Alexander Palace Forum

Discussions about the Imperial Family and European Royalty => The Myth and Legends of Survivors => Topic started by: Forum Admin on January 08, 2011, 04:03:30 PM

Title: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Forum Admin on January 08, 2011, 04:03:30 PM
Now that King and Wilson have demonstrated with certainty that Anna Anderson was indeed FS, and science has proven Anna Anderson could never have been Anastatsia, the question remains, just how and why she was able to pull it off.  Please discuss the issues here, so we don't bog down the book discussion thread.

Thanks!
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 08, 2011, 10:43:46 PM
I was wandering about this exact issue too, FA. Thanks to have opened this discussion right here. You know that I was supportive of Mrs. Anderson claim and that I was sincere on it. Even today I'm amazed about what King and Wilson had discovered. With all these documents and DNA tests we can now accept for sure that AA was FS.

My principal question about AA 's ability to pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia" is, in fact, very simple. If she was not the Grand Duchess, how could she even imagine that any member of the Imperial Family that knew "her" from before would acknowledge her as the person she really wasn't? Wilson and King assures that she knew all time what she was doing and it could be true, but...Did she really believed that Empress Maria Fyodorovna (she always begged to be sent to see her in Denmark) would said: " Oh! This is my granddaughter! How happy I am having found her alive!" if she wasn't Anastasia? Could she think that Olga Alexandrovna, the aunt that loved Anastasia as her own daughter would accept her only for she was something similar to her niece on the upper part of her face? . I doubt it...

I've always believed that AA was AN not only for I always found them like twins in pics, but for the fact that if she was not the lost Grand Duchess her case wouldn't last so many decades as it did. There s not only physicall similarities, but also the "Anastasia way of being" , that only her family would know. It's obvious that Olga Alexandrovna didn't found it in AA, nor Irene, nor Felix Yussupov...But then...HOW IN HECK did she all this charade?

You could answer: "It lasted so long for people wanted to believe that someone had survived", but it doesn't explain the facts, since there were lots of pretenders and no one could be taken seriously by anyone. None of those cases lasted seven decades as Mrs. Anderson did...Yes; Gleb Botkin helped her, coached her and all...Mrs. Rathlef did it too. But their help somewhat harmed AA's claim, since Rathlef feeded her with a lot of errors that AA would repeat making herself ridiculous...So, how she did it? My answer, by now is I DON'T KNOW.

RealAnastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on January 08, 2011, 11:41:33 PM
RA: In the book we try to show that it probably all begin as a kind oj joke at Dalldorf-if she pretended to be a Grand Duchess, the nurses treated her with respect and brought her presents. It was when everyone else tried to PROVE it on her behalf that Franziska essentially became trapped in her own lie-she could admit it or she could go on. And she decided-for whatever reasons-fear of imprisonment, fear of going back to her miserable life-to keep it going.

We try to show how no matter what she may have said she NEVER actually wanted to meet people who had known Anastasia and usually did not talk to them, turned to the wall, and avoided questions. She may well have said that she wanted to see the Dowager Empress, but probably knew that this would not take place. She certainly showed no joy at meeting Irene or Olga Alexandrovna.

The "How" she did it involved hundreds of details and cannot be easily described in a post, so perhaps if you have specific questions about particular persons or events we can answer them for you easier.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on January 09, 2011, 12:43:02 AM
She pulled it off because there were a lot of people that WANTED to believe her.  They shoved their doubts into a box.  Also, maybe that saw AA never met the real Anastasia or hadn't seen her in years.  Plus, the fate of the real Anastasia was still a mystery in those days, so their was doubt.

No doubt the Dowager Empress would have shot her down right then and there, but by that time her health was failing and she didn't want to deal with the fact that her son and his family were all dead (or rather two sons, if you include Michael).  So the surviving Romanovs more or less kept quiet until Marie died, then they opened fire on AA. 

