuanian land. The Conference also decided that the definitive form of the State government and relations with the neighbouring countries would be set forth by the Constituent Seimas, democratically elected by all the citizens. The twenty–member Council of Lithuania, comprised of the representatives of the main contemporary Lithuanian political ideologies (Christian Democrats, members of the Party of National Progress, social democrats and socialists) and non-party members, was elected in order to implement the aforementioned objective.

In the beginning of December, 1917, the Council of Lithuania has started negotiation with the occupational German authority on the political future of Lithuania. On the 11th Of December, 1917, the Council of Lithuania issued a Declaration coordinated with the representatives of the German authority, stating about the “re-establishment of the Independent State of Lithuania with its capital Vilnius”[3]. It was a very important legal and political step towards Lithuania's liberation from the Union with Poland and its withdrawal from the sovereignty of the Tsar’s Russia. This Act also attributed to close relations between the State of Lithuania and Germany in respect of the four following Conventions: Customs, Finances, Communication and Military. However, Germany’s delay in the recognition of the Independence of the State of Lithuania following the Declaration of the 10th of December led to discontent of and internal turmoil in the Council of Lithuania. Under the pressure of left–wing (social democrats and socialists, the Council of Lithuania decided to act in a more radical manner.

On the 16th of February, 1918, the Council of Lithuania, chaired by Jonas Basanavičius, unanimously adopted and declared the Act of Independence of Lithuania. The Act was signed by all of the twenty members of the Council of Lithuania. It stated that the Council of Lithuania, as the sole representative of the Lithuanian nation, based on the right to national self-determination and on the Vilnius Conference's Resolution of the 18th–23th of September, 1917, proclaimed the restoration of the independent state of Lithuania, founded on democratic principles, with Vilnius as its capital, and declared the termination of all the political ties which formerly bound this State to other nations. The Council also declared that the definitive foundation of the Lithuanian State and its relations with other countries had to be determined as soon as possible by the democratically elected Constituent Seimas. Declaration of the Independent State was an important victory, since it provided legal foundation to the future state. But the state was yet to be established and the development process took place in a complex, unsettled and unfavourable political reality. Considering the rapidly changing international relations, the Council of Lithuania had to go hand in hand with the processes by manoeuvring and looking for the most efficient ways to develop the state. With the evolution of the World War I reaching its apogee and Germany being straightforward about its annexation plans with respect to Lithuania between spring and the beginning of summer of 1918, there were also attempts to use monarchic scenario for the restoration of the Lithuanian statehood. On the of June, 1918, in order to prevent possible Lithuania’s annexation to the Kaiser’s Germany, the Council of Lithuania elected prince Wilhelm von Krach, Count of Württemberg and Duke of Urach, as the King of Lithuania and changed its name to the State Council of Lithuania. It was the first time since the end of the 18th century, when the definition of the “State of Lithuania” was used formally. However, Lithuania did not become constitutional monarchy. Lithuanian constitutional monarchy model did not make any sense after the Kaiser’s Germany faced a total defeat in the Great War and the State Council of Lithuania went back to the concept of a Democratic Republic.

A Review of the References

Vytautas the Great War Museum stores photographs containing the contemporary Lithuanian society and political actors: Vincentas Laucevičius, a member of the Great Seimas of Vilnius of 1905[4], as well as the famous photograph of the members of the Council of Lithuania, signatories of the Act of Independence (Jonas Vileišis, Jurgis Šaulys, Justinas Staugaitis, Stanislovas Narutavičius, Jonas Basanavičius, Antanas Smetona, Kazimieras Šaulys, Steponas Kairys, Jonas Smilgevičius, Kazimieras Bizauskas, Jonas Vailokaitis, Donatas Malinauskas, Vladas Mironas, Mykolas Biržiška, Alfonsas Petrulis, Saliamonas Banaitis, Petras Klimas, Aleksandras Stulginskis, Jokūbas Šernas, Pranas Dovydaitis).[5] The Museum collection also includes photographs of the members of State Council of Lithuania from the celebration in Kaunas in 1919.

 

Battles of Independence

World War I ended after signing the Armistice of Compiègne on the 11th of November, 1918. The destiny of Lithuania depended on the efforts of the Lithuanian nation and political powers of the Lithuanian people, as well as on the movement of political powers during the peace talks. The Triple Entente left the German army in the states which had declared independence (including Lithuania), within the former territories of the Russian Empire, in order to protect them from the Bolsheviks. But such protection was not reliable. The Soviet Russia prepared for its campaign westwards. Germans retreated to avoid contact with the Red Army, thus leaving the State of Lithuania (still without its own army) in an awkward position. Young State of Lithuania had to fight the Bolsheviks, Bermontians and Polish army altogether.

Situation in Vilnius, where the State Council of Lithuania and the emerging Government resided, was extremely complicated. The city has been administered by the occupational German authority. Therein, Combat squads were established by the Soviets of workers, which were involved in battles with the underground Polish Military Organization (POW). While Lithuanians were not able to agree with Poles on the future of the city and Germans started to retreat from the city, the Red Army approached to the city. Young Government of Lithuania was facing a threat. On the 2nd of January, 1919, the Government of Lithuania was temporally transferred to Kaunas and Vilnius was left only with its representative and a small soldier squad. This temporality took as long as 20 years.

The State Council and Government of Lithuania had to repulse the aggression of Bolsheviks; an army was formed from volunteers and conscripts. The Lithuanian army development moved on as soon as the Government of M.Sleževičius promised to immediately (without waiting for an approval from the Constituent Seimas) distribute the lands of estates to the landless and the ones having little land and to the volunteer soldiers at first.[6] The Government of Lithuania established the following institutions that supposed to guarantee smooth activities of the State under war conditions: ministries, courts, post offices, customs and representative offices in foreign countries. Lithuanian diplomats sought recognition of the State and guaranteed military support of foreign countries in fighting the external enemies. And enemies emerged on every corner: the Red Army spreading the idea of the global revolution; Poland and its great country claims in respect of Lithuania (on the 19th of April, 1919, Józef Piłsudski attacked and seized Vilnius and then headed towards the lands controlled by the Government of Lithuania by using fights with the Litbel (Lithuanian–Belorussian Soviet Socialist Republic) as an excuse, which resulted in military conflicts between Poland and Lithuania. The question of Vilnius was the reason for persistent disagreements between the neighbouring countries and became an issue preventing the cohesion of the states established on the east coast of the Baltic Sea. In 1919 Lithuania faced yet another risk – the Bermontians (the White Russians supported by the Germans, who tried to restore the Russian Empire and were against the independence of the Baltic States). They have been confronted with in Northern Lithuania (they were ousted from Lithuania in the end of 1919)[7].

Having lost the World War I, Germany was forced to retreat from the occupied territories. Red Army followed the retreating Germans. From the April of 1919 German soldiers were paid by the State of Lithuania for helping to stop the invasion of Bolsheviks. Bolsheviks occupied Švenčionys on the 30th–31st of December, 1918, and were approaching Vilnius. The German army abandoned Vilnius on the 1st of January, 1919, and young Lithuanian army, still being in its development stage, was not able to properly stand against the invading Bolsheviks. The Government of Lithuania was forced to move from Vilnius to Kaunas on the 2nd of January, 1919, and only small squad of Lithuanian volunteer soldiers was left in Vilnius[8]. Lithuanian volunteers raised a tricolour national flag in the Gediminas Tower on the 1st January, 1919. Bolsheviks occupied Vilnius on the 5th of January, 1919. They have attacked the territory of Lithuania. Separate parts of the Bolshevik army had a task to occupy Alytus and Kaunas and to approach the German border. They saw the occupation of the Kaunas Fortress as a significant step. On the 8th of February, 1919, Lithuanian volunteer soldier Povilas Lukšys (a monument for P.Lukšys was unveiled in the backyard of Vytautas the Great War Museum in Kaunas on the 8th of September, 1938[9]) was the first to perish during the battle with Bolsheviks. He lost his life in Taučiūnai village (presently Kėdainiai District). Following the battle, Bolsheviks’ efforts to surround Kaunas from the northern side have failed.

In the February of 1919, Bolsheviks forced their way to Jieznas, towards Alytus. The battle for Alytus took place. The Lithuanian army had to retreat towards Simnas and Prienai. After preparing for retreat, the commander of regiment Antanas Juozapavičius, tried to protect the weaponry kept in Alytus, but was killed himself on the bridge on the 13th February, 1919. A.Juozapavičius was the first Lithuanian army officer who perished in the battlefield (a monument for A.Juozapavičius was unveiled in the backyard of Vytautas the Great War Museum in Kaunas on the 8th of September, 1938[10]). Bolsheviks were ousted from Alytus on the 14th of February, 1919. In the middle of 1919, the Front line with Bolsheviks was extended as follows: through Kuršėnai, Šiauliai, Baisiogala, Krekenava, Pagirys, Vepriai, Žasliai, Jieznas, Varėna and Stakliškės. Meanwhile, northern part of Lithuania has been attacked by Bolsheviks from the territory of Latvia. Bolsheviks were forced to retreat to the vicinity of Šiauliai, following the other unsuccessful battles. The inactive Bolshevik army has been wandering between Šiauliai and Panevėžys for some time[11]. On the 15th of March, 1919, the Lithuanian army took over the railway section Dotnuva–Kuršėnai and ousted Bolsheviks from Šiauliai, Radviliškis and Šeduva.

In the middle of April of 1919, the Lithuanian army started to advance towards Vilnius in its attempt to get the city back. In the middle of April, the Lithuanian army pushed eastwards and approached Vilnius. However, the Polish army was the first to oust Bolsheviks from Vilnius and occupied the city on the 19th of April, 1919. Northern part of Lithuania was still controlled by the Bolshevik army.

The Lithuania army ousted Bolsheviks from the territory of Lithuania in 1919. On the 30th of August, 1919, the Lithuanian army reached the banks of the Daugava River[12]. On the 15th of January, 1920, Latvian and Polish armies occupied Daugavpils, while Lithuania lost the front in the battle with Bolsheviks[13]. The Peace Treaty with the USSR was signed in Moscow on the 12th of July, 1920.

Bermontians, an allegedly independent army comprised of Russian prisoners of war and German soldiers and commanded by Pavel Bermondt-Avalov, started their invasion to the northern part of Lithuania, while the battles with Bolsheviks were still taking place. The emergence of this army has been inspired by the German officers. After losing the World War I, the German army was obliged to vacate the Baltic region, where German nobility had established itself from the old days (in the present territories of Latvia and Estonia) and its statehood vision had never included the independent states of Latvia and Estonia. The Entente countries directed to the German army to leave the region until the 20th of August, 1919. Otherwise Germany would have faced a blockade. Bermontians had intentions to attack the Bolshevik Russia and were for the re-establishment of the undivided Russia, the territory of which would include Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. In the summer of 1919, the first Bermontians showed up in Lithuania. While the Lithuanian army was battling against the Bolsheviks, only a handful of Lithuanian soldiers fought with the Bermontians. Consequently, Bermontians occupied the entire Northern Lithuania in 1919. On the 22nd of November, 1919, the Lithuanian army defeated Bermontians near to Radviliškis. Enormous loot has been taken during the battle: 30 planes, 15 cannons, 100 machine guns, 14 mortars and lots of ammunition. The Entente states tried to interrupt the battles between the Lithuanian army and Bermontians and to encourage both sides to put everything on the negotiating table. However, the negotiations fell flat. Remainder of the marauding Bermontians started to retreat towards Germany through the territory of Lithuania.

Having declared its independence, Lithuania has faced territorial claims from its neighbouring countries. Poland had plans to revive the Polish–Lithuanian Union and incorporate Lithuania into Poland. The Polish army has also fought with the Red Army. On the 19th of April, 1919, the Polish army, led by Józef Piłsudski, found a way to expel the Red Army from Vilnius and to seize the city. State of Lithuania also claimed for the city. The Polish army started to march deeper into Lithuania. On the 4th of July, 1919, Poles demanded to surrender the Vievis Railway Station and the small town. The Entente States attempted to peacefully settle the conflict between Lithuania and Poland, which resulted in suspension of military actions.

On the 18th of June, 1919, the Entente States defined the first line of demarcation (temporary). Lithuanian representatives had been absent when defining the line, therefore Lithuania did not recognize it, while Poland promptly trespassed and occupied the territories within the Lithuanian part. Diplomatic means have been employed for some time. New line of demarcation was defined on the 27th of July, 1919, but has also been trespassed. Polish Government refused to recognize the State of Lithuania with Vilnius as its capital. The negotiations between the States were unavailing. Ferocious battles have taken place by Seinai (Sejny in Polish) on the 22nd–28th of August, 1919, but the Lithuanian army was not able to seize the area. Clashes between Lithuanian and Polish soldiers have taken place on a regular basis[14]. In its attempts to annex Lithuania, Poland tried to organize Lithuanian coup d’état in Kaunas (from the end of August until the beginning of September of 1919), which had to be exercised by the Polish Military Organization – Polska Organizacja Wojskowa (POW). The conspiracy was exposed by the Lithuanian security services and their judicial sitting took place in Kaunas. Exposition of the POW case related exhibits (weapons, letters and a painting depicting the trial of the revolutionaries) was installed in the War Museum of Kaunas in the 1920s)[15]. There have been further attempts to settle the conflict between Lithuania and Poland at the international level. The so called Curzon Line was put forward on the 8th of December, 1919, following which Vilnius has been kept by Lithuania. Representatives of the Entente States made a demand from Poland to stop the attack and to withdraw its army. In April of 1920, the Polish army opened an attack on the Red Army, and Kiev was seized by Poles on the 8th of May, 1920. Soon enough Russia took the lead and Poles were forced to retreat (their army was pushed right to the territory of Poland). The Polish front disintegrated and the Lithuanian army started capturing territories left by Poles while approaching Vilnius. Bolsheviks were already in Vilnius when the Lithuanian army entered into the city on the 15th of July, 1920. The photographs contain moments of the meeting between the Lithuanian and Soviet Russian armies that took place in Lentvaris[16]. The Russian army gave Vilnius over to Lithuania, yet moved out from only on the 26th of August, 1920. Since Poles occupied part of the territory of Lithuania while chasing away the defeated Bolsheviks, battles between the Lithuanian and Polish armies started over. Poland occupied Augustavas (Augustów in Polish) on the 28th of August 1920, and Suvalkai (Suwałki in Polish) and Seinai on the 31st of August. During the battles, there have been attempts to settle the conflict by negotiations. The negotiations took place in Kalvarija on the 15th of September, 1920, and in Suvalkai on the 29th of September, 1920, under mediation of the Military Monitoring Commission of the League of Nations. Members of both negotiating delegation were captured in the photographs stored in Vytautas the Great War Museum[17]. The Treaty of Suvalkai, establishing the demarcation line in the Suvalkai Region and leaving Vilnius for Lithuania, was signed on the 7th of October, 1920. Even before the Treaty entered into force, Lucjan Żeligowski declared himself a “rebel”, seized Vilnius on the 29th of October, 1920 (with the knowledge of Józef Piłsudski), and started to force his way deeper into the territory of Lithuania, by occupying Giedraičiai, Dubingiai and other places till the middle of November of 1920, and then approaching Ukmergė. The Lithuanian army switched to the assault mode and following the ferocious battles managed to seize Širvintos and Giedraičiai respectively on the 19th and 21st of November, 1920. The further march of the Lithuanian army was stopped by the League of Nations, which demanded to halt the military actions. On the 29th of November, 1920, the League defined the neutral zone with and administrative line in the middle, which separated the territories of Lithuania and Poland up until the end of 1939[18]. Although the Lithuanian achieved victory, Vilnius region and Vilnius, once seen as the capital of Lithuania, remained in the Polish part. In the beginning of the occupation, Poland referred to the Vilnius region as to a new state, i.e. Central Lithuania. Eventually, the region was incorporated into Poland in 1922. The battles with Poland in autumn of 1920 marked the ending of the two year long period of Lithuania’s battles for the independence. The loss of Vilnius became a very clear ideological thread in the history of the Independent Lithuania. The activities included publishing proclamations, collecting loans in order to liberate Vilnius, involving art (publishing posters, cards, post stamps, painting pastel portraits and writing poems) and press (from semi-official to satiric publications that encouraged Lithuanians to keep Vilnius in their minds), establishing of fellowships, while slogan “Mes be Vilniaus nenurimsime” (We will not settle down without Vilnius) was integral part of national holidays.

A Review of the References

The following material stored in Vytautas the Great War Museum and the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania helps us to learn about the process of the Battles of Independence: written documents (proclamations, telegrams), photographs, posters, drawings, paintings and maps. Establishment of the Lithuanian army and relation between the army, society and public institutions are captured in the photographs and glass negatives stored in Vytautas the Great War Museum. The photographs reflect the difficulties experienced by the young State while developing army, supplying volunteers with the basic necessities, preparing them for the battles and protecting their health and life during and after the battles. This rich collection of photographs also contain some exclusive pictures, such as of the First oath of the Lithuanian army in Kaunas, in the Town Hall Square on the 11th of May, 1919. The oath ceremony was attended by the President of the State of Lithuania Antanas Smetona, ministers and hierarchy of the Catholic Church[19]. Captured moments also include the army training[20], soldiers in the Military Hospital of Kaunas[21], send-off of the 2nd intake of the Military School in the Independence Square, by the Garrison Church in Kaunas (on the 16th of December, 1919), which was attended by the President of the State, Government members[22]; ; also a send-off of the 3rd intake of the Military School, which was attended by the President[23]. The Museum stores messages written from the battlefields to the commander of the Lithuanian army and commanders of the regiments concerning the situation at the Front[24], including description of military actions of the armoured car “Šarūnas”[25]. The Museum also stores maps that have been used during the Battles of Independence, with the hand marked directions of some regiment battles, written dates of the battles[26], and photographs (taken in 1919) of the locations where the Battles of Independence took place.[27] The photographs within the Museum contain captured volunteer soldiers of the Lithuanian army[28]. These photographs give us an idea about evolution of the military uniforms and about difficulties the young State had to face while supplying its soldiers. Photographs also contain captured Lithuania soldiers taking their positions at the Front[29]. Collections of the photographs illustrating the Battles of Independence are as significant as a large number of individual pictures. Collection Fa–17699 is comprised of the photographs with following captured moments: Battles of Independence with the Bolsheviks in 1919 (moments of the combats, explosions, smoke screens, preparing artillery batteries for the combats); funeral of the Lithuanian army General Vladas Dionizas Slaboševičius; resting Lithuanian soldiers, dinner at the Front, Lithuanian soldiers coming back from the Polish captivity in 1920; medical stations where soldiers injured at the Front used to be taken; entrenchment at the Front with Poland; captured Bermontians and Red Army soldiers; the spoils of war taken from Bermontians and Poles during the battles; festival of Kaunas Commandant's headquarters in 1920 m.; send-off of the 1st and 2nd intakes of the Military Academy; festivals for commemoration of the 16th of February in Kaunas and Alytus in 1920. Collection Fa–16968 is comprised of the following photographs: the first perished Lithuania army officer Antanas Juozapavičius, the place of his death (bridge in Alytus); commemoration monument for him and other Lithuanian soldiers who perished in the Battles of Independence. The Museum also stores photographs from the Military Museum exhibitions in 1920s and 1930s. The aim of the exhibitions is to illustrate the battles of independence fought by the young State of Lithuania, as well as to commemorate the volunteer soldiers who perished in the battles[30]. Photographs of the exhibitions include the following: weapons[31] and paintings of the battles. Maps of Lithuania stored in the Museum reflects the alternation of the territory of Lithuania (i.e. the loss of Vilnius and inclusion of the Klaipėda Region into the administration of Lithuania). Maps prepared in Lithuania depict Vilnius Region as the part of the Lithuanian territory, although the city was administered by Poland at the time. Also a roadmap of the Post of Lithuania, Kaunas (1922)[32], the Lithuanian Trade and Industry Bank map (1940s)[33]. The Museum hold photographs of the Red Army soldiers[34] during different military operations[35], their headquarters, where battles used to be planned; maps hanging on the walls of headquarters[36]. Photographs contain uniforms and outfits of the Red Army soldiers, as well as variety of weaponry[37]. The Museum hold photographs of the Red Army soldiers[38] during different military operations[39], their headquarters, where battles used to be planned; maps hanging on the walls of headquarters[40]. The Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania also holds photographs of the Šiauliai City during the period of the Bolshevik occupations[41]: demonstration of Bolsheviks, crowd of people with flags and banners[42], parade of the Red Army soldiers[43], headquarters of Bolsheviks (a group of officers planning military actions, walls covered with maps)[44]. The Museum also stores pictures of captured Bermontian soldiers[45], the better equipped officers and poverty-stricken private soldiers, difference in their outfit and different uniforms. In some photographs Bermontians are captured in the occupied territories, supervising workers and animals put in requisition[46]. In some pictures there are visible buildings and premises devastated by Bermontians[47]. There are also pictures of detained Bermontians, who have marauded in Lithuania by using self-made weapons. Other photographs contain commemoration symbols (monuments, gravestones) for soldiers perished during the battles with Bolsheviks[48]. Photographs of the detained Bermontians are stored in Vytautas the Great War Museum[49]. They mostly contain Bermontians retreating from the territory of Lithuania[50]. The Museum holds a chart drawn by General K. Ladiga representing the actions of the Lithuanian army against Bermontians between the 21st of November and 16th of December, 1919[51], also messages containing information about Lithuanian army's march to Vilnius. Clash with the Polish soldiers took place during the march, followed by the declaration of the truce[52]. Other noteworthy documents within the Museum include the Journal of actions of the 2nd infantry division of the Lithuanian army and the Journal of military operations of the 3rd infantry division on Seinai (“Suvalkai” operations)[53]. The 1919 album “Vaizdai iš Lietuvos atgimimo” (Images from the Resurgence of Lithuania) (VDKM, FA-17699) contains photographs from the public demonstrations in Laisvės Avenue, Kaunas. The photographs contain captured demonstration of the 17th of August, 1919, intended to protect Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania.[54] Crowds of people, flags and posters of organizations, some of them containing texts in Yiddish, posters with slogans “Tegyvuoja nepriklausoma Lietuva! Šalin okupantai” (Viva Independent Lithuania! Go away invaders).[55] Also photographs of the Lithuanian army in Vilnius (the line of the Lithuania army standing by the Cathedral Square, Vilnius, on the 26th of August, 1920)[56]. Pictures stored in the Museum contain captured clashes between the Lithuanian and Polish armies, uhlans of the Polish army in the territory of Lithuania[57], scouts of the uhlans of the Polish army[58], Polish soldiers[59], Lithuanian army volunteers, their regiments and troops who fought against Poland[60]. Photographs also contain captured successful operations of the Lithuanian army and Lithuanian partisans against the Polish army[61], a moment of the Lithuania partisans' assault[62]. Also, meetings of the representatives of the Polish army and authority with the community in Seinai[63]. There is also the 4th infantry King Mindaugas regiment of the Lithuanian army before entering into Vilnius in 1920[64], Lithuanian army soldiers after coming back of the Polish captivity. The pictures reflect the extremely bad condition of the former prisoners of war (they are in their shirt-sleeves, with ragged clothes, some of them have their feet wrapped with puttees instead of shoes, while others are shoeless)[65]. Paintings hanging on the walls of the Museum portray battles and negotiations with the Poles (usually the paintings are re-painted photographs), including an allegory “Užgrobta Vilnija” (The Occupied Vilnius Region)[66]. The Museum also stores telegrams testifying about the events of the varying battles between the Lithuanian and Polish armies (the information includes correspondence on the military actions between different divisions of the army and intelligence information).

The photographs still remaining in the Chief Archivist of Lithuania contain the occupational army (German soldier holding a pipe in the trenches[67], German soldiers with the demolished Šiauliai city in the background[68]), also the Red Army soldiers and Bermontians, Lithuanian cities before the World War I[69] and during the War[70], the first years of the post-war period, damage caused to the cities[71] and villages by the War (demolished buildings, damaged churches, estates, houses of the town dwellers, devastated parks, etc.), poor daily life of the first post-war years – marketplace in a ruined city[72]. Album LCVA, A14 contains the largest number of photographs. A fair amount of information may be found in the Foundation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (LCVA, f. 383) and in the Foundation of the Council of Ministers (LCVA, f. 923). It includes messages from the Front, description of the positions in the battles, presentation of the mood of the local people, etc. In essence, such information was intended for strengthening and reasoning of the position of the State of Lithuania during international negotiations and conferences.

 

The (State) Council of Lithuania

The Council of Lithuania acted as an object of international politics. It was trusted by the Lithuanian citizens, who used to address the Council on the different matters. However, initially the Council did not have any substantive authority. After signing the Act of Independence of the 16th of February, 1918 and thus declaring the re-establishment of the independence of Lithuania, the Council of Lithuania declared itself as the only representative of the Lithuanian nation. Although it had not been elected during democratic elections, the Council had the right to carry out the works to re-establish the State, since it was not possible to arrange global democratic elections in order to form the representative office of the nation given special circumstances of the time (the War and German occupation)[73]. The Council and the Council of Ministers had the right of legislative initiative according to the Constitutions of 1918 and 1919 of the State of Lithuania. The State Council of Lithuania used to draft, adopt and issue laws, submit inquiries for ministers, organized local municipalities, take care of the return of deportees and war fugitives from Russia, as well as maintained relations with the Lithuanian immigrant organizations and arranged conferences of Lithuanians in Bern and Stockholm. Commissions acting under the State Council of Lithuania used to take care of examination and referral of appeals and to draft laws. The commissions acting under the State Council of Lithuania included commissions of education, finances, rights and others. The Presidium of the Council was formed of the President and two Vice-Presidents. Antanas Smetona was elected as the Chairman of the Presidium. He acted as the Chairman of the Presidium until the 4th of April, 1919. Afterwards this position was taken by Stasys Šilingas for the period of 1919–1920. The activity of the State Council was regulated by the temporary Constitutions of Lithuania of 1918 and 1919 and the Statute of the State of Lithuania. Following the “Framework Principles of the Temporary Constitution of the State of Lithuania” set on the 2nd of November, 1918, the State Council of Lithuania was the highest executive and legislative institution, The executive power was attributed to the Presidium of the State Council of Lithuania and exercised through the Council of Ministers, which was accountable to the State Council of Lithuania. Official publication “Laikinosios Vyriausybės Žinios” (Temporary Official Gazette), which published legislations, was introduced only on the 29th of December, 1918, therefore the first laws and secondary legislation issued by the Temporary Government and Ministries were published in the daily paper “Lietuvos aidas” held by the Council of State in Vilnius[74]. The State Council of Lithuania started to work in Kaunas on the 2nd January, 1919, and its authority ceased to be valid since the 15th of May, 1920, when the authority of the Council was overtaken by the Constituent Seimas as soon as its sittings started. The Chairman of the former State Council of Lithuania Stasys Šilingas released the following statement addressed to the President of the State: “The State Council of Lithuania considers its work as finished with the assembly of the Constituent Seimas and Your opening thereof on the 15th of the current month.”[75]

A Review of the References

Significant documents allowing to get acquainted with the activity of the State Council of Lithuania are stored in the Foundation of the State Council of Lithuania of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 1014). The documents held in this foundation reveals the correspondence between the State Council of Lithuania and German authority institutions on the situation in Lithuania[76], documents and correspondence with German Military Command on the declaration of independence of Lithuania[77], appeal of the League of the Russian Nations to the US President W.Wilson[78], declaration of the Lithuania delegation in the conference of the League of Nation in Laussane[79], list and meeting minutes of the members of the Education Commission under State Council of Lithuania[80], information about the situation of education [81], documents of correspondence with the Commission of Lawyers[82], meeting minutes from the Lithuanian Conference in Vilnius[83], extracts of the resolutions adopted during the Lithuanian Conference in Bern[84] and resolution of the Lithuanian Conference in Stockholm[85], meeting minutes of the Council of Lithuania[86], list of the members of the Council of Lithuania[87], authorizations, certificates and Statute of the Council of Lithuania[88]. Act of the National Council of Lithuania Minor on the Annexation of Lithuania Minor to Lithuania Major[89], correspondence with the Pope Benedict XV and different institutions on the appointment of the Bishop of Vilnius[90], correspondence on the loans of the State, situation in the region and return of the prisoners of war. The documents are available in German, Lithuanian and Russian.

Collections of the Vytautas the Great War Museum contain photographs of the State Council of Lithuania. One of them includes captured members of the Council who moved Kaunas in 1919: J. Kavaliūnas, Saliamonas Banaitis, Pranas Dovydaitis, A. Jakimavičius, Liudas Noreika, Kazimieras Bizauskas, J. Brokas, Vytautas Petrulis, M. Ivanauskas, priest Vladas Mironas, Kazimieras Šaulys, J. Lastauskas, priest Alfonsas Petrulis, Stasys Šilingas, Justinas Staugaitis, Jokūbas Šernas, Dr. Jurgis Alekna and Donatas Malinauskas.[91]

 

Evolution of the Constitutions

Constitution has been amended on a number of occasions during the existence of the Independent State of Lithuania (1918–1940). In most of the cases, the President of the Republic of Lithuania was the one initiating the amendments. Act of Independence, adopted by the Council of Lithuania on the 16th of February, 1918, was the most significant act of the State of Lithuania, re-established in 1910s, when it comes to constitutional meaning, and became the foundation of the Lithuanian constitutionalism[92].

On the 4th of April, 1919, the State Council of Lithuania adopted a new edition of the Framework Principles of the Temporary Constitution of the State of Lithuania. The State Council remained the principal legislator, but collegial Presidium of the State Council was replaced by the sole President of the State elected by the Council. He was authorized with the executive power, which he exercised through the Cabinet of Ministers, which was accountable to the State Council[93]. It is generally agreed that the Framework Principles became invalid after convention of the Constituent Seimas – “the democratic master of the State”[94].

When giving his speech after the convention of the Constituent Seimas on the 15th of May, 1920, the President of the State A.Smetona highlighted the following: “The task of the Interim Authority has been accomplished. Today, those who have brought Lithuania to the Constituent Seimas, including the State Council, the President of the State, the Cabinet of Ministers, National Audit Office and the Commander-in-chief of the army, they all withdraw and are passing the administration of the entire region to the Supreme Assembly.“[95] The Constituent Seimas authorized the President of the State, the Cabinet of Ministers, National Audit Office and the Commander-in-chief of the army, until Seimas would decide who should take over their duties. State Council, the main institution and principle legislator, had accomplished its tasks following the Framework Principles of the Temporary Constitution, therefore it was de jure and de facto immediately replaced by the Constituent Seimas[96].

In the end of 1919, an ad hoc commission started to draft the Law on Constitution, the fundamental law of the State. Following the convention of the Constituent Seimas, this function was taken over by the Constitution Commission assisted by the General Law Commission[97]. As the constituent object of authority, the Constituent Seimas adopted a short version of the Temporary Constitution of the State of Lithuania on the 2nd of June, 1920, which was signed by the President of the State on the 10th of June, 1920.[98] The Constitution was published in the publication “Laikinosios Vyriausybės Žinios” (Temporary Official Gazette) on the 12th of June, 1920. The Constitution established Parliamentary Republic in Lithuania, which was dominated by the Parliament.

The permanent Constitution has developed the basics of a democratic system declared in the temporary Constitutions of 1919 and 1920. This Constitution prioritized the Seimas (i.e. the nation’s elected representatives) against other highest institutions of the State. Sovereign authority belonged to the nation, the Seimas was the highest administrative institutions, while executive power was granted to the Cabinet of Ministers and the Seimas-elected President. The Constitution established the fundamental rights and freedoms of citizens, freedom of activities of political parties and public organizations and political pluralism[99].

The results of the reform were officially legitimized on the 17th of December, 1926, but their constitutionality was infringed after dissolving the Seimas and failing to call new elections. The deepening constitutional crisis obliged President A.Smetona and Premier A.Voldemaras to look for a way how to amend the Constitution, since its amendment order in Seimas, provided for in the Constitution adopted by the Constituent Seimas, was complicated. Besides, the Seimas was absent at the time. Therefore, A.Smetona signed and declared new Constitution on the 15th of May, 1928. This reform of the Constitution has strengthened the powers of the President of the Republic on expense of the Seimas, the authority was concentrated in the hands of the President elected by the nation’s representatives. Thus the foundation was laid for authoritarianism by also putting efforts in retaining the appearance of the most important democratic institutions, parliamentarism in particular. Following the Constitution of 1928, the State of Lithuania turned from parliamentary democracy to presidential democracy[100].

The Cabinet of Ministers formed a commission of the State Council comprised from well-known specialists. It was intended to draft a new Constitution. The Commission decided to follow the new Constitution of the Republic of Poland of 1935. It put an emphasis on the role of State within the society, based on the strong authority of one person (President), as well as retained the Parliament, the institution typical for democracy, although its role was practically insignificant. The next Seimas was convened in 1936 and virtually was just a supervisory body for the President. On the 11th of February, 1938, this Seimas adopted new Constitution. It declares Lithuania as an independent sovereign state without mentioning the word “democracy”, attempts to subordinate the State to the public life and widely discusses all the areas of the State's life and relations between the citizens and the society. The Constitution exalted the role of the State, considered as the most ideal expression of the freedom of nation, and related it to the historical past of Lithuania[101]. This Constitution consolidated the powers of the President of Lithuania even further. The Constitution of 1938 legitimized the already existing principle of the supreme authority of the President as of the nation’s leader. President was endowed with an absolute and practically unrestricted power. He became the main and essentially the only legislator being able to dissolve the Seimas at any time.

