View of the City of Perm from the Railroad Bridge across Kama


From 1909 to 1912, Russian photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863–1944) made several trips to the territory around the Ural Mountains, where he photographed railroad installations, factories, and urban scenes. This 1909 photograph shows the central district of the city of Perm, seen in a view toward the east from the railroad bridge spanning the Kama River. As in most views of central Perm, the dominant feature is the Cathedral of the Transfiguration, with its neoclassical bell tower. Visible to the right is the bell tower of the Cathedral of the Trinity on the Sludka. A plume of factory smoke obscures the minaret of the main mosque in Perm. Prokudin-Gorskii applied the technique of multiple exposures to create this photograph, causing the polychromatic appearance of the drifting smoke. The mudflats along the Kama show makeshift piers used for loading large wooden barges. The Kama is the major left tributary of the Volga River and it played a vital role in connecting the upper Urals region with the center of European Russia. Prokudin-Gorskii used a special color photography process to create a visual record of the Russian Empire in the early 20th century. Some of his 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 different parts of the empire.

Date Created

Subject Date

Title in Original Language

Вид на г. Пермь с железнодорожнаго моста через Каму

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 28, 2016