Jaan Einasto at first investigated the structure of nearby galaxies and helped to deduce that they are dominated by dark matter. Joeveer at first studied the distribution and dynamics of stars in our Milky Way galaxy. In a joint effort in the mid-1970s, they investigated the galaxy distribution using catalogued data and began to see evidence for large-scale inhomogeneities. A careful review of their investigation reveals shortcomings. The Tartu Observatory 1.5-m telescope was built and commissioned in this era, but it was not equipped with a spectrograph capable of detecting galaxy redshifts. The greatest advantage held by the Estonians came from their early knowledge of computer simulations by Shandarin based on the Zeldovich approximation. At IAU Symposium No. 79 organized by the Estonian astronomers, the first open discussion was held of cosmic voids. Also participating in the meeting was Brent Tully, an expert on the structure of the Local supercluster.