View of Our Savior-Iakovlevskii Monastery, from the Tower of the Rostov Museum in the Kremlin. Rostov Velikii (Environs)


In 1911, Russian photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863–1944) visited the town of Rostov the Great, located some 210 kilometers northeast of Moscow. Seen in this sweeping view to the west from the top of the Garden Tower of the Rostov citadel (kremlin) is the Savior-Saint James (Iakovlev) Saint Dimitrii Monastery, founded in 1389 by Bishop Iakov of Rostov (died 1392) and enlarged by Metropolitan Jonah Sysoevich (circa 1607–90) . In 1709, Metropolitan Dimitrii of Rostov (1651–1709), a strong supporter of Peter I (the Great) (1672–1725), was buried here. After his canonization in 1757, the monastery became a pilgrimage site patronized by prominent families such as the Sheremetevs, as well as by Emperor Alexander I (1777–1825). Most of its large churches, including the domed Cathedral of Saint Dimitrii in the center, were rebuilt in the early 19th century. To the right is the Church of the Savior on the Sands, the remnant of a convent founded in the 13th century by Princess Maria Mikhailovna (circa 1212–71) and merged with the Saint James Monastery in 1764. Lake Nero is dotted with a myriad of fishing boats. At the beginning of the 20th century, 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

Вид на Спасо-Яковлевский монастырь с вышки Ростовскаго музея в Кремле. Ростов Великий (Окрестности)

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: October 24, 2017