Vidy Valaamskago monastyria.

Collection History

The Library acquired the majority of the albums in this digital presentation during the early 1930s. Many were originally part of Romanov palace libraries nationalized by the Soviet government and sold abroad for hard currency.


Subjects include Russian Orthodox churches, monasteries, and ecclesiastical art; views of cities, as well as small provincial towns; secular architecture; tsarist- and Soviet-era political exiles; and the diverse peoples of the Russian Empire. A number of albums include portraits of the Tsar or the imperial family; state occasions, military maneuvers, and relaxation at the imperial hunting lodge are all depicted. Represented as well are military operations, particularly during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78. Russian Revolutionary-era photos are extensive, ranging from the immediate aftermath of the February Revolution, to the Stalinist period.

Many of the imperial association albums-that is, those presented as gifts to the royal family-are of superior technical and artistic quality, and in several cases mounted in bindings that are themselves works of art, incorporating silver, wood, and other decorative elements.

Related Resources

Hee-Gwone Yoo."Holdings of rare photographs and plate books at the Slavic and Baltic Division of The New York Public Library." Rosia yongu (Russian Studies), vol. 12, no. 1 (2002): [323]-332.

Collection Data

According to Pierre Apraxine, "leather bound album, all edges gilt, of 40 bromide plates of identical size (6 9/16 x 8 7/8") mounted back to back into the page (as in carte de visite albums). Titled on the cover binding: "Views of the Monastery of Valaam," bookmark of the Gr. Duke Vl. Aleks. on back of first page. Written in pencil on the second: Hammer, May 3, 1945. Album documents the Monastery of Valaam, various hermitages (All Saints, St. Nicholas, etc.), natural settings, and occupations of the monks. Includes a general view of the Monastery, with processions or interior views of churches, tombs, grottos, and retreats of holy monks. Then follows diverse activities: construction of church, fishing in the lake, harvesting cabbages or hay. Follows nature views of cliff, and shores of Lake Valaam, holy monk's abandoned huts, etc., generally with monks posing in foreground. All photos are in Russian in caligraphic script. Album depicts in post-card images the life, architecture, and settings of the monastery. As such it is a very general but good introduction. None of the photographs are signed. The date is suggested by the bromide process. The condition is good."
Dates / Origin
Date Created: 1890
Place: n.p.
Library locations
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Photography Collection
Shelf locator: Slav. Reserve Photo (Vidy Valaamskago) and *ZQ-1009
Valaamskii monastyr
Monasteries, Orthodox Eastern -- Russia
Photograph albums
Physical Description
Extent: 40 photographs on 21 l. ; 26 x 37 cm.
Gelatin silver prints
Type of Resource
Still image
NYPL catalog ID (B-number): b11614048
Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): ff53edd0-c6dc-012f-d875-58d385a7bc34
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