Russian State Historical Archive
- Location and Contact Details
Address: 195112, St. Petersburg, Zanevskii prosp., 36.
RGIA is within 15 minutes walk of Ladozhskaia metro: head left from the metro across an open area to a crossroads with traffic lights; cross to the opposite side of Zanevskii prospekt and walk back towards the city for 5 minutes. The archive building is on the right. There are trolleybuses direct from Nevskii Prospekt (but they are often very crowded): Nos. 1 & 22.
Opening Hours: Monday – Thursday: 1000 – 1700
Friday 1000—1600 The sanitarnyi den’ is the last Friday of each month.
- How to Register
The entrance for researchers is at the far end of the archive building. The propusk office is on the left of the entrance (but the garderob is down the corridor on the right). Passport, a colour passport photo and a zaiavlenie are needed to obtain a propusk (the archive website has an example zaiavlenie: http://www.fgurgia.ru/showObject.do?object=34621372).
It’s best to give a broad theme on the zaiavlenie to avoid problems with documents being refused as ‘ne po teme’. The propusk must be handed over – at the same office – on each visit to the archive in return for a visitor’s pass and a kontrol’yni listok. At the end of the day the process is reversed.
- How to Order Material
Dela are ordered in the reading room (but check the list of closed fondy carefully). Hand the requests to the desk in the centre of the reading room. There is a limit of 3 orders per day and a researcher can have no more than 6 dela at any one time. Documents are ready on the 3rd day after ordering.
- Reading Room Practices, General Hints and Tips
The reading room is on the third floor (accessible only by lift); turn left when coming out of the lift. The opisi have all been scanned and are all available on PCs in the reading room and in the naucho-spavochnyi tsentr on the same floor (on the left down the long corridor from the lift). This also has the enormous original archive card indexes (and very helpful staff who will readily offer advice on the intricacies of the catalogues). The archive’s website has a list of opisi, but does not have links to the contents of them. RGIA also holds an exceptional research library, made up of the library of the former State Council and parts of the Holy Synod library. Sign the book at the entrance to the reading room, pick a seat and then collect documents from the small window by the reading room entrance. No cameras are allowed anywhere in the building: this is rigidly enforced, with CCTV in the reading room. Readers caught using cameras are banned from the archive for long periods (and pictures of the guilty displayed in the archive). No paper photocopying, but documents can be scanned. Price is 64 RUR per frame, with a limit of 400 frames per year per reader. Get an order form from the reading room central desk, show the pages to the staff there and get them to check that the list numbers are filled in correctly. They will vet the file and authorise it. Pay at the kassa in the same room as the propusk is issued. The scanning takes about a month and the scans can be emailed or put on a CD. Either bring a change of footwear for the archive, or else be prepared to pay 5RUR a day for flimsy ‘bakhili’. There is a good stolovaia in the archive building, open after 13.00 for researchers. The Mak-Kafe at the metro is good for the morning caffeine ration before walking down to the archive.
Have you visited this archive?
Have you visited this archive?
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