Historical Photos of Central Asia, Persia & India

Click on the images below for enlarged images and further information on each photograph

These are all old photographs taken in the late 19th/early 20th century in Central Asia, including present day Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, East Turkestan, Iran, India and Tibet.

Photos of Persia (1870 - 1930)
Antoin Sevruguin (late 1830s - 1933)

Curiously, there are few photographs available of 19th century Persia. For some reason, photos were either apparently seldom taken or preserved for posterity. Sevruguin was uniquely placed to undertake this venture, though many of his original prints and negatives did not survive. Here are a merely a few of his images, of which more will appear here in the future. The surviving images are located in the Leiden Museum (Netherlands) and the Smithsonian Institution (Washington, DC)

Photos of Khiva (1850 - 1890)

Photos of Tibet
from The Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC

Rare Images - Holy Men of India

Images of India

Afghanistan in the 1950's
Ten Photos by Josephine Powell

Photos of Central Asia
(from Library of Congress)


Misc. Photos of Central Asia


Nomads in Central Asia

"Nothing could give me a more vivid picture of nomadic life; and when afterwards I questioned a Kirghiz woman respecting this mode of existence, she answered laughingly, 'We shall, I am certain, never be so indolent as you Mollahs and remain sitting days and days in one place! Man must keep moving; for behold, sun, moon, stars, water, beasts, bird, fish, all are in movement; it is but the dead and the earth that remain in their place!" - Armenius Vambery from 'Travels in Central Asia'


Street Life in the Cities of Turkestan




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