On the 15th of June, 1940, Lithuania was occupied by the Soviet Union. Measures have been taken in order to incorporate Lithuania into the Soviet Union. This task was accomplished by the so called People’s Seimas using the will of the nation as a cover and formally legitimizing the incorporation of Lithuania into the Soviet Union on the 3rd of August, 1940. The Constitution of the Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic, drafted in accordance with the principles of the USSR and essentially changing the system, was adopted on the 25th August, 1940. This Constitution finalized the annexation process of Lithuania and formalized its results[102].

A Review of the References

Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Lithuania of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (f. 923) stores documents revealing the evolution of the Lithuanian State’s constitutional system, including different draft Constitutions full of remarks and revealing the long and complicated Constitution adoption process, discussions on various articles of Constitutions, Commissions for the drafting of the Constitution that used to have sittings prior to the convention of the Constituent Seimas, protocols of 1920, the draft Constitutions of the State of Lithuania of 1922,[103] draft Constitutions of the State of Lithuania of 1922 and 1938, amendments to the Constitution of 1938[104], one of the documents contains an illustration (drawing) portraying its author’s conception of Lithuania, nation and citizens[105], attempts to define citizenship and Lithuanianism; these remarks were put in 1936–1937. Version of the Article 112 of the 1939 Constitution of Lithuania on Ratification of / Amendment to International Treaties is stored in the File No. 1082. The draft Constitutions reveal the structure of the State of Lithuania, principles of separation of powers, which help to judge the evolution of relations between the society and the State. Draft Constitution of the State of Lithuania, discussed by the Constituent Seimas, is stored at the Foundation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (LCVA, f. 383)[106]. Foundation of the Presidium of the Supreme Council of the Lithuanian SSR (LCVA, f. R-758) stores documents containing the testimony of the end of the Independent Republic of Lithuania – the Constitution of the Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic, drafted in accordance with the principles of the USSR and adopted on the 25th of August, 1940. The Constitution text was available in Lithuanian and Russian. The cover sheet contains printed coat of arms of the LSSR, but both texts are signed and approved with an embossed seal of the President from the period of Lithuanian independence and a note “Lietuvos Respublikos Prezidentas” (The President of the Republic of Lithuania), with Vytis[107], the symbol of the State of Lithuania, in the middle. The 27th of August, 1940, is the date known for approval of the symbol (coat of arms) and flag of the Lithuanian SSR and abrogation of symbols of statehood of the Republic of Lithuania, the coat of arms and tricolour flag.

Album “Vaizdai iš Lietuvos atgimimo” (Images from the Resurgence of Lithuania) (VDKM, Fa-17699) is kept in Vytautas the Great War Museum and contains a photograph of the coat of arms Vytis of the State of Lithuania in 1919[108]. Texts of the Lithuanian Constitutions from the 1930s include descriptions of the coat of arms and flag of the State of Lithuania, but the Law on Coat of Arms and Flag was drafted only in 1939.

 

The Seimas

Lithuania has been referred to as a Parliamentary State even before the declaration of independence of the State. On the 3rd of June, 1917, the Congress of Lithuanian Russians in Petrapilis (Petrograd) adopted a resolution, declaring that the ruling method and internal procedures of the independent Lithuania should be set forth by the Constituent Congress of Lithuania elected by global, equal and secret voting[109]. The Lithuanian Conference, held in Vilnius on the 21st of September, 1917, decided that the definitive foundation for the independent State of Lithuania should be laid by the “Constituent Lithuanian Seimas in Vilnius”[110]. The necessity to call the Constituent Seimas was also mentioned in the Act of Declaration of Independence of Lithuania of the 16th of February, 1918. Constituent Parliaments have been called in all the States established following the World War I. Constituent Seimas in Poland was convened in February of 1919, while in Estonia and Latvia it was call respectively in April of 1919 and on the 1st of May, 1920. In Lithuania, the Constituent Seimas was convened on the 15th of May, 1920. The Congress of the Lithuanian Constituent Seimas was postponed due to the external factors, such as battles with the Red Army and Bermontians, as well as complicated situation in Lithuania with relation the Polish occupation of the Eastern Lithuania with the capital Vilnius. Up until July of 1919, the sovereignty of Lithuania has been restricted by the German administration, which control transport (railways) and communication (post and telegraph)[111].

During the period of 1918–1940, the Seimas has been convened for five times. It has failed to complete the term of office as much as three times and has been dissolved under the act of the President of the Republic. Meanwhile, only two Seimas have completed the term of office (the Constituent Seimas and the Second Seimas). At that time, Parliamentary period in Lithuania lasted slightly longer than six and a half years (from the 15th of May, 1920, to the 12th of April, 1927). The idea of democracy was compromised by the excessive number of political parties, lack of political culture and inability to come to agreements. The powers of authority were disturbed following the coup d’état on the 17th of December, and eventually misbalanced on the 17th of December, 1926, when the Third Seimas was dissolved without calling elections to the new Seimas. That was the year marking the downfall of democracy and beginning of presidential regime. Lithuania has been ruled under the decrees of the President. Although the Fourth Seimas (1936–1940) has been convened in the 1930s, it was an appearance of parliamentarism rather than an actually democratic parliament, since the main power remained in the hands of the President of the Republic.

Seimas acted following the Statutes of the Seimas. The following three Statutes of the Seimas were adopted: the 1921 Statute of the Constituent Seimas, the 1924 Statute of the Seimas and the 1936 Statute of the Seimas. Members of the Seimas possessed the right to draft laws (laws could be drafted by at least eight parliamentarians), the right to submit interpellation to the Cabinet of Ministers and the right to inquiry. The representatives of the Constituent Seimas had legal immunity and could not be arrested, searched, have their correspondence checked, etc. The Constitution of 1922 provides for that term of office of the Seimas lasts three years, while the Constitution of 1928 sets forth that term of office of the Seimas is five years. Such term of office of the Seimas is also provided for in the Constitution of 1938.

Seimas used to have sittings in Kaunas, the temporary capital of Lithuania. The opening ceremony of the Constituent Seimas took place on the 15th of May, 1920, in the City Theatre of Kaunas (presently the Kaunas State Musical Theatre). Other meetings took place in the Seimas Palace (presently Kaunas Maironis University Gymnasium). That was the place where sittings of the First, Second and Third Seimas have been held. The Seimas dissolution act was read in the Seimas Palace on the 12th of April, 1927. The Fourth Seimas used to have sittings in the Palace of Justice, where the Ministry of Justice and the Supreme Tribunal (presently Kaunas State Philharmonic) were located.

Certain traditions have developed during the period of parliamentarism. The President used to call the elected members of the Seimas to convene to the first session. The future members of the Seimas, representatives of the Government, diplomatic block and society have been invited to participate in the sacred service prior to the convention of the first session of the Seimas. The first sitting used to be chaired by the eldest parliamentarian, while the youngest one used to be assigned as the secretary of the sitting (the Fourth Seimas failed to follow this tradition). Parliamentarians elected during the first sitting of Seimas used to say the words of oath or commitment before becoming full members of the Seimas (members of the Constituent Seimas have seemingly managed to avoid this liability).

 

The Constituent Seimas (1920–1922)

The President of the State of Lithuania announced the date of elections to the Constituent Seimas under the Act of the 12th of January, 1920, based on the proposal of the Cabinet of Ministers[112]. The elections took place on the 14th–15th and 16th of April, 1920. Following the Framework Principles of the Temporary Constitution of the State of Lithuania, the President of the State A.Smetona declared that the Constituent Seimas of Lithuania should convene “[...] on the 15th of May, 1920, 6 p.m., in the Palace of the City Theatre of Kaunas.“[113]

All of the political parties have been competing in elections to the Constituent Seimas (except for the Communist party which had boycotted the elections), as well as the organisations of national minorities, unions and different groups (a list of a total of 31 candidates)[114]. The election campaigns have been severely affected by the state of war which was in place in Lithuania from the beginning of 1919. However, the state of war in the territory of Lithuania was abolished with one month and a half left until the elections to the Seimas, except for the 30 kilometre borderline area. It was later announced that the area is also "[...] eligible for the pre-election meetings of the Constituent Seimas and the citizens may not be deprived of their right of movement in the region after 11 p.m. without an order of the Commander-in-chief of the army“[115]. The elections have taken place in six counties administered by the authority if Lithuania. The elections were not held in the Vilnius region, since it had been occupied by the Poles, and in the Klaipėda region, as its status was ambiguous (at the time it was administered by France).

A total of 112 representatives were elected to the Constituent Seimas. Block of the Lithuanian Christian Democrats, comprised of the three following parties, won the elections to the Constituent Seimas: Lithuanian Christian Democrat party, Lithuanian Labour Federation and Lithuanian Farmers’ Union. The block won 59 seats in the Seimas (a total of 52.7 per cent of votes). Block of the Popular Peasants ended up in the second position (it was comprised of the Lithuanian Popular Social Democratic Party and the Lithuanian Peasants’ Union) and won 29 seats (25.9 per cent). The Social Democratic Party of Lithuania won 15 seats and took the third position. The remaining seats were divided among the national minorities: 6 seats were won by the Democratic Union of Jews, while 3 seats were won by the Polish Central Electoral Committee and 1 seat by the Committee of Lithuanian Germans[116]. Eight women have worked during the term of office of the Constituent Seimas, while only five women had been elected. The 112 representatives elected to the Constituent Seimas included 15 farmers, 7 workers, 4 artisans, 10 priests, 1 rabbi, 13 educators (mostly teachers), 11 lawyers, 11 doctors and pharmacists, 7 soldiers, 15 clerks and officers, 3 writers, 3 engineers, 3 agronomists and 9 representatives of other professions (community activists, organists, worker cooperative, etc.)[117]. The Constituent Seimas represented all the social classes of Lithuania. Level of education among the members of the Seimas was much higher than that of the average Lithuanian citizens, but only minority of the members had diplomas of higher education.[118] The turnover of the members of the Constituent Seimas was relatively high. 

Statute of the Constituent Seimas regulating the activities of the Seimas was adopted on the 18th of May, 1920. The Statute was based on the edited and supplemented version of the Statute of State Council of Lithuania regulating the activities of the Constituent Seimas. The Presidium of the Constituent Seimas was comprised of the following: Aleksandras Stulginskis, the Chairman of the Constituent Seimas, two Vice-Chairmen, two Secretaries with the decisive vote and two Secretaries with the advisory vote. The members of the Constituent Seimas organised themselves into fractions, which could be comprised of a group of at least three parliamentarians. The Seimas had functioning blocks of Christian Democrats (comprised of different fractions) and Popular Peasants. Fraction of the Lithuanian Social Democratic Party, Fractions of Jews and Fraction of Poles have acted individually, while the representative of the Committee of the German Lithuanians was not able to organise a fraction and other two members of the Seimas did not belong to any of the fractions. At the very beginning of work of the Seimas, it has been decided to organise a Meeting of Elders, which was intended to assist the Presidium of the Seimas in organising the work.  Both permanent and temporary commissions played an important role while organising the work of the Constituent Seimas. Their task was to draft laws or to discuss the draft laws to be submitted to the plenary sessions. Twelve permanent commissions, which were responsible for the matters of Constitution, national defence, agricultural reform, finances, education, social security, foreign affairs, municipalities, trade, industry, economy and other matters, have operated during term of office of this Seimas. In addition to the permanent commissions, temporary commissions also used to be organised in order to examine various events.

The Constituent Seimas was the first parliament of Lithuania elected by global, equal and secret voting. At the very start of its work, the President of the State A.Smetona emphasized that Lithuania already had the main features of statehood: its own area of land, army, and mechanism of authority, finances and established commercial relations with foreign countries[119]. After taking over the control of the State, the Constituent Seimas has faced the following challenges: occupation of part of the territory of Lithuania with the capital Vilnius, ambiguous situation in the Klaipėda region, Lithuania was not yet recognised by the Entente states and borders were not coordinated with the neighbouring countries. Battles with the Polish army took place on 1920. On the 22nd of October, 1920, the Constituent Seimas decided to temporarily stop calling the plenary sessions, as well as to send its members to the Front, central and local state institutions and organise national defence therein. Member of the Constituent Seimas and military officer Antanas Matulaitis perished during the independence battles with Poland. Several members of the Seimas have been delegated to London, Paris and Rome, where they had intentions to start neutralising the anti–Lithuanian propaganda and accelerate international recognition of Lithuania[120]. The Seimas resumed the plenary sessions only on the 17th of January, 1921. During the period of inactivity, the Minor Seimas, elected by the Seimas, was functioning. It consisted of the Chairman of the Seimas A.Stulginskis and six members: M.Krupavičius, A.Tumėnas, M.Sleževičius, V.Lašas, K.Venclauskis and N.Fridmanas. This institution was endowed with the main functions of the Constituent Seimas: passing legislation, assertion of loans, and law enforcement oversight[121]. The Minor Seimas held 43 sittings.

Up until autumn of 1922, the Constituent Seimas held a total of 257 plenary session (excluding the 43 held by the Minority Seimas), during which some 300 legal acts: laws, supplements and amendments thereof. The laws adopted by the Constituent Seimas has impacted strongly on the further evolution of the State of Lithuania. On the 15th of May, the Constituent Seimas unanimously adopted the Document on Proclamation of Independence of the State of Lithuania, which once again declared that Lithuania was an independent state, just as it was done by the act of the 16th of February, 1918. On the 1st of August, 1922, the Constituent Seimas adopted the main law of the country, i.e. the Constitution of the State of Lithuania. It was the first document within the territory of the Republic of Lithuania to set forth that the State of Lithuania was an independent democratic Republic with its supreme authority belonging to the nation. The Seimas adopted the Law on Agricultural Reform on the 15th of February, 1922, while the Law on Monetary Unit, declaring that monetary unit of Lithuania is Litas, based on gold and consisting of 100 cents. The Constituent Seimas adopted the Law on the Bank of Lithuania on the 11th of August, 1922, in order to ensure financial stability.

The period of the national revival was concluded by the State Council of Lithuania and the Constituent Seimas. The Constituent Seimas adopted the permanent Constitution of the State, as well as the laws on the agricultural reforms (see above for the descriptions of the laws), discussed and adopted laws regulating different areas of the State's life (e.g. introduced the system of metric measures and weights, as well as the Central European Time in Lithuania). The Constituent Seimas has monitored executive authority institutions at all levels, while Lithuania's international status has been also consolidated during this period. In two years and a half, Lithuania has de jure recognized sixteen states[122]. The Constituent Seimas established the principles of a Western, democratic and parliamentary state, as well as freedom of faith, conscience and expression; equality of genders and nations; integrity of a person and his/her right to private conscious and expression.

A Review of the References

Vytautas the Great War Museum stores proclamations to the members of the Riflemen's Union[123], order to the army: “Kariškiai renka į Steigiamąjį Seimą” (Soldiers elect to the Constituent Seimas), introducing the procedures of elections and rules to the soldiers during the pre-election period[124]; electoral posters are visible in the photograph within the billboard[125]. The museum stores photographs containing the following: farewell of colonel lieutenant K.Žukas to the First Reserve Battalion prior to leaving for the Constituent Seimas[126], society greeting the Constituent Seimas after its convention in Kaunas (banners with welcome notes to the Seimas are visible in the background)[127], ceremony of planting an oak tree during the opening of the Constituent Seimas (the photograph includes members of the Seimas, representatives of the Government and the President A.Smetona)[128], the first sitting of the Constituent Seimas in the City Theatre of Kaunas[129]. One of the photographs contains a member of the Constituent Seimas and journalist Juozas Pronskus along with the Lithuanian soldiers returning from the Polish captivity (J.Pronskus has been kept in captivity under very poor conditions)[130]. Business card[131] of a member of the Constituent Seimas Dr. Vladas Lašas is present within the collection of extant business cards, as well as his photographs[132]. The foundations of the museum include a variety of posters from the elections to the Constituent Seimas.

The Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania stores documents and audio records revealing the activities of the Constituent Seimas and its meaning in the history of Lithuania. They are stored in the Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923) and include files of the documents concerning the activities of the Constituent Seimas; lists of the members of the Constituent Seimas, inquiries and interpellations to the ministers[133], registry log of the inquiries to the ministers from the members of the First and Second Seimas[134], agendas of the sittings of the Constituent Seimas; documents of correspondence between the Cabinet of Ministers and the Chairman of the Constituent Seimas regarding laws and other matters, as well as draft laws[135], estimates of the income and expenditure of the State of 1922, the Law on Elementary Schools, the Law on the Elections of the Seimas and the Law on the Remuneration of Civil Servants[136], the Statute of the Constituent Seimas[137]; agendas of the sittings, orders, laws and personnel schemes of both the Constituent Seimas and the Minor Seimas[138]; instructions for the Secretariat of the Constituent Seimas and Office of the Seimas[139], draft rules for the exit of the current members of the Constituent Seimas, as well as for the entry of new ones[140]; minutes of the sittings, held on the 14th–20th of January 1922, in the Constituent Seimas by the representatives of the block of the Christian Democrats and the block of the Lithuanian Popular Social Democratic Party and Peasants’ Union[141]; laws signed by the Chairman of the Constituent Seimas acting as the President of the Republic, and order of the President of the State: announcement of the place and time for the assembly of the Constituent Seimas, the postponement of day of the elections to the Constituent Seimas; notice of the Premier to the elected members of the Constituent Seimas to arrive to the Cabinet of Ministers and submit information about themselves and order of the Premier concerning the establishment of the Commission in order to arrange opening ceremony of the Constituent Seimas[142]. The Mykolas Sleževičius Foundation (LCVA, f. 1437) stores the certificate of the member of the Constituent Seimas issued to M.Sleževičius on the 24th of September, 1920 (it includes an excerpt from the Temporary Constitution of Lithuania regarding the immunity and rights of a member of the Constituent Seimas)[143]. The Foundation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (LCVA, f. 383) holds telegrams, notices of the Cabinet of Ministers and “Elta” concerning elections to the Constituent Seimas, their results in some of the counties, information about the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania, its compositions and the Constitution of the State of Lithuania adopted by the Constituent Seimas[144]. The Foundation of the Ministry of Education (LCVA, f. 391) holds an Appeal to all the organisations with information of the procedures in order to avoid turmoil on the eve of the assembly of the Constituent Seimas. Procedures of the 22nd session of the Constituent Seimas (2nd of July, 1920, 9 a.m.).[145] Numerous documents of the block of the fractions of the Education Commission of the Constituent Seimas, the Lithuanian Popular Social Democratic Party and Peasants' Union. There is an extant Resolution on the Establishment of the University of Lithuania adopted by the fraction of the social democrats[146]. Foundation of the Vytautas Magnus University (LCVA, f. 631) stores personal file of a student of the University of Lithuania Antanas Tamošaitis (1920–1925). A.Tamošaitis was elected as the members of the Constituent Seimas in the 6th electoral county (Utena)[147]. The Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania also stores the audio record prepared for the “Laisvės radijas” (Radio Liberty) (audio record No. 110), which contains the commemoration of the Constituent Seimas in Chicago in 1980.

 

The First Seimas (1922-1923)

The date of elections to the First Seimas was announced on the 7th of August, 1922, by the Chairman of the Constituent Seimas A.Stulginskis who has been temporarily acting as the President of the Republic[148]. Elections to the First Seimas took place on the 10th–11th of October, 1922. The Seimas was convened to its first session in Kaunas on the 13th of November, 1922. Samogitian bishop Pranciškus Karevičius accepted oaths from 38 members of the Seimas, while commitment of other parliamentarians (29 representatives) was accepted by the President of the Republic A.Stulginskis[149].

The number of the candidate lists received by the Central Electoral Commission was three times as big as that of the candidates to the Constituent Seimas. The list of the Labourites was exceptional, since members of the underground Lithuanian Communist Party used its name as a cover[150]. The most vicious disputes took place between the blocks of Christian Democrats and Popular Peasants.

78 parliamentarians were elected to the Seimas. The block of the Cristian Democrats received most of votes in the Seimas and got 32 seats (12 of them were won by the Lithuanian Farmers’ Union (LŪS), 15 by the Lithuanian Christian Democrat Party (LKDP), and 11 by the Lithuanian Labour Federation (LDF)); the block of Lithuanian Peasants’ Union and Lithuanian Popular Social Democrats got 19, the Lithuanian Peasants’ Union (LVS) got 14, the Lithuanian Popular Social Democratic Party (LSLDP) got 5; the Social Democratic Party of Lithuania (LSDP) won 11; Jews got 3, Poles won 2, while Labourites got 5. 45 of the elected 78 members of the First Seimas had been the members of the Constituent Seimas[151]. Six members of the First Seimas had been the members of the Petersburg Seimas of Lithuania, and five were the Signatories of the Act of Independence[152]. Three women were elected to the First Seimas (however, a total of four women have worked). On the contrary to the Constituent Seimas, intelligentsia was apparently dominant in the First Seimas. Members of the First Seimas worked after organising themselves to the following fractions. Attempts to organise permanent commissions of the Seimas appeared to be ill-fortune. The activity of the Seimas was complicated due to ambiguous majority. There have even been cases when undisciplined members of the Seimas had to be expelled from the Seimas sessions.

Most of the seats in the new Seimas were won by the block of Christian Democrats, but neither of the parties had majority. It was the end of the dominance of Christian Democrats, which lasted during the period of the Constituent Seimas. The highest institutions of the State (the Presidium of the Seimas and the Cabinet of Ministers) had to be organised under the principle of coalition. Presidential elections also required compromises.

Disagreements between the fractions started with the very first sessions. During the second session of the Seimas, held on the 17th of November, 1922, many disputes were triggered by the Seimas election results. National minorities refused to accept them. In protest, they decided to refuse from carrying out work at the Seimas. Poles and Jews have been passive and virtually did not participate in the parliamentary activities through the entire term of office.

Difficulties have also been met during the election of the Presidium of the Seimas. The Temporary Presidium of the First Seimas was elected on the 21st of November, 1922, and was comprised from: the Chairman of the Seimas Leonas Bistras; the First Vice-Chairman and Canon J.Staugaitis; Secretary with the decisive vote Kazimieras Ambrozaitis; Secretary with the advisory vote M.Markauskas. This Presidium was smaller than that provided for in the Statute of Seimas, since the Seimas failed to elect the following members due to the disputes among the parties: the Second Vice-Chairman, Second Secretary with the decisive vote and Second Secretary with the advisory vote. The Presidium of the Seimas was elected on the 23rd of January, 1922 (during the 20th of the First Seimas) replacing (essentially supplementing) the Temporary Presidium. L.Bistras was nominated as the Chairman of the Seimas[153].

With the greater fractions having failed to agree and the negotiations discontinued, Aleksandras Stulginskis, the representative of the Lithuanian Farmers' Union, was elected as the President of the Republic of Lithuania, during the session of the 21st of December, 1922, only by the votes of the right wing parties. The opposition refused to recognize the results of the Presidential elections. The conflict emerged due to different interpretations of the paragraph of the Constitution of the State of Lithuania, declaring that the President of the Republic is elected by the Seimas, in a secret voting and by an absolute majority of the representatives.

A Review of the References

The collection of the Vytautas the Great War Museum includes a photograph of the opening session of the First Seimas. It contains captured a lodge of a block for foreign country diplomats, Samogitian bishop Pranciškus Karevičius, who accepted the oath of the catholic members of the First Seimas, is sitting beside the lodge[154].

The Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania stores files revealing the work of the First Seimas. They include the following documents present in the Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923): accounts of the expenditure of the Seimas electoral commissions and county commissions, brief biographies of the representatives of the First Seimas (last name, first name, age, county where he/she was elected, whether was a member of the Constituent Seimas, marital status, nationality, religion, place of birth, education, timeline of activities prior to the election to the Seimas), regulations on the correspondence with the Presidium and the Office of the Seimas and matters of the personnel approval[155]. Here there are also orders signed by the President of the Republic of Lithuania, declaring the date of the assembly of the First Seimas, the opening of the First Seimas[156], law adopted by the Seimas and issued by the President of the Republic, among the others, including the Law on the Salary of the Representatives of the Seimas.[157] The Foundation of the Lithuanian Social Democratic Party (LCVA, f. 937) stores correspondence of the Central Committee of the Lithuanian Social Democratic Party on the participation in the elections to the Seimas[158].

 

The Second Seimas (1923-1926)

The date of elections to the new Seimas was announced following the dissolution of the First Seimas. Elections to the Second Seimas took place on the 12th–13th of May, 1923. The Seimas was convened to its first session in Kaunas on the 5th of June, 1923.

Just like before that during the elections to the First Seimas, eight districts of Lithuania were still at the state of war, as in the “sub-Front zone”[159]. The election campaigns were restricted within the zone, but the rest parts of Lithuania were deeply involved in the elections battles.

78 representatives were elected to the Seimas. The block of the Cristian Democrats won 40 seats in the parliament (Lithuanian Christian Democratic Party got 14 seats, Lithuanian Farmers’ Union got 14 and Lithuanian Labour Federation won 12 seats), Popular Peasants won 16 seats, Social Democrats got 8, representatives of the Jews won 7, while Poles, Germans and Russians got respectively 4, 2 and 1. Around third of the members of the Seimas were the first time elected representatives. 17 representatives have been replaced during the term of office of the Second Seimas, thus adding up to a total of 95 representatives who functioned in the Second Seimas[160]. Three women were among the elected. None of the political parties had majority in the Seimas. The work was possible only on the grounds of coalition. Labour talks between the representatives of the Christian Democrats and Popular Peasants have been carried on the basis of coalition.

Presidium of the Seimas has been elected for several times (it used to be elected either in the beginning of each session, in case of a change of the governing majority or adoption of the new Statute)[161]. The following persons have acted in the position of the Chairman of the Seimas: Antanas Tumėnas, Justinas Staugaitis, Vytautas Petrulis and Jonas Staugaitis. Representatives of the fractions used to take part in the sessions of the Presidium of the Seimas instead of the meeting of elders, since it has not been elected yet set forth in the Statute. Members of the Second Seimas have functioned in fractions. Commissions played an important role in organisation of the Seimas activities. The first ones to be elected were the Mandates Commission and the Commission of Commissions. Initially, the Second Seimas had fourteen permanent commissions organised. The commissions were reorganised after adopting the Statute of the Seimas in 1924[162].

The Second Seimas was exceptional, since it has functioned all through the entire term of office provided for in the Constitution. The Seimas has gained increasingly more influence and significance. Influence of central management within the parties has gotten increasingly bigger, they took control of their own representatives in the Government. This was the year of stabilization of domestic policy. On the other hand, the sessions of the Seimas have revealed the intensifying disputes between the Christian parties and the left-wing parties. These parties have failed to come to an agreement regarding the educational and agricultural reforms. Tense discussions and difficulties in finding the required number of members for consideration of the laws have been faced during the Seimas sessions. Frequent turnover of Governments was characteristic to this term of office of the Seimas. However, stability was evident in the area of domestic policy during the term of office of the Second Seimas, while foreign policy had endured losses. Klaipėda Convention was successfully signed, thus avoiding serious claims of Poland to the only port of Lithuania, but relationship with Vatican was still a work in progress.

A Review of the References

Vytautas the Great War Museum stores photographs containing opening session of the Second Seimas on the 5th of June, 1923 (a block for foreign country diplomats, representatives of three confessions who accepted the oath of the members of the Seimas: Catholic – J.Mačiulis-Maironis, Orthodox – Metropolitan Eleutherius, Jews – rabbi Abraomas Beras Šapiro[163], the photograph contains Plenary Chamber of the Seimas packed with both the members of the Seimas and the Government, as well as bypassers. The walls of the Plenary Chamber decorated with the coats of arms of Lithuanian cities[164], other photographs contain the Chairman of the Second Seimas attending the Lithuanian Military School[165]. 

The Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania stores the following files with the Second Seimas operation documents (within the Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923):  accounts of the expenditure of the Seimas electoral commissions and county commissions; documents of approval of regulations and personnel, as well as documents related to the repair works of the Seimas Palace; draft report of the Seimas fraction of the Popular Peasants’ Union to the fractions of the Farmers’ Union and Christian Democrats concerning the consent to attend the sessions of the Seimas and the Work Programme (this appeal was printed in the publication “Lietuvos žinios” under name “For the Seimas Fractions of Farmers’ Union and Christian Democrats, 06/06/1923, 2–3 pages; the answer under name “Negotiation of the Establishment of the Management. For the Seimas Fraction of Popular Peasants”, also published in “Lietuvos Žinios”, 08/06/1923)[166]. There is an extant correspondence between the Seimas and the Government regarding organisation of work, consideration of draft laws in the Seimas, etc.[167], correspondence between the Cabinet of Ministers and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs concerning personal insult of the Chairman of the Seimas and consequences thereof. Documents contain the fact that the Cabinet of Ministers requested the Ministry on the 8th of January, 1926, to enter a protest against the Government of Germany in relation with the “insinuations spread in the German press by the former Finance Minister of Württemberg W.Schall in respect of the former Premier and current Chairman of the Seimas Mr. V.Petrulis in order humiliate and discredit Lithuanian Government and State”[168].

 

The Third Seimas (1926-1927)

The date of elections to the new Seimas was announced by the President of the Republic A.Stulginskis on the 8th of March, 1926[169]. Elections to the Third Seimas took place on the 8th–9th of May, 1926. The Seimas was convened to its first session on the 2nd of June, 1926.[170]

The Law on the Elections to the Seimas was amended with an approach of elections. Its key amendment was the increase in the number of parliamentarians up to 85. The 10th electoral county, dedicated to the Klaipėda Region was also established with Klaipėda as its Centre[171]. It was the first time when the Klaipėda Region citizens were granted with the right to vote during elections to the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania and run for the mandate of a member of the Seimas.

An unconventional coalition of three parties has been established during the pre-elections campaign to the Third Seimas. It included the Lithuanian Popular Peasants’ Union, Lithuanian Farmers’ Party (it was known as “Santara” up until the 14th of February, 1926) and Lithuanian Nationalist Union. Although the Lithuanian Nationalist Union (it was known as the Party of National Progress up until the summer of 1924) had participated in the elections to the Seimas, it failed to get to the Parliament. This coalition lived up to the expectations, as the representatives of the Lithuanian Nationalist Party and Lithuanian Farmers’ Party were elected to the Third Seimas. 

In the Third Seimas, Lithuanian Labour Federation got 5 seats, Lithuanian Christian Democratic Party – 14, Poles – 4, Social Democratic Party of Lithuania – 15, Lithuanian Nationalist Party – 3, Lithuanian Farmers’ Party – 2, Lithuanian Farmers’ Union – 14, Lithuanian Popular Peasants Union – 22, German Lithuanians and Klaipėda citizens – 6 (Germans – 1, Germans from the Klaipėda Region – 5)[172]. Only 7 members of the Third Seimas have been replaced during its short existence[173]. 40 members of the 85 members of the Third Seimas had already worked in the Second Seimas. Left-wing parties, i.e. social democrats and popular peasants had more support of the voters. Nonetheless, neither party had majority in the Seimas. The elected Government of the Seimas proved to be based on a coalition.

Popular peasants, social democrats and national minorities became partners of the governing coalition.

The Third Seimas was comprised from the fraction of Popular Peasants, Fractions of Jews, Fraction of Lithuanian Labour Federation, Fraction of Poles, Fraction of Social Democrats, Fraction of Lithuanian Christian Democrats, Fraction of Lithuanian Farmers’ Union, Fraction of Nationalists and Fraction of Klaipėda citizens and Germans[174]. Commissions were vital for the functioning of the Seimas. Permanent commissions acted along with the temporary ones[175].

The Presidium of the Third Seimas was comprised of the following: the Chairman of the Seimas Jonas Staugaitis, the First Vice-Chairman Steponas Kairys, the Second Vice-Chairman Jonas Steponavičius, the First Secretary Rudolfas Kinderis and the Second Secretary was initially not elected[176], and Balys Žygelis was elected as the Second Secretary only on the 2nd of July, 1926[177]. New Presidium of the Seimas was elected following the coup d’état of the 17th of December, 1926: A.Stulginskis became the Chairman of the Seimas, M.Krupavičius – the First Vice-Chairman, K.Ambrozaitis – the Second Vice-Chairman , K.Masiliūnas – the First Secretary, and P.Jočys – the Second Secretary[178].

The Third Seimas was presented with several draft laws intended for democratization of the State administration and practical implementation of the Constitution of the State of Lithuania of 1922. On the 17th of June, 1926, the Third Seimas adopted the Law on the Abolition of the State of War. State of war was abolished for the very first time of the Republic of Lithuania. The Third Seimas adopted the Law on Amnesty on the 6th of July, 1926. Political prisoners, including communists and young communists, had been released from prison after the Law on Amnesty entered into force. Other laws, abolishing the restrictions of democratic rights and freedoms, have also been adopted. An amendment to the amendment to the Criminal Statute, abolishing death penalty in Lithuania, was adopted on the 6th of July, 1926. Soon after, an amendment to the Law on Press was adopted abolishing all the restriction on press valid hitherto. The new reforms allowed to freely call assemblies and freedoms of the press, expression and other democratic freedoms have been introduced for the first time in the history of the country. The new government reduced salaries of the President and members of the Cabinet of Ministers as a result of cutting spending, as well as planned to reduce wages of civil servants, introduced civil status services, etc.

This Seimas has twice elected the President of the Republic and has undergone a revolution. Part of the society disapproved the laws adopted by the Third Seimas, while resentment was caused due to the granting of amnesty and permission to establish Polish schools in Lithuania. Pressure of the opposition and frequent friction between popular and social democrats lead to the overthrow of democratic authority in Lithuania on the 17th of December, 1926. The upheaval was executed by military officers, but nationalists and Christian democrats contributed to its organisation. The failure of the governing left-wing to react to the warnings regarding the planned upheaval is somewhat paradoxical. On the 16th of December, 1926, 7:24 p.m. the Third Seimas convened to the session to discuss the State budget of 1927. After the session has been protracted until 3:43 a.m. (December 17), the Session was interrupted by armed military officers who stormed into the Plenary Chamber and ordered the parliamentarians to disband. During the upheaval, military officers surrounded the Presidential Palace and other crucial buildings, arrested the President, members of the Cabinet of Ministers and several members of the Seimas who had condemned the actions of the reformers. Under pressure of the organisers of the upheaval, President K.Grinius dismissed the Mykolas Sleževičius Government he had appointed himself, and authorized Augustinas Voldemaras, who had support of military officers, to form a new Cabinet of Ministers. Soon after that, the reformers made K.Grinius himself to sign a resignation note under which he refused from the Office of the President.

