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A large segment of Berkeley's early population was Finnish, and even more Finns moved into the city following the 1906 earthquake. Toverii Tuppa, or the Finnish Hall, was built in 1908 to serve as a community center among the Finns of Berkeley. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


  • Toverii Tuppa, or the Finnish Hall

By the late nineteenth century, there was a growing Finnish population in Berkeley, and it grew even larger following the 1906 earthquake. In 1908, members of the city's Finnish community built Toverii Tuppa ("Comrade's Lodge") on Tenth Street, incorporating elements of both traditional Finnish and American design. The building was designed by August Trille. 

The Finnish Hall served primarily as a community center. It was built with a kitchen and dining hall, a library, an auditorium with a stage, and a sewing room. It was a central part of the Finnish community for a number of years.

In 1934, during the West Coast General Strike, striking workers were welcomed into the Finnish Hall and given food. As a result, the building was vandalized and political differences led to the establishment of a competing Finnish community center on the same street. The building was sold in the 1970s but continues to function as a community center. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 

Toverii Tuppa: Finnish Hall. Berkeley Historical Plaque Project. Accessed June 26, 2017. http://berkeleyplaques.org/plaque/toveri-tupa-finnish-hall/.