Made of large logs of pine, spruce or larch, a tall and spacious northern izba (log-house) was heated by a huge Russian stove. If the stove was the heart of the Russian house, its soul was the Red Corner (red meaning beautiful in old Russian) where the family’s sacred objects sat.

This area included holy icons draped over with the embroidered bozhnik (godly-towel), a Bible—if there was a literate person in the household—and occasionally a figurine of a saint brought from a pilgrimage by a pious relative.  Wooden representations of St. Nilus of Stolben were common.  An oil lamp suspended from the ceiling burned in front of the icons.