Volga Flowing Out of Lake Peno at the Village of Izvedovo


In May 1910, Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863–1944) photographed in the Ostashkov area of Tver Province. Of particular interest were the lakes that form the upper reaches of the Volga River. This view shows a part of Lake Peno at the point where the Volga leaves the lake (in the foreground). The name “Peno” derives from the Russian word for “stump” in recognition of the large number of tree stumps on the lake bottom. At 7.2 kilometers in length, Lake Peno was part of scheduled passenger boat service during the Soviet period. Such lakes were also important for fishing. To the right across the water is the left bank of the outlet at the village of Izvedovo — a cluster of wooden houses and sheds. On the far left is part of the village of Shvetsova. A ford over the lake shallows connected the two villages. A herd of horses is dimly visible in the water on the right. Their motion is recorded in the different colors produced by the photographer’s three-color exposure process. Prokudin-Gorskii used a special color photography process to create a visual record of the Russian Empire. 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 different parts of the empire.

Date Created

Subject Date

Title in Original Language

Выход Волги из озера Пено у дер. Изведово

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 http://www.loc.gov/pictures/collection/prok/.

Last updated: October 3, 2016