Thus President K.Grinius contributed to the legalization of the upheaval outcomes. Antanas Smetona was elected as the new President of the Republic during the extraordinary session on the 19th of December, 1926. Following the upheaval, the Third Seimas has abolished part of the laws it had adopted, restored the state of war and imposed censorship. The Third Seimas was dissolved upon the act of President A.Smetona on the 12th of April, 1927.

A Review of the References

The Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania stores files containing the work of the Third Seimas. They are stored in the Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923) and include documents of correspondence between the Seimas and the Government regarding organisation of work of the Seimas, consideration of draft laws in the Seimas, interpellation of the members of the Seimas concerning procedures for dismissal of servants, resolution of the Seimas on inspection of the Seimas elections, draft estimates of the Seimas income and expenditure of1927, documents of correspondence with the Presidium of the Seimas on the matters of approval of the State budget, laws, regulations and personnel.[179]Additionally, there are the Seimas convention acts, notes of the Presidium of the Seimas approving the Presidential election results, acts of the days for the elections of the Seimas, draft laws returned by the President to discuss in the Seimas,[180] minutes of the sessions of the Cabinet of Ministers which included discussions on advance payment for the members of the Seimas (concerning advanced payment of the salaries of the Seimas representatives for the holiday months)[181]. The Mykolas Sleževičius Foundation (LCVA, f. 1437) stores the certificate of a member of the Seimas issued by the Presidium of the Third Seimas to M.Sleževičius (it includes photograph of the members of the Seimas and text of the certificate, quotation from the Constitution of the State of Lithuania pointing out the immunity of a member of the Seimas, as well as providing for that a member of the Seimas has a right to travel with trains within Lithuania free of charge)[182]. Ignas Šeinius foundation (LCVA, f. 675) stores invitations of the Chairman of the Seimas regarding participation in the events[183].

 

The Fourth Seimas (1936-1940)

After dissolving the Third Seimas on the 12th of April, 1927, President A.Smetona was slow with the announcement of the new elections to the Seimas. The talks on the necessity to convene the Seimas got increasingly louder only in the middle of the 1930s, with the continuing unrest among farmers in Suvalkija and the emerging idea of the election of the new Seimas put forward by the citizens and parties in opposition. New Law on the Elections to the Seimas was issued. However, nor community organizations neither civic groups were eligible to nominate their candidates to the Seimas, according to the Law. The Fourth Seimas was elected after nine years of absence. It was a non-democratic parliament which served only as one of the elements of authority and assistant of the President of the Republic.

On the 9th of May, 1936, the President of the Republic issued a new Law on the Elections to the Seimas and the date of the elections to the Fourth Seimas[184]. The elections took place on the 9th–10th of June, 1936. Full nominal list of candidates to the Fourth Seimas, according to counties and districts (a total of 144 candidates) was published in “Valstybės žinios” (Official Gazette) on the 3rd of June, 1936[185]. On the 3rd of July, 1936, the President of the Republic signed the act appointing the date of the assembly of the Seimas: “[...] to make an oath of a representative of the nation on the 1st of September, 1936, 10 a.m., and I call to the first session of the Seimas in the Seimas Palace of Kaunas on the 1st of September, 1936, 12 p.m.”[186]. 49 parliamentarians have been elected during the non-democratic elections to the Fourth Seimas and 42 of them represented the Lithuanian Nationalist Union, while 3 members represented the Klaipėda Region. On the contrary to the previous terms of office of the Seimas, the Fourth Seimas did not include women, as well as fractions (since it was a “non-party” Seimas), although there have been suggestions to allow the representatives of the nation to organise themselves into groups on the basis of economy, culture and business[187]. The first sessions of the Seimas were chaired by the Premier J.Tūbelis assigned by the Temporary Presidium. During the session of the 23rd of September, 1936, the representatives of the nation elected the permanent Presidium of the Seimas and Konstantinas Šakenis as the Chairman of the Seimas[188].

Work of the Seimas was substantially restricted by the laws issued by the President of the Republic. The Seimas was not able to independently draw the Statute of the Seimas. Role of the Seimas was substantially restricted by the Constitution of 1938. 91.3 per cent of all of the laws adopted by the 1936–1940 Seimas had been put forward by the Council of Ministers, while only 8.7 per cent of them were draft laws drawn by the members of the Seimas, yet they also had been coordinated with the Government in advance[189]. During the four years of its activities the Seimas has adopted only one law which had not been in coordinated with the Council of Ministers in advance: Amendment of the 4th of October, 1938, to the Statute of the Institute of Lithuanian Studies, naming the institution under the name Antanas Smetona.

The Fourth Seimas finished its spring session on the 31st of May, 1940. The Seimas was supposed to be convened by the President of Republic, but failed to do so, as Lithuania was occupied on the 15th of June, 1940. Justas Paleckis, an acting President of the Republic at the time signed an act of the 27th of June, 1940, based on the Constitution of Lithuania of 1938 and releasing the Fourth Seimas on the 1st of July, 1940.

A Review of the References

The Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania stores files containing the work of the Fourth Seimas. Most of them are stored in the Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923). They include verbatim reports of the sessions of the Fourth Seimas[190]; texts and drafts of the speeches given by the Premier at the Seimas sessions[191]; documents on correspondence between the Cabinet of Ministers and the Chairman of the Fourth Seimas regarding approval of or amendment to laws, personnel documents or other documents, inquiries of the representatives of the nation to the Cabinet of Ministers on the matters of domestic and foreign policy[192]; Draft Statute of the Seimas, outcomes of the elections to the Seimas, lists of the representatives of the nation and inquiries to the Government on the matters of policy, agendas of the Seimas sessions, drafts of the laws adopted by the Seimas[193]; question of the representatives of the Klaipėda Region in the Fourth Seimas[194]; verbatim report of the extraordinary session of the 19+ of March, 1938 on the ultimatum of Poland concerning establishment of diplomatic relations between Lithuania and Poland.[195] Note of the Seimas Commission on Economic Matters to the Premier of the 24th of May, 1938, protocol of the Commission on the price-fixing for mineral fertilizers, introduction of workbooks for the agricultural workers, matters on price support for crops, butter, pork and eggs[196]; correspondence between the Seimas Budget Commission and State Council in 1937 following the dispute on the boundaries of competence. There is information about laws on custody, citizenship and administrative court [197]; on the 22nd of December, 1939, the Commission of the Seimas discussed the draft law amending the law on order, medals and other insignia of the State of Lithuania[198]. The Foundation of the Ministry of Education (LCVA, f. 391) stores the draft Statute of the Vytautas Magnus University presented for the discussion of the Fourth Seimas in 1937[199]. Vytautas the Great War Museum stores photographs of the Chairman of the Fourth Seimas Konstantinas Šakenis participating in different events[200], as well as a vignette with the members of the Fourth Seimas.

 

The Institution of the President

The founding principles of the institution of the President of the State of Lithuania, i.e. the Temporary Constitution of the State of Lithuania, have been adjusted on the 4th of April, 1919. The Presidium of the State Council of Lithuania was replaced with the Institution of the President. It was believed that the Institution of the President would be the best choice in representing the interests of the Republic of Lithuania, and most importantly “would lead Lithuania to the Constituent Seimas”. Antanas Smetona, the former Chairman of the State Council, was elected as the first President of the State of Lithuania.

The President of the State was authorized with the executive power and exercised it through the Cabinet of Ministers, which was accountable to the State Council. The President was endowed with the following functions: “a) Issues laws and treaties with other states under his signature; b) Calls the Premier and authorizes him to organise the Cabinet of Ministers, as well as approves the organised one; c) Represents the State; d) Appoints couriers and accepts couriers from the accredited foreign states; e) Appoints higher military and civil officers of the State; f) Keeps the army intended to defend the independence of the Lithuania and inviolability of its land at his disposal and appoints the Commander-in-chief of the army; g) Calls and dissolves sessions of the State Council”[201]. The President was granted with the right of amnesty and was responsible for the seal of the State. It was also specified that “All the acts issued by the President of the State should be signed by the Premier or respective Minister”[202].

On the 12th of June, 1920, President of the State Antanas Smetona issued the Temporary Constitution of the State of Lithuania (adopted by the Constituent Seimas on the 2nd of June, 1920)[203]. Therein, President is referred to as the President of the Republic, rather than the President of the State. Following the Constitution, the executive authority was granted to the President of the Republic and Cabinet of Ministers. The Constituent Seimas elected the President based on the Constitution. Until the election of the President, this post was filled by the Chairman of the Constituent Seimas[204]. After the Temporary Constitution entered into force, Antanas Smetona transferred the function of the President to the Chairman of the Constituent Seimas Aleksandras Stulginskis, who also became the acting President of the Republic, on the 12th of June, 1920[205].

It has been disputed at the Constituent Seimas whether Lithuania needed the Institution of the President as such, some politicians suggested to renounce. The left-wing parties associated the Institution of the President with a monarchy, its substitute, threat to the democracy and anti-democratic system. Meanwhile right-wing parties were among strong supporters of the Institution of the President. Despite the doubts, the Institution of the President was consolidated in the Constitution adopted on the 1st of August, 1922. The President was endowed with mere representative powers. This led to consolidation of the Seimas based political system. The President was elected by the Seimas with its term of office lasting for three years (as long as the one of the Seimas). Every citizen of the Republic of Lithuania, eligible for the Seimas, and at least 35 years of age, was also eligible for presidential elections. The same person could not be elected as the President of the Republic for more than two three-year terms in a row.

Following the coup d’état of the 17th of December, 1926, President K.Grinius was obliged to resign from the office of the President. Soon after that the outcomes of the upheaval were legalized officially. On the 17th of December, 1926, the President of the Republic Kazys Grinius approved the Cabinet of Ministers organised by the Premier Augustinas Voldemaras, based on the Article 47 of the Constitution[206]. On the 19th of December, 1926, A.Smetona, a candidate nominated by the reformers, was elected as the President by the Seimas. The 12th of April, 1927, was the start of the presidential regime, when the Third Seimas was dissolved without calling elections to the new Seimas. Lithuania has been ruled under the decrees of the President. The moderate authoritarian regime of A.Smetona was relying on the military officers, political police, nationalists and numerous officials[207].

Following the Constitution signed and issued by the President Smetona on the 15th of May, 1928, the President became the most important institution, President was no longer accountable to the Seimas, he was authorized with full power in sphere of foreign policy and became the Commander-in-chief of the army. The term of office of the President was prolonged up to 7 years. There have also been changes in the procedures for presidential elections. The President was no longer elected by Seimas, but by Extraordinary Representatives of the People (the Representatives were elected by Councils of counties, districts and towns; one voter represented 20 thousand citizens). The age census for presidential candidates was at least 40 years of age. However, the reform did not stop there. On the 12th of May, 1938, the President announced a new Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, which has further strengthened the power of the President. The President could dissolve the Seimas or the Government, and legislate in the absence of the Seimas or the Seimas Sessions. He was awarded with an absolute immunity and thus was neither politically nor legally accountable to the Seimas or the Government during its term of office. The Constitution did not restrict the presidential re-election, therefore A.Smetona could be a President for life. The President was the Commander-in-chief of the army, Head of the Lithuanian Nationalist Union, Young Lithuanians, Scouts, and Chief of the Lithuanian Teachers' Union and Trustee of the Lithuanian Young Farmers' Circle Union. A.Smetona was proclaimed as the Nation's Leader during the congress of Nationalists in 1933[208].

At the time the President was elected in the indirect elections. The first President of the State of Lithuania was elected by the members of the State Council of Lithuania in 1919. Later, the President was elected by the members of the First, Second and Third Seimas. They used to pick candidates from their representatives. Just two days after the resignation of the President Kazys Grinius, following the coup d’état of the 17th of December, 1926, presidential elections were held in the Seimas and Antanas Smetona was elected as the President. Following the dissolution of the Seimas on the 12th of April, 1927, and with term of office of the President Antanas Smetona approaching to an end, the President of the Republic issued the Law on Presidential Elections on the 25thof November, 1931. The elections were in an undemocratic way. Following the Law, the President was elected by the Extraordinary Representatives of the People. The Representatives were elected by the voters of Councils of counties, districts and towns; one voter represented 20 thousand citizens. The Extraordinary Representatives of the People used to convene in Kaunas in order to elect the President. A candidate could be nominated by a group of at least twenty representatives. A.Smetona was unanimously nominated as the single candidate to be elected as the President of the Republic by 116 Extraordinary Representatives of the People who convened in Kaunas on the 11th of December, 1931. With the President's term office coming to an end, an amendment to the Law on Presidential Elections was issued on the 15th of October, 1938, under which the “Extraordinary Representatives of the People” were referred to as the “Representatives of the People”, and the Chairman of the assembly was obliged to read the names of the candidates to the Representatives of the People prior to the voting. During the pre-occupation period, the last presidential elections of the Republic were held on the 14th of November, 1938. The President was elected by 120 Representatives after reading the name of the only candidate. Antanas Smetona was elected for another term of office of the President.

The following three persons were elected to the office of President during the period of 1919–1940: Antanas Smetona, Aleksandras Stulginskis and Kazys Grinius. Antanas Smetona held the office longer than anybody else, as much as fifteen years. Aleksandras Stulginskis held the office of President for six years. He also was an acting President while holding the position of the Chairman of the Constituent Seimas. Meanwhile Kazys Grinius held the office of President for six months only. He was the first President of the Republic of Lithuania to visit the Klaipėda Region. Seven persons in total have been nominated as the candidates to the office of President during the elections of 1919–1938. They included Antanas Smetona, Aleksandras Stulginskis, Kazys Grinius, Ernestas Galvanauskas, Jonas Vileišis, and women, Gabrielė Petkevičaitė-Bitė and Felicija Bortkevičienė (the election of the 7th of June, 1926). Antanas Smetona was the leader in the number of claims for the office of President by trying his luck for six times out of seven. He was elected as the President for four times. Only one candidate was available in the four of the seven elections.

President elections have been held seven time during the period of 1919–1940. The President used to start his term of office from the moment of oath to the Constitution, rather than from the moment of election. There have been cases during the inter-war period when the President was elected and made an oath on the very same day. Presidential elections took place in Kaunas. Kaunas was also the place of work and residence of the President. Office of the President was also located in Kaunas and used to organise the President's incoming and outgoing correspondence, documents of correspondence with different institutions, also organised documents of the sessions and meetings which used to take place in the Presidential Palace, storage and publication of official documents, as well as organised the matters of representation and awards with insignia.

Presidential elections have taken place as follows:

On the 4th of April, 1919. Elected by the members of the State Council of Lithuania. The elected President of the State Antanas Smetona made an oath to the Constitution and started his term of office on the 6th of April, 1919;

On the 21st of December, 1922. Elected by the members of the First Seimas. The elected President of the Republic Aleksandras Stulginskis made an oath to the Constitution and started his term of office on the 21st of December, 1922;

On the 20th of June, 1923. Elected by the members of the Second Seimas. The elected President of the Republic Aleksandras Stulginskis made an oath to the Constitution and started his term of office on the 20th of June, 1923;

On the 7th of June, 1926. Elected by the members of the Third Seimas. The elected President of the Republic Kazys Grinius made an oath to the Constitution and started his term of office on the 8th of June, 1926;

On the 19th of December, 1926. Elected by the members of the Third Seimas. The elected President of the Republic Antanas Smetona made an oath to the Constitution and started his term of office on the 19th of December, 1926;

On the 11th of December, 1931. Elected by the Extraordinary Representatives of the People. The elected President of the Republic Antanas Smetona made an oath to the Constitution and started his term of office on the 11th of December, 1931;

On the 14th of November, 1938. Elected by the Representatives of the People. The elected President of the Republic Antanas Smetona made an oath to the Constitution and started his term of office on the 12th of December, 1938;

State Defence Council under the Institution of the President of the Republic has been active since the 1st of January, 1935. It consisted of the President, Premier, Ministers of Defence, Finances, Foreign Affairs and the Interior, Army Commander and Chief of Army Supply. The Army Commander was the speaker of the State Defence Council. Other ministers used to attend if the matters in question were related to their area. The session used to be announced and presided by the President of the Republic. The resolutions of the Council could be executed only subject to the approval of the Republic of Lithuania[209].

During the Soviet Occupation, the Institution of the President was used in order to incorporate Lithuania into the Soviet Union. 15th of June, 1940, is the starting point of the occupation of Lithuania. Occupation and annexation process has been carried out in compliance with the Constitution of 1938 and other legal acts of the Republic of Lithuania. On the 14th of June, 1940, the Soviet Union delivered an ultimatum to Lithuania, requiring to form a new Moscow-friendly Government and admit unlimited quota of armed forces into the territory of Lithuania. At the night from the 14th to the 15th of June, 1940, the meeting of the members of the State Defence Council, Council of Ministers and the President made a decision to let the Soviet Union army enter into Lithuania and accepted the ultimatum. President Antanas Smetona decided to leave Lithuania. Before leaving he signed an act appointing Premier Antanas Merkys as the Deputy President of the Republic based on the Constitution. However, following the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, a person deputizing for the President did not have all of the powers of the President and was the chief of the State. Therefore, there have been attempts to expand constitutional powers of Premier A.Merkys. That was all the Soviets needed in order to avoid doubts due to legality of the future puppet Government. Special envoy V.Dekanozov, sent from Moscow by the Government of the Soviet Union, was very active in establishment of the Government and aimed to annex Lithuania to the Soviet Union following the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania and other laws. This required the creation of legal appearance. By acting ultra vires, the Council of Ministers adopted a resolution on the 16th of June, 1940, under which the departure of A.Smetona was referred to as the “resignation from the office of President of the Republic”[210]. The acting President A.Merkys acquired all the constitutional powers of the President of the Republic. On the 17th of June, 1940, the acting President A.Merkys signed two acts. The first one was for appointing Justas Paleckis as the Premier and authorizing him to organise the Council of Minister, while the second one was for approval of the new Government (its composition was suggested by V.Dekanozov). A.Merkys resigned just after approving the Government of J.Paleckis. On the same day, J.Paleckis became an acting President of the Republic and V. Krėvė-Mickevičius started to work as Premier. Institution of the President of the Republic of Lithuania and Office of the President was abolished following the adoption of the Constitution of the Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic by the puppet People’s Seimas on the 25th of August, 1940. This Constitution has been drafted according to the principles of the Constitution of the USSR. Ironically, cover sheet of the Constitution contains printed coat of arms of the LSSR, but both texts are signed and approved with an embossed seal of the President from the period of Lithuanian independence and a note “Lietuvos Respublikos Prezidentas” (The President of the Republic of Lithuania), with Vytis, the symbol of the State of Lithuania, in the middle[211].

A Review of the References

Most of the information about the evolution of the Institution of the President during the period of 1919–1940 is provided in the documents, photographs and audio records stored in the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA) and exhibits (posters, portraits and photographs of Presidents) located in Vytautas the Great War Museum (VDKM).

As mentioned before, the most comprehensive collection of documents allowing to get more knowledge of the activity of the Institution of the President and Office of the President is stored in the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania, within the Foundation of the Office of the President of the Republic of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 922). This foundation is comprised of the laws, orders and regulations approved by the President, acts of the President, laws, orders and regulations, instructions, rules, reports, transcripts of protocols and correspondence approved by the Temporary Government, documents related to the matters of relations between Lithuania and foreign countries, as well as activities of organisations and institutions, explanatory letters from the State Council regarding laws and draft laws, political reports of the Lithuanian diplomatic institutions in South Africa, France, Brazil and Lithuania information office in Switzerland, reports on the activity of the Lithuanian delegation in the League of Nations, politics and economy, documents from the presidential elections, documents on the Klaipėda Region, information of import, export, as well as prices of goods and raw materials of Lithuania, Gediminas Order diplomas and financial documents. Documents are available in Lithuania, French, German, English and Latvian. The Foundation also stores documents of the Office of the President, letters sent to the President, secret notifications and reports on the mood of the opposition, disloyal Catholic priest who spoke against the Government and the President while preaching sermons. It also stores clemency requests from the organisers of upheavals against the President A.Smetona. They include requests of clemency, pardon and permit to return to live and work in Kaunas from the deported and incarcerated reformers. Letters for the President from different Catholic organisations with requests to prevent introduction of civil status services in Lithuania and restriction of activities of Catholic organisations. Plenty of material regarding presidential elections, which took place in Kaunas on the 11th of December, 1931[212] and 11th of November, 1938[213]. Information about the presidential institution and presidential elections is stored in the Foundation of the Municipality Department of the Ministry of Interior (LCVA, f. 379). It includes documents related to the presidential elections of 1931, list of voters organised on the 2nd of December, 1931, according to the counties, they include occupation and political views of some voters[214]. The archive stores collection of photographs containing oath ceremonies of the Presidents K.Grinius and A.Smetona. Ignas Šeinius foundation (LCVA, f. 675) stores drafts on the Order of Vytautas the Great of 1927 revealing the process of the state award reform[215]. The Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923) stores the following documents: minutes of the sessions of the Cabinet of Ministers, held in the Presidential Palace and chaired by the President of the Republic[216]; documents on the appointment of wages for the President and clerks of the Office of the President; estimate of the Institution of the President of 1926, matters of the wages of Presidential Office Adjutant and the President[217]; orders of the President appointing the Chairman of the Lithuanian Bank, his deputy and persons managing other institutions. The foundation also includes acts of the President regarding appointment and dissolution of the Cabinet of Ministers, documents of appointment of various persons to the public offices, orders on appointment of pensions, pardon acts[218], presidential speeches, lectures and proclamations. Acts announcing the dates of elections, acts of the Seimas convention, acts and letters of the President, under which Premier is authorized to form a Government. Among the others, the following references are also crucial: Pro memoria for the Premier signed by the former President A.Stulginskis and M.Krupavičius on the 22nd of November, 1938, regarding the situation in Lithuania, the Government is blamed for its inability to respond to the largest groups of the Lithuanian society, etc.[219]; transcript of the lecture (on the situation in Lithuania after the start of the World War II) held in the Radio Station by the former President K.Grinius on the 20th of September, 1939. The text of the lecture was submitted to the censorship, but has ended up in the file of the Premier foundation.[220]. The foundation stores the following documents related to the presidential elections: uncertainty of the 1923 presidential elections in the Seimas was one of the reasons to dissolve the First Seimas[221]; Notification of the Presidium of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania to the Premier L.Bistras, approving that the presidential elections took place on the 7th of June, 1926[222]; Notification of the Presidium of the Seimas about the election of A.Smetona as the President of the Republic on the 19th of December, 1926[223]. The foundation also stores files related to the 1931 presidential elections: protocols of the elections of the Extraordinary Representatives of the People, data submitted pursuant to the counties, list of the candidates to the Extraordinary Representatives of the People and their voters according to the counties by specifying age and occupation of the voters: counties of Alytus, Biržai, Kaunas, Kėdainiai, Kretinga, Marijampolė, Mažeikiai, Panevėžys, and cities of Kaunas and Panevėžys[224]; counties of Telšiai, Trakai, Ukmergė, Utena, Vilkaviškis and Zarasai[225]. The foundation also stores election files of the Representatives of the People (who elected President of the Republic) of the 4th of November, 1938, containing lists with the voters of the Representatives of the People (names of the voters, their place of residence, occupation and the basis on which they are allowed to vote for the Representatives of the People), description of the election procedures and protocols of elections. The material is provided according to the counties[226]. The documents state that there had been doubts with respect to transparency of the elections of the Representatives of the People within the county of Kretinga: the Chief of the county of Kretinga allegedly gave orders to the Representatives of the People.[227]. Among the candidates to the voters of the President there were persons close to A.Smetona, his family members, collaterals and associates. Description of the presidential election ceremony, and act of oath of the President of the Republic[228]. The Foundation of the Ministry of Education (f. 391) is also crucial, since it stores acts, providing for the appointment of senior lecturers, protectors, rectors and other employees of the Vytautas Magnus University of Lithuania (since 1930), director of the State Theatre, administrative personnel, etc. Fair part of the documents is comprised from the documents indicating the increase of the power of the Institution of the President. Additional information is provided in photo documents stored in the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA album: A14). The photographs include captured tours of the Presidents around Lithuania, their visits in the military units, commercial and industrial exhibitions and events of the public organisations. The photographs contain the first visit of the President of the Republic of Lithuania to the Klaipėda Region, as well as the tour of the President A.Smetona around Lithuania, following the coup d’état of the 17th of December, 1926. Audio records of “Amerikos balsas” (Voice of America), which are also stored in the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania, also contain interesting information on the Institution of the President, personalities of the Presidents and their private lives. They include information on the death of Antanas Smetona in the United States of America[229]; Kazys Grinius is described by his wife Kristina Grinienė (she tells about the coup d’état and occupation)[230]; there is also a broadcast dedicated to Kazys Grinius who died in 1950, his son reads father's proclamation to the people[231]. The process of occupation and annexation of Lithuania is revealed in the following documents of the foundation of the Presidium of the Supreme Council of the Lithuanian SSR (LCVA, f. R-758): the downfall of the institutions of the State of Lithuania following the Soviet occupation in 1940, and exploitation of the institutions in order to create the appearance of Lithuania's voluntary incorporation in to the Soviet Union. This includes laws on the political system, adoption of the Constitution of the Lithuanian SSR and other laws adopted by the Lithuania People’s Seimas in 1940[232].

Collection in the Vytautas the Great War Museum also includes the telegram, informing of the presidential elections of the 19th of December, 1926.[233] There are photographs in the album “Vaizdai iš Lietuvos atgimimo” (Images from the Resurgence of Lithuania) (VDKM, Fa-17699) portraying the President of the State A.Smetona greeting the representative of the British Military Mission colonel Rowan-Robinson and partaking in the parade[234]. There is also a number of photographs of A.Smetona captured together with the Lithuanian military officers[235]. The museum holds a portrait of K.Grinius painted in June of 1926 after he became the President of the Republic[236], also a proclamation of the presidential election campaign of 1931, calling to vote for the presidential candidate A.Smetona, the text highlights the merits of A.Smetona[237]. The museum stores plenty of photographs of the Presidents of the Republic of Lithuania A.Smetona, A.Stulginskis and K.Grinius. The Presidents have been captured during various assemblies, exhibitions and visits.

 

Cabinet of Ministers

The functions of the Cabinet of Ministers, also referred to as the Government, were set forth in the Constitutions. The Cabinet of Ministers alongside with the President was referred to as the Government in the Constitutions of the Republic of Lithuania of 1922 and 1928. The Council of Ministers (the changed name of the Cabinet of Ministers) was identified as the Government only in the Constitution of 1938. Cabinet of Ministers was presided over by the Prime Minister. Prime Minister was appointed and authorized by the President of the Republic to organise the Cabinet of Ministers, as well as to approve the organised Cabinet and accept the resignation of the Cabinet. The Constitution of 1938 provided for a new office, i.e. the Deputy Prime Minister[238]. Following the Constitutions of 1922 and 1928, the Cabinet of Ministers was severally liable to the Seimas for general policy of the Government, and Seimas was obliged to resign in case of a motion of censure. Following the Constitution of 1938, the Seimas could no longer withdraw confidence in the Council of Ministers (could disagree with the Prime Minister's responses to the interpellation). The Cabinet of Ministers tackled the matters of domestic and foreign policy, discussed and submitted draft laws for adoption to the Seimas in a collegial way, as well as approved the President of the Republic in case of the absence of the Seimas. It submitted International Treaties for ratification to the Seimas, drew draft budget of the State and submitted it for adoption to the Seimas (or to the President of the Republic in case of an absence of the Seimas), was responsible for other matters and discussed proposals of the ministers. The President of the Republic possessed a right to participate in and chair the sessions of the Cabinet of Ministers. The Constitution of 1938 provides for that State controller takes part in the sessions of the Council of Ministers with an advisory role. Sessions used to be chaired by the President of the Republic, once he took part therein.

During the period of 1918–1940, twenty one Cabinets of Ministers have functioned in Lithuania. During the period, the twelve persons have held the office of the Prime Minister, as follows: Augustinas Voldemaras, Mykolas Sleževičius, Pranas Dovydaitis, Ernestas Galvanauskas, Kazys Grinius, Antanas Tumėnas, Vytautas Petrulis, Leonas Bistras, Juozas Tūbelis, Vladas Mironas, Jonas Černius and Antanas Merkys.

Ministries of Finances, National Defence, Transport, Education, Justice, Foreign affairs, Interior and Agriculture have functioned during the period of 1918–1940. Their names have changed along with their areas of activities. Some individual ministries, which have later become departments of other ministries, had been active for some time in the beginning of the period of independence. For instance, the Ministry of Labour and Social Security became the Department of the Ministry of the Interior in 1919. Ministries of Catering and Public Works, Ministry of Supply and Catering, as well as Ministry of Commerce and Industry have also been established. A Minister without portfolio for the matters of Jews functioned for some time in the Cabinet of Ministers (from 11th of December, 1918, to 1922), whose office was later restructured to the Ministry for Jewish Affairs (from 1922 to March of 1924). The Ministry for Jewish Affairs aimed for national and cultural autonomy of Jews, monitored activities of Jewish institutions, mediated between Jewish people and authority institutions, maintained relations with international and foreign Jewish organisations, was concerned about matters of Jewish communities, organisation of the Jewish teachers' seminary, Jewish people education, war fugitives, migrants, charity, mutual assistance and national culture. A Minister without portfolio for the matters of Belarusians also functioned in the Cabinet of Ministers (from the 9th of December, 1918 to the 31st of December, 1923). He also represented Belarusians and defended their interests, looked after economic, cultural and educational matters, as well as issued news bulletins.

The following ministries were the most important to include the first Cabinet of Ministers organised on the 11th of November, 1918, and have been important through the entire period of the Independence: Ministry of Finance, Commerce and Industry (it was later renamed to the Ministry of Finance), which has implemented the financial policy of the State; Ministry of National Defence (during the period of the first Cabinet of Ministers it was referred to as the Ministry of Defence), which had a task to organise a volunteer army. Ministry of National Defence was responsible for the organisation of defence and protection of the State, preparing the State and army for a war, as well as supply and financing of the army. Minister of National Defence was the Commander-in-Chief of the entire army, issued order for the army, approved the military personnel, weaponry standards, statutes of cultural and economic organisations of the army, as well as appointed and dismissed military officers. Ministry of Transport kept the construction and operation of all the roads and other objects of the Republic at its disposal. The Ministry was in charge of administrations of Railways, Posts, Telegraphs and Telephones (later renamed to Postal), Roads and Waterways (later renamed to Road), Port of Klaipėda and civil aviation. Higher Technical School was held at the disposition of the Ministry. Ministry of Education implemented educational, academic and cultural policy of the State. This Ministry was in charge of the operation of the Lithuanian educational (except for agricultural technical and military schools), academic, cultural and religious institutions. Ministry of Justice created the law enforcement system of the State, issued legislation regulating the law enforcement, as well as established, organised and monitored the work of the law enforcement institutions. Courts, prosecution authorities, notaries and bailiffs, prisons, guardhouses and disciplinary educational institutions for pre-teens. Ministry of Justice was responsible for the administration of files with pardons of the convicted persons to be sent to the President of the Republic. Ministry of Foreign Affairs formed and implemented the State's foreign policy, represented the Republic of Lithuania abroad, maintained diplomatic and consular relations with foreign countries and international organisations, managed the activities diplomatic representative offices and consular institutions of the Republic of Lithuania abroad, negotiated and concluded international treaties on behalf of the Republic of Lithuania and within the scope of its competences, monitored their execution, collected and provided information about foreign states, was responsible for development of commercial and economic relations, protected interests of the citizens of the Republic of Lithuania within foreign states and was responsible for the matters of foreigners within Lithuania, as well as drafted laws and other legislation concerning its activities. Ministry of the Interior was responsible for the surveillance of external borders. The Ministry was in charge of the chiefs of the counties (the territory of Lithuania was divided into twenty counties with another three counties in the Klaipėda Region), public and security police, supervision of activities in all municipalities, health matters, construction planning and its supervision, social insurance, social care, organisation of public works, etc. Ministry of Agriculture managed agriculture of the State, looked after the private and public property, estates, forests, ponds, buildings, inventory and other objects overtaken from the occupational German authority, as well as made sure that volunteers are provided with a land and land reform execution is carried out.

