Interactive GULAG Map
The GULAG History Museum created an interactive map – a replenishable database dedicated to history and geography of the labour camps, that operated in the USSR from 1918 to 1960
Interactive GULAG map is a visual representation of the History of the Soviet camp system, that is known all over the world as GULAG. The map was created by the GULAG History Museum and represents a database about the colonies, camps and special settlements, that existed in the country from the first years of the soviets till the end of the 1950s.
The scientific base for the project was supplied by the archive materials, photo albums of the camps and colonies, memoirs of the witnesses and video interviews with them. The basis for the map was formed by the reference book “The system of the labour camps in the USSR”, published by the International Memorial society for the 25th anniversary of the appearance of Solzhenitsyn’s “The GULAG Archipelago”.
The map gives the opportunity to trace the chronology of the tragical events, to see, how the GULAG appeared, how it grew, reaches its highest power in the end of 1940s and faced the recession in the middle of 1950s. The scale of the camp system that embraced the whole country from the Baltic Sea and Crimea to Chukotka and Sakhalin, is vividly demonstrated.
The map has several levels, in each of which there are different types of camps: labour camps, special camps on the territory of the GDR, filtration camps e.t.c. It helps to understand the structure of the Soviet punitive system. By now the map depicts approximately 550 objects in USSR and outside the country.
In future the map will provide information also about the first camps of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, children colonies, special settlements for the convicted peasants and the deported peoples, as well as about the special camps in the Soviet occupation zone in Germany. The map will be also replenished by the photos and documents.
The GULAG History Museum invites to collaboration the historians from different regions of Russia and welcomes any information about camps. First of all the cartographic materials, photo albums NKVD-MVD, statistic information, materials from regional museums and archives, as well as the modern photos of the “traces of GULAG” are of interest. This information would replenish the interactive map.
The project of the user interface of the interactive GULAG map, its back and front end and visualization of the data was processed by “Urbika”.
The project is effectuated using the presidential grant of the Russian federation for the development of civil society, rendered by the Fond of the presidential grants.
In the Documentation center of the Museum, where every visitor can use it, a sensory panel with an interactive GULAG map is installed.