The Isaac Cathedral from Alexander's Garden, St. Petersburg, Russia


This photochrome print of St. Isaac’s Cathedral in St. Petersburg is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites Primarily in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). Named after St. Isaac, the presumed patron saint of Peter the Great (1672-1725), the cathedral was commissioned by Alexander I (1777–1825) and was built between 1819 and 1858 under the direction of the French architect Richard de Montferrand (1786–1858). It is the largest cathedral in Russia. According to Baedeker’s Russia with Teheran, Port Arthur, and Peking (1914): “The cathedral, built of granite and marble with a lavish disregard of cost, is in the shape of a cross 364 ft. long and 315 ft. wide. . . . The doors are approached by wide granite steps.” The gilded dome, “visible at a great distance,” required more than 100 kilograms of gold to complete.

Subject Date

Publication Information

Detroit Publishing Company, Detroit, Michigan

Type of Item

Physical Description

1 photomechanical print : photochrom, color


  • The Detroit Photographic Company was launched as a photographic publishing firm in the late 1890s by Detroit businessman and publisher William A. Livingstone, Jr., and photographer and photo-publisher Edwin H. Husher. They obtained exclusive rights to use the Swiss "Photochrom" process for converting black-and-white photographs into color images and printing them by photolithography. This innovative process was applied to the mass production of color postcards, prints, and albums for sale to the American market. The firm became the Detroit Publishing Company in 1905.

Last updated: July 14, 2014