The Place Iljinka, (i.e., Il'inka), Moscow, Russia

This photochrome print of Place Ilinka in Moscow is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites Primarily in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). Place Ilinka is located in Kitai-Gorod, an area near Red Square. As described in Baedeker’s Russia with Teheran, Port Arthur, and Peking (1914), “[the] central and main street of the Kitai-Gorod, almost exclusively occupied by wholesale houses and banks, is named the Ilyinka.” Kitai-Gorod was one of Moscow’s commercial centers, as evidenced by the construction of many banks and shops during the 19th century. The monument in the middle of Place Ilinka is a memorial to the fallen Russian soldiers from the Battle of Plevna (1877), which took place during the Russo-Turkish war of 1877-78. Designed by the Russian architect Vladimir Osipovich Shervud (1833–97), the monument was erected in 1887.

Monument of Catherine II, St. Petersburg, Russia

This photochrome print of the Catherine II monument in St. Petersburg is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites Primarily in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). Empress Catherine II, also known as Catherine the Great, ruled Russia from 1762 to 1796. She was much admired, particularly by the Russian nobility, who benefited from the reforms she instituted. The monument, erected in 1873, stands in a square just off of St. Petersburg’s main thoroughfare, Nevsky Prospekt. It was designed by Mikhail Osipovich Mikeshin (1835–96) and Alexander Mikhailovich Opekushin (1838–1923). As described in Baedeker’s Russia with Teheran, Port Arthur, and Peking (1914), “a base of reddish granite supports a bell-shaped pedestal bearing a figure of the Empress, 13 ft. in height, clad in an ermine mantle, and holding the imperial scepter in her right hand and wreath in her left. Round the pedestal are nine colossal bronze figures of celebrated contemporaries of the Empress.” These “celebrated contemporaries” include General Alexander Suvorov, the politician Prince Potiomkin, Ekaterina Dashkova, the first woman to chair the Russian Academy of Sciences, and the celebrated poet Gavrila Derzhavin.

Peterhof from Castle, St. Petersburg, Russia

This photochrome print of the palace of Peterhof in St. Petersburg is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites Primarily in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). Based on a design by the French architect Alexandre Jean-Baptiste LeBlond (1679–1719), Peterhof is regarded as the Russian Versailles. It was built by Peter the Great (1672–1725) as a summer residence. Located on the shore of the Neva Bay (or Gulf of Kronstadt), the palace offers a view of Kronstadt, the city and fortification founded by Peter in 1703. Shown here is the Samson Fountain, a work by the Russian sculptor Mikhail Kozlovski (1753–1802). As described in Baedeker’s Russia with Teheran, Port Arthur, and Peking (1914), the main feature of the fountain “consists of a bronze-gilt figure of Samson . . . forcing open the jaw of a lion, from which a jet of water as thick as a man’s arm shoots up to a height of 65 ft. The cascade is flanked with about 45 gilded statues, vases, and the like. The space between the palace and the beach, 330 yds. in width, is laid out as a park. The paths skirting the canal are enclosed by lofty pine-trees interspersed with 22 fountains (11 on each side).”

The Isaac Cathedral from Alexander's Garden, St. Petersburg, Russia

This photochrome print of St. Isaac’s Cathedral in St. Petersburg is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites Primarily in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). Named after St. Isaac, the presumed patron saint of Peter the Great (1672-1725), the cathedral was commissioned by Alexander I (1777–1825) and was built between 1819 and 1858 under the direction of the French architect Richard de Montferrand (1786–1858). It is the largest cathedral in Russia. According to Baedeker’s Russia with Teheran, Port Arthur, and Peking (1914): “The cathedral, built of granite and marble with a lavish disregard of cost, is in the shape of a cross 364 ft. long and 315 ft. wide. . . . The doors are approached by wide granite steps.” The gilded dome, “visible at a great distance,” required more than 100 kilograms of gold to complete.

Kasan Cathedral, St. Petersburg, Russia

This photochrome print of the Kazan Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral of Our Lady of Kazan, in St. Petersburg, is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites Primarily in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). The cathedral takes its name from Our Lady of Kazan, the most venerated icon of the Russian Orthodox Church, and was designed by the Russian architect Andrey Voronikhin (1759–1814). According to Baedeker’s Russia with Teheran, Port Arthur, and Peking (1914), the cathedral is “approached by a semicircular colonnade of 136 Corinthian columns, modeled on that of St. Peter’s at Rome. The church, erected in 1801-11 . . . . at a cost of 4 million rubles, is in the form of a cross 236 ft. long and 180 ft. wide. It is surmounted by a metal dome 65 ft. in diameter, the drum of which is adorned with 16 pilasters. The total height to the top of the cross is 260 ft. . . . The bronze doors of the main entrance are copies of the doors of the Baptistry in Florence.”

