The oldest of four brothers, all of whom had tangential associations with archeology, Fedor was a Byzantinist, best known as the director of the Russian Archeological Institute in Constantinople, which opened in 1894. Uspenskii was particularly interested in studying the Slavic lands of the Ottoman Empire via the Institute, especially their Orthodox artefacts. Although the guns of August, 1914, forced the closure of the Institute, Uspenskii took his archeological ambitions to the Russian Army on the Caucasian front, where it was enjoying success against the Turkish forces. Planning for a Russian victory, he dreamed of a Russian liturgy being prayed in the Hagia Sophia.
Unlike his brother Nikolai, who directed his attention to the specific topic of church architecture, Fedor turned his to a region, Vilna. He taught there, worked in digs there, and involved himself with the Archeological Museum, writing a guide to it. In addition to drafting an archeological map of Vilna Province, he made one also of Grodno Province.
Nevostruev was one of the first archeologists to come from Viatka, just as he was also among the first trained in theology to develop church archeology as a branch of the science. His primary contribution was the cataloging of Slavic manuscripts in the Synodal Library, which won him the Lomonosov Prize, but he also excavated in the Ananinskii Mogilnik.