It was just a convergence of circumstances that allowed FS to "become" Anastasia, and play that role for the rest of her life.  By the time the means came to expose her, she was dead.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: LisaDavidson on January 09, 2011, 01:25:14 PM
I see the impersonation as kind of a "perfect storm". The death of the IF was deeply shocking to everyone (except perhaps the Bolsheviks) that the expatriate Russians in Berlin were especially susceptible to the idea of a surviving grand duchess. Franziska didn't start out with an end game of impersonating the tsar's daughter, like Greg and Penny, I think initially it was just a short tern bid for more attention. She was so damaged that she literally became another person because she could not bear to live as Franziska and as "Anna Anderson" she did not have to work for her keep and was the one served. AA had enough resemblance to the girls that she could carry it off and she only had to tolerate people who'd known the real Anastasia for a very short time.

My thought is that anyone less intelligent or less damaged could never have carried it off.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on January 09, 2011, 09:28:37 PM
Absolutely. She was lucky in her physical features, her timing, and in those she most often met, lucky in whom she was surrounded by, lucky by the uncertainty-but above all of that she had to have possessed some considerable charm at times (when not throwing tantrums) to have won people over. That charm meshed with desire and then you get Lisa's "perfect storm."
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 09, 2011, 11:13:20 PM
RA: In the book we try to show that it probably all begin as a kind oj joke at Dalldorf-if she pretended to be a Grand Duchess, the nurses treated her with respect and brought her presents. It was when everyone else tried to PROVE it on her behalf that Franziska essentially became trapped in her own lie-she could admit it or she could go on. And she decided-for whatever reasons-fear of imprisonment, fear of going back to her miserable life-to keep it going.

We try to show how no matter what she may have said she NEVER actually wanted to meet people who had known Anastasia and usually did not talk to them, turned to the wall, and avoided questions. She may well have said that she wanted to see the Dowager Empress, but probably knew that this would not take place. She certainly showed no joy at meeting Irene or Olga Alexandrovna.

The "How" she did it involved hundreds of details and cannot be easily described in a post, so perhaps if you have specific questions about particular persons or events we can answer them for you easier.

Yes. It seems she avoided to meet certain Romanov family members. And it’s true that she often turned to the wall trying not to establish eye-contac with persons who had personally known the real Anastasia (not me! The real one..hahaha), but I think she asked Tatiana Botkin about going visit her “grandmother”, Empress Maria living currently in Denmark. Tatiana answered her that her “Grandmamma” wanted nothing to do with her , and that her “auntie” Olga had said she don’t believe AA was Anstasia. The claimant became furious and desperate, since apparently she wanted to see her “granny”. She repeated over ando ver: “I want to see my grandmother! I will prove it! (her claim), I will prove it!”  (this quotation can be found in Peter Kurth’s book: “Anastasia; The Riddle of Anna Anderson, pag 161) Was she realizing that if Maria Fyodorovna would meet her, she would also deny her claim as a fraud?

It seems that she also wanted to see Ernest of Hesse. Or at least, this is what Harriet Rathlef wrote. Maybe AA didn’t want to and she just tried to arrange a meeting without consulting the issue with her protegée. And certainly, she was not shy at the time of meeting Gleb Botkin and Tatiana, people who were never as close as they claimed to be, to the IF, but that knows Anastasia’s features perfectly to said if she was the “real thing” or not. It’s true that people of her intimacy whispered in her ear who were Gleb and Tatiana BEFORE they visited her , but even if she know who they were by the moment she met them, she must have been afraid of showing her face to both Botkinses. Certainly, she could said who they were, for she had been informed about their identity, but they could deny her as Anastasia. She was certainly very lucky when they took her side of the store and they became her champions!

On the other hand I find pretty convincing your argument about how the whole “affaire Anastasia” began. It’s posible that –at least initially – AA-FS was wanting some notoriety among her friends in Dalldorf, so, she said she was a former Grand Duchess. She would not work and people should treat her with respect…But things got complicated when Clara Peuthert went to search the “help” of Monarchist circles of Russian emigrés of Berlin. By then AA couldn’t take her Franziska personality again…And never did.

RealAnastasia.

Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 09, 2011, 11:30:11 PM
She pulled it off because there were a lot of people that WANTED to believe her.  They shoved their doubts into a box.  Also, maybe that saw AA never met the real Anastasia or hadn't seen her in years.  Plus, the fate of the real Anastasia was still a mystery in those days, so their was doubt.