Peter the Great Place, St. Petersburg, Russia

This photochrome print of Peter the Great Place in St. Petersburg is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites Primarily in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). The statue, which stands beside the Neva River, just before St. Isaac's Cathedral (visible in the background), is famous as the “Bronze Horseman” of Alexander Pushkin's narrative poem of 1833. The statue was commissioned by Catherine II (1762–96) to honor Peter I. A model was made by French sculptor Etienne Maurice Falconet (1716–91) in 1769. Casting of the statue began in 1775 and was completed in 1782. The statue rests on an enormous block of granite measuring 14 meters long, six meters wide, and five meters high. Baedeker's Russia with Teheran, Port Arthur, and Peking (1914) noted: "To the W. of the Admiralty lies Peter Square, with flower-beds, and (near the Neva) the famous Equestrian Statue of Peter the Great. The Tzar, riding up a rocky slope, has his face turned to the Neva, and points with his right hand towards the scene of his labours."

The Newsky, (i.e., Nevskii), Prospekt and the Admiralty, St. Petersburg, Russia

This photochrome print of the Nevsky Prospect and the Admiralty in St. Petersburg is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites Primarily in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). In his novel, Nevsky Prospect, Gogol wrote of the street, “Step into it, and you step into a fairground.” Named for Alexander Nevsky (1220–63), the 13th-century hero who led Russian armies to victory over German and Swedish invaders, Nevsky Prospekt was planned by Peter the Great (1672-1725) and designed by the French architect Alexandre Jean Baptiste LeBlond (1679–1719). It runs from the Admiralty (visible in this photograph) to the Alexander Nevsky Lavra (Monastery). Baedeker’s Russia with Teheran, Port Arthur, and Peking (1914) described the street as “115 ft. wide and 2 ¾ M. long, being the longest street in St. Petersburg. From the Admiralty it runs in a straight line as far as the Znamenskaya Square, where it trends slightly to the S. and runs through a poorer quarter to the Alexander Nevski Monastery. As far as the part W. of the Anitchkov Bridge is concerned, it is the busiest street in St. Petersburg.” The Admiralty was one of the first structures built in St Petersburg. Construction began in 1704, a year after the founding of the city itself, by command of Peter the Great, who wanted to create a formidable Russian navy. The contemporary structure was built in 1806–23 by Russian architect Adrian Zakharov (1761–1811). It is more than 400 meters wide and 160 meters high, with a commanding golden spire that is more than 70 meters tall.

The Winter Palace Place and Alexander's Column, St. Petersburg, Russia

This photochrome print of the Winter Palace and Alexander’s Column in St. Petersburg is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites Primarily in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). The Winter Palace was built between 1754 and 1762 for Empress Elizabeth, the daughter of Peter the Great (1672-1725), and served as the residence of the Russian tsars from the 1760s until the revolution of 1917. The Baroque-style building measures more than 17,000 square meters and is distinguished by its striking green hue, Corinthian columns, and decorative emblems and figures related to Russia’s past. The palace now houses the world-renowned State Hermitage Museum. In front of the Winter Palace, in the center of Palace Square, is Alexander’s Column, which honors Tsar Alexander I (1777–1825). The column was designed by the French architect Auguste Richard de Montferrand (1786–1858), who was also the architect of St. Isaac’s Cathedral in St. Petersburg (the largest and tallest Russian Orthodox cathedral at the time). The 550-metric-ton column is made of red granite. An 1886 article in Harper’s Magazine described it as "the greatest monolith of modern times. . . . It is a single shaft of red granite, 84 feet high and 14 feet in diameter, placed on a cubic monolithic pedestal 25 feet high, and surmounted by a bronze capital, above which rise an angel and a cross, giving it a total height of 154 feet.”

Cathedral of SS, Peter and Paul, St. Petersburg, Russia

This photochrome print of the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul, the patron saints of St. Petersburg, is part of “Views of Architecture and Other Sites Primarily in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). Construction of a wooden church on the site of the cathedral began in 1703, one month after the city of St. Petersburg was officially founded. The church was consecrated on April 1, 1704. The stone cathedral was built between 1712 and 1733, under the direction of the Swiss-Italian architect Domenico Trezzini (1670–1734). The new cathedral was consecrated on June 29, 1733. The bell tower burned down on the night of April 29-30, 1756, in a fire caused by lightning. In 1766, Catherine the Great ordered that the bell tower be rebuilt, and the new tower was completed in 1776. The cathedral has served as the burial site of Russian emperors and their families from the time of Peter the Great (1672-1725).

Champs Elysees, an Avenue, Paris, France

This photochrome print of the Champs-Elysées in Paris is part of “Views of Architecture, Monuments, and Other Sites in France” from the catalog of the Detroit Publishing Company (1905). The area of the Champs-Elysées originally consisted of fields and market-gardens. In 1616, Marie de Medici (1575–1642), the widow of Henri IV, extended the Tuileries gardens to create a walkway flanked by trees. The pathway was further extended in 1667 by the landscape architect André Le Nôtre (1613–1700). The avenue, now nearly two kilometers long, stretches between Place de la Concorde and the Arc de Triomphe. As described in the 1900 edition of Baedeker’s Paris and its Environs, with routes from London to Paris: Handbook for Travellers, “this magnificent avenue, flanked with handsome buildings, is one of the most fashionable promenades in Paris."