Tamminiemi has been connected to Finnish stately and administrative life for almost half a century and during the 19th century the estate was for a period occupied by the governor general. Since World War II, Tamminiemi has been used by Finland’s heads of state. Tamminiemi was the official residence of President Ryti (1940-1944), President Mannerheim (1944-1946) and President Kekkonen (1956-1981) and a scene for many political negotiations and decisions. Particularly during Kekkonen’s time, Tamminiemi became almost a concept in Finnish political life and language.
In spring 1987 the National Board of Antiquities was given the task to make Tamminiemi into the Urho Kekkonen Museum which also presents the history of independent Finland. The project was enabled by a contribution from President Kekkonen’s estate; the contribution included objects which make Tamminiemi’s interior and museum authentic and simultaneously tells the history of the house’s longest lasting host and hostess.