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  • Writer's pictureMichael Laxer

Soviet Murmansk 1973 -- 16 Vintage Images

16 postcard images of the world's largest city north of the Arctic Circle

In 1973, as is true today, Murmansk was the largest city in the world north of the Arctic Circle. Since the fall of the USSR its population has declined from a height of over 450,000 to just under 300,000 in 2014.

During the Soviet era the city was an important port and naval center as well as being home to various industries and fisheries. It played a critical role during World War II as a destination for Allied aid convoys to the Soviet Union thanks to its rail and road connections with Moscow and its ice free harbour. Despite never having fallen to the German troops that tried to capture it, Murmansk was severely damaged by constant artillery and air bombardment. As with other Soviet cities it was rebuilt and greatly expanded after the war.

For its remarkable resistance the city was designated as a Hero City of the USSR in 1985.

This set of 16 summertime postcard images was aimed at both a domestic and foreign audience with descriptive text in five languages.

The images are a terrific compilation of diverse streetscapes, important buildings and monuments and, unsurprisingly, a number of maritime and naval photos.

The Railway Station

The Kirov Palace of Culture

Lenin Avenue

The Port Building

The House of Soviets

Captain Jegorov Street

Regional Drama Theatre

Monument to the Heroic Sixth Battery

The Sixth Battery played a critical role in defending the city during the constant German attacks. It took heavy losses and displayed exceptional bravery.

The Murmansk Port

The House of Political Education

The Building of the Northern Fisheries and the Regional Trade Union Council

The Rodina Cinema

The Fishing Port

Regional Library

New Residential District on Varnichny Hill

Kola Bay


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