No doubt the Dowager Empress would have shot her down right then and there, but by that time her health was failing and she didn't want to deal with the fact that her son and his family were all dead (or rather two sons, if you include Michael).  So the surviving Romanovs more or less kept quiet until Marie died, then they opened fire on AA. 

It was just a convergence of circumstances that allowed FS to "become" Anastasia, and play that role for the rest of her life.  By the time the means came to expose her, she was dead.

Yes, Tim…But I can’t explain what the case lasted so many decades only for people “wanted to believe. They were two trials about “Anastasia” in Germany. No trial could begin if there are no cause at all. People could be gullible, romantic, delusional and all…But no trial would start for these kind of reasons.  It must have been something “solid” to admit the whole thing going to be to a trial. A trial is not a joke …and much less TWO TRIALS.

In both cases, AA was not identified as Anastasia, but lawmen couldn’t establish she was Franziska, either! This is that still puzzles me, even if I know SHE WAS FRANZISKA.

Penny and Greg established beyond any doubt that AA was FS , without the help of any DNA proof.. They only analyzed documents that were available about the case. Documents that were known by German judges at the time. What could have been the reasons that keep these judges saying that they couldn’t establish AA was Franziska Schanzkowska?

RealAnastasia.

Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on January 10, 2011, 05:23:26 AM
Yes. It seems she avoided to meet certain Romanov family members. And it’s true that she often turned to the wall trying not to establish eye-contac with persons who had personally known the real Anastasia (not me! The real one..hahaha), but I think she asked Tatiana Botkin about going visit her “grandmother”, Empress Maria living currently in Denmark. Tatiana answered her that her “Grandmamma” wanted nothing to do with her , and that her “auntie” Olga had said she don’t believe AA was Anstasia. The claimant became furious and desperate, since apparently she wanted to see her “granny”. She repeated over ando ver: “I want to see my grandmother! I will prove it! (her claim), I will prove it!”  (this quotation can be found in Meter Kurth’s book: “Anastasia; The Riddle of Anna Anderson, pag 161) Was she realizing that if Maria Fyodorovna would meet her, she would also deny her claim as a fraud?
On the other hand I find pretty convincing your argument about how the whole “affaire Anastasia” began. It’s posible that –at least initially – AA-FS was wanting some notoriety among her friends in Dalldorf, so, she said she was a former Grand Duchess. She would not work and people should treat her with respect…But things got complicated when Clara Peuthert went to search the “help” of Monarchist circles of Russian emigrés of Berlin. By then AA couldn’t take her Franziska personality again…And never did.

RealAnastasia.



She may have been insistent on wanting to meet the Dowager Empress, but she must have known by this point it would never happen-so there was little risk in her insisting after Olga Alexandrovna had already rejected her.

She knew how to "play" to both expectation and to behave in ways that confounded people-as in her refusal to cooperate with supporters. It never made sense and lent her an aura of credibility because surely an imposter would TRY to prove her claim and do everything to show that she was real. But of course Franziska had very real reasons for NOT pushing for meetings and forcing "recognitions" from those who had known Anastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on January 10, 2011, 05:29:22 AM
As I have previously pointed out, Penny and myself learned, on examining all of the documentation from Darmstadt, that lawyers for Duchess Barbara and Prince Ludwig never really tried very hard to prove that she was Franziska. They never introduced into court, for example, half of the statements they took from former friends of Franziska from Hygendorf or even those made by her sister Gertrude-primarily because they cared more about refuting stories that Anastasia was spotted alive in this or that place, or that Ernst Ludwig had visited Russia in 1916. The entire countersuit claiming she was actually Franziska was a last minute thought, tacked on to the defense case, and thus never actively pursued beyond a few witnesses.

Had the situation been reversed and had the lawyers really tried, and actually sued AA for deliberate fraud by insisting that she was Franziska, the trial would have played out differently. The main point in the trials in Hamburg, though, was never to prove that she was Franziska-it was to offer enough evidence so that the court would not rule that she was Anastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Kalafrana on January 10, 2011, 06:24:35 AM
'Penny and Greg established beyond any doubt that AA was FS , without the help of any DNA proof.. They only analyzed documents that were available about the case. Documents that were known by German judges at the time. What could have been the reasons that keep these judges saying that they couldn’t establish AA was Franziska Schanzkowska?'