The following auxiliary institutions functioned under the Cabinet of Ministers: Office of the Cabinet of Ministers; editorial office of “Vyriausybės žinios” (“Vyriausybės žinios” was an official publication containing laws, estimates of income and expenditure, international treaties, acts of the President of the Republic, order of the ministers and official announcements); Commission of Legal Advisers of the Ministries (functioned during the period of 1919–1928, the Commission was comprised from its Chairman (legal adviser of the Cabinet of Ministers), and members (legal advisers of all of the Ministries). The Commission used to review draft laws and comment them before forwarding them to the Cabinet of Ministers for discussion. The functions of the Commission were taken over by the State Council established in 1928 and the Commission was dissolved); Commission for consideration of complaints regarding appointment of pensions and allowances; Commission of Klaipėda Region (comprised of the Chairman (General Secretary of the Cabinet of Ministers) and members (General Secretary Prof. M.Romeris and Professor T.Petkevičius. The Commission was authorized to draft laws in relation with the Klaipėda Region, consider the laws drafted by the Ministries in relation with the Klaipėda Region, supervise the right of veto of the Klaipėda Region Governor to comply with the Statute of the Klaipėda Region, as well as tackled other issues related with the autonomy of the Klaipėda Region. The Commission was formed at the end of 1930s with the revisionist views becoming more active, and was active till the loss of the Klaipėda Region in 1939).[239]

A Review of the References

Documents located in the Foundation of the State Council of Lithuania of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 1014) contain information about the process of formation of the state institutions: Order of the Prime Minister and other ministers on organisation of police and municipalities within Lithuania[240], minutes of the sessions of the Government of Lithuania and representatives of the German civil administration[241], documents of correspondence between the German representative office in Lithuania and Government of Lithuania concerning activities[242]. The Foundation of the Ministry of Education (LCVA, f. 391) stores the following: Draft of the Statute of the Temporary Cabinet of Ministers, Extraordinary Statute of State Defence of 1919, Guidelines of 1919 on the “Writing of names, surnames, nicknames and place-names”, matters of return of deportees and prisoners to Lithuania in 1919. Also temporary law on the work of the Minister for the matters of Jews of 1919[243]. Most of the information about the work of the Cabinet of Ministers is provided in the documents located at the Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923). They describe the work and consultations in different areas of the Cabinet of Ministers, President and Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania. The files available in this Foundation include orders of the President of the Republic of Lithuania, appointing the Prime Minister, calling to form the Cabinet of Ministers, appointing and dismissing ministers from their respective offices. The documents attest to the process of changes in the Cabinet of Ministers. That is based on the orders of the President, dismissing ministers from service on their own request, acts of appointment of a new Prime Minister and documents related to the changes in the Cabinet of Ministers.[244] Significant part of the documents is comprised from the minutes of the sessions of the Cabinet of Ministers, involving the discussed draft laws, different matters (e.g. 1926 matter of remuneration of civil servants, matter of exchange of prisoners, matter of compensation (allowance) for the damage done by floods, matter of negotiation on the reinstatement of the Lithuanian Metrica, matter of abolition of the state of war, as well as discussions on the financing and ceremonial of the state funeral following the death of Petras Vileišis, etc.)[245]. 1933–1934: Draft Law on Withdrawal of Citizenship, Criminal Laws, list of the clerks of the higher ministries[246]; matter of Civil Status Services, which has provoked a surge of protests of the Catholic society in 1933. Protest letters for the Prime Minister and the President of the Republic. Most of them have been written in an organised way, some of them contain almost identical texts with different names of departments and signatures of Parishes and organisations (generally it was Lithuanian Youth Catholic Federation “Pavasaris” and Catholic Action Centre). Part of these letters have been initiated by the Catholic Action Centre. The authors of the letters request the Prime Ministers to exempt faithful people (i.e. Catholics) from the civil status services. It was also requested to prevent introduction of civil status services in Lithuania[247]. There are also documents of correspondence between the Ministries and other institutions, organisations and associations regarding appointment of financing and with editions concerning publication of the Government's announcements in respective publications. The Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers reveals the circumstances of the coup d’état of the 17th December, 1926. In particular, the legitimisation of the outcomes of the reform, as well as reveals the development of relationship between Prime Minister A.Voldemaras and President A.Smetona following the coup d’état.[248] Documents reveal the attempts to give prominence to the 17th of December, the day of the coup d’état.[249] Prime Minister A.Voldemaras and President A.Smetona have worked cohesively for some time after the coup d’état. However, the increasing chieftainship and developing tendency to the authoritarianism of the Prime Minister encouraged President A.Smetona to eliminate the opponent from the political arena. A.Voldemaras joined the opposition in autumn of 1929. Documents specify the fact that he was derived from power and isolated in Zarasai and Plateliai. The Cabinet of Ministers discussed the question of the citizenship of his wife[250] Letter of A.Voldemaras to the Prime Minister regarding permission to return to Lithuania from abroad. The circumstances of deportation (exile) of the former Prime Minister and the conditions under which he was kept. The 1939 instigation of the Government for A.Voldemaras to not return to Lithuania, since in case of return both his fund and freedom of movement would be subject to restriction.[251] Following the coup d’état, the political regime started to limit the activity of the opposition, opposition parties have been closed down and certain opposing activists were forced to leave the temporary capital. Although the opposition was derived from instruments of political activities (they did not participate in the activities of the Cabinet of Ministers and were absent in the Seimas reassembled in 1936), but its leaders did not walk away from the affairs of the State. In 1938 they have written an appeal “To the People and the Government”, under which the Government was urged to resign following the ultimatum of 1938. The appeal was signed by former Presidents Dr. K. Grinius and A. Stulginskis, as well as former Ministers[252].

Documents stored in the Foundation of the Presidium of the Supreme Council of the Lithuanian SSR (LCVA, f. R-758) contain history of the occupation of Lithuania. Letter “Considering the Security of the State” of the 16th of July, 1940, from the Minister of the Interior M.Gedvilas to the President of the Republic J.Paleckis regarding deportation the former Prime Minister of the Republic of Lithuania A.Merkys and Minister of Foreign Affairs J.Urbšys: “[...] they have to be deported from the territory of Lithuania together with their families as posing threat to the State of Lithuania, and settled within the Soviet Union.” (Resolution “Approved and agreed” of the President of the Republic is also available.)[253]

The 1919 photo album “Vaizdai iš Lietuvos atgimimo” (Images from the Life in Lithuania) (VDKM, FA-17699) is kept in Vytautas the Great War Museum and contains photographs of public demonstration at Laisvės Avenue, by the Chamber of the Cabinet of Ministers, Kaunas. Among other things, demonstration of the 17th of August, 1919, intended to protect Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania. Crowds of people, flags and posters of organizations[254]. Photographs of the Minister of National Defence Major Antanas Merkys [255], photograph of the building, where the Ministry of National Defence was located[256], photograph of Latvian delegation in Kaunas at the end of 1919, by the Ministry of National Defence with a plate on the building containing the following text: “Lietuvos valstybės namai” (House of the State of Lithuania)[257]. A vignette of the Government of Lithuania of 1936. It contains photographs of the President, members of the Cabinet of Ministers and their residences (Presidential Palace and Chamber of the Cabinet of Ministers).[258]

 

Political Parties

The starting point of the establishment of the parties in Lithuania was as late as at the crossing of the 19th and 20th centuries. Initially, their formation was related to the Lithuanian National Revival. First political organisation was established in 1896, the Lithuanian Social Democratic Party (LSDP), its name has changed for several times. It was renamed to Social Democratic Party of Lithuanians in 1902 and finally settled under the name of Social Democratic Party of Lithuania in 1905). Democratic Party of Lithuanians (LDP, Lithuanian Democratic Party since 1906) was established in 1902. Its wing (Lithuanian Peasant Union (LVS)) was established in 1905. Other parties have started establishing gradually with an increasing division of the society. Their mass establishment coincided with the end of the World War I and the re-establishment of the independence of Lithuania. Newly established parties or the re-established parties, which had functioned before the war, have been expanding their activities and prepared for the Lithuania's very first democratic elections to the Constituent Seimas. Parties and party system played an exceptional role in Lithuania during the democratic period with regularly held democratic elections to the Seimas and municipalities. Ideological division and separation to the left and right wings have taken quite intense forms of public life. Political parties sought for support in the society and have been shortly provided with the help from different associations, as well as managed to establish their own organisations. Although they complied with the principle of indifference to politics, yet they have essentially acted as a certain tool of political campaigning. Quarrel between parties during the “Period of Seimas” (1920–1927) has been soon transferred to the public life. However, following the coup d’état of the 17th of December, 1926 and with the authority harassing the opposing parties, as well as dissolution of the Third Seimas carried out by A.Smetona at the end of April of the next year, activities of the parties have been restricted within the State, except for the Lithuanian Nationalist Union (LTS) which remained in power. With the rising power of authoritarian government, political organisations and associations supporting them became pests in the rhetoric of Nationalists. In fact, this epithet does not apply to Nationalists who remained the only lawfully functioning political part in 1936. While some organisations have been consolidated, the others (politically unreliable and ideologically opposite) have been diminished. In the beginning of 1936 political parties were closed down (except for the Lithuanian Nationalist Union). New Law on Associations was issued in 1936. Based on the law, Minister of the Interior closed down the parties of Lithuanian Christian Democrats and Social Democrats of Lithuania, unions of Lithuanian Popular Peasants and Lithuanian Youth, as well as the “Lietuvos ūkininkų vienybė” (Solidarity of Lithuanian Farmers) along with all the departments of these organisations within Lithuania in 1936.[259] Due to the Law on Associations issued in 1936, the Nationalist organisations have gained power, but the Lithuanian Nationalist Union have always emphasized that it was not a party.[260] The political parties and ideologies have carried out their activities mostly through the periodical publications and daily newspapers censored by the authority. Such situation lasted till the occupation of Lithuania which took place in June of 1940.[261] Although there were representatives from more parties elected to the Seimas, yet the most important and influential parties at the time were Lithuanian Christian Democrats, Lithuanian Peasants' Union, the Social Democratic Party of Lithuania and Lithuanian Nationalist Union.

Statute of the Lithuanian Christian Democrat Party was registered in the Kaunas City and County Governor's institution on the 20th of December, 1919. The Party was administered by the Assembly, Central Committee, Revision Commission and Council. All the citizens approving the programme of the Party and following its resolutions were eligible to become members of the Lithuanian Christian Democrat Party. The Party disseminated Christian and democratic ideas and tried to implement them within Lithuania, was looking after domestic and foreign policy of the State, equal rights of the citizens, decentralisation of local municipalities, legal system, educational and religious matters, land use, social matters of workers and national economy. The Party mobilised people to associations, established reading-rooms, bookshops, clubs and information offices, published publications, organised assemblies and rallies, arranged lectures, plays and classes. Lithuanian Christian Democrat Party was closed down upon the resolution of the Minister of the Interior on the 6th of February, 1936. However, it has functioned illegally until occupation.

Period of 16th-19th of November, 1917 is considered as the beginning of the Lithuanian Peasants' Union, when the right wing socialists Felicija Bortkevičienė, Feliksas Kaupas, Povilas Matulionis, Albinas Rimka, Mykolas Sleževičius and others have separated from the Lithuanian Popular Socialist Union. Members of the Party have actively worked in the Supreme Council of Lithuania, therefore the Bolshevik authority forbidden the Party and the Council on the 19th April, 1918. Idea of agricultural reform was put forward during the conference, held in Kaunas on the 3rd–4th of December 1918. The implementation of the idea was started when the coalition Cabinet of Ministers was administered by the Chairman of the Party M.Sleževičius and K.Grinius. Statute of the Party was registered on the 8th of November, 1919, while the programme approved on the 6th of January, 1920. The Party published newspapers “Saulėtekis” (1919) and “Darbas” (1919–1920). It had 9 representatives among the 112 members of the Constituent Seimas and respectively 6 of 78 in the First Seimas. Representatives of the LSLDP have taken part in the Conference of the Second International in Lucerne on the 1st-10th of August, 1919, and in the Congress of the Second International, held from the 31st of July to the 5th of August, 1920, in Geneva (Lithuania had 4 seats therein). In 1922 it voted against the consolidation of the Second International and the Vienna international, and thus has ceased being a part of these activities. Lithuanian Popular Peasants' Union was established during the general assembly held on the 4th-6th of December, 1922, between LSLDP and Lithuanian Peasants' Union.[262] The Party was closed down in the 1930s, but has further functioned illegally.

Statute of the Social Democratic Party of Lithuania was registered on the 3rd of September, 1919, in the Civil Protection Department the Ministry of the Interior. The Party's structure was comprised from the party congress, central committee, and party conference, committees of cities and counties, as well as editions of the party's printouts. The Social Democratic Party amended its Statute and re-registered it in the Kaunas City and County Governor's institution on the 16th of December, 1922. The Party's structure was comprised from the party congress, central committee, party conference, committees of cities, counties and rural districts, editions of the party's printouts, as well as Fraction of Social Democrats in the Seimas. The Party amended its Statute and re-registered it in the Kaunas City and County Governor's institution: On the 21st of June, 1924 and on the 17th of October, 1925. The Social Democratic Party of Lithuania and its departments were closed following the resolution of the 6th of May, 1929, of the Commission on the matters of the Law on Associations. The Social Democratic Party of Lithuania and its departments were allowed to function following the resolution of the 3rd of December, 1929, of the Kaunas County Court. The Social Democratic Party amended its Statute and re-registered it in the Kaunas City and County Governor's institution on the 30th of April, 1932. The Social Democratic Party of Lithuania was a public organisation of workers. All the citizens approving the programme of the Party, following resolutions of the party congress and belonging to any other organisation of the party, were eligible to become its members. In its activities, the Party followed the ideology of democratic socialism and reforms, as well as tried to implement them by employing political activities. The Party disseminated the ideas of social equality and justice, freedoms of individuals and national minorities, as well as national solidarity; mobilised workers to organisations, encouraged establishment of trade unions, looked after education of youth and published a newspaper “Socialdemokratas”. Members of the Party belonged to the Governments of Lithuania, also were the members of the Constituent Seimas and other terms of office of the Seimas. Following the resolution of the 6th of February, 1936, the Social Democratic Party of Lithuania and its department were closed down, but the Party has further functioned illegally.

The Lithuanian Nationalist Union was established following the consolidation of the Party of National Progress and Farmers' Union on the 17th–19th of August, 1924. Statute of the Lithuanian Nationalist Union was registered in the Kaunas City and County Governor's institution on the 11th of October, 1924. The Statute was amended on the 17th of October, 1925; on the 17th of December, 1929 and on the 29th of May, 1929. New Statute was adopted during the general congress of the Union on the 18th–19th of October, 1930. The Statute was registered in the Kaunas City and County Governor's institution on the 30th of January, 1931. The Union was administered by the general congress of the department representatives, Central Administration and Revision Commission. A Court of Honour was also present. Departments of the Union functioned in the counties, rural district centres and small towns. New Statute was adopted on the 15th of December, 1933. It was registered in the Kaunas City and County Governor's institution on the 20th of December, 1933. Antanas Smetona acted as the Supreme Leader of the Union and was entitled to appoint and dismiss the Chairman of the Union. Since 1930, the Supreme Authority had to follow the order of the President while carrying out its activities. The Union was administered by the Supreme Authority, assembly of the chairmen of counties and general assembly of the representatives of wards. A Court of Honour was also present. Departments within the counties have been referred to as the wards. The Lithuanian Nationalist Union was re-registered on the 3rd of December, 1936, and included into the Registry of Associations of the Ministry of the Interior, based on the Law on Associations of the 1st February, 1936. All Lithuanian men and women approving the objectives of the Union were eligible to become members of the Lithuanian Nationalist Union. According to the Statute of 1924, minimum age limit for the membership of the Union was 17, while the Statute of 1933 provided for a minimum limit of 24. The aim of the Union was to develop national consciousness and culture, defend the independence of Lithuania, regain the Vilnius Region with the capital Vilnius, raise material wealth of the nation, regulate relations between the State and the Church, consolidate the army, etc. The Lithuanian Nationalist Union participated in the political life of Lithuania, established foundations, clubs, bookshops, reading-rooms, organised assemblies, congresses, conferences, lectures, published newspapers “Lietuvis” and “Lietuvos aidas”, as well as magazines “Vairas”, “Mūsų kraštas”, “Lietuvių tautininkų sąjungos žinynas” and other publications. It had 26 representatives in the Seimas. After the President dissolved the Seimas, Governments have been comprised solely from Nationalists from 1927 up until the 28th of March, 1939. When Lithuania was occupied by the Soviet Union, the Lithuanian Nationalist Union was closed down together with its divisions following the resolution of the Minister of the Interior on the 19th June, 1940.

A Review of the References

The Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923) stores reports on the establishment of parties and organisations.[263] The Foundation of the Lithuanian Nationalist Union (LCVA, f. 554) stores the following: The Statute of 1930 of the Lithuanian Nationalist Union, the Statute of 1934 of the Union[264], programme of the Union[265], minutes of the session of the Central Administration from the period of 1935–1940[266], documents from the general congress of the representatives of the departments of the Lithuanian Nationalist Union[267]. The Foundation of the Social Democrats of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 937) contains resolutions of the Presidium of the Central Committee of the Lithuanian Social Democratic Party, minutes of the sessions and resolutions of the Presidium from the period of 1922–1927[268]. The Foundation of the Municipality Department of the Ministry of the Interior (LCVA, f. 379) contains information about municipal elections of 1931: As a Party, the Lithuanian Popular Peasants' do not possess good organisation, but they had already gathered to economic organisations and are in charge of some of them (good relationship with rural people)[269].

 

Public Organizations

During the period of 1918–1940, Lithuania had many different organisations, which were highly influential in public life. Part of them originates from the end of the 19th century. The ban of publications printed in Latin alphabet initiated the establishment of secret fellowships and chapters which supported publishing and dissemination of the press[270]. The very beginning of the 20th century was the dawn of scientific and artistic association, which has significantly influenced the modernisation process of the Lithuanian people. Before the World War I, women's organisations had filled the gaps of social casework by carrying out the functions, which have been later administered by the State (social security, nursery-schools and education). Some of them were suspended during the period of the World War I. Economic, political, professional, scientific, national, religious, cultural, sport, social, charity, relief and other organisations have functioned in Lithuania during the independent period. Charity and care associations (“Lietuvos vaikas”, “Pieno lašas”, Saving Babies, Human Care, Blind People Care associations and many others) were looking after the significant part of the public life that the State was not able to take care of. The associations were particularly vital after the World War I, when a major part of people suffered poverty and famine. These organisations have been supported by the State institutions, and were subject to allowances financed by the National lottery. Activities of the social associations were particularly significant until the beginning of the 1930s, when National Health Insurance Funds have been established in Lithuania. In general, individual areas of the social care fell within the competence of certain public organisations until the founding of the public social care system,

Among the other significant organisations, there were “Ateitis”, “Pavasaris”, Nationalists, Young Lithuanians, Young Farmers' Union, Riflemen and left-wing organisations. At the time, associations have been grouped to the Nationalist, Catholic and Left ones, according to their ideology. “Ateitis” and “Pavasaris” were among the largest organisations. The organisations functioned secretly up until the beginning of the World War I and have started public activities following the declaration of the independence of Lithuania. Left-wing youth organisations “Lietuvos jaunimo sąjunga”, association “Žiežirbos” and circles “Kultūra” functioned in parallel. It was like two opposing ideologies – the right-wing or Catholic, and the left-wing. The objective of youth organisations of the Catholic nature was nurturance of faith, Christian morals, science and conscious nationality. The main purpose of the left-wing nature youth organisation “Lietuvos jaunimo sąjunga” (also referred to as the Youth) was to educate young Lithuanian people in moral and spiritual way while preparing them for the public life. They did not put an emphasis on religion or nationality. Quarrel between parties have been transferred from the Lithuania Seimas to the public sphere. This resulted in consolidation of the third nature organisations, i.e. Nationalists. The aim of the organisation “Jaunoji Lietuva”, established in 1927, was nurturance of the national Lithuanian culture by adhering to the Christian values. Nationalist organisations included Lithuania Nationalist Union, “Jaunoji Lietuva”, nationalist student corporations (“Neo-Lithuania” was among the most significant ones), Lithuanian Teachers' Union, Young Farmers' Circles, Riflemen's Union, Vilnius Liberation Union, Volunteer Union and Scouts. Although associations representing all of the different ideologies declared their non-party nature, yet each of them had their supporters among the political parties. Organisation of “Pavasaris” was sponsored by the Christian Democrats, while the Youth and Young Lithuanians were supported respectively by the Popular Peasants and Nationalists.

Activities of public organisations were established by the laws. A law was adopted in the 10th of October, 1919[271], delegating supervision of the activities of the associations to the Ministry of the Interior. They have been registered by the County Governor. Civil Protection Department and County Governor had the right to suspend activities of an organisation subject to evidence of anti-national elements thereof. National monitories possessed wide cultural autonomy, ability to establish schools in native language and different organisations. Freedom of public organisations was declared in all the Constitutions of Lithuania. However, political events have adjusted the provisions laid down in the Constitution. Activities of the organisations have been affected by the coup d’état of the 17th of December, 1926. Extraordinary laws on the State Defence entered into force, based on which each assembly was subject to permission from the County Governor. Each assembly had to be attended by a responsible representative of the Police who was obliged to prevent the raising of the political questions. Following the coup d’état, there were concerns regarding the consolidation of the Lithuanian Nationalist Union and its allied organisations. Actions have been taken to restrict the activities of the opposing organisations. In 1930, the activities of the “Ateitis” associations of pupils were banned in secondary schools (despite the ban, their organisations have further functioned illegally). It was only pupil Scouts who could function legally. Their supervision fell within the competence of the Minister of Education. Members of “Ateitis”, “Pavasaris” and left-wing organisations were not welcome in State's service. New organisation “Tautiško darbo talka” was established in 1933. “Talka” was comprised of “Šaulių Sąjunga” (Riflemen's Union), “Jaunoji Lietuva” (Young Lithuania), student corporation “Neo-Lithuania”, Lithuanian Teacher's Union of Dr. Jonas Basanavičius, “Vilniui Vaduoti Sąjunga” (Vilnius Liberation Union), Scouts, and was also supported by the Young Farmers' Union. New law regulating activities of the associations was issued on the 1st of February, 1936. It was more comprehensive, strict, specific and oriented to the Lithuania national society[272]. Statutes of the associations used to be approved by the Minister of the Interior. Minister's approval was also required for the establishment of departments, acquirement of flags and uniforms. Number of founders for an association was also increased. Some of the organisations did not conform to the formal statutory provisions, therefore they have been closed down (mostly due to insufficient number of members). The Government required unconditional approval of its actions, while opposing organisations were provided only with the social care, educational and cultural spheres. Interests of the State and people were prioritized and organisations were required to support the State (i.e. the Government).

The first census of organisations took place in 1931. It has revealed that most of the organisation were located in the temporary capital Kaunas (in 1931, in Kaunas City there were 220 active organisations without divisions, 96 organisations with divisions all through Lithuania, 132 divisions of various organisations and 13 unions of organisations). Number of associations has rapidly increased in the 1930s. On the 1st of April, 1938, in Lithuania there were 730 active associations, 10 unions of associations and 6900 divisions thereof. The associations formed unions and collaborated with foreign organisations. When Lithuania was occupied by the Soviet Union, the associations have been closed and their members have usually faced deportation.

A Review of the References

Documents stored in the Foundation of the Ministry of Education of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 391) are very helpful in recognising the influence of associations during the period in Lithuania. They reveal the State's attempts to regulate the activities of the associations, unions and parties. The documents include: Law on the Registration of Associations, Unions and Parties of 1919; Statement of the Congress of Medical Corporation “Fraternitas Lithuanica” dedicated to the Minister of Education regarding lack of doctors in the army and society after the World War I, their education, training and studies abroad[273].

The Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers (LCVA, f. 923) stores documents containing information about stricter supervision of associations and organisations in the 1930s (Draft Law on the Uniforms and Labels of Associations and Unions of around 1934[274]). Draft Law on the Associations adopted during the session of the Cabinet of Ministers on the 27th of March, 1934[275]. The Foundation contains information about: Lithuanian Riflemen's Union, Lithuanian National Youth Union “Jaunoji Lietuva”, Young Farmers' Circle Union, Vilnius Liberation Union, Vilnius Iron Foundation Committee, Vilnius Society of Lithuanian Art and Literature, Committee “Jūros diena”, Western Lithuanian Union, Vytautas the Great Committee, Union “Pavasaris”, Lithuanian Catholic Women Association, Catholic Action Centre, Lithuanian Student Organisation Union of Vytautas Magnus University, Support Association for Foreign Lithuanians, Lithuanian Theatre Association, Darius and Girėnas Monument Building Committee, Lithuanian Aeroclub, Red Cross Association, Union “Pieno lašas”, Lithuanian Agriculturist Union, Educational and Cultural Association of Polish Lithuanians “Pochodnia”, Free-Thinker Ethnic Culture Association, Association of Lithuanian Women Higher Education Graduates, Lithuanian Teachers' Union, Association of Houseowners of Šančiai, Association of Lithuania Nobility, Lithuanian Military Officer Club, Association “Lietuvos Vaikas”, Klaipėda Region Fishermen's Association, Human Care Association, Union of the Volunteer Founders of Lithuania Army, The USSR Culture Recognition Association and others. The Foundation also contains resolutions of the departments of public organisations, Lithuanian Seamen's Union, Company “Švyturys” in Kaunas, Lithuanian Sports League and Farmers' Union to the Cabinet of Ministers regarding the domestic policy and inquiries on funding of the organisations' activities.[276] Lists of organisations of Lithuania and Klaipėda Region of 1935[277]. The Foundation of the Lithuanian Riflemen's Union (LCVA, f. 561) stores the following: Statute of the Lithuanian Riflemen's Union of 1919[278], orders of the period of 1921–1924[279], minutes of the session of the Central Administration from the period of 1935–1940[280], minutes of general assemblies of representatives of the squads[281], minutes of the sessions of the Council[282]. The Foundation of the Head of the Lithuanian Diplomatic Service (LCVA, f. 668) contains invitations and greetings o Lithuanian organisations from the 1930s, Programme of the Anniversary Lithuanian Women Congress in Kaunas in 1937 and Programme of Anniversary National Camp of Girl Scouts in 1938[283].

Vytautas the Great War Museum stores obverse and adverse photographs of the flag of the Lithuanian Grand Duchess Birutė Military Families Women Society with embroidered logo and slogan[284]. Also some other photographs: festivals[285], celebration of the 10th anniversary commemoration of association (women wearing national clothes are captured during the solemn session)[286]; also photographs of the nursery-schools of Kėdainiai sponsored by the association[287], solemn session in the nursery-school sponsored by the Kėdainiai division in commemoration of S.Darius and S.Girėnas: in 1934 children dressed as pilots, each of them has small models of a plane put beside. Lithuania flag and portraits of Darius and Girėnas hanging on the wall.[288] Nursery-school in Šančiai[289], Christmas party arranged in the Kaunas Military Officers' Palace by the associations for the children of disabled war veterans[290], visitors of the nursing courses organised the association[291]. Photographs of the association's Klaipėda Department contain a meeting with the President A.Smetona which took place in Klaipėda in 1927[292], meeting with the members of the Lithuanian Women Association in 1928 [293](they completed the First Aid Training Courses in 1934).[294]

 

Army

Lithuanian army was assigned with an important role from the first years of the State. During the period of 1918–1920 it fought for the preservation of the State of Lithuania. On the 23rd of November, 1918, Prime Minister A.Voldemaras signed an Order No. 1, based on which the Defence Council has been founded and an order to establish the First Regiment of Lithuania has been given. During the battles of independence Lithuanian army was comprised from Lithuanian volunteer soldiers. Obligations concerning military service in Lithuania have been introduced in 1919. At the end of the battles of independence Lithuanian army had more than 40.000 soldiers. Due to constant threat of a military conflict it has not been reduced up until 1922.

In the 1920s Lithuanian army was comprised from the following four types of forces, according to the weaponry: infantry, cavalry, artillery and engineering. Higher courses for military officers and Military School were also available. An individual structural unit Local army included Commandant's head-quarters of seventeen counties, disciplinary unit, military prison and concentration camp. Among others, there were individual institutions, including military sanitation inspection, military hospital, military commissariat, Riflemen's Union. The most significant structural changes took place on the 1st of January, 1935, along with the reorganisation and modernisation of the army. At the end of February of 1939, Lithuanian army (excluding the educational institutions of the Ministry of National Defence and army) was comprised of 3 divisions of infantry with headquarters and 9 infantry regiments, headquarters of cavalry, 3 cavalry regiments, repair squadron, 3 horse batteries, 4 artillery regiments, Military Equipment Administration, 2 engineering battalions, communication battalion, vehicle team, armoured car team, military ship “Prezidentas Smetona”, military aviation, air defence team and 12 borderline defence battalions. In 1940, Lithuanian army had 17 generals, 1800 military officers and 30.078 sergeants and soldiers. In case of a war, the military was planned to be increased up to 150.000 soldiers in 72 hours following the announcement of global mobilisation. There were 500.000 men eligible for military service in Lithuania. Mobilisation reserve (around 120.000 soldiers) had to be comprised from 19 infantry regiments and 12 borderline defence battalions. Considerable part of the State's budget used to be allocated to the support of the army.

Command of the army was inconsistent at the time. With frequent changes of the Cabinets of Ministers, new Army Commander and Chief of the Headquarters used to be appointed following the shift of Ministers of National Defence. Thus they have been too dependent on the politics and political parties took the advantage of the situation by trying to acquire influence in the army through a new Army Commander. The situation has stabilised only at the beginning of 1935, after the new Law on the Command of the Army entered into force, defining the structure of the military command, as well as the rights and liabilities of the military command.[295]

President of the Republic became the Commander-in-Chief of the Lithuanian armed forces. According to the Constitution of 1922, management and command of the armed forces fell within the competence of the Cabinet of Ministers or the Minister of National Defence. Both of them have been accountable to the Seimas. Following the dissolution of the Seimas in April of 1927 they have been accountable to the President. From the 1st of January, 1935, formation of the armed forces, competence and organisation of the command have been defined by a separate law. President of the Republic was entitled to appoint and dismiss the Army Commander, announce mobilisation and demobilisation, and order the Army Commander to the initiate military actions (when an enemy is entering the territory of Lithuania, etc.). He could appoint and dismiss soldiers under the rights of the army regiment commander or higher commanders, approved the discipline of the army, as well as its statutes of administration and property. Minister of National Defence was the second in the chain of the army's command after the President. He was the Commander-in-Chief of the army, and Army Commander, Chief of Army Supply, President of the Military Court, the Army's Military Prosecutor, Head of the Vytautas the Great War Museum, “Karininkų Ramovė” and others have reported directly to the President. When the Soviet Union Army's detachments entered into the territory of Lithuania in autumn of 1939, an Extraordinary Department for the Relationship with the USSR Army within Lithuania was established under the Ministry.[296] Minister of National Defence was responsible for preparing the society, State and army for the war, equipment of army, etc. Military Council functioned under the Minister as a supervisory body and was comprised of the Minister, Army Commander, Chief of Army Supply, Chief of the Army Headquarters, as well as Chiefs of the divisions and weapon types appointed by the order of the Minister. Institution of the Army Commander, reporting to the Minister of National Defence, was another important element in the chain of the army command. During the peacetime, Army Commander reported to the Minister of National Defence. During the war he directly reported to the President of the Republic and his rights exceeded those of the Minister[297]. Army Commander was obliged to prepare all the armed forces for the war following the Law on the Command of the Army, which entered into force in 1935. Chief of the Army Headquarters, chiefs of divisions, chiefs and inspectors of weapon types, heads of military education institutions, Chief of the Riflemen's Union and the Supreme Chaplain of the Army reported directly to the Army Commander. Defence Attachés of Lithuania also used to report directly to the Army Commander. Institution of the Chief of Army Supply, responsible for the equipment of the army, and institution of the Chief of the Army Headquarters have also played an important role. The Chief of the Army Headquarters was in charge of the authority of the command of the army[298] .

The territory of Lithuania was has been subject to one of the extraordinary forms of state, i.e. the state of war, almost for the entire existence of the State of Lithuania (1918–1940). On the 10th of February, 1919, the state of war was introduced in a part of the territory of Lithuania, and declared in the entire territory of Lithuania on the 9th of October, 1919. During the first years of the State of Lithuania, its introduction and validity have been determined by the battles of Independence, while later – by the tense relations between Lithuania and Poland. After the battles of Independence were over, the state of war was abolished in the major part of the territory of Lithuania, yet it has remained active in the army, the entire railway area and within number of rural districts along the demarcation line. The state of war in Lithuania was abolished on the 17th of June, 1926, except for and area of one kilometre by the demarcation line. However, it was reinstated following the coup d’état of the 17th of December, 1926. On a proposal of the Cabinet of Ministers, the state of war was declared in the entire Lithuania by the act of the President of the Republic of 20th of December, 1926. Enhanced State protection period was introduced in the entire Lithuania one the 22nd of March, 1939 (just before losing Klaipėda)[299].

Detachments of the Lithuanian army have been deployed within the entire territory of Lithuania following the plans of the Supreme Headquarters of the Army. Principles of and changes in the deployment of the army have been determined by the international situation of the State and threat of a possible assault. Major changes in deployment of the Lithuania army in 1939 were influenced by the withdrawal of the Klaipėda Region and conclusion of the Treaty of Mutual Assistance with the USSR, as well as the retrieval of Vilnius and its region and establishment of the USSR army garrisons. Some detachments of the Lithuanian army were redeployed to Vilnius and the Vilnius Region at the end of October of 1939. The Lithuanian army's room for manoeuvre has been restricted following the conclusion of the Treaty of Mutual Assistance with the USSR and establishment of the Soviet army within the territory of Lithuania.[300]

Lithuania failed to avoid occupation regardless of military preparedness. A political decision has been made to let the Soviet Union army in the territory of the Republic of Lithuania without resistance. During the occupation the power of the Lithuanian army was diminished and it has been gradually integrated into the Soviet Union's Red Army by dissolving its remaining elements. Part of the soldiers has been deported, while other parts have either departed to the West or remained in Lithuania and waged guerrilla warfare against the occupation.

