How Moscow looked 50 years ago (PHOTOS)

Leonid Lazarev / Gallery of classical photography
Moscow photographer Leonid Lazarev shows the city of the “Khrushchev thaw” era, conveying the spirit of that time with surprising accuracy.

The lens of the legendary master of photography Leonid Lazarev captured Yuri Gagarin and Nikita Khrushchev, but his main subjects were ordinary Soviet people. The “Live Twice” Exhibition, dedicated to the 80th anniversary of the great Soviet photographer, runs at the Gallery of Classic Photography in Moscow until Aug. 26.

1. Strokes of childhood, 1957

A boy runs ahead of a watering machine, near a pastry shop.

2. Moscow during theWorld Festival of Youth and Students, 1957

The 6th festival was the largest in its history. It was attended by 34,000 people from 131 countries. Moreover, Moscow became the northernmost city ever to host the event.

3. Forsaken flowers, 1957

Did she miss a date? Or just lose her flowers?

4. Skiers, 1957

Could there be anything more pleasant in winter than skiing in a Moscow park?

5. Volga car. The waiting. 1958

The elegant Volga was the dream of many Soviet people. Produced in the city of Gorky (now Nizhny Novgorod), it can still be spotted on the streets!

6. The trolleybus conductor, 1958

The first trolleybus rolled out on the streets of Moscow in the 1930s. It had a wooden frame, a metal cover, and a low maximum speed by today's standards: 50 km/hr. Since that time, many different trolleybuses were designed in Russia. Among them were the world’s most numerous trolleybus, rare double-decker models, and the first ever “trolleybus train.” 

7. On the corner. 2nd Lesnoy Lane, 1958

What did Soviet children do in the yards between apartment blocks? They played, chatted and even fought. 

8. Gorky Street, May 1, 1958

Labor Day on May 1 marks international workers’ solidarity and is a splendid opportunity to enjoy the coming spring. From 1932 to 1990, Moscow’s main street, Tverskaya, bore the name of the great Russian writer Maxim Gorky.

9. Belorussky railway station, 1959

Built in 1870, the Belorussky railway station is the starting point on the way to the Western borders of Russia.

10. Weekday, 1960

An ordinary day in Moscow.

11. Gifted hands, 1960s

The Monument to the Conquerors of Space was unveiled in the 1960s and is still located at the All Russian Exhibition Center.

12. Under the sun, 1961

Enjoying a spot of Moscow sunshine.

13. Mounted militia, 1962

Introduced in the 1800s, mounted guards usually patrol the beaches and park areas of the capital.

14. Window lights, 1967

Just 50 years ago Moscow was nowhere near as big as today. The multi-level residential areas outside the city center had only just appeared back then, and the night city became really amazing.  

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