Camel Grazing in the Steppe. Golodnaia Steppe
Located to the southeast of the Kyzyl Kum Desert, Golodnaia Steppe is composed of the loess variety of soil suitable for growing grass and small shrubs in semi-arid conditions. Shown here is a dromedary camel (with a single hump) grazing in the midst of the steppe grasslands. The harsh continental climate of Golodnaia Steppe—cold in the winter and extreme heat in the summer—made camels the primary beast of burden in this area. Central Asia is more commonly associated with the Bactrian camel (with two humps). In the hazy distance is the Turkestan Range. The image is by Russian photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863–1944), who used a special color photography process to create a visual record of the Russian Empire in the early 20th century. Some of Prokudin-Gorskii’s photographs date from about 1905, but the bulk of his work is from between 1909 and 1915, when, with the support of Tsar Nicholas II and the Ministry of Transportation, he undertook extended trips through many different parts of the empire. In 1911 he made two trips to an area of Central Asia then known as Turkestan (present-day Uzbekistan and neighboring states), where he photographed Islamic architecture as well as Russian development of the area. Among the Russian developments projects in Turkestan was the diversion of water from the Syr-Darya River to create a productive area for raising cotton and wheat in the Golodnaia Steppe (“Hungry Steppe”).
- acku Afghanistan
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- Contained in galleries