A Review of the References

Documents stored in the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania introduce to the Lithuanian army of the time, its development process, equipment and meaning in the society. The Foundation of the Ministry of National Defence (LCVA, f. 384) contains orders of the Minister of National Defence and Army Commander[301], and schemes of military uniforms. It also holds orders regarding procedures on certification of military officers, promotion to the military rank and retirement of soldiers[302]. Description of the Lithuanian army uniforms, orders regarding the procedures on wearing of uniforms, order regarding military trainings and establishment of the Military Academic Association[303]. Orders of 1925 regarding military service[304]. An order of 1929 describes the procedures for support of the War disabled persons[305]. Orders regarding promotion to the higher ranks for military officers, honouring and personnel within military elements[306]. Order of 1933 regarding composition of the regiment courts, certification of military officers, etc.[307] Situation of army during the period of 1938–1940 is described in various documents, order regarding the army mobilisation, certification, military trainings, promotion to the higher ranks for military officers and retirement of military officers.[308]. Also the Order No. 56 of the 15th of June, 1940, to the army regarding withdrawal of the Brigadier I.Musteikis, orders concerning reformation of the army, which reveal the Lithuanian army liquidation process[309]. Minutes of the sessions of the Cabinet of Ministers stored in the Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers (LCVA, f. 923) contain a great deal of information about the army, military training, equipment and preparation of the army and protection of the State in case of assault. Finnish Law on the State Defence of 1939. Consideration of 1939 on the repetition of Military Course concerning call-up: “decided to allow the Minister of National Defence to call up to 100 reserve sub-lieutenants and up to 7000 first class reserve soldiers to repeat the military courses during January and February of 1935.”[310] Resolution of the State Defence Council of the 1st of September, 1939, on assignment of the protection of the bars “Nemunas” (from Sudargas) and Neris to the Army. Order of the President regarding the changes in staff of the Ministry of National Defence during the peacetime. Groups of reserve military officers have been called to the army in 1939, therefore some institution were short of officers and employees (e.g. the State Radio Station was deprived of a mechanic and two bandsmen). Secret Order to the Army No. 24 of the 18th of December, 1939. Price list for ammunition. The documents tackle the matters of the army funding, request of the Ministry of National Defence to increase the army funding for the year of 1940, since the army has expanded by almost 100 per cent. Matters of establishment of military aerodromes.[311] Information about equipment of the army. The following public enterprises used to supply the army with foodstuffs: “Maistas” with meat and fat, “Lietūkis” with ryes and barleys. “Pienocentras” with milk and butter, “Žuvis” with fish and “Lietuvos cukrus” with sugar. File contains correspondence regarding visas for military officers travelling abroad, particularly to Germany, as well as Latvia, Finland, Italy, etc.[312] Report of the 22nd of August, 1922, of the Army Supply Administration of the Ministry of National Defence on the military ship “Antanas Smetona”, which had to be moored at the fishermen port of Šventoji after the loss of the Klaipėda Region. Detailed review of the situation of the military ship “Antanas Smetona”, its preparation for military actions and mood of the crew[313]. Matters of equipment of military officers, determination of welfare allowance, standards for the apartments appointed to military officers, etc. Regulations on Military Actions adopted on the 3rd of October, 1933, and approved by the Council of Ministers on the 7th of February[314]. The Foundation of the Ministry of Education (LCVA, f. 391) contains various draft laws revealing fact of the formation of the Lithuanian army and life difficulties during the first year the Independence. Draft Law on “Remuneration for health strengthening of the military officers released for holidays”. Additional requisition was introduced with the army facing a shortage of horses. Lists of the army court personnel made in 1919, the Law on a Ban to Join Foreign Army, and instruction for calling to the Lithuanian army (1919).[315]

Collections of the Vytautas the Great War Museum contain vast selection of photographs of the army. They portray daily life of soldiers, celebratory parades, military trainings and leisure time. Infantry, cavalrymen and artillerymen. The photographs reveal relations between the army, public institutions and society. They also include the first oath of the Lithuanian army in Kaunas, at the Town Hall Square, on the 11th of May, 1919.[316] The album “Vaizdai iš Lietuvos atgimimo” (Images from the Resurgence of Lithuania) (VDKM, Fa-17699) contains photographs of Lithuanian army soldiers and officers, also army's workshop, vehicles, poor living conditions during the first year of Independence, bad condition of barracks and others premises of the army. Military sanitation department recurs in different photographs of the Military Hospital (of staff, operating-room and others).[317] Collection of the Museum includes a selection of self-published publication of the army's divisions revealing education functions of the army.

 

Local Self-Government

Local self-government was functioning and had the power only in part of the State's territory, while general aim of the municipalities was to look after matters of the local people. Municipal institutions managed and looked after education, health care, social care and charity, construction supervision, maintained cleanliness, supervised roads, bridges, marketplaces, ensured public order and peace, organised public works, taxes, allocated liabilities for the citizens, as well as looked after other matters provided for by the law. Local self-governments depended on the laws issued by the State.[318]

Proclamation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the 11th of November, 1918, encouraged people to establish local government, the Parochial Committees. During the period of 1918–1919, local self-government organisations (committees and councils) have been entitled to take over the property from the German administration, monitor trade, establish militia, etc.[319] The first Law on Municipalities of Lithuania was adopted on the 10th of October, 1919[320]. It established territorial self-government, which could be attended by all the people, regardless of their property, gender or religion. The Law also established division of Lithuanian territory into rural districts and counties. Depending on the size, cities could operate under to the rights of rural districts or counties. The Law describes the mechanism for determination of the rural district area (individual villages could request to join another rural district, but subject to approval of the Municipality Department of the Ministry of the Interior). Wards have been legitimised. Citizens of wards formed associations (known as “Krivulė”) and had a right to elect an elder, but did not possess any wider functions of a municipality.  Council of rural district was granted with the representational authority, while Administration of rural district obtained the executive power. Administration was elected by members of the Council. President of the Rural District Administrations was referred to as the Chief (Viršaitis), while President of the City Administrations was known as the Burgomaster (Burmeistras). Local self-government were responsible for social care, education, transport, management of infrastructure, etc. Local institutions had a right to collect some taxes and dispose of tangible assets[321]. However, functions of central and local authorities were not clearly separated neither by the Law, not by the first permanent Constitution of Lithuania. This led to turmoil between heads of counties (who reported to the Ministry of the Interior) and heads of the municipalities of the counties. At the beginning of the 1920s, Lithuanian municipalities have faced difficulties while fulfilling their tasks and shortage of specialist, particularly within the municipalities of rural districts. Although municipalities had extensive power, yet it was not based on sufficient funding, thus municipalities have been constantly facing the financial deficit. Municipalities used to introduce additional taxes on their own discretion, which resulted into lower income paid to the State budget. This was one of the reasons for disagreement between central and local authorities.[322] Income of municipalities was comprised from taxes, as well as income from private property and companies. The funds from collected taxes and fees have never been sufficient in order to meet the needs of municipalities, therefore they have been provided with the State loans (allowances) starting from 1925.

Reforms of the municipalities were important, since they have brought changes in the structure, status and activities of local government. On the 29th of July, 1924, the Second Seimas approved the amendments to the Law on Municipalities, which led to the first reform of municipalities. Heads of counties, appointed by the Ministry of the Interior, have also become the presidents of the administrations of municipalities of the counties. The procedures for taking the office of chief of a rural district: the chief used to be selected from three candidates suggested by a rural district, rather than elected by the Council of rural district (as it was the case previously). Approval of estimates, personnel and wages of the counties and counties possessing the rights of counties was appointed to the the administrations of municipalities of the counties[323]. Counties played a role of mediator between central government and rural districts. Following the coup d’état of the 17th of December, 1926, leaders of the Lithuanian Nationalist Union decided to fundamentally restructure the system of government. A Law on Local Self-Government was adopted in 1929 and dedicated to rural municipalities. While Law on Local Self-Government dedicated to all the municipalities was adopted in 1931. The introduced voter qualifications have divided potential voters to groups according to their property, income level and position held. The qualifications allowed the Nationalist authority to control the electorate, as well as to prevent the authority's undesirable persons from being elected to the local self-governments. The Law on Municipalities of 1931 provided for that one third of the members of the Council of the temporary capital Kaunas City should be appointed by the Cabinet of Ministers.[324]

During the period of 1918–1940, the territorial administration network remained virtually the same, counties used to be divided into rural districts. Cities, depending on their size, could belong to the level of counties or rural districts. Administrative surveillance of local self-governments has intensified during the period of independence, yet they have not been fully integrated into the administration of the State[325]. 

A Review of the References

Documents in the Foundation of the Department of Municipalities of the Ministry of the Interior of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 379) contain information about the activities of the local self-governments. The Foundation contains review of the activities of the Kaunas County municipality and account of the Kaunas City municipality[326]. It also contain information about the development of local self-government (establishment of county boundaries, prioritizing of Lithuanian against other languages, translations of place-names of the Šakiai County from German to Lithuania, translations of Lithuanian place-names from Polish to Lithuanian[327]. Informations about the 1920 elections to the self-government and councils of rural districts. List of candidates and elected ones, as well as election protocols[328]. Statistics of the elections to councils of rural districts and city councils. Number of the members of councils of counties, cities and rural districts. Ministry of the Interior used to get information about the intentions of the Communist Party to disturb the self-government elections (breaking ballot boxes, tearing voting cards, making noise, etc.)[329]. Characteristics of candidates to the office of Burgomaster and their deputies (secret information provided by the criminal police). Information about chiefs and secretaries of rural districts. Information about violations of elections, impermissible agitation on the day of elections, bribing of voters, etc.[330] Elections of Burgomasters and protest against the results of the elections. Matters of salaries of Burgomasters and their deputies. Characteristics of the elected Burgomasters, evaluation of their credibility, loyalty to the State (evaluation of national loyalty in particular), information of the fact of belonging to organisations, education, culture and relations with local community. There is also information of moral portrait of the con.temporary society (characteristics include drinking, playing cards, as well as corruption and liaison). Information about organisation of the self-government elections. Prediction of the 1931 self-government elections, list of unreliable chiefs. Specification of reasons revealing why the 1931 self-government elections could be unfavourable for Nationalists (activities of opposing parties and organisations, as well as Nationalist organisations in rural areas lack support, while Popular Peasants have a number of supporters). There were suggestions to nominate authoritative Nationalists as candidates, who were widely supported by the society, or, in case of lack thereof, non-party candidates who supported Nationalists; prevent public agitation and appoint different dates for elections in rural districts (so that the process of elections could be monitored by the County Governor, head of police or any other member from the County Administration). Information about elections had to be provided as soon as possible. There were concerns that Nationalists would get just a handful of votes given that all candidates are nominated on their behalf.t There were suggestions to secretly notify credible people (elders, Riflemen, Nationalists, etc.) to follow the preparation for elections and to adjust it, once the situation becomes unfavourable in respect of Nationalists. To address to and to unify the position and persuade to actively participate in elections. To dismiss unreliable chiefs[331]. The Foundation contains information on income and expenditure of municipalities: estimates of income and expenditure. Expenditure under the rights of counties, rural districts and cities. Summaries of income and expenditure of the 1920s.[332]. Reports, telephonograms, appeals, protocols and minutes of sessions of some of the city councils. Matters of self-government: paving, widening and cleaning of streets, construction and supply of elementary schools, improvement for work conditions of firefighters, tax-related matters, income from slaughterhouses and taxation of pubs and other business institutions[333]. Municipalities were responsible for the support of elementary schools[334]. They also looked after a particular sphere of social care: they covered treatment expenses and cost of disadvantaged people living at caring homes. In 1928, the rainy weather has destroyed the harvest of farmers, and Northern Lithuania was threatened by famine. The municipalities had to bring the situation under control[335]. There is also information about customs and daily life of the contemporary society (e.g. encouraging to dress up before annual festivals). The Foundation contains information about city maintenance, prioritizing the paving of streets, installation of pavements, numbering of the city buildings (numbering is supervised by the city administration), each plot located on the side of a street had to be surrounded by a fence; fences, gates, house façades, windows with shutters and door present on the side of the street had to be painted with oil paint. Rules on maintenance of roads, labelling of roads[336]. Specifications who should cover the expenses of the maintenance of roads and pavements. Indication of transport procedures in cities and small towns, described under the traffic rules. Specification of the allowed weight of commercial vehicles driving in city streets (e.g. in 1927, riding only with bridled horses, passing the one driving from the right side and overtaking from the left; fast driving and racing is forbidden during the days of fair, market and holidays in crowded places, while racing has been forbidden in general and allowed only subject to permission granted by the police). Carriages and sledges had to be labelled (with a plate containing name and place of residence of its owner), professional carriers (entrepreneurs) could be persons falling into age range from 16 to 65, and were obliged to be sober. Letting processions, cortèges and army elements and firefighter teams to pass is mandatory. Traffic rules for bicycles: it is forbidden to ride by pavements, pedestrian routes and bicycles had to be numbered.[337]. The Foundation of the Ministry of Education (LCVA, f. 391) contains information about the role of municipalities in development of the State's social security policy. Social security departments should be established under the municipalities. They are meant to “carry out charity and relief activities, as well as look after or control different types of relief associations”[338]. The archive photo album (LCVA, A25) contains Biržai County photographs from the 1920s. They include the remains of Biržai castle, churches, schools, landscapes, land-reclamation works, local industrial companies, flax processing unit, dairy, brewery, organisations of Riflemen and “Ateitis”, evangelical reformer synod, and the President's A.Smetona visit to Biržai.

 

Education

Lithuania has had some remarkable achievements in the area of education during the period of 1918–1940. Following the declaration of independence, education has become one of the priority tasks of the young State. Although schools had been devastated and teachers scattered following the World War I, yet the network of educational institutions has become increasingly larger. Temporary statutes of elementary schools and higher general education schools was adopted in 1919. The Law on Elementary Schools was adopted on the 6th of October, 1922, while the Law on Secondary Schools was adopted in 1925. General education school was established in included the following: 4-year elementary school, 4-year progymnasium (also called secondary school) and 4-year gymnasium (also called higher school). Educational system was reformed in 1936. The reform was related to the idea of national school and Lithuania's statehood. Elementary school was comprised from 6 grades, while progymnasiums and gymnasiums had 3 and 7 grades respectively. Graduates of the elementary school could further continue their studies in either progymnasium or gymnasium. Their number has also increased significantly during the years of independence. There was a total of 38 gymnasiums and progymnasiums at the beginning of 1920. This number has increased up to 107 in 1934. There have also been gymnasiums and progymnasiums of national minorities (Polish, Jewish, German, Russian and Latvian) and all of them were private. Since 1924, gymnasiums offered an optional educational profile: with compulsory Latin language; with enhanced mathematical and natural science teaching; with enhanced teaching of foreign languages. Graduation from gymnasium enabled pupils to try for higher school. Professional higher secondary schools of various profiles have functioned in Lithuania. Among them, commercial, technical, agricultural, forestry, art, musical, medical, accountancy, police, military and other schools, as well as teacher and priest training seminaries. In the 1930s, there has been a rapid expansion of craft, merchant and other professional schools.

Illiteracy has been successfully eliminated in the course of two decades of independence. School network has face expansion. In 1919, there were 40 higher schools and some 1000 elementary school in Lithuania. Following the 20 year period, Lithuania had 93 higher schools, 73 professional schools, while the number of elementary schools increased by three times. Additionally, University of Lithuania (Vytautas Magnus University from 1930) and another 5 higher education schools and institutes have been established[339].

 

Elementary Education

Lithuania has been dominated by Lithuanian elementary schools. During the period of 1918–1920, there have been 903 Lithuanian elementary schools, which comprised 87.16 per cent of the total of elementary schools. Meanwhile, number of elementary schools of national minorities was way smaller: 49 Jewish schools comprising 4.73 per cent of a total of elementary schools, 37 German (3.57 per cent), 33 Polish (3.19 per cent), 11 Latvian (1.06 per cent) and 3 Russian (0.29 per cent)[340]. School network has expanded by almost 2.5 times until the initial phase of implementation of compulsory elementary education (1928). Most of the elementary schools have been supported by the Ministry of Education and municipalities. There have also been some private elementary schools. State schools have provided free elementary education. Content of teaching within elementary schools has been established following the programmes approved by the Ministry of Education, which mostly focused on Lithuanian, regional familiarity and arithmetic. The Constitution adopted in 1922 provided for compulsory elementary education, but the time of and procedures for the introduction of the compulsory elementary education were yet to be defined. The Constituent Seimas adopted the Law on Elementary Schools on the 6th of October, 1922[341]. All of the elementary schools fell within the competence of the Ministry of Education. Schools could be established by the Ministry of Education, municipalities, public and religious organisations, as well as individual citizens of Lithuania[342]. The Law provided for a four-year compulsory elementary education in Lithuania for 7–14 year old children of both genders. However, the school network was incomplete (municipalities were not able to support and supply elementary schools), thus it has taken some time until compulsory education was declared in Lithuania. Teachers used to be appointed by the educational and cultural commissions of counties, supervised by an inspector of county schools appointed by the Ministry of Education. New instructions for the introduction of compulsory education was drafted on the 18th of February, 1924[343]. Law on Compulsory Education was drafted in 1926. It provided for the procedures for introduction of compulsory education. It has been presented for consideration of the Third Seimas, but the Seimas did not make it on time (it was dissolved on the 12th of April, 1927). Compulsory attendance of elementary schools was introduced on the 1st of May, 1928, within municipalities where school network is expanded sufficiently, as well as in the district of schools supported by the Ministry of Education (it included schools of Eastern Lithuania located closest to the demarcation line). It has been officially declared in 1931 that compulsory attendance of elementary schools had been implemented in the entire Lithuania. General education system has been reformed in 1936. New Law on Elementary Schools has been issued in the very same year. New programmes for elementary schools focused on the familiarity with the native region and national education[344].

A Review of the References

Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of Lithuania of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (f. 923) stores documents revealing the process and circumstances of introduction of compulsory elementary education. Minutes of the session of the Cabinet of Ministers contain valuable information[345]. Among others, there is Law on Courses for Elementary School Teachers of the 9th of February, 1923[346]. Reports and instructions containing description of the process of introduction of compulsory education and difficulties that have been faced by the State's institutions. Commentaries on: Law on Elementary Schools issued in 1922, Instructions for Introduction of Compulsory Elementary Education drafted by the Ministry of Education in 1924, Draft Law on Compulsory Education submitted to the Cabinet of Ministers by the Ministry of Education in 1926. Plan for introduction of compulsory elementary education, as well as establishment of the school year[347]. Some municipalities have commemorated the first decade of the Independence of Lithuania by introducing compulsory elementary education[348]. The Foundation of the Municipality Department of the Ministry of Interior (LCVA, f. 379) stores the 1928 plan for global introduction of compulsory education. The plan includes reviews legal base, school network, supply of teaching inventory for schools and rural district preparedness for the introduction of compulsory elementary education. Plan for introduction of compulsory elementary education and description of its stages. Statistics is provided on the preparation for introduction of compulsory education (number of schools, teachers and pupils according to counties and rural districts), as well as statistics on the funds required for construction and equipment of schools within the counties. Agreements on lease of school premises (between rural district administrations and houseowners). Review of economic situation of elementary schools and school support conditions. Information on the dates of compulsory education introduction in elementary schools and which rural districts are capable of covering the increased expenses (there was a need to establish additional units, equip underprivileged pupils with writing implements and textbooks, as well as to grant allowances for the poor parents to support their children). Rural districts with limited financial capabilities have been supported by their people (by making furniture and providing other kind of assistance). Municipalities were in a need of allowances[349]. Letters from people expressing their resentment due to number of Lithuanian, Jewish and German elementary schools. Indignation is expressed concerning the fact that German or Jewish doctors are the ones looking after the health of Lithuanian pupils. Statistics available on the elementary schools of Kaunas, specification of the teaching languages (Lithuanian, Polish, Yiddish, German and Russian), inventory of schools, addresses and inventory of the schools, manager, number of units, teachers and pupils, as well as the total area of rooms taken by the schools. Description of problems arising due to support of the schools of national minorities (it is requested to provide support from the funds of the municipality: part of the expenses is subsidised by the self-government, while the parts covered by parents)[350]. Back in 1923, the Ministry of Education proposed to the educational commissions to follow certain instructions when opening new schools and units: schools should be established only at the beginning of the school year; premises of the newly established schools have to be inspected by a commission[351]; specification of conditions under which foreigners could carry out the teaching[352], conclusions on their credibility used to be provided by respective special commissions[353]. Information available on the use of the laws on education in practice and issues arising thereof, as well as on the teaching of foreign languages in Lithuanian schools[354]. Information about higher schools is available in the Foundation of the Ministry of Education (LCVA, f. 391). List of Lithuanian schools the graduation certificates of which used to enable their graduates to try for the higher education courses. The list was compiled by the Ministry of Education in 1921 and included the following: State gymnasiums Kaunas First gymnasium, Marijampolė Rygiškių Jonas Gymnasium, Panevėžys and Šiauliai gymnasiums); private gymnasiums (Kaunas Jewish Gymnasium, Kaunas Real Jewish Gymnasium, Kaunas Teachers' Association Gymnasium  (Russian), Kaunas Polish Gymansium, Kaunas Commercial School and Marijampolė Real Gymnasium).[355]. The 1919 review of agricultural schools, temporary rules for lower agricultural schools, medium agricultural and forestry schools[356]. Information on the Kaunas Musical School, Kaunas Conservatory (Professors and Director of the Conservatory used to be appointed by the President of the Republic on a proposal of the Minister of Education)[357]. Establishment of the department of music in 1919[358], information on the Klaipėda State Craft School[359] and Klaipėda Musical School[360]. The Foundation also contains a great deal of information about musical education situation in Lithuania in 1933[361], M.Dobužinskis letter about the Art School.[362]

 

Higher Education

There has been a number of different higher educational institutions during the period of independence. Most of them were located in Kaunas: University of Lithuania (Vytautas Magnus University from 1930) established in 1922, Art School established in 1922 (later know as the Institute of Fine Arts), Vytautas the Great Higher Military School established in 1931, Conservatory established in 1933, Higher Physical Education Course established in 1934, Veterinary Academy established in 1936 (Veterinary Department of the Medical Faculty of the Vytautas Magnus University has been established on the grounds of its material base). Dotnuva Agricultural Academy was established in 1924 (Department of Agronomy and Forestry of the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences of the University of Lithuania, as well as the Dotnuva Agricultural Technical College have been established on the ground of the Academy's material base), Commerce Institute established in 1934 and  Pedagogical Institute established in 1935 in Klaipėda. University was the most important higher education school at the time.

On the 5th of December, 1918, the State Council of Lithuania adopted the Statute of Vilnius University, which declared of the re-establishment of Vilnius University on the 1st of January, 1919. The implementation of this idea has been interrupted by the Battles of Independence. Higher education school had to be established in Kaunas. On the 27th of January, 1920, the Higher education courses have been established with the six following departments: Humanities, Law, Mathematics and Physics, Natural Sciences, Technology and Medicine. These course gave birth to the university. In 1922, the Cabinet of Ministers decided to open the university following the Statute of Vilnius University adopted by the State Council of Lithuania on the 5th of December, 1918. University of Lithuania was opened in Kaunas on the 16th of February, 1922. Most of the students and lecturers of the Higher education courses have integrated into the University. On the 24th of March, 1922, the Constituent Seimas adopted the Statute of Vilnius University, thus legitimizing the autonomy of the University. The University was comprised from the following six faculties: Theology and Philosophy, Humanities, Law, Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Medicine and Technology. Council of University was the highest self-governing body of the University. It was comprised from the members of all of the faculty councils and honorary professors. Council of the University used to elect rector, prorectors and secretaries out of professors for a one year term. Rector, protector, secretary and deans of the faculties comprised the executive body of the University known as the Senate. On the 31st of March, 1925, an amendment to the Statute of University was adopted by the Seimas. The amendment provided for the establishment of the Faculty of Evangelical Theology. The faculty was closed down on the 1st of September, 1936, due to insufficient number of students. On the 7th of June, 1930, the President of the Republic declared the Law on the Name of University of Lithuania. Hereby the university was renamed to the Vytautas Magnus University. Statute of Vilnius Magnus University was declared on the very same day. It has partially limited the autonomy of the University: members of the superior personnel used to be appointed by the President on a proposal of faculties, while privatdozents were appointed by the Minister of Education. Age qualification has been applied for lecturers.  Terms of office of the rector and prorector was prolonged up to 3 years. The University was comprised from seven faculties. The Seimas adopted new Statute of Vytautas Magnus University on the 4th of November, 1937. It has restricted the autonomy of the University even further. Functions of the Council of the University have been narrowed, while functions of the University Senate have been expanded. Meanwhile, the Student representative offices and student organisations have been regulated. Rights of the Minister of Education have also been expanded. He was eligible to propose candidates to the office of rector or prorector. Vytautas Magnus University has provided assistance in re-establishment of Vilnius University in 1939–1940. On the 13th of December, 1939, the Fourth Seimas adopted the Law on Universities, providing for that the faculties of Humanities and Law are transferred to Vilnius as of January of 1940. The Polish Stephen Báthory (Steponas Batoras) University was suspended on the 15th of December, 1939, and was replaced by the Lithuanian University of Vilnius, administered following the Statute of Vytautas Magnus University.

When Lithuania was occupied by the Soviet Union, the Faculty of Theology and Philosophy was closed down on the 16th of July, 1940. Statute of the University was amended and its autonomy was abolished on the 29th of July, 1940. Soon after that, a ban was put on student organisations, followed by dismissal of lecturers and employees. Vytautas Magnus University was renamed to the University of Kaunas on the 21st of August, 1940[363].

A Review of the References

Collection in the Vytautas the Great War Museum includes vignettes of intakes of different faculty departments of Vytautas Magnus University. They contain photographs of students and professors.

The Foundation of the Vytautas Magnus University of Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 631) stores minutes of the sessions of Senate and Council of University of Lithuania[364] and regulations of faculties of Vytautas Magnus University[365]. Lists of lecturers and clerks of the Higher education courses (later renamed to University of Lithuania) of 1920–1922. The Foundation contains information on number of students of the Higher education courses, lecturers, plans of the courses and lectures, activity report and estimates of the Higher education courses[366]. Information on education personnel of University of Lithuania, descriptions of subjects, rules on education process[367], information on professors working in the University.[368] Information on elections of 1926 to the student representative office, lists of university corporations and students within faculties, as well as various statistics[369]. 1927–1928 education plans[370], list of 1937–1938 of Vytautas Magnus University personnel, lists of student organisations (corporations, unions, associations and clubs)[371]. Structure of the developed University of Lithuania, consideration on matters of professorship, wages, Statutes of the Higher education courses and draft legislation on remuneration for work in University of Lithuania. Lecturers of the Higher education have been sent to serve apprenticeship to German and Italian universities[372]. The Foundation of the Ministry of Education (LCVA, f. 391)[373] stores draft Statutes of 1936–1939 containing remarks of rector of the University M.Romeris[374]. Documents of the Foundation reveal the circumstances of establishment of the Higher education courses: Note of the Council of Higher Education of Association to the Minister of Education of 1919 concerning establishment of the Higher education courses, Statute of the Higher education courses approved by the Minister of Education in 1919[375], minutes of the sessions of councils of faculties of University of Lithuania of 1922, orders of the President of the Republic, appointing professor, deans and secretaries of faculties. Correspondence between University of Lithuania and the Ministry of Education on the matters of activities. These documents provide information about administration of the University, its activities, organisation of studies and material situation of the university[376]. Temporary regulation of University of Lithuania issued in 1925[377]. Memorandum concerning the reform of the Statute of University of Lithuania issued in 1928, as well as statements of councils of faculties. Dependency of the education personnel, executive bodies of the University and faculties, as well as education or subjects, on the political authority (the President of the Republic or the Minister of Education) has been seen as posing the most risk. Professors-scientists have been replaced by professors-functionaries-bureaucrats. Radical reform of the Faculty of Theology and Philosophy[378]. Vytautas Magnus University's senior lecturers, professors, prorectors and rectors have been appointed by the President of the Republic on the basis of the Constitution of the State, the Statute of Vytautas Magnus University and on a proposal of the Minister of Education[379]. Professors used to move to other higher education institutions abroad (e.g. Czechoslovakia). New Law of the Faculty of Evangelical Theology. Information on the Department of Semitology[380]. Draft statutes of the University from the 1930s. Explanatory notes of the University community concerning the Statute (remarks, proposals and objections). List of student organisation of Vytautas Magnus University of 1937. It includes 92 organisations[381]. Information on the University is stores in the Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers (LCVA, f. 923): Consideration of the amendment to the Statute of Vytautas Magnus University in 1935. Request of the student representative office of the University regarding the support of representatives going to session of the central office of the Baltic Student Union SELL.[382].

The archive contains personal files of rectors, lecturers and students of the University (famous Lithuanian scholarly, cultural, political and public activists of the second half of the 20th century). (LCVA, f. 631, ap. 7) personal files of the following students of the Faculty of Humanities: Viktoras Alekna, Vytautas Augustauskas, Konstantinas Avižonis, Bernardas Brazdžionis, Ona Girčytė, Chackelis Lemchenas, Bronius Raila, Rapolas Šaltenis, Adolfas Šapoka, Antanas Tamošaitis, Algirdas Vokietaitis, Kazys Boruta, Jonas Balys, Domas Cesevičius, Lėja Goldbergaitė, Marija Krygerytė, Vincas Maciūnas, Antanas Miškinis, Jurgis Lebedis, Aldona Liobytė, Monika Mironaitė, Antanas Salys, Pranas Skardžius and Juozas Sužiedėlis; Faculty of Theology and Philosophy: Juozas Keliuotis, Kazys Bradūnas, Pranas Dielininkaitis, Jonas Grinius, Juozas Grušas, Zenonas Ivinskis, Antanas Kučinskas, Antanas Maceina, Antanas Tylenis, Pranas Mantvydas and Ignas Skrupskelis; Faculty of Law: Juozas Audickas, Kunigunda Bartninkaitė, Jonas Bučas, Juozas Bulavas, Romas Burokas, Jokūbas Gensas, Albertas Gerutis, Antanas Diržys, Kazys Jakubėnas, Jonas Januška, Juozapas Gruzdys, Juozas Kairys, Brunonas Kalvaitis, Petras Minkevičius, Jonas Noreika, Giršas Ošerovičius, Emilija Spudaitė-Gvildienė, Antanas Škėma, Aleksandras Tornau, Dionizas Trimakas, Matas Šalčius, Vincas Ignatavičius, Anicetas Simutis, Leonas Prapuolenis and Antanas Tamošaitis; Faculty of Technology: Juozas Dalinkevičius, Juozas Indriūnas, Česlovas Tamašauskas, Feliksas Bielinis, Jonas Boruta, Antanas Gustaitis and Juozas Jurginis; Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences: Kazys Baršauskas, Kazys Bieliukas, Adolfas Jucys, Juozas Matulis, Antanas Žvironas, Vladas Literskis and Otto  Vagneris; Faculty of Construction – Juozas Lukšas; Faculty of Medicine: Blažiejus Abraitis, Marija Apeikytė, Petras Baublys, Stasys Kudirka, Vytautas Sirijos Gira, Zigmas Januškevičius, Juozas Markulis, Algimantas Juozas Marcinkevičius, Hermanas-Mezesas Perelšteinas, Kostas Nekvedavičius, Teodoras Šiurkus. (LCVA, f. 631, ap. 3 and 7) files of the following lecturers of Vytautas Magnus University: Pranas Augustaitis, Vytautas Augustauskas, Simonas Bieliackinas, Mykolas Biržiška, Vaclovas Biržiška, Viktoras Biržiška, Juozas Blažys, Povilas Brazdžiūnas, Kazys Būga, Kazys Buinevičius, Pranas Dovydaitis, Vladas Dubas, Pranas Jodelė, Vytautas Jurgutis, Leonas Karsavinas, Pranas Kuraitis, Vytautas Landsbergis-Žemkalnis, Jonas Lapas, Vladimiras Lazersonas, Jonas Mačiulis-Maironis, Vincas Mykolaiti-Putinas, Konstantinas Rėgelis, Pranas Skardžius, Alfred Senn, Vladimiras Stankevičius, Vosylius Sezemanas, Vladimiras Šilkarskis, Pranas Šivickis, Jonas Štrauchas, Jonas Vabalas-Gudaitis, Augustinas Voldemaras, Karolis Žalkauskas, Jurgis Žilinskas, Antanas Žvironas, Leonas Bistras, Kazys Daukšas, Juozas Eretas, Paulius Galaunė, Juozas Albinas Herbačiauskas, Augustinas Janulaitis, Konstantinas Jablonskis, Tadas Ivanauskas, Zenonas Ivinskis, Martynas Yčas, Petras Leonas, Vincas Krėvė-Mickevičius, Balys Sruoga, A.Smetona and Jonas Šliūpas. (LCVA, f. 631, ap. 3) personal files of the following rectors of Vytautas Magnus University: Mykolas Biržiška, Julijonas Gravrogkas, Jonas Šimkus, Vincas Čepinskis, Pranciškus Petras Būčys, Petras Avižonis, Mykolas Romeris, Pranas Jodelė and Stasys Šalkauskis.

