Chapel on Olga Hill. Russian Empire


The Mariinskii Canal system (now known as the Volga-Baltic Waterway) links Saint Petersburg with the Volga River basin. A primary component of the waterway is White Lake in Vologda Oblast. At its southeastern end the lake is drained by the Sheksna River, a tributary of the Volga. Among the major historic sites on the Sheksna is Goritsy, location of the Convent of the Resurrection, founded in 1544 by Princess Evfrosiniia Staritskaia. Shown in this 1909 photograph is a wooden chapel situated on Olga Hill near Goritsy. Built of logs, the small chapel has some plank siding, and its upper part has been whitewashed. Because of the severe winds at this exposed location, the large cross was stabilized by guy wires. At least one wooden chapel still survives near Goritsy, but the fate of this modest structure is unknown. The image is by Russian photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863–1944), who used a special color photography process to create a visual record of the Russian Empire in the early 20th century. Some of Prokudin-Gorskii’s photographs date from about 1905, but the bulk of his work is from between 1909 and 1915, when, with the support of Tsar Nicholas II and the Ministry of Transportation, he undertook extended trips through many parts of the empire.

Date Created

Subject Date

Title in Original Language

Часовня на Ольгиной горе. [Российская империя]

Type of Item

Physical Description

Glass negative (presented as a digital color composite)


  • Prokudin-Gorskii’s photographic work survives primarily in two forms: 1,901 black-and-white triple-frame glass plate negatives, made with color separation filters, which Prokudin-Gorskii used to make color prints and lantern slides; and 12 albums of sepia-tone prints, made from the glass negatives, which Prokudin-Gorskii compiled as a record of his travels and studies. The Library of Congress purchased the glass plate negatives and the albums from the Prokudin-Gorskii family in 1948. In 2004, the Library of Congress had digital color composites made from all the surviving glass negatives using a software algorithm to automatically align the color components. As with most historical photographs, title and subject identifications are corrected and enhanced through new research. Current information on the collection is at

Last updated: September 23, 2016