Moscow in 1931 Through Branson DeCou’s Lens

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American photographer and travelogue lecturer Branson DeCou journeyed the world for thirty years before his death in 1941 at the relatively young age of 49.

DeCou was born October 20, 1892, in Philadelphia, a city with a long history of photographic invention, from the pioneer Langenheim brothers to the work of Thomas Eakins. The city also has a tradition of collecting and publishing photographs – the Library Company of Philadelphia, American’s oldest cultural institution, had exceptional holdings of photographic works well before 1900 – as well as active associations for professionals and amateurs such as the Philadelphia Photographic Exchange Club and the Philadelphia Photographic Society.
The photos below were taken by Branson DeCou that show street scenes of Moscow in 1931. They were later colored with aniline ink.
Moscow 1931

“Best service – to workers!”, Moscow 1931

A foreigner is surrounded by the Muscovites, Moscow 1931

A parking lot next to Leningrad railway station, Moscow 1931

Agitation on Soviet Square: “The 5-year plan ensures tremendous amplitude of socialistic construction”, Moscow 1931

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