Judges tend to be cautious, and it is a legal truism that it's easier to prove a negative than a positive. As I understand it, in the two trials AA was trying to prove that she was Anastasia, and what is important to me is the judges' conclusion that she had failed to prove this, not their conclusion that the oppomnents had failed to prove that she was FS instead.

Ann
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Carisbrooke on January 10, 2011, 07:07:02 AM
   I think the lack of remains was a major factor in keeping the ball rolling during AA's lifetime, & at first glance the soviet attitude to her claim makes no sense. For I don't believe the soviets were not interested in the events of Ekaterinberg at that time. We know the surviving witnesses were hauled in by the KGB and questioned in the 1960's. They knew of the burial site, so why not spill the beans then ? Could it be they took a sneaky look at pigs meadow and found the body count was wrong. Is it possible they too could have believed the Grand Duchess escaped the net. Yet one more reason why AA got away with it for so long.

         
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on January 10, 2011, 11:21:24 AM
Exactly, the Soviets could have ended all this decades ago by saying:  "Yes, Anastasia is dead, here's her body!"  But they didn't.

The reason is simple, the Soviet Union was a criminal state, run by thugs and murderers.  On July 17, 1918, they committed the crime of murder against the Imperial Family and then, like the criminals they were, covered up said crime.  Thought intimdation and threats, they forced all who had taken part in the crime to keep quiet.

FS, although indirectly, profitted from the actions of these criminals because there was no real evidence at that time that Anastasia was dead.  What someone heard about, or heard from soneone else, is hearsay.  Hearsay is inadmissable in a court of law, civil or legal.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on January 10, 2011, 09:27:59 PM
Exactly, the Soviets could have ended all this decades ago by saying:  "Yes, Anastasia is dead, here's her body!"  But they didn't.

FS, although indirectly, profitted from the actions of these criminals because there was no real evidence at that time that Anastasia was dead.  What someone heard about, or heard from soneone else, is hearsay.  Hearsay is inadmissable in a court of law, civil or legal.

Not in this case! The tribunals in Hamburg were bogged down with hearsay evidence from Person X or Y who claimed to have heard Z or A from someone. That's what made getting at the heart of the issue difficult
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 10, 2011, 09:35:37 PM
As I have previously pointed out, Penny and myself learned, on examining all of the documentation from Darmstadt, that lawyers for Duchess Barbara and Prince Ludwig never really tried very hard to prove that she was Franziska. They never introduced into court, for example, half of the statements they took from former friends of Franziska from Hygendorf or even those made by her sister Gertrude-primarily because they cared more about refuting stories that Anastasia was spotted alive in this or that place, or that Ernst Ludwig had visited Russia in 1916. The entire countersuit claiming she was actually Franziska was a last minute thought, tacked on to the defense case, and thus never actively pursued beyond a few witnesses.

Had the situation been reversed and had the lawyers really tried, and actually sued AA for deliberate fraud by insisting that she was Franziska, the trial would have played out differently. The main point in the trials in Hamburg, though, was never to prove that she was Franziska-it was to offer enough evidence so that the court would not rule that she was Anastasia.

Oh…That’s was not an intelligent attitude of Ernest –Ludwig. If he had only showed to the world the documents that Knopf had demosntrating that AA was Fs, this case would have ended in the last years of the 1920’s…What a pity!  

RealAnastasia.  

Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 10, 2011, 10:34:53 PM
   I think the lack of remains was a major factor in keeping the ball rolling during AA's lifetime, & at first glance the soviet attitude to her claim makes no sense. For I don't believe the soviets were not interested in the events of Ekaterinberg at that time. We know the surviving witnesses were hauled in by the KGB and questioned in the 1960's. They knew of the burial site, so why not spill the beans then ? Could it be they took a sneaky look at pigs meadow and found the body count was wrong. Is it possible they too could have believed the Grand Duchess escaped the net. Yet one more reason why AA got away with it for so long.

