Rare Photographic Record of a Sea Voyage from Odessa to The Middle East in 1903-1904 [68 negatives on glass plates]
Odessa: 1903—1904. [N. Alekseev (photographer)]. Original labeled commercial boxes. Very Good. Item #207
A collection of 68 photographic negatives on glass plates ranging in size from H:12 x W:16 cm to H:30.5 x W:33 cm, most of them apparently taken from shipboard during a voyage of several Russian imperial steam yachts from Odessa to the Middle East in the first years of the 20th century. The photographs show (out of sequence) various vessels, port installations, ROPiT stations, participating individuals and coastal landscapes, from Odessa, Crimea, the Bosporus, Istanbul, the Dardanelles to Egyptian ports of Alexandria, Port Said, the Sea of Marmara, Jerusalem and others.
Twenty-nine of these plates depict ships, including one large American and several Russian torpedo boats, the steam yachts taking part in the voyage, such as "Grand-Duke Alexis", "Baklanov", "St. Nicholas", "Grand-Duchess Xenia", Austrian steamer "Habsburg", various sailing vessels, and smaller craft. Since written notations are lacking, not all the places are identified. One plate is inscribed "Jerusalem" [picnic in the forest].
Most of the plates are packed in their original labeled commercial boxes, from France (Lyon), Russia (Moscow), and dealer’s labels from Odessa. There is no record of the photographer, except of the inscription on one of the plates “N. Alekseev, 1903,” who was probably a professional employed by the imperial party, or a proficient amateur. All the plates are suitable for making photographic prints.
Since most of the pictures are “landscape” (horizontal), the dimensions of the glass plates in each Box are given as Height X Width. However, a few of the pictures are “portrait” (vertical). Five plates are damaged.
Box 1: 18 x 24 cm. (7 1/8 x 9 7/16 in.) - 11 plates;
Box 2: 24 x 30 cm. (9 ½ x 11 13/16 in.) – 19 plates;
Box 3: 25.5-30.5 x up to 33 cm. (10-13 ¾ x up to 13 in.) – 4 plates;
Box 4: 12 -13.5 x 16-19 cm. (4 ¾ -5 5/16 x 6 ¼ - 7 ½ in.) – 15 plates;
Box 5: 16.5 x 21.5 cm. (6 ½ x 8 7/16 in.) – 19 plates.