Now on the Web: the 20th century through Soviet eyes

December 7, 2001

Cameras were rolling and clicking when the world’s first space traveler returned home, when Soviet leaders discussed anticapitalism campaigns, and when Russian troops invaded Afghanistan. But the 38,000 films and more than 1 million pictures chronicling significant events of the former Soviet Union have been guarded in vaults, accessible only to a few government-approved groups.