Elias Lönnrot’s Kajaani

Elias Lönnrot worked as a district and castle physician in Kajaani from 1833 to 1853.  He travelled to do vaccination rounds but also to collect poetry in Karelia and compiled Kalevala, the national epic of Finland, in 1835, based on the poems he had written. In 1834 and 1835 Elias Lönnrot lived in the Hövelö house in Paltaniemi, in the same house where Eino Leino was born. Elias Lönnrot’s and Eino Leino’s heritage is showcased by a permanent photograph exhibition in the Eino Leino House. On 2 June 2007, the Elias Lönnrot Centre was opened in the Kajaani townhall, honouring the heritage of Elias Lönnrot and Eino Leino together with the Eino Leino House.

The Elias Lönnrot statue


The Elias Lönnrot statue, by Mauno Oittinen, was first made public in 1942 (on its pedestal since 1940). The idea was to bring out the statue in 1940, on the 100th anniversary of Lönnrot’s Kanteletar, but the outbreak of the Winter War delayed the plan. The statue was then brought out while the Continuation War was still raging on. The statue is the very first memorial set up in honour of one individual in Kajaani and the whole of Kainuu. The statue stands in the corner of Linnankatu and Brahenkatu, close to the Kajaani Castle ruins.

Lönnrot’s cottage and herb garden
Leiripolku 2

Elias Lönnrot’s summer cottage, Hauhola is located on Hotel Kajaani grounds.
Herb garden is open summertime.

The Elias Lönnrot Society laid out Lönnrot’s herb garden in summer 2009 at Lönnrot’s cottage, called Hauhola. The garden is a one of a kind herb garden in Kajaani and quickly became a tourist attraction.