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Russia's 'Wild Nineties' As You've Never Seen Them Before

An initiative has been launched to digitize Russia's photographic archive. Russiainphoto.ru has more than 80,000 images ranging from the 1860s up to 1999. RFE/RL's Amos Chapple had a look through the archive's 1990s collection and found 18 gems. From "Passion Boulevard" to the battleground, here's a taste of everyday life during one of the most turbulent eras in Russia's history.

Galina Brezhneva, the daughter of Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev, dancing on a table during a "home holiday" in the early 1990s. 
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Galina Brezhneva, the daughter of Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev, dancing on a table during a "home holiday" in the early 1990s. 

The last snow of the year in the isolated northern village of Glazovo on May 5, 1990.
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The last snow of the year in the isolated northern village of Glazovo on May 5, 1990.

"Russian Crossroads" in 1991. When the image appeared on Russian social media, a commenter noted that "only a bear is missing." 
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"Russian Crossroads" in 1991. When the image appeared on Russian social media, a commenter noted that "only a bear is missing." 

Young Russians relaxing in the sun. The photographer, Nikolai Baharev, grew up an orphan and worked as a locksmith, photographing people in his spare time. Today the 69-year-old exhibits in Europe's most prestigious galleries. 
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Young Russians relaxing in the sun. The photographer, Nikolai Baharev, grew up an orphan and worked as a locksmith, photographing people in his spare time. Today the 69-year-old exhibits in Europe's most prestigious galleries. 

Revellers during Moscow's 850th anniversary pageant in 1997. The celebrations ran for a full week. 
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Revellers during Moscow's 850th anniversary pageant in 1997. The celebrations ran for a full week. 

A Moscow model in 1991, posing for a photo called "Passion Boulevard".
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A Moscow model in 1991, posing for a photo called "Passion Boulevard".

View of the Patriarch's Palace inside the Kremlin, pictured in 1995. 
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View of the Patriarch's Palace inside the Kremlin, pictured in 1995. 

Image of a prisoner at work in Vladimir, a city 200 kilometers east of Moscow, in 1990. 
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Image of a prisoner at work in Vladimir, a city 200 kilometers east of Moscow, in 1990. 

The keeper of the Kremlin chimes, looking out of the Spasskaya Tower. 
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The keeper of the Kremlin chimes, looking out of the Spasskaya Tower. 

Snowfall in Moscow in 1994. 
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Snowfall in Moscow in 1994. 

"Duet," a portrait of two synchronized swimmers. 
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"Duet," a portrait of two synchronized swimmers. 

Soviet cosmonauts Pyotr Klimuk (left) and Aleksei Leonov partying in the early 1990s. Klimuk was the first Belarusian in space. Leonov was the first man to carry out a spacewalk when, in March, 1965, he floated through space attached to his spacecraft with a rope tether. 
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Soviet cosmonauts Pyotr Klimuk (left) and Aleksei Leonov partying in the early 1990s. Klimuk was the first Belarusian in space. Leonov was the first man to carry out a spacewalk when, in March, 1965, he floated through space attached to his spacecraft with a rope tether. 

A Moscow traffic policeman in 1994. 
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A Moscow traffic policeman in 1994. 

Elderly women in Grozny during the second Chechen war in 1999. 
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Elderly women in Grozny during the second Chechen war in 1999. 

Russian troops bombarding separatists during the second Chechen war in 1999. 
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Russian troops bombarding separatists during the second Chechen war in 1999. 

Russian Army cadets in the late 1990s.
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Russian Army cadets in the late 1990s.

Women at a savings bank in 1998. The year saw economic turmoil for ordinary Russians when the ruble lost 34 percent of its value against the dollar within four months. 
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Women at a savings bank in 1998. The year saw economic turmoil for ordinary Russians when the ruble lost 34 percent of its value against the dollar within four months. 

A wet fall day in Moscow, 1990. 
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A wet fall day in Moscow, 1990. 

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