 

Culture and Art

Lithuania did not have a dedicated institution public institution to look after the matters of culture and art from the declaration of Independence of Lithuania in 1918 up until 1926. An Art Department was established in the Ministry of Education in autumn of 1918, but its activity was rather ceremonial and it was abolished at the end of 1919. Ministry of Education has been further responsible for the cultural matters. Artist established Lithuanian Association of Artists on the 29th of January, 1920. It included writers, artists and actors. The main objective of the association was to develop Lithuanian art and artistic culture, support artists, organise their creative work and protect their interests in public institutions. The association built ground for the establishment of Drama and Opera playhouses at the end of 1920. They have laid the ground for the Lithuanian professional drama and opera theatres. M.K.Čiurlionis Art Gallery was established 1921on the initiative of the association in 1921. It was intended to store the creative heritage of the artist, as well as to collect works of other Lithuanian artists. Creative studies of the association coincided with the establishment of the School of Art and conservatory. During the course of several years, the association had laid down the foundation for national institutions, which have been later taken over by the State[383]. In summer of 1926, the Lithuanian Association of Artists and Ministry of Education have jointly started establishing an Arts Council. Its members have been elected from representatives of various creative unions (acting, literature, architecture, painting and music) and the Archaeology Commission. The Council did not last long, as it ceased to exist in 1928. Functions of the Arts Council have been carried out the Department of Culture Affairs established under the Ministry of Education in 1934. It was intended to endue creation processes with more organisation. Meanwhile, artists themselves have been establishing creative unions (writers, painters). An Arts Affairs Commission was established within the Department of Culture Affairs on the 10th of April, 1935. Its objective was to improve the situation of artistic creation by consulting with artists[384]. At first, the Commission has organised a review exhibition of Lithuanian fine arts on the occasion of the First Global Congress of Lithuanians in Kaunas. Following the exhibition, the Lithuanian Painters' Association was established in 1935. It has taken over the functions of the Arts Affairs Commission. The authoritarian regime tried to join artist into creative unions and thus increase the organisation of artistic life, as well as to influence and control it. Members of the Painters' Association were not allowed to “represent Lithuania” abroad without its consent[385].

The Department of Culture Affairs under the Ministry of Education sought to administer the entire cultural life. The Department has kept the follow at its disposal:  Vytautas Magnus University, editorial office of the Dictionary of the Lithuania Language, Archaeology Commission, Bureau of Meteorology, Office of the Chief Archivist of the State, State Theatre, M.K.Čiurlionis Art Gallery, School of Arts, Conservatory, religious affairs, State Radio Station and other institutions. Laws establishing the activities of certain institutions reporting to the Ministry of Education have been adopted until 1935, while laws regulating activities of different cultural areas have been issued after 1935. Law on Organisation of Folklore, Regulations on Appointment of Literary Award and Law on Bookshops have been adopted in 1935. Law on State Public Libraries and Law on Vytautas Magnus University have been issued in 1936. Regulations on Implementation of the Law on State Public Libraries and Statute of the Vytautas the Great Museum of Culture have been adopted in 1937. Law on Theatres has been adopted in 1939.[386] Artists viewed the Ministry of Education as an office meant for administration of institutions, rather than organising creation processes. The Ministry had a task to deflect culture and art towards Lithuanian national values. It had to carry out propaganda of natural culture. For this purpose, Public Works Administration has been established in 1938. This Administration was in charge of censorship of cinematography, State Radio Station and Register of Associations. It was responsible for public education affairs, supervision of press, cinemas, production of Lithuanian films, organisation of art exhibitions and arrangement of public festivals, ceremonies and anniversaries[387].

The Ministry of Education used to grant special scholarships for artists and musicians studying abroad, premiums and arrange national competitions. One of the most significant writing competitions was related to the anniversary campaign of Grand Duke Vytautas in 1930. There have been painting and musical competitions arranged during the campaign. In 1935 the Cabinet of Ministers established Annual Literary Award. Meanwhile, the State Saving Bank allocated funds for premiums for fine arts works in 1938. The State was virtually the only patron of the arts. By employing its controlled institutions and state capital enterprises, it sought bigger part of the society to be involved into the support of the artists.

National Lithuanian culture has been particularly popularised by Song festivals, which have become a unique phenomenon. The first Lithuanian Song festival “Dainų diena” (Day of Songs) was organised in Kaunas from the 23rd to the 25th of August, 1924. It coincided with the Lithuanian Agricultural and Industrial Exhibition, also held in Kaunas. The programme of the festival included popular Lithuanians folksongs. Later the programme of the Song festivals has also included dances. The second Song festival was dedicated for the 10th Anniversary of the Independence of Lithuania and was held in Kaunas on the 1st–2nd of July 1928. It was attended by 6000 singers: 51 church choirs, 22 choirs of gymnasium and other schools, 19 choirs of various associations and organisations, as well as Lithuanian Riga choir “Šviesa”. Another Song festival was arranged on the 20th of June, 1930. It was dedicated for commemoration of the 500th Death Anniversary of Grand Duke Vytautas. It was attended by 200 choirs and 9000 singers. A total of 24 songs have been performed, including one psalm, six authentic works and harmonised folksongs.[388]

Lithuanian professional fine arts and architecture have formed during the period of independence. Poetry and literature have also reached fairly high level with an introduction of psychological and satiric novels, as well as historic and realistic-drama works. Theatre, as a tool of social and political critique, played an important role in shaping national identity and developing patriotism. After the authoritarianism solidified its position in the 1930s, theatre repertoire use to be subject to the political censorship and eventually became a political instrument. Theatres used to be administered by renowned Lithuanian diplomats, while contemporary Lithuanian and foreign diplomats, among others, were the authors of the repertoire.

A Review of the References

Documents of the Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923) contains information on theatre as a political and diplomatic instrument. Theatre plays used to the focal point of public holidays. The most important institutions of the State, including Seimas, President and Government, owned individual theatre boxes. Individual seats also belonged to diplomatic block and journalists.[389] The State Theatre used to send free seasonal tickets for the Cabinet and Ministers, which distributed the invitations among civil servants and military officers on its own discretion.[390] The Cabinet of Ministers used to approve proposal of the Ministry of Education on appointing Lithuanian artistic directors for training abroad, in Western Europe, as well as in the Soviet Union in 1935[391]. Documents within the Foundation includes criticism in respect of director of the State Theatre concerning the fact that the Theatre performs Andersen's fairy tales (“Andersono pasakos”) while Lithuania is raising the flag in Vilnius. Theatre is referred to as the unifier of the society and public platform[392]. Documents include information on financing of the M.K.Čiurlionis Art Gallery, its activities, protection and preservation of fine arts works[393]. The Foundation includes Statute of the Vytautas the Great Museum of Culture of 1937[394], a great deal of data on organisation of Song festivals, minutes of the sessions of the organisational committee for the first Song festival[395].

The Foundation of the Ministry of Education (LCVA, f. 391) stores instructions for choirs from the Song festival organisational committees and lists of choirs.[396] Association “Daina” has established its divisions in the Klaipėda Region (propaganda campaign).[397] Documents contain information about the difficulties that have been faced while organising the festival: In 1926, the Cabinet of Ministers did not manage to grant loan to the Lithuanian Choirmaster Association for arrangement the Song festival. Lithuanian Choirmaster Association (Klaipėda) was preparing to organise Song festival in 1928 for the commemoration of the first decade of the Independence of Lithuania. It had been planned to arrange a competition for musicians in order to compose songs for choirs specifically for the Song festival. There have been plans to organise courses for choirmasters. Kaunas “Aušra” was at the disposal of the Ministry of Education. Special attention has been paid to the propaganda of the national women's clothing by making to plans to award the best-looking national clothes (the idea has been nurtured from 1926, before the Nationalists came into power).[398] The Foundation contains works plans and repertoires of the State theatres, their planned tours in Lithuania and summaries of opera and drama plays from the period of 1935–1939. [399] Theatre has been called the supreme education institution for the people.[400] The State Theatre was comprised from drama, opera and ballet. The State Theatre was considered as a political and diplomatic instrument. A play “Baltoji rožė” (White Rose) was put on in the theatre in 1936 by the Great Britain's diplomat T.H.Preston who resided in Kaunas. There has been a secret confidential agreement made in October of 1938 concerning alliance of opera theatres of the State of Lithuania and Berlin, as well as presentation of Lithuanian culture in Berlin. The Foundation also contains nominal lists of soloists and repertoires of Kaunas opera and ballet theatres.[401] The State Theatre had plans to arrange concert of Lithuanian music at the end of 1939 in Vilnius after regaining the city. However, the Department of Culture Affairs under the Ministry of Education encouraged to put the plans on hold due to lack of funds[402]. Theatre's activities have been monitored by the Ministry of Education. Director of the Theatre used to appointed and dismissed by the President of the Republic on a proposal of the Ministry of Education.[403] Repertoire used to be approved and censored by the Department of Culture Affairs under the Ministry of Education. The Minister of Education used to determine the length of the theatrical season and approve plans for theatre tours. Tours have taken place in Lithuanian cities and small towns, as well as in Latvia. Riflemen's organisations, schools, Jewish soldiers, Young Lithuanians, members of “Birutė” and Labour Chamber have watched plays for free. Tour repertoires of the touring State theatres had to be coordinated in order to avoid having two plays held at the same time in the same place. Estimates of the tours are also available. The Ministry used to censor the repertoire of the State Theatre (opera/drama). Short explanation are provided concerning the necessity to have certain plays. A.Vienuolis drama “Emilija Pliaterytė” staged in the theatre in 1939. The theatre has also produced dramatic works of popular foreign authors: E.O‘Neill, S.Mogem. (Lucy Maud Montgomery?). In 1938, the Department of Culture forbidden the R.C.Sherriff's “Journey's End” (the drama depicts the following noble human virtues under the war conditions: heroism, selfless and love for the motherland and family. This works has been put on many stages in Europe, as well as made into book and film),  V.G.Salm's “Minister” (apolitical comedy, although it was based on the life of fraction of a fictitious State's Parliament. Clever women overcomes the challenges that the “men fraction” was not capable of defeating) and V.Werner's “People on the Ice” to be included into the repertoire of the State Theatre.[404] If required, the Department of Culture Affairs under the Ministry of Education used make remarks on the plays of a repertoire by specifying what should be highlighted and what should be hidden. For instance, Marcel Pagnol's “Topaze” has been included into the repertoire of the Klaipėda State Theatre in 1938–1939.  The Department of Culture Affairs suggested the psychological features of phenomena to be highlighted, the process of Topaze turning from a teacher to a businessman. However, there have been certain limitations: “[...] a conclusion can be drawn that Topaze has learned that “there is not much you can achieve when playing fair”. Such conclusion is not appropriate for an ending of the play. [...] Eventually Topaze faces failure, he becomes bankrupt. It is the result of the unfair way of life. These conclusions have to be highlighted appropriately.”[405] Transcripts of the translations of plays have been requested to be sent to the Department of Culture Affairs. Vydūnas' “Prabočių šešėliai” and V.Švidrigaila's “Žygimantas Augustas” were allowed to be included into the repertoire of the Theatre. The Klaipėda Theatre had been forbidden to produce I.Šeinius' “Diplomatai”, yet this dramatic work was also included into the repertoire in 1939.[406] Correspondence between the Ministry of Education and the Klaipėda State Theatre, letters from Vydūnas to the Director of the Department of Culture Affairs under the Ministry of Education on the level of the Klaipėda State Theatre, letter from I.Šeinius to the Director of the Department of Culture on the direction of B.Dauguvietis[407]. There are also passages regarding foreign performers (from Vienna, Berlin, Paris, Oslo, London and the USA) employed by the State Theatre (conductors, singers, dancers and actors). Some information reveals that there have been attempts to separate the opera and drama theatres. There have been suggestions to establish opera in Klaipėda (the new generation of soloists had not jobs, and this would lead to an establishment of national culture hearth in Klaipėda.  There was a shortage of works of Lithuanian authors and National culture is impossible without such works. Directorate of the State Theatre has proposed granting premiums for well-known writers for their works dedicated to adults, youth and children.[408]

Paintings of M.K.Čiurlionis and Lithuanian national art had have become the main symbols of Lithuania's, therefore the Foundation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (LCVA, f. 383) contains a great deal of information on the organisation of Lithuanian fine arts works exhibition abroad and exhibition of foreign painters organised in Lithuania (e.g. Belgian fine arts exhibition, days of the French culture in Kaunas in the 1930s).

Vytautas the Great War Museum stores a poster of the arts exhibition organised by the Section of Plastics of the Lithuanian Association of Artists. The poster was painted by a painter Petras Kalpokas. The exhibition was held at the Seimas Palace in Kaunas from the 1st of May to the 1st of June, 1923.[409]  The War Museum in Kaunas was visited by Estonian painters. Photographs from the exposition within the War Museum (1936).[410] The collection of the Museum includes various posters revealing high level of the contemporary Lithuanian graphic masters. Posters made by professional painters (in a style close to art deco) have invited to the exhibitions of artists and have been used for the purpose of advertising (e.g. in an advertisement of fire extinguishers[411]). It also includes a number of posters used in Lithuania at the time regardless of their lower quality (e.g., a poster printed in the USA and encouraging to donate funds for commemoration of S.Darius and S. Girėnas[412], poster “Malda į Aušros Vartų Švenčiausiąją Panelę”[413] and election posters).

 

State Economic Policy

On the eve of the World War I, Lithuania fell behind the rest of the Baltic States with its reactively low level of agriculture and very poor condition of industry. During the period of 1919–1939, Lithuanian industrial production has on an average grown by 6–7 per cent annually, while agricultural production has grown by 3.5–4 percent.[414] Important efforts have been made, but the potential of the industry has still remained at a low level. However, general economic deprivation of Lithuania has decreased. Development of industry, commerce and transport in Lithuania was faster than that of agriculture, while increase in export of agricultural products was the most significant among others. Lithuania had 6 active banks[415].

 

State Finances

Among other issues, the first Government has faced financial difficulties. In 1918–1919 Lithuania operated without the budget. Public servants have been paid by in kind (e.g. by the US Army's donated remaining items). Meanwhile, the Government had major tasks, including creation of the State, organisation of the army and protection against the external enemies, as well as domestic anarchy. One of the most important tasks of the young State was the arrangement of the State's finances. During the first year of independence, foreign loans have served as a lifeboat to the State. It has received loans from Germany in 1918–1919, the United States in 1919 (in foodstuffs, medicaments and other goods which allowed to equip the developed Lithuanian army[416]), as well as relief from France and Great Britain[417]. In 1919, Lithuanian freedom loan sheets have been distributed among the Lithuanian Americans. Domestic loans have served as a significant support for the State's finances. The first domestic loan was issued in 1919, while an extraordinary State's Treasury loan for the needs of the citizens and the State's Treasury loan were issued in 1920 and 1921 respectively. There was a need for a tax system. Looking after the public finances, the Cabinet of Ministers adopted an Order on Taxes on the 23rd of January, 1919. It established a liability to pay the following taxes which had been effective prior to the World War I: land, commercial and industrial enterprises, real estate within cities, the ordinary stamp-duty and others. Municipalities were eligible to collect addition taxes on their own discretion for the needs of municipalities[418]. The funds have been raised in Ost-Marks and German Marks (the contemporary monetary units). On the 4th of February, 1919, the Cabinet of Ministers adopted an order prohibiting settlement in Russian banknotes (Kerensky's and Tsar's) within Lithuania (the order became effective on the 5th of March, 1919)[419]. On the 26th of February, 1919, the Cabinet adopted an order establishing a monetary unit “Auksinas” (meaning “gold”) (its hundredth part was called “Skatikas” (meaning “penny”)), which was related to the German Mark. The currency introduced on the 5th of March, 1919[420]. Postal rates were set in the beginning of 1919, while collection of duties was initiated and flax monopoly was introduced in order to increase income in summer of the same year.

The Constituent Seimas was obliged to draft laws on taxes, to compose the budget and to project income and expenses. The first budget of the Republic of Lithuania was approved by the President of the Republic on the 14th of May, 1920. However, an estimate of 1921 has been published in the “Vyriausybės žinios” (Official Gazette), which was approved by the Constituent Seimas on the 21st of December, 1921. Since then, the accounting of the State of Lithuania has been conducted following the procedures of the budget (it replaced the preceding system of funds of individual institutions)[421]. The relation of the Lithuanian monetary unit to the German Mark resulted in rapid inflation and significant losses. The finances of the State have started stabilising following the introduction of the Lithuania's own currency – Litas.

The income of the budget of Lithuania was comprised from ordinary and extraordinary income. The income was complemented with the funds received from the State vodka monopoly, which had started operating on the 10th of November, 1923 (Law on the State Vodka Monopoly was enforced). The expenses of the budget of Lithuania were comprised from ordinary and extraordinary expenses. The ordinary expenses were intended to maintain the supreme institutions of the State (the institution of the President and the Seimas), as well as for the executive authority, i.e. the Cabinet of Ministers and all the rest of the ministries.[422].

A Review of the References

The Foundation of the Bank of Lithuania within the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 755) contains agreements of the Bank of Lithuania, including the 1922 agreement between the Ministry of Finance, Commerce and Industry and Prague-based A. Haase lithography company on the Production of Litas, and the 1927 and 1928 agreements between the Bank of Lithuania and Great Britain's Company “Bradbury, Wilkinson and Co., Ltd.” on the Printing of Litas Banknotes[423]. The documents stored in the Foundation “reproduce” the activities of the Bank of Lithuania: its income, turnover, balance-sheets, number of clerks, turnover and balance-sheets of the bank accounts, turnover of banknotes and coins during the period of 1926–1932[424]. The Foundation of the Alytus Department of the Bank of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 1582) contains the 1922–1925 circulars of the Bank of Lithuania and correspondence with Lithuania banks regarding currency exchange (the exchange rate of a Pound and Litas), statement on introduction of Litas, instructions of the Minister of Finance, Commerce and Industry on the introduction of the State's own currency Litas.[425] The Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers (LCVA, f. 923) contains orders of the President of the Republic of Lithuania concerning the appointment a chairperson and deputy chairpersons and resignation thereof[426]. The documents within the Foundation contain the 1925 negotiation between the Government of Lithuania and Great Britain on the granting of a loan.[427] The Draft Law on Lithuania Monetary Unit of 1922 and the Statute of the Bank of Lithuania[428]. Minutes of the sessions of the Cabinet of Ministers in 1922. They include discussions on the introduction of the State's own currency and draft laws on currency[429]. They also include draft budgets, laws on the budget adopted or amended by the Seimas, estimates of income and expenses and correspondence concerning the budget. For instance, the 1922 budget of the State of Lithuania was comprised from the following: ordinary income ( direct taxes (from agriculture and real estate, commerce and industry); indirect taxes (from beverages, tobacco, “papyrus, tubes and cut papyrus paper”, matches, excise duty for various industrial products and custom duties); customs (stamp, court, clerical and document fees, as well as fees for hereditary property and other fees); the State's profit (postal, telegraph and telephone fees), public property and capital (income from forests; fees for movable and immovable public property; wide and narrow railway fees; income from public workshops, industrial and technology enterprises and warehouses; income from newspapers, books and printouts published by the State); income for the sale of public immovable property; refund of the State's Treasury (redemption of loans, educational fees, income from fine arts institutions, etc.).[430] In this very year budget of the State was comprised from the following expenses: for supreme institutions of the State (support of the President of the Republic and the Constituent Seimas); executive authority (support of Cabinet of Ministers; Ministry of Finance, Commerce and Industry; Ministry of Transport; Ministry of the Interior; Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Ministry of Education, Agriculture and Public Property; Ministry of Justice; Ministry of National Defence, as well as the department and units of the ministries; support of the Ministry for Jewish Affairs; Minister without portfolio for the matters of Belarusians and to defray expenses of the National Audit Office)[431]. Documents within the Foundation of the Ministry of Education (LCVA, f. 391) reveal the process of the establishment of the State's budget. History of the State's income required in order to refund the public expenses. This include the following documents of 1919: Temporary regulations on special fee for the use of domestic roads of Lithuania; Postal rates; Draft Law on Requisition of Horses; draft on the fee for the use of inland waterway of Lithuania; telephone usage fee, fee for imported and exported “Russian money”, Law on Public Rental Fee (it was paid by the tenants of estates, etc.), Law on Public Property and Profit Fees, “Law on a Single Public Fee of War for the Year of 1919” and various requisitions.[432] The Foundation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (LCVA, f. 383) contains letters from the Lithuania's representative in Prague regarding Litas banknotes printed in Czechoslovakia and being under way to Lithuania, their quality[433], exchange rate of Litas and the company which printed Litas banknotes.[434] The Foundation also includes information on the appointment of chairpersons of the Bank of Lithuania, resignation of the Minister of Foreign Affairs Vladas Jurgutis and his appointment to the office of the Director of the Bank of Lithuania.

 

Agriculture

The post-war Lithuania had a task to modernise agriculture and to use it for build-up of funds dedicated for the establishment of processing industry of agricultural products. The general structure of economy prioritised agriculture, particularly the modernisation of agronomy and livestock farming, as well as stimulation of dairy and meat farming[435]. Enterprises processing milk have been established. They have mainly produced butter and it became one the most successfully exported items at the time. Lithuanian butter used to reach European countries, as well as South and North Americas. Development of the meat processing industry has also been successful. Several export oriented slaughterhouses were built within Lithuania. The pork processed therein used to be exported to the Western Europe. In the 1930s, sugar industry has also been stimulated. The raw material processing factories have been built in Marijampolė, Panevėžys and Pavenčiai (the latter has was not yet finished at the time of occupation). Agricultural partnerships and cooperatives have formed unions and organisations.  “Pienocentras” coordinated the milk processing and export of butter and eggs, “Lietūkis” imported goods required by the farmers (fertilizers, fuel and others), “Maistas” monitored the export oriented slaughterhouses and export of meat, while “Lietuvos cukrus” kept sugar processing industry at its disposal. Chamber of Agriculture was established in 1926. It was monitored by the Ministry of Agriculture. The Chamber contributed to the preparation of farmers, coordinated agricultural schools and called youth to the circles of young farmers. The Government sought to modernise agriculture and to enhance its performance.

Agriculture has been the main profession among the Lithuanian people for a long time. It comes as no surprise that is was the first to recover and develop most rapidly during the post-war period. There have been concerns due to raising of the backward-looking culture of agriculture. Rapid rise of the Lithuania economy and its different branches revealed the need to arrange agricultural and industrial exhibitions in order to present the achievements of the young State. Such first exhibition was arranged in Kaunas, on the initiative and by the funds of the Lithuanian Agricultural Association and was partly supported by the Government. Later organisation of such exhibitions has become a tradition. They intended to introduce the young industry of Lithuania and annually improving situation of agriculture. Meanwhile, foreign industrial enterprises used to present themselves. The largest exhibitions used to be held in the temporary capital Kaunas. Such exhibitions were also held in Šiauliai and Klaipėda in 1926 and 1927 respectively, in order to highlight economic importance of the regional cities. The main objective of the exhibitions was the promotion Lithuanian economy and industry.

The State had to carry out agricultural reform in order to recover the agriculture that had been devastated by the World War I. Following the War, agrarian reforms have been carried out in all the states of the Central and Eastern Europe. Parcelling of estates, i.e. agricultural reform in a narrow sense, comprised almost 25 per cent of the entire territory of Lithuania, while reform in a wide sense, including division of villages to individual farms, comprised around 56 per cent of the territory[436]. This reform helped to modernise agriculture, the most important branch of the State's economy. It also enabled the formation of middle class and laid down the foundation for the national State of Lithuania[437]. Agricultural Reform Commission was organised in December of 1918. On the 1st of July, 1919, the State Council of Lithuania decided to grant land to soldiers, the landless and the ones having little land. Principles of the agricultural reform were finalized by the following laws adopted by the Constituent Seimas: Introductory Law on Agricultural Reform adopted on the 18th of August, 1929, and Law on Agricultural Reform adopted on the 15th of February, 1922[438]. Agricultural reform was not merely the distribution of the lands of estates. It comprised land management, administration and application. Among other things, the laws established the acquisition, transfer and exchange of land, the right to rent private farms, land provision to soldiers, as well as expropriation of forests and waters.[439] Agricultural reform has accelerated when M.Krupavičius was appointed to the office of the Minister of Agriculture in 1923. In less than three years, almost half million hectares of land have been handed over to the landless or the ones having little land. [440] The reform has been carried out by the Department of Agricultural Reform established by the Ministry of Agriculture.[441] Volunteers have been provided with the land without deferred payment. Others had to pay for the obtained land by instalments in 36 years. The acquired land has not been available neither for sales, nor lease for a period of ten years. Under certain conditions, it was provided for to grant land to the servants and workers of institutions, educational institutions, rural craftsmen, hospitals, caring homes, expansion of small town or cities, as well as establishing or landless and parishes. [442] Newly installed farmers carried out land-reclamation works and turned thousands of hectares of pastures, shrubbery and forests into cultivable land. With the area of crop increasing by a third, Lithuania was able to provide itself with food and feeding cereal, while the surplus used to be exported.[443]

A Review of the References

The Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923) contains information on the execution of the agricultural reform, complaints regarding expropriation of land and disputes on compensation for the expropriated land. It also includes information on the strike of farmers, held around 1935–1936 in Suvalkija. Also information about the processing of the Lithuanian agricultural production and its preparation for the export to foreign countries, as well as description of the Chamber of Agriculture.

 

Industry and Commerce

Area of industry has faced major changes as a result of the World War I. During the course of the War part of the factories has been vacated, while others have been destroyed entirely. Situation of the major industry of Lithuania was critical, as it was closely related to foreign markets, Russian Empire's in particular. The domestic market oriented industrial enterprises dealt with the difficulties easier. They were more resistant to the raging post-war crisis. During the years of independence, Lithuania became the State of light industry. Although there has been an increase in the number of enterprises, yet the number of workers has decreased.[444] Lithuanian industry has reached its pre-war level by 1924–1925.[445] Lithuania's economy has strengthened and industry has advanced, but still remained overshadowed by the agriculture. Production of foodstuffs and beverages, i.e. the processing of agricultural raw materials, became the main branch of industry of Lithuania. In 1919, industrialists and tradesmen have started forming various unions. Two individual offices were established under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. They employed representatives of industrialists and tradesmen (separately). The offices were merged, which led to the establishment of the Council of Industrialists and Tradesmen under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.[446] Chamber of Commerce and Industry was established in 1925. It was active within the contemporary territory of Lithuania, which did not include regions of Vilnius and Klaipėda. (Chamber of Commerce and Industry within the Klaipėda Region functioned independently and did not report to the Chamber of Kaunas, yet collaborated therewith. After re-annexing the Vilnius Region in 1939, Chamber of Vilnius became the Vilnius Department of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts of Lithuania In 1936, the Chamber was renamed to the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts. The Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts was comprised from 21 members representing interests of four groups: banks and banking institutions, cooperatives, industrial institutions and commercial institutions.[447] The Chamber's activities have been monitored by the Ministry of Finance. The Chamber was essentially nationalised by the laws adopted in 1936.[448] Chairman of the Chamber used to be appointed by the President of the Republic of Lithuania on a proposal of the Minister of Finance. The Chamber's objective was to develop commerce, industry, as well as crafts, and to represent commercial, industrial and crafts enterprises. The Chamber conveyed knowledge on commerce, industry and craft  to the Government, public and municipal institutions, as well as enterprises, participated in drafting of legislation regulating commerce, industry and crafts, called congresses of traders and industrialists, looked after the market activities, registered commercial and industrial institutions, as well as insolvent persons, granted certificates of origin of goods, drafted rules and standards for products, established schools, courses, research institutes, libraries and information offices, organised product exhibitions and promoted national products, maintained commercial warehouses and market places, looked after training of specialists, awarded deserving businessmen, servants and workers, looked after financing of craft companies, organised mutual benefit funds, organised trips, as well as published books and other publications. The Chamber was administered by the Chairman, Presidium, Council and Monitoring Commission. Its members were owners of commercial, industrial and crafts enterprises, citizens of Lithuania under 30. The Chamber contributed in organising agricultural and industrial exhibitions. The objective of the exhibitions was promotion of progress of agriculture and industry. The beginning of organisation of such exhibitions in Lithuania dates back before the World War I. Major agricultural and industrial exhibition were arranged in Kaunas (1922, 1923, 1924, 1925, 1928, 1930 and 1935), Šiauliai (1926) and Klaipėda (1927). After the Klaipėda Region was re-annexed to Lithuania, the Government of Lithuania directed significant part of Lithuanian export and import to be carried out through the Port of Klaipėda. Modern warehouses for the exported goods were built in Klaipėda. Public enterprises “Maistas” (exporting port), “Pienocentras” (exporting butter and eggs) and “Lietūkis” (exporting cereal cultures and flax) had their branches in Klaipėda. Lithuanian Commercial fleet was established in Klaipėda. When Lithuania was occupied by the Soviet Union in 1940, industrial and commercial enterprises have been reorganised. They were nationalised, their functions were reorganised in order to satisfy the needs of the occupational authority and agricultural and industrial production and goods have been materialised in the market of the Soviet Union, rather than in that of Lithuania. Commercial and industrial enterprises were nationalised, their names were changed in order to conform to the ideology of the occupational regime. Former owners of the enterprises were accused and deported to the Soviet Union as an “unreliable element of society”.  Part of them has managed to depart to the West.

A Review of the References

The Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923) contain information on the Lithuania's industry and commerce, lists of members of and candidates to the members of the Chamber of Industry, Commerce and Crafts[449]. Note of the Prime Minister concerning the search for materials required by the industry (high voltage lines, electrical equipment, iron, etc.), their collection and transportation to the warehouses of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.[450] Draft Laws on Change of Commerce and Industry (1926), Statement of the Chamber “Regarding maintenance and management of our industry” (1934)[451]. The documents provide information on the matters of sugar industry development, construction of factories, bridges and roads[452]. They also contain information on the process of the conclusion of the Commercial Agreement between Lithuania and Germany (1921).[453] Documents stored in the Foundation of the Lithuanian Embassy in Germany (LCVA, f. 671) are related to commercial relations between Lithuania and Germany[454], correspondence between the Chamber of Commerce of the Klaipėda Region and Lithuanian Embassy in Berlin on commerce of wood[455], information of the Lithuanian Embassy in Germany on the commercial relations between Lithuania and Germany in 1939–1940.[456] Reviews of export, i.e. what has been done in development of Lithuania's export and what else should be achieved.[457] Export of horses to Denmark (in 1933 through Liepāja), Lithuania pushed the representative of Denmark in order to increase export from Lithuania to Denmark through Klaipėda. Export of pork to Austria, Italy and Czechoslovakia, export of eggs to Sweden, as well as export of butter and forest (wood). The Foundation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (LCVA, f. 383) contains commercial agreements between Lithuania and foreign countries: Commercial Agreement between Lithuania and Denmark[458], correspondence on conclusion of a commerce agreement between Lithuania and Finland[459]. The Foundation of the Bank of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 755) contains information on goods turnover between Lithuania and Germany, i.e. the protocol of goods turnover agreement between Lithuania and Germany. [460] The Foundation of the Municipality Department of the Ministry of Interior (LCVA, f. 379) contains documents revealing Lithuania's domestic commerce which was essentially kept at the disposition of self-government. Establishment of regulations for commerce fell within the jurisdiction of municipalities. Municipalities used to establish the commerce hours[461] and rules specifying the conditions of commerce of milk and its products (emphasis was put on the hygiene standards). Regulation for running of teashops, canteens, beer houses and pubs.[462] Introduction of fairs and marketplaces.[463] Referendum on the ban of commerce of all types of alcoholic beverages in Mosėdis.[464] The Foundation of the Presidium of the Supreme Council of the Lithuanian SSR (LCVA, f. R-758) contains documents containing information on the process of occupation, the so called “transition to socialistic economy”, nationalisation of industrial and commercial enterprises, change of their names and organisation of trade unions of workers.[465]

Album “Vaizdai iš Lietuvos atgimimo” (Images from the Resurgence of Lithuania) (VDKM, Fa-17699) is kept in Vytautas the Great War Museum and contains photographs of the establishment of the detachments of the Lithuanian army in the former factory of Tilmansas. The photographs include buildings of the factory which have been later rebuild and demonstrated as the main symbol of the Lithuanian industry. Album (VDKM, Fa-10441) of the 4th Lithuanian Agricultural and Industrial Exhibition, held in Kaunas on the 24th–29th of June, 1925. Photographs contain pavilions of Lithuanian and foreign producers, cooperatives (Union of Lithuanian Cooperative Enterprises, “Lietūkis”), general view of the exhibition, crowds of people, as well as some exotica at the contemporary exposition – a camel. The exhibition highlighted the priorities of the Lithuanian economic policy – development of agriculture (particularly dairy farming and beef production), enhancement of the branches of industry which included processing of agricultural production, or products applicable in agriculture. Photographs contain the President of the Republic A.Stulginskis and the Prime Minister V.Petrulis during their visit to the exhibition. Posters inviting to the agricultural and industrial exhibition, as well as exhibition of livestock farming in Kaunas, are kept in Vytautas the Great War Museum.

 

Public Holidays

During the 1920s and 1930s, Lithuania's main public holidays were the 16th of  February – Declaration of Independence of Lithuania re-establishing the sovereignty of Lithuania, the 15th of May – the day of assembly of the Constituent Seimas, the 8th of September – Day of Crowning of Grand Duke Vytautas (celebrated from the 1930s). In addition to these days, the 15th of January – the day of Klaipėda Region's annexation to the Major Lithuania and 9th of October – Day Vilnius, have also been celebrated as solemnly as the aforementioned ones, even though they were not regulated by the laws. These holidays were meant to emphasize the importance of the territorial integrity (loss of the Vilnius Region and Klaipėda Region's integration into the territory of Lithuania). Commemoration of the 9th of October has been popularised by the Vilnius Liberation Union, which managed to transfer the idea of Vilnius liberation to the daily environment. Commemoration of the then called day of “Vilnius seizure”, 9th of October, had become a certain mourning tradition – the entire Lithuania used to honour the loss of Vilnius with a minute of silence.

