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Virtual Tour

Select one of the maps below to explore the city of Kazan as it appeared in the mid-nineteenth century. Click on the red arrows which appear on the map () to display historical images of the city along the indicated sightlines.

The map dates to about 1820. The images range from 1834 to 1901, but all are selected to provide an accurate sense of how the city looked around the middle of the century.


What's missing from the tour?

It is important to remember that the images we have from nineteenth-century Kazan reflect the shared understanding (at least among those who had the means to capture or commission images) about what aspects of the city were most important and aesthetically appealing.

Thus these albums are dominated by scenic panoramas, views of the Kreml, houses of worship and official buildings, and the city's prosperous downtown core. Far fewer pictures preserve a sense of the daily life of the peasants, workers, tradesmen, and petty merchants who made up the majority of Kazan's population.