Зимняя канавка (Winter Canal) in St. Petersburg with
the Эрмитажный мост (Hermitage Bridge) in the
background. The canal connects the Neva River with
the Moika River next to the Winter Palace.
The Harder St. Petersburg
I now have available on the web two, old maps of St. Petersburg, Russia which I have been able to digitize. It took a little bit of doing and manipulating, but I think that they came out pretty nice.
The St. Petersburg map from 1914 is also very large, maybe 35" x 25", very detailed, and it is part of this assignment, the Harder St. Petersburg Map Assignment (HSPMA)!
As I mention on the introduction to the SSPMA, the decade of the 1890s was a time of sweeping transformation of the Russian capital city of St. Petersburg, as rapid industrialization encouraged by Count Serge Witte, the Minister of Finance, brought the establishment of large factory complexes to the city and the creation of working class suburbs to house the hundreds of thousands of workers needed for those factories. Count Witte was a firm believer in the need for railroads in Russia, and to build railroads, Russia needed a developed network of heavy industry. St. Petersburg became the central point of Russia's industrial network.
Consider these two short, simplified statistics that help to illustrate the rapid growth (and changing nature) of the city between 1897 and 1914:
- the population of St. Petersburg increased from roughly 1,250,000 in 1897 to about 2,215,000 in 1914 (wiki) That is an overall growth of over 75% in less than twenty years.
- the index of Russian industrial production increased from 44 in 1895 to 100 in
1913 (Mitchell’s Historical Statistics, 1750-1975, 2nd rev. ed.). That meant a lot more factories throughout the country and especially in St. Petersburg!
In a two-page paper, compare the 1897 and 1914 maps, and explain what you can discover about St. Petersburg at this time from looking at and analyzing these old maps. We can learn a lot from old maps, and these are excellent quality maps for us to look at more closely. I think that these are great maps! Of course, one map is in French, and the other map is in Russian, and so that might make your task a bit more challenging, but you can still pick up some of the changing features on the maps. You should aim for finding more than ten comments/items about the city from these maps.
You should also watch my video remarks about this assignment.
Here are some formal requirements for your paper:
- Must have an introduction and conclusion (each not to exceed three lines)
- May not exceed two pages (If you are going to go longer, please get permission.)
- One-inch margins
- Double-spaced (If you set up your items as an unordered, bulleted list, then you can single-space your explanation of each item.
- Name and date at top left
- Proper English grammar, spelling and style usage
- You may consider submitting a draft of your paper for feedback before submitting the assignment for a grade.