The White Stone Transfiguration tower is one of the gate towers built by the Pskov masters by the end of the 16th century in the Kazan Kremlin, presumably, on the site of the Temensk Gate. Of all the defensive towers of the Kremlin, it is the most powerful and impressive.
When Ivan the Terrible entered Kazan, he immediately ordered to build fortifications.
Three years after the conquest of Kazan, he commanded to send out two hundred people from Pskov – masons and wall masters – in order to disassemble, erect and repair.
One of the constructed towers, Transfiguration Tower, served as the entrance to the Kremlin on the West side. Only military personnel or the clergy were using it as an entrance. Originally, the tower was called Sergievskaya in honor of the Trinity-Sergius monastery, which was founded in 1553 and existed until 1734. And then - in honor of the Saviour's Transfiguration Monastery, in close proximity of which it was located.
The tower was the work of Ivan Postnik and Barma, who erected the Cathedral of Intercession (St. Basil's Cathedral), but it is believed that it was rebuilt afterwards, since there is definitely an influence of the Moscow defensive architecture in the image of the tower.
The tower was almost rectangular even back then. It was shaped as a truncated pyramid, but with a quadrangular wooden hip roof, five upper battlements and a viewing tower. Subsequently, the battlements were filled, the hip roof was removed, and the walls were covered with plaster. They remained as such until the second half of the 20th century.
In the 70s, the tower was returned to the former majestic image of a defense facility. The plaster was removed, the battlements were disassembled and restored, the observation deck was repaired. The low roof was once again replaced with an imposing four-cornered hip roof with a weather vane, which preserved the features of Tatar fortress architecture.
The passage of this tower was blocked for a long time after the peasant uprising of 1774. And only at the beginning of the twenty-first century, the passage was once again opened. Today, tourists are using the passage. The entrance looks as if it is guarded by a mighty giant - the pylons on either side of the entrance look like huge white boots.