Heikki Junnila, Ph.D.:
PROVINCIAL DEVELOPMENT IN BRIEF

The municipalities of the present province of Central Finland were part of the province and later administrative district of Häme from the 16th until the 18th century. In 1831 they were dispersed into the administrative districts of Häme, Kuopio, St. Michel and Vaasa.

In the 1850s Wolmar Schildt, the district physician, proposed that the province and administrative district of Central Finland be formed. Newspapers played an important role in promoting provincial hopes in the latter half of the 19th century. Societies, organizations and companies with a provincial focus corroborated Central Finland's provincial identity at the end of the 19th century and at the beginning of the 20th century. The Regional Council of Central Finland acted in favour of the establishment of a separate administrative district in the 1920s and 1930s.

Jyväskylä, which had developed from a town of schooling into a commercial and industrial centre, and its economic region were suitable to serve as the capital of the administrative district. During the time between the two world wars the Parliament and administrative authorities became convinced of the strength of Central Finland's provincial spirit and of the area's capabilities to act as a separate administrative district. The Winter War and Continuation War and their economic consequences put off the foundation of the administrative district of Central Finland until 1960. In 1997 Central Finland was annexed to the administrative district of Western Finland.