         

Yes, but the fact that Anastasia could have escaped wouldn't make AA the Grand Duchess...The more I think about it, the more confusing I find the whole issue. It's now clear for us that she was Franziska Schanzkowska, but apparently, and in despite the weird   scene that happened between AA and Felix Schanzkowsky, people was not so convinced of it at the time. And it was not for they "wanted to believe". There were people who wouldn't acknowledge her as Anastasia, but that insisted that she couldn't be Franziska in any way, that she was a "lady of good breed" and all. We now have the documents that Penny and Greg had found in Darmstatdt and this simplifies the matter, but all the same, the judges could have declared her a fraud without these. If we follows what Penny and Greg saids, NO ONE of AA's champions was reliable and almost everything they claimed was demonstrated as fake. Why did the case lasted so many decades, then? Many people was romantic and maybe dreamed about Anastasia being alive, but the judges were not romantic at all and tried to deal with real events. The real events were that AA was not recognized as Anastasia almost by no one of her alleged family. They were cautious, I'm sure of it. All judges must be cautious. Anastasia's body had been not found...but even if some corpses were never found, either, a lot of murder cases had been solved and the person who was victimized declared dead. AA was a very good luck woman. Things were always arranged the way she wanted to...

RealAnastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Belle on January 11, 2011, 10:15:46 AM
Ms. Wilson and Mr. King, I am great fan of your work. I've read a number of your books- I've just moved on from Resurrection to Mrs. Astor. The Fate of the Romanovs is one of my favorites. While my interpretation of certain aspects of the Romanov mystique may differ from yours, I have always appreciated the depth of your work and your ability to articulate the cobwebs in the corners. Resurrection articulated a process that I went through in from belief to disbelief in AA. It was a tissue of small bits of information that built over a 30 year or so period. At ten, my mother played Anastasia in the play at the Little Theater. It was all my imagination needed. I checked out a big red book from the grown-up section of the library- I don’t remember what it was called. I really couldn’t understand it- but the pictures fascinated me! As I grew up I read anything that I could and, as you said, it was usually cast as support for AA. But then little bits of anti-information began registering with me- particularly the amount of gifts of pictures and books and conversations and lack of weight given to opposing views. Peter Kurth’s book kept me wondering- particularly because the German Court ruled that it could not be proved that Anastasia died that night. My Aha! moment came in the Lovell book (I think that it was the Lovell book!), when an observer said that AA would pause at the edge of a room, then launch herself in jerky movements across the floor. I had just recently seen a news reel where the family walked by in jerky steps. Aha. It was a loss. Filaments woven into a tissue of disbelief. Again, I enjoy your work and look forward to future books!
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on January 11, 2011, 12:12:12 PM
Sometimes I wonder, after AA died and when she arrived in the Afterlife, did she find herself face-to-face with Anastasia.  I can imagine the Imp would have a few words to say to her!
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 11, 2011, 12:46:11 PM
Sometimes I wonder, after AA died and when she arrived in the Afterlife, did she find herself face-to-face with Anastasia.  I can imagine the Imp would have a few words to say to her!

Oh, I was thinking just the same... ;D

RealAnastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 11, 2011, 12:55:57 PM
I was also thinking about our "Aha!" moments. As far as I know, Tim, you were just like me: a believer in AA's case. I think it was you who held a site named "Her Imperial Highness Grand Duchess Anastasia" in which you endorsed AA's claims as Anastasia. I cannot blame you, since I was a firm believer of AA being the Grand Duchess and I didn't have a delusional personnality. It was so many rumors against and endorsing her, so many misinformation that I can understand why one could keep believing ...

But my question is "WHEN and WHY your beliefs were challenged to the point you may think you were wrong about AA being Anastasia?

I was only convinced when Greg and Penny showed that all we know about the case had been twisted, but I had my little moments of doubt just before. I doubted over these issues:

1- Once, AA told Harriet Rathlef, that when a teen, she liked to
smoke, like her sister Tatiana. Then, she affirmed that she WAS NOT
allowed to do so. We all knows that Nicholas and Alexandra doesn't
matter about their children smoking. They spoke about it in their
personal letters and there's even a pic in which Anastasia is smoking
and his own father is holding her cigarette.


