1918-1920 Dictatorship

Stamp issued in 1923 featuring Latvia's coat of arms. The 3 stars represent Vidzeme (Livonia), Kurzeme (Courland), Latgale.

Latvia a Democratic Republic, 1920-1934

In April 1920, democratic elections were held. A constitution was passed in 1922, the parliament called SAEIMA established. Latvia's democracy was characterized by political fragmentation; more than 20 political parties were represented in the Saeima in 1922 and 1931. In the 1920es, Latvia, after a land reform which broke up the large noble estates, experienced economic growth and moderate prosperity. The Great Depression, however, resulted in declining exports, rising unemployment and cuts in salaries.
Latvia's political fragmentization and the democratic constitution were blamed for a part of the problems, and prime minister KARLIS ULMANIS succeeded with his proposal of adapting a new constitution, giving the government strengthened authority and reducing the authority of parliament.

History of Latvia, from vernet.tv
Riga, History of, from vest_ang
Timeline History of Latvia 1918-, from Encyclopedia of World History (Bartleby), click on NEXT to continue
DOCUMENTS Latvian banknotes, from Ron Wise's World Paper Money and from Currency Museum
REFERENCE David G. Kirby, The Baltic World 1772-1993, London : Longman 1995
Article : Latvia, in : Statesman's Yearbook 1924 pp.1077-1082, 1925 pp.1086-1091, 1926 pp.1052-1057, 1928 pp.1081-1086, 1929 pp.1064-1069, 1932 pp.1080-1085 [G]
Article : Latvia, in : Americana Annual 1927 pp.492-493, 1928 p.448, 1930 pp.437-438, 1931 pp.439-440, 1932 pp.405-406, 1932 pp.405-406, 1933 pp.430-431, 1934 pp.332-333, 1935 pp.398-399 [G]
Article : Latvia, in : New International Year Book 1923 pp.413-414, 1925 pp.381-382, 1928 pp.399-400, 1930 pp.423-424, 1932 pp.432-433, 1933 pp.421-422, 1934 pp.358-359 [G]
Article : Latvia, in : Funk & Wagnall's New Standard Encyclopedia Year Book 1932 pp.347-348, 1933 pp.310-311, 1934 pp.325-326 [G]

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted on January 5th 2002, last revised on August 24th 2007

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