Public holidays were established by the laws. The first law referring to the holidays was adopted in 1919 and was known as the Law on Length of Working Day. It refers to Sundays and “bigger traditional holidays” without providing more details on the holidays. In 1920, discussion have been held in the Constituent Seimas on the inclusion of public and religious holidays into the same list. There have been suggestions to limit the number of public holidays to three, thus shedding responsibility on the part of the State in terms of religious holidays, since different national and non-secular communities had different holidays. On the 16th of February, 1920, the Cabinet of Ministers declared the 16th of February as the “Day of Anniversary of the Independence of Lithuania. All the public institutions should be closed on that day.”[466] On the 18th of November, 1924, the Seimas adopted the Law on Holidays and Recreation. That was the first law to list public holidays. List included twenty memorable days. Most of them were religious holidays. It also included the following non-religious holidays: “New-Year – the 1st of January, [...] 16th of February – Independence of Lithuania, [...] 1st of May, [...] Day of adoption of the Constitution of the State [...]”[467]. In three months, the Law was supplemented by including one more memorable day – “15th of May”[468] –day of commemoration of the first assembly of the Constituent Seimas. On the 14th of May, 1930, the new Law on Holidays and Recreation. Hereby, the list of memorable days was cut down to fifteen celebratory days. The non-religious one included: “New-Year – the 1st of January” and “16th of February – Independence of Lithuania”, and newly named “Festival of the People – 8th of September.”[469] Previous, the day was called “Birth of St.Mary – the 8th of September”[470] All the public holidays were listed in the Constitution of Lithuania of 1938. Its Article 9 stated the following: “Public holidays are as follows: 1) Sixteenth of February – for commemoration of re-establishment of the Independence of Lithuania; 2) Eight of September – for commemoration of the Great Past of the Ancient Lithuania.“ This Constitutions was the first and only to specifically list the memorable days. Until then, the Constitution of the 1920 has stated the following: “Sundays and other holidays approved by the State are protected by laws as days of recreation and exaltation.”[471] The Chapter on the Religious and Faith Affairs of the Constitution of 1928 indicates the following: “Sundays and other holidays approved by the State are protected by laws.”[472]

The traditions of commemoration of memorable days has formed during the years of independence. Independence of Lithuania was declared in Vilnius on the 16th of February, 1918, but all of the most important commemorations of the day during the period of 1918–1940 have been held in Kaunas, the temporary capital of Lithuania. During commemoration of the first anniversary of the declaration of the Independence of Lithuania in 1919, the main street of Kaunas was named Laisvės Avenue, and one of the peripheral streets was named after the 16th of February (Vasario 16-osios). Tradition of public holidays has been gradually formed. Parades, the so called “walk around the holiday”, was the most important attribute of the parade. Through the respective organisational committee, assisted by the Riflemen's Union, the Government used to call representatives of educational institutions and organisations with flags. They used to visit the residences of the most important public institutions by following the established programme and route: the State Council of Lithuania (later the Seimas), the Presidential Palace. There they used to thank their representatives for the declaration of the Independence. They also used to visit the Military Hospital and backyard of the War Museum. There they expressed gratefulness to the participants of the Battles of Independence for the protection of the Independence and remembered the volunteer soldiers who had perished in the Battles of Independence. On that day people used to decorate their houses with flags, portraits of the grand dukes and wreaths. The most significant public buildings used to be decorated with illumination. In the 1930s, portrait of the Nation's Leader Antanas Smetona used to stand next to the portraits of Grand Dukes. The 16th of February, 1918, has been celebrated not only in Kaunas, but in the entire Lithuania and foreign countries. Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs looked after the celebratory programme abroad through the diplomatic representative offices of Lithuania. At that occasion, there have been concerts of the well-known Lithuanian performers and arts exhibitions organised during live radio broadcast from Kaunas.

15th of May – the day of assembly of the Constituent Seimas, has also become a public holiday. 15th of May was granted with the status of public holidays by the Law adopted in 1925. In the middle of 1920s, the 15th of May used to be celebrated even more solemnly than the 16th of February. The first anniversary of the assembly of the Constituent Seimas was modest, but its meaning has become increasingly important and festival ritual has been formed. That was the fifth anniversary of the assembly of the Constituent Seimas. Up until the end of the 1920s, the 15th of May used to symbolise Lithuania's conversion to a democratic Republic. However, under the changed circumstances (following the dissolution of democratically elected Seimas after the coup d’état), it became the State which breached the Constitution. Therefore the regime in power started changing the status and meaning of the event. In between the 1920s and 1930s, there have been attempts to transform collective memory of the Lithuanian citizens. The commemoration has become less important on the national level. In 1928, this holiday was not commemorated as the day of assembly of the Constituent Seimas. It was turned to the day of army: “The President of the Republic of Lithuania, with an approval of the entire Cabinet of Ministers [...] convened for a solemn session of the army, on the 15th of May, 1928”[473] to declare the new Constitution of the State of Lithuania. In 1928, the 15th was commemorated rather solemnly, events were attended by the President of Lithuania, members of the Governmental and diplomatic block. However, in several upcoming years the commemoration has diminished to the local level: commemorations included small groups of people with similar views and opposing organisations. After adopting new Law on Holidays and Recreation in 1930, the day was removed from the list of public holidays. The Law also abolished the 1st of August – the day of adoption of the Constitution of the State. Commemoration of the day of assembly of the Constituent Seimas and Constitution was like a living reproof for the regime of A.Smetona about the breach of the Constitution and failure to fulfil liabilities. On way or another, the society still kept the habit to remember and commemorate the 15th of May. Army parade in the temporary capital Kaunas had previously become the attribute of the day. Thus it comes as no surprise that in 1930s the Army and society approach day has been held in the middle of May, which in some years purportedly coincided with the 15th of May. Up until the loss of independence in 1940, the opposition used to remind the 15th of May as the fact of breach of the Constitution.

There have been attempts to replace the 15th of May, which had been deeply in the minds of the people, with another public holiday. On that occasion, the 8th of September was transformed. Until 1930, it had been commemorated as the day of the birth of St. Virgin Mary. It was endowed with another meaning in 1930, the year of the Grand Duke Vytautas. It has been declared “on Monday, the 8th of September, it has been 500 years from the day when defender of the Independence of Lithuania (Grand Duke Vytautas) had to to be crowned [...]“. In 1930, the 8th of September became the Festival of the People, while in the Constitution of 1938 this public holiday was referred to as the day of “Commemoration of the Great Past of the Ancient Lithuania”. The increasing importance of this holiday symbolised the consolidating authoritarian regime of A.Smetona. It is of coincidence that in 1934, the 60th anniversary of the President A.Smetona was celebrated on the 9th-10th of September (although the President was born on the 10th of August). In 1934, the Supreme Committee of the Anniversary of the President of the State was established in order to organise celebratory event not only in the capital, but also in the regional areas, just like during the commemoration of the year of the Grand Duke Vytautas in 1930. On that occasion, a flag parade of the army and public organisation has been arranged. Organisations from the entire Lithuania have been encouraged to participate in the flag parade.

The statehood holidays have been abolished in 1940, when Lithuanian was occupied by the Soviet Union. They were replaced by a new list of the days to commemorate. The Presidium of the Supreme Council of the Lithuanian SSR has changed the names of the squares, where the most important events of the public holidays of the Independent Lithuania had been held.

A Review of the References

The Foundation of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania (LCVA, f. 923) contains Draft Law on Holidays of 1922.[474] Documents stored within the Foundation include correspondence: the 1930s correspondence between the Cabinet of Ministers and the Ministry of National Defence and the Army Command on the persons to be invited to the concert organised in the State Theatre on the occasion of the 16th of February. Lists of military officers to be invited to the State Theatre; the names of the military officers not to be invited were removed from the list. The list included the Army Command and it was edited by the Office of the Prime Minister. Identical correspondence with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the invitations for the diplomatic block, lists of the servants of the Ministry to be invited. Programme for the commemoration of the 16th of February in the entire country.[475] The Foundations contains documents related to the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the President A.Smetona: Celebratory programme approved by the Government[476]. It provided for a sacred service in a church, sports festival, flag parade of army and public organisations, salutations in squares and the Presidential Palace, as well as salutations by pupils. Celebratory programme for the 8th of September in 1933. The Cabinet of Ministers distributed free tickets to the setting of the play “Gražina” in the State Theatre. Riflemen's Union used to provide assistance in organising festivals, particularly in forming celebratory parades. Diplomatic and consular blocks had their seats reserved in the State Theatre (their seats were on the first floor, up to the ninth lodge). Representatives of foreign press also had ten seats reserved in the stalls.[477] It also contains information on organisation of the Festival of the People in 1939: Riflemen's Union was one of the main organisers.[478] The Foundation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (LCVA, f. 383) contains documents revealing correspondence between Lithuanian Diplomatic Embassies on the organisation of the commemoration of the 16th of February abroad and difficulties arising thereof. Letters contain information about the event commemoration programmes, their coordination and presentation of an artistic programme. The Foundation also includes information on organising the commemoration events for the 16th of February within Lithuania. On the presence and absence of the President in organising the festivals and in the commemoration events. The Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania stores photographs containing the celebration of the 16th of February in the Klaipėda Region. The photographs have been taken in 1923, after the Klaipėda Revolt. Documents stored in the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania include discussion on organisation of the celebration, etc. There is also a photograph containing a captured moment from the celebration of the 15th of May in Biržai.[479] Documents stored in the Foundation of the Presidium of the Supreme Council of the Lithuanian SSR (LCVA, f. R-758) include information on the occupation of Lithuania, the attempts of the occupational regime to reform economy, industry, social system, as well as the people's memory of independence and statehood. On the 6th of November, 1940, the names of the most important squares of Kaunas and Vilnius have been changed: “Petro Vileišio aikštė” (Petras Vileišis Square) in Kaunas, where statehood festivals, Song festivals and assemblies of organisations had been held, was renamed to the October Revolution Square, while “Lukiškių aikštė” (Lukiškės Square) in Vilnius was renamed to the Square of Councils.[480] On the 11th of October, 1940, the Presidium of the Supreme Council of the Lithuanian SSR declared the holidays of the Lithuanian SSR. The list did not include statehood festivals of the Republic of Lithuania.[481]

The 1919 photo album “Vaizdai iš Lietuvos atgimimo” (Images from the Life in Lithuania) (VDKM, FA-17699) is kept in Vytautas the Great War Museum and contains moments of the public holiday in the Husarai (later renamed to Petras Vileišis) Square in Kaunas. The festival was attended by representatives of the Lithuanian authority, the representative of the British Military Mission colonel Rowan-Robinson, Lithuanian Army Command, the army was greeted by the President of the Republic.[482] The commemoration of public holidays has been impressive both in the temporary capital and regions. Photographs contain crowds of festival participants. Members of organisations used to comprise the majority of the festival participants and audience. The collection of the Museum includes photographs of commemoration of the 16th of February during the first year of the independence both in Kaunas and other cities of Lithuania. Photographs contain the commemoration of 16th of February in Alytus in 1920 (Lithuania army regiment celebrating the independence, army parade[483]), as well as in Kaunas, at Vilnius Street and the Town Hall Square. Photographs show crowds of people, parades, the supreme officers of the State (the President and members of the Cabinet of Ministers), members of the foreign countries' diplomatic block gathered in Kaunas, defence attachés of foreign countries, army parade, etc.[484] This collection of the Museum contains the President's A.Smetona large format proclamation to the people “Į TAUTĄ” (TO THE PEOPLE) in commemoration of the 10 anniversary of the Independence of Lithuania. It was published on the 16th of February, 1928, and included a review of Lithuania's achievements and objectives.[485] The Museum also stores photographs containing the celebration of the 15th of May. In the contemporary public rhetoric, the 15th of May was referred to as the “Festival of the People”. The establishment of its commemoration has started from 1921: The visitation of the commemorative monument for the Unknown Soldier by the War Museum has become an integral part of the ceremonial ritual, honouring of the soldiers who had perished for the Independence of Lithuania, as well as army parade. Members of the Constituent Seimas were captured at the monument on the 15th of May, 1922.[486] The most important officers of the State in the temporary capital Kaunas: Chairman of the Seimas or the President of the Republic used to accept the army parade and go around the elements of the army aligned for the parade.[487] The parade used to be attended by diplomats of foreign countries, various education institutions and organisations with flags and religious leaders. During the festival, busts of Simonas Daukantas and Vincas Kudirka were unveiled at the backyard of the War Museum.[488] The Museum contains photographs of the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of A.Smetona – nursery-school in Kėdainiai, its children wearing national clothes and holding the portrait of the President A.Smetona.[489]

 

 

 


[1] Maksimaitis M., Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 19.
[2]Maksimaitis M., Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 20.
[3]Maksimaitis M., Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 38.
[4]Laucevičius, V, VDKM, Fa–16984.
[5] Lietuvos Taryba, pasirašiusi Nepriklausomybės aktą. Vilnius, 1918 m. vasario mėn., VDKM, Fa–5976.
[6]  Truska L., Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: Baltos lankos, 2009, p. 85–86.
[7] Lietuvos istorija.
[8] Vasiliauskas D, Nepriklausomybės karas, Lietuva 1918–1938, Kaunas; „Šviesa“, 1990, p. 46.
[9] Povilo Lukšio (1886–1919), pirmojo Lietuvos kariuomenės kareivio, žuvusio už Lietuvos nepriklausomybę, paminklas Karo muziejaus sodelyje. Skulpt. B. Pundzius. Paminklas atidengtas 1938 m. rugsėjo 8 d., VDKM, N–880.
[10] A. Juozapavičiaus (1894–1919), pirmojo Lietuvos kariuomenės karininko, žuvusio kovose už Lietuvos nepriklausomybę, paminklas Karo muziejaus sodelyje. Skulpt. B. Pundzius. Paminklas atidengtas 1938 m. rugsėjo 8 d., VDKM, N–881.
[11] Vasiliauskas D., Nepriklausomybės karas, Lietuva 1918–1938, Kaunas, „Šviesa“, 1990, p. 49.
[12] Fotodokumentai: a) 8 pėstininkų pulkas Daugpilio fronte. Viena pulko kuopa prie Dauguvos. 1919 m. b) 8 pėstininkų pulko štabas Daugpilio fronte. 1919 m. VDKM, N–909.
[13] Vasiliauskas D., Nepriklausomybės karas, Lietuva 1918–1938, Kaunas: „Šviesa“, 1990, p. 50–54.
[14] Vasiliauskas D., Nepriklausomybės karas, Lietuva 1918–1938, Kaunas: „Šviesa“, 1990, p. 56–58.
[15] Senojo Karo muziejaus Kariuomenės skyriaus su POW bylos eksponatais ekspozicija. Kaunas, 1928 m., VDKM, N–22.
[16] Lietuvos kariuomenės susitikimas su SSRS kariuomene Lentvaryje, išvijus lenkus iš Vilniaus 1920 m. liepos 15 d., VDKM, N–1087.
[17] Lietuvių ir lenkų delegacijų posėdis Suvalkuose. Dešinėje: antras B. Balutis, ketvirtas – užsienio reikalų ministras V. Čarneckis, penktas – prof. M. Biržiška. Suvalkai, 1920 m. spalio 7 d., VDKM, N–1088; Lietuvos ir Lenkijos delegatai derybose Kalvarijoje. 1920 m., VDKM, N–126.
[18] Vasiliauskas D., Nepriklausomybės karas, Lietuva 1918–1938, Kaunas: „Šviesa“, 1990, p. 58–59.
[19] Pirmoji Lietuvos kariuomenės priesaika, Kaunas, 1919 05 11, fotografas J. Timukas, VDKM, N–410.
[20] Lietuvos kariuomenės 1 haubicų baterija. Mokymas šaudyti, 1920 m., VDKM, N–727.
[21] Sužeistieji Lietuvos kariuomenės kariai karo ligoninėje Kaunas, apie 1920 m., VDKM, N–724.
[22] Karo mokyklos II laidos išleistuvės Nepriklausomybės aikštėje, prie Įgulos bažnyčio, Kaunas, 1919 m. gruodžio 16 d., VDKM, Fa–17699–345.
[23] Karo mokyklos III laidos išleistuvių iškilmės Nepriklausomybės aikštėje, prie Įgulos bažnyčios. Priekyje LR prezidentas Aleksandras Stulginskis, už jo – Krašto apsaugos ministras plk. ltn. Konstantinas Žukas (2–as iš kairės) ir kiti aukštieji karininkai, Kaunas, 1920 m. spalio 17 d., VDKM, Fa–17699–363.
[24] 3 pėst. divizijos vado mjr. Ig. Musteikio pareiškimas Armijos vadui apie 1 pėstininkų pulko II bataliono vado majoro J. Gaudešiaus savavališką kovos baro apleidimą ir pavojingą kitoms kaimynystėje esančioms dalims su batalionu pasitraukimą, niekam apie tai nepranešus, 1920 10 25, VDKM, S–18642.
[25] Raštas 5–to pėstininkų D. L. K. Kęstučio pulko vadui. Šarvuočio „Šarūnas“ koveis veiksmų aprašymas. 1920 09 18, VDKM, S–17940–120; Pranešimas Nr. 7 pulko vadui 1920–09–10 3 val. 20 min., Štabinas.Kapitonas P. Kaunas praneša, kad kovos metu sumuštas jo dalinys, su likusiais kariais pasitraukė už Štabino kaimo į šiaurę, VDKM, S–17940–78.
[26] LIETUVOS ŽEMĖLAPIS. M 1: 800 000. XX a. 2 deš. Naudotas nepriklausomybės kovose. Lapo viršuje įrašyta „4 esk.“. Žemėlapyje ranka prie miestų ir vietovių sužymėtos datos :1919–X, 1921–VII, 1922–XI, VDKM, S–7965–2.; LIETUVOS ŽEMĖLAPIS. M 1: 800 000. XX a. 2 deš. Naudotas nepriklausomybės kovose. Žemėlapio viršuje ranka įrašyta „9 p. L. K. Vytenio pulko žygiai“. Nužymėtos kovų kryptys, surašytos mūšių datos, VDKM, S–7965–1.
[27] Nepriklausomybės kovų vietovių vaizdai. 1919 m., VDKM, rinkinys N–878.
[28] Savanoriai tėvas Jonas Karutis su sūnumi, taip pat Jonu. 1919 m., VDKM, N–739; Atskirojo partizanų, kitaip vadinamo mirties bataliono, karininkai. Iš kairės pirmoje eilėje sėdi: apskrities apsaugos štabo komendantas Artūras Pušmanas, Joniškėlio partizanų bataliono štabo viršininkas Petras Montvyd–Olechnavičius, bataliono vadas, VDKM, N–746; 2 baterijos žvalgų komanda. 1919–1920 m., VDKM, N–721.
[29] 5 pėstininkų pulkas Vievio fronte kovose prieš lenkus. 1919 m., VDKM, N–722.
[30] Vytauto Didžiojo karo muziejus, kuriame įrengta Lietuvos kariuomenės kovų dėl nepriklausomybės įamžinanti ekspozicija. 1935 m., VDKM, N–145.
[31] Vytauto Didžiojo karo muziejaus Ginklų skyriaus ekspozicija 1936–1940 m., VDKM, N–99, N–100, N–101, N–102, N–103, N–104, N–185.
[32] Lietuvos pašto kelių žemėlapis, VDKM, S-11278.
[33] VDKM, S-11277.
[34] Rusų Raudonosios armijos kariai. 1919 m., VDKM, N–710.
[35] Bolševikų kariai lietuvių vykdytos Utenos karinės operacijos metu. Utenos apskritis, 1919 m. gegužės–birželio mėnuo, VDKM, N–705.
[36] 1. 28 raudonarmiečių internacionalinės divizijos štabas Šiauliuose. 1919 m. 2. Raudonosios armijos kariai. 1919 m., VDKM, N–719.
[37] Rusų Raudonosios armijos kareiviai, kovoję prieš Lietuvos kariuomenę Ukmergės, Utenos ir Panevėžio apskrityse. 1919 m., VDKM, N–708; VDKM, N–707; VDKM, N–704.
[38] Rusų Raudonosios armijos kareivių būrelis prie Gegužės 1–ajai skirto plakato, 1919 m., VDKM, N–706.
[39] Nepriklausomybės kovos. Lietuvių paimti į nelaisvę Raudonosios armijos kareiviai. 1919 m., VDKM, Fa–17699–312, Fa–17699–311, Fa–17699–310.
[40] Nepriklausomybės kovos su bolševikais. Lietuvos kariuomenės II pėstininkų brigados kariai su mažamečiu globotiniu – jauniausiu kareiviu štabe. 1–as iš dešinės Balys Giedraitis. 1919 m. rugpjūtis, VDKM, Fa–17699–40. 
[41] Šiauliai bolševikų okupacijos metais 1919 m. Lietuvių bolševikų pulkas, LCVA, P41–A14.
[42] Šiauliai bolševikų okupacijos metais 1919 m. Bolševikų manifestacija, LCVA, P40–A14; ten pat, P38–A14;
[43] Šiauliai bolševikų okupacijos metais 1919 m. Raudonarmiečių paradas aikštėje, kalba brigados vadas, LCVA, P39–A14.
[44] Šiauliai bolševikų okupacijos metais 1919 m. Bolševikų štabas, LCVA: P42–A14, P43–A14.
[45] 1. Bermontininkų karininkai. 1919 m ruduo. 2. Bermontininkų kariai. 1919 m., VDKM, N–716. 1. P. Virgoličiaus rinktinės kareivių grupė su karininku (pažymėtas kryžiuku) Šiauliuose 1919 m. rudenį. 2. P. Virgoličiaus rinktinės karys. Šiauliai, 1919 m., VDKM, N–715. 
[46] Bermontininkai prižiūri Aleksandrijos dvare dirbančias lietuves moteris. 1919 m. vasara, VDKM, N–709; Iš Lietuvos gyventojų bermontininkų rekvizuoti gyvuliai. Andrešiūnų kaimas, Šiaulių apylinkės, 1919 m., VDKM, N–1080.
[47] Bermontininkų apiplėštos ir suniokotos Šiaulių kooperatyvų sąjungos parduotuvės patalpos. 1919 m., VDKM, N–1081.
[48] 1 pėstininkų pulko kario savanorio, žuvusio kovose su bermontininkais 1919 m., kapas Radviliškio kapinėse. XX a. 3 deš., VDKM, Fa–16968–679.
[49] Nepriklausomybės kovos. Bermontininkų kariai Maks von der Dange ir Karl Vierheilig su plėšimo įrankiais. Lietuva, 1919 m., VDKM, Fa–17699–309; Nepriklausomybės kovos. Bermontininkų karys Karl Vierheilig su plėšimo įrankiais. Lietuva, 1919 m., VDKM, Fa–17699–308; Nepriklausomybės kovos. Bermontininkų karys Maks von der Dange su plėšimo įrankiais. Lietuva, 1919 m., VDKM, Fa–17699–307; Fotomontažas iš trijų nuotraukų. Bermontininkų kariai Karl Vierheilig ir Maks von der Dange su plėšimo įrankiais. Lietuva, 1919 m. (Identiškas fotomontažas publikuotas: „Karys“, 1928, nr. 20), VDKM, Fa–17699–306.
[50] D. Vasiliauskas, Nepriklausomybės karas, Lietuva 1918–1938, Kaunas: „Šviesa“, 1990, p. 54–56.
[51] Schema. Lietuvos kariuomenės veiksmai prieš bermontininkus 1919.XI. 21 – XII.16. Sudarė ats. gen. K. Ladiga, VDKM, N–1040.
[52] Reliacija (nuorašas). Išsamus žygio į Vilnių metu 1920 07 14–15 įvykusio karinio susidūrimo ir paliaubų su lenkais aprašymas, VDKM, S–17940–35.
[53] VDKM, S-14363.
[54] VDKM, Fa-17699-1, Fa-17699-3, Fa-17699-4, Fa-17699-6, Fa-17699-7.
[55] VDKM, Fa-17699-5.
[56] VDKM, Fa-17699-137 – Fa-17699-140. 
[57] Lietuvoje veikę lenkų ulonai, 1920 m., VDKM, N–975.
[58] Lenkijos kariuomenės ulonų žvalgai, 1920 m., VDKM, N–974, Lenkų Suvalkų pulko raitieji žvalgai su vachmistru Sadausku priešakyje. 1920 m., VDKM, N–973.
[59] Lenkijos kariuomenės 2 pėstininkų Kauno pulkas Dauguose 1920 m. gegužės mėn., VDKM, N–717; Lenkijos kariuomenės 41 pėstininkų Suvalkų pulko kariai žvalgo vietovę prie Michalovo. 1921 m. pradžia, VDKM, N–714; Įvairių Lenkijos kariuomenės dalių, veikusių prieš Lietuvos kariuomenę, karininkai ir kareiviai. 1920 m., VDKM, N–713; VDKM, N–711, VDKM, N–712.
[60] 1 husarų pulko 3 eskadronas įžengia į Merkinės miestelį. 1920 m., VDKM, N–754;
[61] Lietuvos partizanų atimti iš lenkų arkliai. 1920 m., VDKM, N–1352.
[62] Lietuvos partizanai puola lenkų sargybą. 1920 m., VDKM, N–1349.
[63] 1. Prakalba ties Seinų bažnyčia lenkų okupacijos metu. Lenkų kariai ir valdžios atstovai. 1919–1920 m. 2. Lenkijos kariuomenės žvalgai fronte. Kariai ginkluoti 1898 m. modelio Mauser karabinais (Vokietija). 1919–1920 m., VDKM, N–718.
[64] Nepriklausomybės kovos. Lietuvos kariuomenės 4 pėstininkų Lietuvos karaliaus Mindaugo pulkas prieš įžengiant į Vilnių. 1920 m., VDKM, Fa–17699–403, šio pulko štabas, VDKM, Fa–17699–402.
[65] Lietuvos kariuomenės kariai, grįžę iš lenkų nelaisvės. 1920 m., VDKM, N–1149; N–1150; N–1159; N–1160; N–1167; taip pat daug nuotraukų su lietuvių kariais grįžusiais iš lenkų nelaisvės yra VDKM rinkinyje Fa–17699.
[66] Paveikslas „Pavergtoji Vilnija“. Dail. Irena Jackevičiūtė. Senojo Karo muziejaus ekspozicija. 1921–1934 m., VDKM, N–23.
[67] Šiauliai vokiečių okupacijos metais, LCVA, P21–A14.
[68] Šiauliai vokiečių okupacijos metu apie 1918 m., LCVA: P31–A14, P65–A14.
[69] Rusijos lakūnas Vsevolodas Abramovičius (sėdi lėktuve dešinėje) lėktuvu „Rait“ skrisdamas iš Berlyno į Peterburgą trumpam nusileido Šiauliuose. Pirmas iš kairės stovi Šiaulių burmistras Julijonas Šalkauskis, LCVA, P12–A14.
[70] Šiauliai prieš Pirmąjį pasaulinį karą ir karo metu: LCVA, P28–A14, P26–A14, P24–A14, P25–A14, P22–A14, P20–A14, P19–A14, P18–A14, P16–A14, P17–A14, P14–A14, P15–A14, P11–A14.
[71] Pirmojo pasaulinio karo metu sugriauti Šiauliai, LCVA: P54–A14, P55–A14, P56–A14, P57–A14, P59–A14, P60–A14.
[72] Turgus Šiauliuose, LCVA, P64–A14.
[73]  Maksimaitis M., Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 39.
[74] Maksimaitis M., Kai kurios pirmųjų Lietuvos Konstitucijų istoriografijos problemos, Jurisprudencija, 2002, t. 30(22), p. 181.
[75] Buvusios Lietuvos Valstybės Tarybos pirmininko St. Šilingo pranešimas Valstybės Prezidentui, 1920 0518, LCVA, 923, ap. 1, b. 245, l. 31.
[76] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 1, 4.
[77] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 16, 17, 28, 29.
[78] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 2.
[79] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 3.
[80] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 6.
[81] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 5, 7.
[82] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 32.
[83] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 8, 9.
[84] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 11.
[85] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 10.
[86] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 14, 15, 21, 22.
[87] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 20.
[88] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 22.
[89] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 25.
[90] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1, b. 30.
[91] VDKM, Fa-62.
[92] M. Maksimaitis, Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 288.
[93] M. Maksimaitis, Kai kurios pirmųjų Lietuvos Konstitucijų istoriografijos problemos, Jurisprudencija, 2002, t. 30(22), p. 184.
[94] M. Maksimaitis, Kai kurios pirmųjų Lietuvos Konstitucijų istoriografijos problemos, Jurisprudencija, 2002, t. 30(22), p. 186.
[95] Steigiamojo Seimo Darbai: Pirmasai sąsiuvinis, I Sesijos, Pirmasai posėdis, 1920 05 15, p. 2.
[96] M. Maksimaitis, Kai kurios pirmųjų Lietuvos Konstitucijų istoriografijos problemos, Jurisprudencija, 2002, t. 30(22), p. 186.
[97] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 80.
[98] M. Maksimaitis, Kai kurios pirmųjų Lietuvos Konstitucijų istoriografijos problemos, Jurisprudencija, 2002, t. 30(22), p. 186.
[99] M. Maksimaitis, Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 291. 
[100] M. Maksimaitis, Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 293.
[101] M. Maksimaitis, Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 295.
[102] M. Maksimaitis, Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 279.
[103] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 364.
[104] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 814.
[105] LCVA, f. 923, ap.1, b. 898, l. 21.
[106] LCVA, f. 383, ap. 7, b. 96.
[107] LCVA, f. R-758, ap. 1, b. 40, l. 13.
[108] VDKM, Fa17699-2.
[109] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 39.
[110] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 40.
[111] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 42.
[112] Steigiamojo Seimo rinkimų dienų paskelbimas (1920 01 12), Laikinosios Vyriausybės žinios, 1920 02 06, nr. 1 (19), p. 1.
[113] Steigiamojo Seimo susirinkimo vietos ir laiko paskelbimas, Lietuva, 1920 05 15.
[114] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 46.
[115] Įsakymas (dėl Ypatingųjų Krašto Apsaugos Įstatų) (1920 03 01), Laikinosios Vyriausybės žinios, 1920 03 03, nr. 20, p. 5.
[116] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas ir jo vieta Naujųjų laikų Lietuvos istorijoje, Didysis Lietuvos parlamentarų biografinis žodynas, t. 2, Lietuvos Steigiamojo Seimo (1920–1922 metų) narių biografinis žodynas, sud. A. Ragauskas, M. Tamošaitis, Vilnius, 2006, p. 24–25. 
[117] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 53.
[118] A. Kasparavičius, Steigiamasis Seimas ir jo oratoriai, Lietuvos istorijos studijos, nr. 12, p. 38.
[119] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 56.
[120] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 54.
[121] Mažojo Seimo sudarymo įstatymas, Vyriausybės žinios, 1920 10 29, nr. 50.
[122] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 94.
[123] Atsišaukimas: Draugai! Lietuvos Šauliai, saugokit Kuriamąjį Seimą, 1920 m., VDKM, S–15975.
[124] Skelbimas. KARIŠKIAI RENKA Į STEIGIAMĄJĮ SEIMĄ. (Liet. Kar. Įs. Nr. 283§ 1–5). 1920 m., VDKM, S–1286–1, S–1286–2.
[125] Steigiamojo seimo rinkimų plakatai Kauno gatvėse. 1920 m., VDKM, Fa–17699–247.
[126] Plk. ltn. K. Žuko atsisveikinimas su I atsargos batalionu, prieš išvykstant į Steigiamąjį seimą 1920 m. gegužės 15 d., VDKM, N–686, Fa–13581; Lietuvos kariuomenės I atsargos bataliono karininkai, išleidžiant vadą plk. ltn. Konstantiną Žuką (centre) į Steigiamąjį Seimą. 1920 m. gegužės 15 d. VDKM, Fa–13580.
[127] Manifestacija Kaune, atidarant Steigiamąjį seimą. 1920 m. gegužės 15 d., VDKM, Fa–17699–246.
[128] Lietuvos valstybės valdžios atstovai ir seimo nariai ąžuolo sodinimo iškilmėse, atidarant Steigiamąjį seimą. Centre Ministras Pirmininkas Ernestas Galvanauskas, Prezidentas Antanas Smetona. Kaunas, 1920 m. gegužės 15d., VDKM, Fa–17699–249.
[129] Pirmasis Steigiamojo seimo posėdis Kauno miesto teatre. 1920 m. gegužės 15 d. Prezidiume sėdi (iš kairės): Jonas Staugaitis, Aleksandras Stulginskis, Justinas Staugaitis. Sekretoriatas (iš kairės): Naftalis Fridmanas, Petras Radzevičius, Ladas Natkevičius. Dešinėje, už stalo sėdi Zigmas Starkus., VDKM, Fa–243.
[130] Nepriklausomybės kovos. Lietuvos kariuomenės kariai, grįžę iš lenkų nelaisvės. Iš dešinės – Lietuvos Respublikos Steigiamojo Seimo narys, žurnalistas Juozas Pronskus. 1920 m., VDKM, Fa–17699–441.
[131] Dr. Vlado Lašo vizitinė kortelė, 1920–1922 m., VDKM, S–9920–1.
[132] Portretinė; prof. Vladas Lašas, Steigiamojo ir pirmojo seimo narys, ilgametis Lietuvos universiteto Medicinos fakulteto dekanas. XX a. 4 deš., VDKM, Fa–16911; Lietuvos mokytojų profesinės sąjungos suaugusiųjų gimnazijos Kaune mokytojų kolektyvas. 1924 m. I eilėje (iš kairės): 2–as Balys Žygelis (seimo narys), 3–ias Kazys Šleževičius, 4–a Petronėlė Lastienė, 5–as Vaclovas Biržiška, 7–as Zigmas Žemaitis. II eilėje (iš kairės): 5–as Jeronimas Vyšniauskas. III eilėje (iš kairės): 1–as Antanas Purėnas, 2–as Vladas Lašas, 3–ias Antanas Tamošaitis, 4–as Matas Šalčius. Apie 1924 m., VDKM, Fa–16911.
[133] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 99; Steigiamojo Seimo narių sąrašai taip pat yra byloje: LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1296.
[134] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 77.
[135] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 100.
[136] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 220.
[137] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 142.
[138] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 184.
[139] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1286.
[140] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1420.
[141] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1426.
[142] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 245.
[143] M. Sleževičiaus, Steigiamojo Seimo nario liudijimas, 1920 09 24, LCVA, f. 1437, ap. 1, b. 786, l. 2.
[144] LCVA, f. 383, ap. 7, b. 96.
[145] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 8, b. 3.
[146] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 765.
[147] LCVA, f. 631, ap. 7, b. 312.
[148] Seimo rinkimų dienų paskelbimas, Vyriausybės žinios, 1922 08 07, nr. 101, p. 1.
[149] Seimo Stenogramos: 1-sis Seimo posėdis, 1922 11 13, p. 2.
[150] M. Tamošaitis, I Seimas (1922-1923), Didysis Lietuvos parlamentarų biografinis žodynas, t. 3, Lietuvos Respublikos Seimų I (1922-1923), II (1923-1926), III (1926-1927), IV (1936-1940) narių biografinis žodynas, Vilnius, 2007, p. 20.
[151] Seimas. Seimo sąstatas, Lietuva, 1922 11 11, p. 2. 
[152] M. Tamošaitis, I Seimas (1922-1923), Didysis Lietuvos parlamentarų biografinis žodynas, t. 3, Lietuvos Respublikos Seimų I (1922-1923), II (1923-1926), III (1926-1927), IV (1936-1940) narių biografinis žodynas, Vilnius, 2007, p. 25.
[153] M. Tamošaitis, I Seimas (1922–1923), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 108.
[154] Lietuvos Respublikos I Seimo atidarymo posėdis, Kaunas, 1922 m. lapkričio 13 d., VDKM, Fa–17699–503.
[155] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 315. 
[156] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 245, l. 1.
[157] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 350.
[158] LCVA, f. 937, ap. 1, b. 4.
[159] D. Blažytė-Baužienė, II Seimas (1923 –1926) Seimo rinkimai, Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 114.
[160] D. Blažytė-Baužienė, II Seimas (1923 –1926) Seimo rinkimai, Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 116.
[161] D. Blažytė-Baužienė, II Seimas (1923 –1926) Seimo rinkimai, Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 118.
[162] D. Blažytė-Baužienė, II Seimas (1923 –1926) Seimo rinkimai, Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 119–120.
[163] Lietuvos Respublikos II Seimo atidarymo posėdis. Kaunas,1923 m. birželio 5 d., VDKM, Fa–17699–501.
[164] Lietuvos Respublikos II Seimo atidarymo posėdis. Kaunas,1923 m. birželio 5 d., VDKM, Fa–17699–502.
[165] Karo mokyklos V laida. Kaunas, 1923 m. spalio 15 d., VDKM, Fa–14523.
[166] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1425.
[167] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 466.
[168] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(1).
[169] Naujojo Seimo rinkimų dienos paskelbimo aktas (1926 03 08), Vyriausybės žinios, 1926 03 12, nr. 219.
[170] Seimo sušaukimo aktas, 1926 05 25, LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 46, l. 102.
[171] Seimo rinkimų įstatymo priedo pakeitimas, Vyriausybės žinios, 1926 03 12, nr. 219.
[172] M. Tamošaitis, III Seimas (1926–1927), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 147.
[173] M. Tamošaitis, III Seimas (1926–1927), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 147.
[174] Seimo Stenogramos: 3-sis Seimas, I sesija, 1-sis posėdis, 1926 06 02, p. 8.
 