2- AA also told Harriet that her mother liked to be with Maria more
than with her other daughters. We all known she really liked to be
with Tatiana, who shared most of her opinions about a noblewoman's
social behavior. In fact, Maria complained about not being loved by
her parents.


3-.AA claimed that her sisters and she were always dressed with white
navy outfits at "Standart". But they also wore dark blue similar ones.
The truth is that you'll find more pics of them dressed alike with
these dark navy dresses than with the white ones.


4- AA claimed that all the sisters were   "with their hair down"  at
the imperial ship. It seems clear to me that she had seen only photos
of them being under 16 years old, After this ,all girls would put her
hair in a knot, and Tsar's daughters would not be the exception to
thsat rule. There also are some photos of OTMA wearing their hair up
at the ship, but it seems that AA didn't see them.


5- She would tell too much about royalty's scandalous affairs to her
commoner friends (this or that royal being homosexual, promiscuous or
a drunkard). At the time, and even today, royalty would not discuss
this kind of issues with persons who they didn't know closely. AA
seemed obsessed by sex affairs (maybe her pasts?). The hideous "King-
Kong" story seemed to confirm it.It's like she really did witnessed a
kind of raping scene and then, in her Alzheimer years, she told it to
Blair Lovell changing the names to Nicholas, Alexandra, Olga, etc...


6-She changed too much the story of her escape. For years, she claimed
that there was a massive massacre at Ipatiev's House. She even said
her clothers were "blood-soaked" and that tatiana dead for she covered
her younger sister with her body, and received all the bullets who
were sent to Anastasia. Later, she claimed there was no massacre and
all the sister and her mother were kept alive, and then she escaped
leaving them alone and feeling guilty for this the rest of her life.
She seemed to choice the "no massacre" alternative, after knowing by
Blair Lovell herself about Summer and Mangol's book. Candidly, Lovell
tell us that AA seemed very worried when he told her he will interview
them. Maybe she tought that the two British authors had really found
solid evidence demonstrating there was no massacre and if it could be
proved she must change her story to remain credible...Later, when she
told the "King-Kong" story, I think she could have mixed her true FS
story to her ANR fantasy. She really had run her family leaving her
siblings and mother.


7- She seemed too enraged when people showed to her evidence about her
claim being not too solid.


8- She believed all stories about claimants and wanted to know them
personnally. She was almost sure about Margda Boodts being her sister
Olga and was in contact with Mrs. De Graaf. Now, I think she must have
been seeking desperately the love of a family more normal that her
own. She wanted to be loved.


9- AA was somewhat fooled by photographies: when she saw one of Mr.
Gibbes with his head turned slightly to one side, she tought that he
had suffered from some strange sickness and stated that he ALWAY was
with his head this way and was lame. (By the way...how did she to
obtain so much pics they were not available at the time? We knows some
of them only now that public archives are open and massive books are
published).


10- And now, the most compelling of all the evidences: she never spoke
about her  alleged sisters with real love or personal interest. She
always referred to them to quote proofs of herself being ANR. She
never said for example, how much she missed Olga, or what a lovely
person Maria was. She only spoke with real love about Alexandra and
Alexei...She was maybe projecting her own memories of her mother and
his brother Felix?


  What do you think about all these points?

RealAnastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on January 11, 2011, 04:25:07 PM
Quote
I think it was you who held a site named "Her Imperial Highness Grand Duchess Anastasia" in which you endorsed AA's claims as Anastasia

Nope, not me.  The only website I ever had was devoted to Rex Buckland and Hannah Webster (two characters from Charmed, don't bother looking for it, it was with GeoCities and shut down when they did).

You must be thinking of someone else.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 11, 2011, 10:11:54 PM
Quote
I think it was you who held a site named "Her Imperial Highness Grand Duchess Anastasia" in which you endorsed AA's claims as Anastasia

Nope, not me.  The only website I ever had was devoted to Rex Buckland and Hannah Webster (two characters from Charmed, don't bother looking for it, it was with GeoCities and shut down when they did).

You must be thinking of someone else.

