Log House, Lenin Street, No. 41 (19th Century), Tot'ma, Russia


This photograph of a wooden house at No. 41 Lenin Street in Tot'ma (Vologda Oblast) was taken in 1996 by Dr. William Brumfield, American photographer and historian of Russian architecture, as part of the "Meeting of Frontiers" project at the Library of Congress. Located on the Sukhona River, Tot’ma for centuries was part of an important trading network that led from the Russian heartland northward to the White Sea. The town's relative prosperity is reflected in houses such as this one, a classic creation of 19th-century provincial Russian culture. The basic structure, which might date from the early 19th century, is composed of notched logs with a half upper story known as a "mezzanine." The dwelling is clad in plank siding painted gray. The decorative trim and tall window surrounds, painted white, probably date from the late 19th century. The log ends at the corners are faced with vertical boards resembling pilasters. The long facades face a garden (on the left) and a courtyard (on the right), while the side facade faces the street. The house culminates in a complex roof, sheathed in metal and painted red. What begins on the sides as a hipped roof is interrupted by the mezzanine, which has a gabled roof repeated in the form of the courtyard porch. The details and proportions of the house are noteworthy for their harmony.

Last updated: January 11, 2016