 
[175] M. Tamošaitis, III Seimas (1926–1927), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 153–154.
[176] Seimo Stenogramos: 3-sis Seimas, I sesija, 15-sis posėdis, 1926 06 30, p. 6–7.
[177] Seimo Stenogramos: 3-sis Seimas, I sesija, 16-sis posėdis, 1926 07 02, p. 1.
[178] M. Tamošaitis, III Seimas (1926-1927), Didysis Lietuvos parlamentarų biografinis žodynas, t. 3, Lietuvos Respublikos Seimų I (1922-1923), II (1923-1926), III (1926-1927), IV (1936-1940) narių biografinis žodynas, Vilnius, 2007, p. 176.
[179] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 466.
[180] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 46.
[181] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(1).
[182] Mykolui Sleževičiui išduotas III Seimo nario liudijimas, LCVA, f. 1437, ap. 1, b. 786, l. 3–4.
[183] LCVA, f. 675, ap. 1, b. 25. - patikrinti
[184] Respublikos Prezidento aktai, Vyriausybės Žinios, 1936 05 09, nr. 533.
[185] Apygardų apskričių kandidatų į tautos atstovus sąrašai, Vyriausybės Žinios, 1936 06 03, nr. 537.
[186] Respublikos Prezidento aktas (1936 07 03), Vyriausybės Žinios, 1936 07 07, nr. 539.
[187] L. Truska, IV Seimas (1936-1940), Didysis Lietuvos parlamentarų biografinis žodynas, t. 3, Lietuvos Respublikos Seimų I (1922-1923), II (1923-1926), III (1926-1927), IV (1936-1940) narių biografinis žodynas, Vilnius, 2007, p. 591.
[188] L. Truska, IV Seimas (1936-1940), Didysis Lietuvos parlamentarų biografinis žodynas, t. 3, Lietuvos Respublikos Seimų I (1922-1923), II (1923-1926), III (1926-1927), IV (1936-1940) narių biografinis žodynas, Vilnius, 2007, p. 594.
[189] L. Truska, IV Seimas (1936-1940), Didysis Lietuvos parlamentarų biografinis žodynas, t. 3, Lietuvos Respublikos Seimų I (1922-1923), II (1923-1926), III (1926-1927), IV (1936-1940) narių biografinis žodynas, Vilnius, 2007, p. 597.
[190] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1114, 1308, 1309, 1310, 1311, 1312.
[191] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1110.
[192] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 954, 1038.
[193] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 901.
[194] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1196.
[195] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1082.
[196] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(2).
[197] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 898.
[198] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1106.
[199] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1518.
[200] Vytauto Didžiojo karininkų kursų generalinio štabo skyriaus II laidos ir intendantų skyriaus I laidos išleistuvės Kauno karininkų ramovėje, 1937 06 28, VDKM, Fa–15533–93; Lietuvos šaulių rinktinių atstovų metinio suvažiavimo prezidiumas Kauno karininkų ramovėje, 1938 03 12, VDKM, Fa–15780–69.
[201] Lietuvos Valstybės Laikinosios Konstitucijos Pamatiniai Dėsniai (1919 04 04), Lietuvos valstybės teisės aktai (1918.II.16–1940.VI.15), pareng. V. Andriulis, R. Mockevičius, V. Valeckaitė, Vilnius, 1996, p. 4.
[202] Lietuvos Valstybės Laikinosios Konstitucijos Pamatiniai Dėsniai (1919 04 04), Lietuvos valstybės teisės aktai (1918.II.16–1940.VI.15), pareng. V. Andriulis, R. Mockevičius, V. Valeckaitė, Vilnius, 1996, p. 4.
[203] M. Maksimaitis, Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 100.
[204] Laikinoji Lietuvos Valstybės Konstitucija (1920 06 10), Laikinosios Vyriausybės Žinios, 1920 06 12, nr. 37.
[205] M. Maksimaitis, Lietuvos valstybės Konstitucijų istorija (XX a. pirmoji pusė), Vilnius, 2005, p. 103.
[206] LR Prezidento K. Griniaus raštas Ministrui pirmininkui prof. A. Voldemarui, 1926 12 17, LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 46, l. 73.
[207] Politinė padėtis, Lietuva 1940-1990. Okupuotos Lietuvos istorija, Vilnius, 2005, p. 28.
[208] Politinė padėtis, Lietuva 1940-1990. Okupuotos Lietuvos istorija, Vilnius, 2005, p. 29.
[209] J. Vaičenonis, Lietuvos kariuomenė Valstybės politinio gyvenimo verpetuose (1927-1940), Vilnius: Versus Aureus, 2004, p. 14.
[210] Lietuva 1940-1990. Okupuotos Lietuvos istorija, Vilnius, 2005, p. 62-63.
[211] LCVA, f. R-758, ap. 1, b. 40, l. 13.
[212] LCVA, f. 922, ap. 1, b. 57.
[213] LCVA, f. 922, ap. 1, b. 58.
[214] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 119.
[215] LCVA, f. 675, ap. 1, b. 27.
[216] 1925–1926, LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(2).
[217] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(1).
[218] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 46.
[219] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1082.
[220] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1082.
[221] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 315.
[222] LR Seimo prezidiumo raštas Ministrui pirmininkui L. Bistrui, Kaunas, 1926 06 07, LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 46, l. 99.
[223] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 466.
[224] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 704.
[225] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 705, 706.
[226] 1938 m., LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1: b. 989 – Raseinių apskrities Tautos atstovų rinkimai; b. 990 – Rokiškio; b. 991 – Seinų; b. 992 – Šakių; b. 993, 994 – Šiaulių; b. 995 – Tauragės; b. 996 – Telšių; b. 997 – Ukmergės ir Trakų; b. 998 – Utenos; b. 999 – Vilkaviškio; b. 1000 – Zarasų; b. 1001 – Panevėžio miesto; b. 1002 – Panevėžio apskrities; b. 1003 – Mažeikių apskrities; b. 1004 – Marijampolės; b. 1005 – Kretingos; b. 1006 – Kėdainių; b. 1007 – Kauno miesto; b. 1008 – Kauno apskrities; b. 1009 – Biržų; b. 1010 – Alytaus apskrities.
[227] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1005.
[228] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1001.
[229] LCVA, Mg 012037-2 (garso įrašas).
[230] LCVA, (Mg 012158) (garso įrašas).
[231] LCVA, (Mg 011883-5) (garso įrašas).
[232] LCVA, f. R-758, ap. 1, b. 40.
[233] VAKARO „RYTO“ Ekstra telegrama. „Didysis istoriškas Seimo posėdis. Respublikos prezidentas Antanas Smetona“, VDKM, S–1288.
[234] VDKM, Fa-17699-16, Fa-17699-18.
[235] VDKM, Fa-17699-149, Fa-17699-150, Fa-17699-153, Fa-17699-157, Fa-17699-160.
[236] VDKM, S-11824.
[237] VDKM, S-14757.
[238] B. Masiulis, Ministras, Lietuvių enciklopedija, t. 18, Bostonas, 1959, p. 533.
[239] V. Mašalaitis, Ministrų kabinetas, Lietuvių enciklopedija, t. 18, Bostonas, 1959, p. 535.
[240] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1 , b. 19.
[241] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1 , b.46.
[242] LCVA, f. 1014, ap. 1 , b. 47.
[243] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 8, b. 3, l. 376.
[244] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 46.
[245] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(1).
[246] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813.
[247] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 758.
[248] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(1).
[249] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813, l. 43.
[250] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 758.
[251] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1082.
[252] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(2), l. 35.
[253] LCVA, f. R-758, ap. 1, b. 40, l. 1.
[254] VDKM, Fa-17699-1, Fa-17699-3, Fa-17699-4, Fa-17699-5, Fa-17699-8, Fa-17699-10.
[255] VDKM, Fa-17699-149, Fa-17699-151, Fa-17699-152.
[256] VDKM, Fa-17699-232.
[257] VDKM, Fa-17699-244.
[258] VDKM, S-15658.
[259] Uždarytos politinės partijos ir sąjungos, Diena, 1936 02 09.
[260] Lietuvių Tautininkų Sąjunga – LTS, Didysis Lietuvos metraštis-kalendorius 1936 metams, Kaunas, 1936, p. 134.
[261] [M. Tamošaitis]
[262] Lietuvos socialistų liaudininkų demokratų partija, Visuotinė lietuvių enciklopedija, t. XIII, .Vilnius, 2008, p. 324.
[263] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1296.
[264] LCVA, f. 554, ap. 2, b. 1.
[265] LCVA, f. 554, ap. 1, b. 115.
[266] LCVA, f. 554, ap. 1, b. 36. ,
[267] LCVA, f. 554, ap. 1, b. 7, 10, 11, 19, 37, 40, 42, 45, 52, 55, 80, 99, 107, 112.
[268] LCVA, f. 937, ap. 1, b. 4, 21. 33, 119, 123.
[269] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 119.
[270] E. Aleksandravičius, A. Kulakauskas, Carų valdžioje. XIX amžiaus Lietuva, Vilnius: Baltos lankos, 1996, p. 290.
[271] Įstatymas apie draugijas, 1919 10 10, Laikinosios vyriausybės žinios, 1919 11 24.
[272] Draugijų įstatymas, Vyriausybės žinios, 1936 02 01.
[273] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 8, b. 3.
[274] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813.
[275] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 797.
[276] LCVA, 923, ap. 1, b. 480.
[277] LCVA, f.923, ap. 1, b. 1194.
[278] LCVA, f. 561, ap. 18, b. 81.
[279] LCVA, f. 561: ap. 2, b. 366, 432; ap. 12, b. 1; ap. 18, b. 83.
[280] LCVA, f. 561, ap. 2, b. 956.
[281] LCVA, f. 561, ap. 2, b. 319, 467, 579, 1048.
[282] LCVA, f. 561, ap. 18, b. 393.
[283] LCVA, f. 668, ap. 1, b. 795.
[284] Karininkų šeimų moterų draugijos kunigaikštienės Birutės draugijos vėliavos aversas, 1925 m., VDKM, N–98; reversas – VDKM, N–183; šios vėliavos nuotrauka ekspozicijoje: VDKM, N–186–1; N–186–2.
[285] 2 ulonų pulkas. Rautas karininkų ramovėje pulko vėliavos įteikimo proga 1928 m. spalio mėn. 1 d., VDKM, N–267.
[286] Kunigaikštienės Birutės draugijos dešimties metų gyvavimo sukakties iškilmingas posėdis Valstybės teatre Kaune, 1935 m. kovo 4 d., VDKM, N–265; Kunigaikštienės Birutės draugija. Valstybės Prezidentas A. Smetona draugijos dešimtmečio sukakties baliuje. 1935 m. kovo 4 d., VDKM, N–274.
[287] Kunigaikštienės Birutės draugijos Kėdainių skyrius globojamame vaikų darželyje pamini Tautos vado Prezidento A. Smetonos 60 metų sukaktį. 1934 m., VDKM, N–266; Kunigaikštienės Birutės draugija. Kėdainių skyriaus globojamo vaikų darželio iškilmingasis posėdis S. Dariui ir S. Girėnui pagerbti. 1934 m., VDKM, N–276; Kėdainių darželis, 1934 m., VDKM, N–270.
[288] VDKM, N-276.
[289] Kunigaikštienės Birutės draugijos Šančių skyriaus globojamas karininkų vaikų darželis; viena grupė. 1936 m. sausio 28 d., VDKM, N–273.
[290] Kunigaikštienės Birutės draugija. Kalėdų eglutė, surengta karo invalidų vaikams Kauno karininkų ramovėje. 1935 m., VDKM, N–275.
[291] Kunigaikštienės Birutės draugija 1935 m. medicinos seserų kursai Karo ligoninėje Kaune, VDKM, N–272.
[292] Kunigaikštienės Birutės draugijos Klaipėdos skyrius su vaikučiais pasitinka Valstybės Prezidentą A. Smetoną prie pulko kareivinių vartų. 1927 m., VDKM, N–271.
[293] Kunigaikštienės Birutės draugija priima „Latvių moterų draugijos“ atstoves Klaipėdos skyriuje. 1928 m., VDKM, N–268.
[294] Karininkų šeimų moterų draugijos kunigaikštienės Birutės draugijos Klaipėdos skyriaus „Pirmosios pagalbos kusų“ baigimo aktas, 1934 m. kovas, VDKM, N–269.
[295] J. Vaičenonis, Lietuvos kariuomenė Valstybės politinio gyvenimo verpetuose (1927-1940), Vilnius: Versus Aureus, 2004, p. 18.
[296] J. Vaičenonis, Lietuvos kariuomenė Valstybės politinio gyvenimo verpetuose (1927-1940), Vilnius: Versus Aureus, 2004, p. 14.
[297] J. Vaičenonis, Lietuvos kariuomenė Valstybės politinio gyvenimo verpetuose (1927-1940), Vilnius: Versus Aureus, 2004, p. 15.
[298] J. Vaičenonis, Lietuvos kariuomenė Valstybės politinio gyvenimo verpetuose (1927-1940), Vilnius: Versus Aureus, 2004, p. 18.
[299] J. Vaičenonis, Lietuvos kariuomenė Valstybės politinio gyvenimo verpetuose (1927-1940), Vilnius: Versus Aureus, 2004, p. 86-87.
[300] J. Vaičenonis, Lietuvos kariuomenė Valstybės politinio gyvenimo verpetuose (1927-1940), Vilnius: Versus Aureus, 2004, p. 20-22.
[301] LCVA, f. 384, ap. 1, b. 83, 81, 85, 95, 99, 111, 117, 122.
[302] LCVA, f. 384, ap. 1, b. 35, 46, 126.
[303] LCVA, f. 384, ap. 1, b. 52, 62.
[304] LCVA, f. 384, ap. 1, b. 69.
[305] LCVA, f. 384, ap. 1, b. 91.
[306] LCVA, f. 384, ap. 1, b. 103, 122.
[307] LCVA, f. 384, ap. 1, b. 107.
[308] LCVA, f. 384, ap. 1, b. 130, 134.
[309] LCVA, f. 384, ap. 1, b. 138.
[310] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 797, l. 147 ap.
[311] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1082.
[312] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1106.
[313] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1106, l. 48-60.
[314] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1106, l. 119.
[315] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 8, b. 3.
[316] VDKM, Fa-17699-387 - Fa-17699-390.
[317] VDKM, Fa-17699-216–Fa-17699-230.
[318] G. Žilinskas, Vietos savivaldybės Pirmojoje Lietuvos Respublikoje: Petro Leono darbai, Acta humanitarica universitatis Saulensis, 2011, nr. 12, p. 182.
[319] A. Morkūnaitė-Lazauskienė, Vietos savivaldos sistema Pirmojoje ir Antrojoje Lietuvos Respublikoje, Darbai ir dienos, 2010, nr. 53, p. 102.
[320] Savivaldybių įstatymas, Laikinosios Vyriausybės žinios, 1919 10 28, nr. 14, p. 1.
[321] A. Morkūnaitė-Lazauskienė, Vietos savivaldos sistema Pirmojoje ir Antrojoje Lietuvos Respublikoje, Darbai ir dienos, 2010, nr. 53, p. 103-104.
[322] A. Morkūnaitė-Lazauskienė, Vietos savivaldos sistema Pirmojoje ir Antrojoje Lietuvos Respublikoje, Darbai ir dienos, 2010, nr. 53, p. 102.
[323] J. Sireika, Vietos savivaldybių reformos Pirmosios Lietuvos Respublikos laikais, Istorija, 2003, nr. 57, p. 54.
[324] J. Sireika, Vietos savivaldybių reformos Pirmosios Lietuvos Respublikos laikais, Istorija, 2003, nr. 57, p. 56.
[325] A. Morkūnaitė-Lazauskienė, Vietos savivaldos sistema Pirmojoje ir Antrojoje Lietuvos Respublikoje, Darbai ir dienos, 2010, nr. 53, p. 108.
[326] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 151, 336.
[327] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 62.
[328] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 5.
[329] Kriminalinės policijos direktoriaus pranešimas Savivaldybių departamento direktoriui, Kaunas, 1931 06 09, LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 119, l. 20.
[330] Pil. Kosto Olšausko skundas Prienų nuovados Taikos teisėjui, Prienai, 1931 06 24, LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 119, l. 45-45ap.
[331] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 119.
[332] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 29.
[333] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 119.
[334] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 65.
[335] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 62.
[336] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 55, l. 29.
[337] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 55.
[338] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 8, b. 3, l. 28.
[339] J. Jakštas, Nepriklausomybės laikai, Lietuvių enciklopedija, t. 15, Bostonas, 1968, p. 339.
[340] S. Kaubrys, Lietuvos mokykla 1918-1939 m.: galios gimtis, Vilnius, 2000, p. 35-36.
[341] Pradžios mokyklų įstatymas (priimtas 1922 m. spalio 6 d.), Vyriausybės žinios, 1922 11 23, nr. 117.
[342] Pradžios mokyklų įstatymas (priimtas 1922 m. spalio 6 d.), Vyriausybės žinios, 1922 11 23, nr. 117.
[343] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 65, l. 267-269.
[344] P. Papečkys, Mūsų laimėjimai švietimo dirvoje, Lietuva 1918-1938, Kaunas, 1990, p. 274.
[345] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(1).
[346] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 350, l. 36.
[347] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 65.
[348] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 65, l. 90.
[349] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 65.
[350] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 65.
[351] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 65, l. 270.
[352] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 65, l. 270ap.
[353] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 65, l. 270ap.
[354] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 851, l. 78-78ap.
[355] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 765, l. 142-142ap.
[356] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 8, b. 3.
[357] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 26.
[358] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 8, b. 3.
[359] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 765.
[360] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1460.
[361] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813.
[362] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 758.
[363] V. Kaminskas, Aštuoniasdešimties metų kelią peržvelgus, Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas. Mokslas ir visuomenė 1922-2002, Kaunas, 2002, p. 9-13.
[364] LCVA, f. 631, ap. 12, b. 44, 45, 47, 48.
[365] LCVA, f. 631, ap. 1, b. 2.
[366] LCVA, f. 631, ap. 12, b. 37, 41.
[367] LCVA, f. 631, ap. 12, b. 53. 
[368] LCVA, f. 631, ap. 12, b. 76.
[369] LCVA, f. 631, ap. 12, b. 255.
[370] LCVA, f. 631, ap. 12, b. 281.
[371] LCVA, f. 631, ap. 12, b. 1059.
[372] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813.
[373] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813.
[374] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1518.
[375] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 765.
[376] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 769, 774.
[377] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1488.
[378] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1490.
[379] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 26.
[380] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 765.
[381] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1518.
[382] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813.
[383] D. Mačiulis, Valstybės kultūros politika Lietuvoje 1927-1940 metais, Vilnius, 2005, p. 13.
[384] D. Mačiulis, Valstybės kultūros politika Lietuvoje 1927-1940 metais, Vilnius, 2005, p. 21.
[385] D. Mačiulis, Valstybės kultūros politika Lietuvoje 1927-1940 metais, Vilnius, 2005, p. 28.
[386] D. Mačiulis, Valstybės kultūros politika Lietuvoje 1927-1940 metais, Vilnius, 2005, p. 35.
[387] D. Mačiulis, Valstybės kultūros politika Lietuvoje 1927-1940 metais, Vilnius, 2005, p. 51-52.
[388] G. Barkauskaitė, Lietuvių etniniai ir autoriniai šokiai Dainų šventėse, Liaudies kultūra, 2003, nr. 4, p. 54.
[389] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(1), l. 138ap-139.
[390] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813. 
[391] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 851.
[392] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1082, l. 4-9.
[393] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(1).
[394] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, ,b. 967.
[395] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 400.
[396] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1457.
[397] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1460.
[398] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1460.
[399] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 12, b. 1633.
[400] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1668.
[401] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1654.
[402] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1633.
[403] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1633, 26.
[404] LCVA, f.391, ap.4, b.1633.
[405] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1633, l. 31.
[406] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 4, b. 1633.
[407] LCVA, 391, ap. 4, b. 1668.
[408] LCVA, f.391, ap.4, b.1633.
[409] Plakatas. MENO PARODA. L. M. K. D. PLASTIKŲ SEKCIJOS RENGIAMA SEIMO RŪMUOSE KAUNE, 1923 m., VDKM, S–13206.
[410] Estų dailininkų atsilankymas Vytauto Didžiojo karo muziejuje. Iš kairės: sėdi ketvirtas V. Nagevičius; stovi trečias dailininkas tapytojas A. Žmuidzinavičius, viduryje – mjr. P. Šeštakauskas. 1936 m., VDKM, N–640, N–639.
[411] Plakatas reklaminis. UGNIES GESINTUVAI. LIETGAZ.Dail. G. Bagdonavičius. 1933 m. „Grafika“. Šiauliai. VDKM, S-7801-1.
[412] VDKM, S-9750.
[413] VDKM, S-9938.
[414] G. Vaskela, Mykolas Krupavičius, žemės reforma ir Lietuvos ūkio raida 1920–1940 m., Lietuvių katalikų mokslo akademijos metraštis, 2005, t. 27, p. 476.
[415] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 93.
[416] D. Micuta, Lietuvos finansai 1918–1928 m., Pirmasis nepriklausomos Lietuvos dešimtmetis, Kaunas, 1990, p. 178.
[417] D. Micuta, Lietuvos finansai 1918–1928 m., Pirmasis nepriklausomos Lietuvos dešimtmetis, Kaunas, 1990, p. 196.
[418] Mokesčių įsakymas (1919 01 23), Laikinosios Vyriausybės žinios, 1919 03 05, nr. 4 (Priedėlis prie Laikinosios Vyriausybės žinių nr. 4).
[419] Dėl Rusijos popierinių piniginių išėmimo iš apyvartos, Laikinosios Vyriausybės žinios, 1919 03 05, nr. 4.
[420] Dėl piniginių vienetų „auksino“ ir :skatiko“ Lietuvoje įvedimo, Laikinosios Vyriausybės žinios, 1919 03 05, nr. 4.
[421] D. Micuta, Lietuvos finansai 1918–1928 m., Pirmasis nepriklausomos Lietuvos dešimtmetis, Kaunas, 1990, p. 179.
[422] Lietuvos Respublikos išlaidų sąmata 1923 metams, 1923 07 24, LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 350, l. 54–55ap.
[423] LCVA, f. 755, ap. 2, b. 484.
[424] LCVA, f. 755, ap. 2, 484.
[425] LCVA, f. 1582, ap. 1, b. 217.
[426] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 245.
[427] LCVA, f. 383, ap. 7, b. 572.
[428] LCVA, 923, ap. 1, b. 284(III).
[429] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 216. 
[430] Lietuvos Respublikos 1922 metų papildomoji pajamų sąmata, 1923 01 16, LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 350, l. 19.
[431] Lietuvos Respublikos 1922 metų papildomoji išlaidų sąmata, 1923 01 16, LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 350, l. 21–22ap.
[432] LCVA, f. 391, ap. 8, b. 3.
[433] LCVA, f. 383, ap. 7, b.281.
[434] LCVA, f. 383, ap. 9(III), b. 193.
[435] G. Vaskela, Mykolas Krupavičius, žemės reforma ir Lietuvos ūkio raida 1920–1940 m., Lietuvių katalikų mokslo akademijos metraštis, 2005, t. 27, p. 486.
[436] L. Truska, Steigiamasis Seimas (1920–1922), Lietuvos Seimo istorija. XX–XXI a. pradžia, Vilnius: baltos lankos, 2009, p. 87.
[438] G. Vaskela, Mykolas Krupavičius, žemės reforma ir Lietuvos ūkio raida 1920–1940 m., Lietuvių katalikų mokslo akademijos metraštis, 2005, t. 27, p. 478.
[439] S. Karasevičiūtė, Prelatas Mykolas Krupavičius ir žemės reforma Lietuvoje 1919-1926 metais, Soter, 2006, nr. 20(48), p. 111.
[440] S. Karasevičiūtė, Prelatas Mykolas Krupavičius ir žemės reforma Lietuvoje 1919-1926 metais, Soter, 2006, nr. 20(48), p. 111.
[441] S. Karasevičiūtė, Prelatas Mykolas Krupavičius ir žemės reforma Lietuvoje 1919-1926 metais, Soter, 2006, nr. 20(48), p. 111.
[442] S. Karasevičiūtė, Prelatas Mykolas Krupavičius ir žemės reforma Lietuvoje 1919-1926 metais, Soter, 2006, nr. 20(48), p. 112.
[443] A. Eidintas, A. Bumblauskas, A. Kulakauskas, M. Tamošaitis, Lietuvos istorija, Vilnius, 2013, p. 163. 
[444] A. K. Kubilius, Lietuvos ūkio perspektyvos, Kaunas, 1930, p. 224.
[445] [Meškauskas]
[446] Rūmų pereitų metų darbų apžvalga, 1926, LCVA f. 987, ap. 1, b. 343, l. 3.
[447] Finansų Ministerio įsakymas, Vyriausybės žinios, 1925 03 28.
[448] Prekybos, Pramonės ir Amatų Rūmų įstatymas, Vyriausybės žinios, 1936 07 07.
[449] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 967.
[450] 1919 11 26, LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 245, l. 45.
[451] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813.
[452] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1123(1), 797.
[453] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 188.
[454] LCVA, f. 671, ap. 1, b. 29.
[455] Klaipėdos krašto Prekybos rūmų prezidento pranešimas apie Lenkijos ir Klaipėdos prekybos mediena galimybes, LCVA, f. 671, ap. 1, b. 32.
[456] LCVA, f. 671, ap. 1, b. 29.
[457] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 758.
[458] LCVA, f. 383, ap. 7, b. 2357.
[459] Lietuvos atstovybės Suomijoje dokumentai, 1925–1927, LCVA, f. 383, ap. 8, b. 6.
[460] LCVA, f. 755, ap. 2, b. 245.
[461] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 55.
[462] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 55, l. 13.
[463] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 66.
[464] LCVA, f. 379, ap. 1, b. 62.
[465] LCVA, f. R-758, ap. 1, b. 42.
[466] Vyriausybės įsakymas, Kaunas, 1920 02 10, LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 245, l. 41.
[467] Švenčių ir poilsio įstatymas (1924 11 18), Vyriausybės Žinios, 1925 02 02, nr. 181.
[468] Švenčių ir poilsio įstatymo pakeitimas (1925 05 05), Vyriausybės Žinios, 1925 05 09, nr. 191.
[469] Švenčių ir poilsio įstatymas, Vyriausybės Žinios, 1930 05 14.
[470] Švenčių ir poilsio įstatymas (1924 11 18), Vyriausybės Žinios, 1925 02 02, nr. 181.
[471] Lietuvos Valstybės Konstitucija (1922 08 01), Vyriausybės Žinios, 1922 08 06, nr. 100.
[472] Lietuvos Valstybės Konstitucija (1928 05 15), Vyriausybės Žinios, 1928 05 25, nr. 275.
[473] Lietuvos valstybės konstitucija (1928 05 15), Vyriausybės Žinios, 1928 05 25, nr. 275.
[474] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 284.
[475] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813.
[476] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813, l. 117.
[477] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 813.
[478] LCVA, f. 923, ap. 1, b. 1106.
[479] Gegužės 15-oji Biržuose, LCVA, P64–A25.
[480] LCVA, f. R-758, ap. 1, b. 42, l. 63.
[481] LCVA, f. R-758, ap. 1, b. 42, l. 23.
[482] VDKM, Fa-17699-12, Fa-17699-14. Fa-17699-15, Fa-17699-16.
[483] Lietuvos kariuomenės I pėstininkų Lietuvos Didžiojo kunigaikščio Gedimino pulkas 1920 m. vasario 16 d. Alytuje švenčia Lietuvos nepriklausomybės dieną, VDKM, Fa-17699-288–Fa-17699-291 ir kita.
[484] VDKM, Fa-17699-272–Fa-17699-282 ir kita.
[485] VDKM, S-8328.
[486] Steigiamojo seimo nariai prie paminklo ,,Žuvusiems už Lietuvos laisvę“ Karo muziejaus sodelyje. 1922 m. gegužės 15 d. Dešinėje pusėje: I eilėje (iš kairės) – Aleksandras Stulginskis, Vytautas Račkauskas, N, kun. Povilas Dogelis, N, Antanas Staugaitis, N, N. II eilėje – Kazys Grinius, N, Mykolas Marma, N, N, N. III eilėje – Eliziejus Draugelis, N, Povilas Spudas, Antanas Povylius, kun. Antanas Šmulkštys. IV eilėje – Zigmas Starkus, Jurgis Žitinevičius, Jonas Pakalka. Kairėje pusėje: I eilėje (iš kairės) – Simanas Rozenbaumas, kun. Kazimieras Šaulys, P. Grėbliūnas, J. Vailokaitis, Mykolas Krupavičius, N, dr. Jonas Staugaitis. II eilėje – N, Juozas Buzelis, Kazimieras Ambrozaitis. III eilėje – Antanas Tamošaitis, N, N, Bartautas. VDKM, Fa–64.
[487] Tautos šventė. Laikinai einantis prezidento pareigas seimo pirmininkas Justinas Staugaitis apvažiuoja paradui išrikiuotas kavalerijos dalis Husarų (vėliau P. Vileišio) aikštėje. Kaunas, 1924 m. gegužės 15 d., VDKM, Fa–13643; VDKM, Fa–17299–11; Tautos šventė. Lietuvos kariuomenės vado gen. Silvestro Žukausko raportą kariniame parade priima laikinai einantis prezidento pareigas seimo pirmininkas Justinas Staugaitis Husarų aikštė (vėliau P. Vileišio), Kaunas, 1924 m. gegužės 15 d., VDKM, Fa–17299–13.
[488] Tautos šventė. Žuvusiųjų už Lietuvos nepriklausomybę karių pagerbimas Karo muziejaus sodelyje. Iš kairės: Lietuvos prezidentas Antanas Smetona, už prezidento – ministras pirmininkas Augustinas Voldemaras, toliau – prezidentas Aleksandras Stulginskis, gen. Leonas Radus–Zenkavičius. Šventės metu buvo atidengti S. Daukanto ir V. Kudirkos biustai. Kaunas, 1927 m. gegužės 15 d., VDKM, Fa–15010.
[489] S. Smetonienė su darželinukais Kėdainiuose, Smetonos 60-čio proga, VDKM, N-270.

 

 
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