Corner of a Dacha
In 1905 Russian photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863–1944) traveled and photographed extensively in the Caucasus region. In 1912, Prokudin-Gorskii returned to photograph in the Caucasus region, including extensively along the coast of the Black Sea in the area of Sochi. Beginning in the 1870s, the imperial court began to purchase land for a large estate and park in the Dagomys River valley. By the turn of the 20th century, the surrounding territory had been cultivated for the construction of imposing residences. Seen here at the village of Uch-Dere is the dacha of Evgenii V. Pavlov (1845–1916), a professor and prominent surgeon in Saint Petersburg who had connections to the imperial family. He was known locally for his work to improve medical conditions in an area that faced public health problems such as malaria. The attractive two-story house with a turret seen in this photograph was designed to take maximum advantage of sea breezes. The structure has vine-covered verandas and a pergola (seen here on the lower right). A terrace extends from the house, and the grounds have been profusely planted with ornamental shrubs. Visible in the background are mountains in the western Caucasus Mountain range. 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.
Title in Original Language
Type of Item
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 http://www.loc.gov/pictures/collection/prok/.
Last updated: September 28, 2016