Grave of the Gagarin Princes, Village of Suchki 60 Versts from Tver


These two burial memorials on the south wall of the Transfiguration Cathedral of the Solovetskiy Monastery were photographed by Russian photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863–1944) in 1916. Although the photograph is labeled “graves of the Gagarin princes in the village of Suchki,” the photograph actually was taken as part of a commission Prokudin-Gorskii had to photograph railroad construction to the port of Romanov-on-the-Murman (now Murmansk). As part of the commission, Prokudin-Gorskii journeyed from the White Sea port of Kem’ to the Transfiguration Monastery on Great Solovetskiy Island. The metal canopy in the photograph covers the grave of the monk Avraamii Palitsyn, famed for his account of the dynastic crisis known as the Time of Troubles (1605–18). In 1619 the monk returned to the Solovetskiy Monastery, where he died in September 1626 (or 27). Long lost, his grave marker was rediscoverd in 1871 and a new memorial was erected. In the foreground is the stone burial marker for Petr Kalnishevskii, the last ataman of the semiautonomous Cossack territory known as the Zaporozhian Sich. After Catherine II abolished the Sich, he was exiled to the monastery in 1776 and died there in 1803 at the age of 112. Prokudin-Gorskii used a special color photography process to create a visual record of the Russian Empire on the eve of the Russian Revolution. 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

Могила кн. Гагариных, село Сучки 60 в. от Твери

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: January 11, 2017