Wow...Too many Tims on the internet! :D

RealAnastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on January 11, 2011, 11:02:21 PM
You're thinking of Tim Welch, who used his real name on the net so I think OK to say it.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 12, 2011, 10:53:05 AM
Yes. I couldn't remember his last name. Welch. Thanks for helping improving my memory. However, Tim Welch doesn't believe in AA being FS any more, I think.

RealAnastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on January 12, 2011, 04:27:11 PM
Well, the DNA surely has convinced most people.

Mind you, you'll still get the Flat Earthers that won't believe, no matter what.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 12, 2011, 05:22:50 PM
Well, the DNA surely has convinced most people.

Mind you, you'll still get the Flat Earthers that won't believe, no matter what.

Well; I think that by now, most of us are really convinced about AA being FS, but not all of us. The ones who believed in her claim, are used to think that all the info in her favor had been biased or distorted, so the issue will be around for a lot  of time , yet.

I was an AA supporter and I don’t belong to Flat Earth’s Society. I’ve always thought that there was something very wrong and twisted going on in AA’s story. Something just rang fake in it. People who was witnesses in the case contradicted themselves when attacking or championing the claimant and I know very honest people who were her supporters , so it’s hard to show the ones who believed in her claim as belonging to the   category of stubborn blind believers. I was not. My beliefs were – I thought so – largely justified by the great amount of proof that seemed to support AA. When Penny and Greg demonstrated that these allegad “proofs” had been twisted and made up, I do not hesitate to change my views. But I reached this point by reasoning all that now was against the whole idea that AA was ANR, not by accepting blindly a DNA test who seemed to be in contradiction with all we know about AA. I think that if research would have been properly made we must have accepted the claimant being Franziska much before the DNA proofs would be even discovered.

It makes some sense?

RealAnastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on January 12, 2011, 08:03:50 PM
What I mean about Flat Earth Society is the people that still believe NOW that AA was Anastasia.  You mention DNA to them and they'll tell you that the DNA was tainted by some evil international cabal (of course why this hypothetical cabal would do this is totally illogical).

As I have said, if the ghost of Anastasia materialized in front of one of these people and gave a personal account of her murder in 1918, they STILL wouldn't believe.

Just as some maintain the Earth is flat, some maintain that AA was Anastasia, no matter what evidence you can produce that says otherwise.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Belle on January 12, 2011, 11:39:48 PM
 ""My beliefs were – I thought so – largely justified by the great amount of proof that seemed to support AA. When Penny and Greg demonstrated that these allegad “proofs” had been twisted and made up, I do not hesitate to change my views. But I reached this point by reasoning all that now was against the whole idea that AA was ANR, not by accepting blindly a DNA test who seemed to be in contradiction with all we know about AA. I think that if research would have been properly made we must have accepted the claimant being Franziska much before the DNA proofs would be even discovered.

It makes some sense?""



Real Anastasia, I think that was very well said. Articulation!

Belle

Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on January 18, 2011, 11:56:51 AM
Still she pulled it off.  It was not until many years after her death that the truth was finally revealed.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Kransnoeselo on January 18, 2011, 07:01:27 PM
Hello RealAnastasia,

It is I, Tim Welsh and yes I used to have a website dedicated to my belief that Anna Anderson was Anastasia.  I held onto this belief for many years following the initial DNA evidence, due to several unresolved issues relating to Anna's claims that I had not felt were adequately addressed by the genetic tests. It took me many years for me to find enough counter information to her claim for me to finally believe that she was with certainty not Anastasia.  Even once I concluded that she was not Anastasia I still doubted that she was  Franziska due to a lot of information supplied by Harriet von Keilmann-Rathlef and other authors.  Yet the more information that came out, especially when I reread the fact that Anna and her brother Felix had been allowed to talk privately for several moments during their first meeting out of earshot- after which Felix changed his story and said that Anna was not his sister. Secondly when I saw photos of Franziska's relatives- I knew she was Franziska (somewhere on the Myth threat I previously posted photos comparing Anna with her sisters and brother-to me they were definitive-especially the identical full lips.)

Your list of reasons to doubt Anna's claims are impressive.  One of those reasons you mentioned (along with another listed below) that ultimately led me to disbelieve Anna's claim regarded Sidney Gibbes and Anna's statement that he was lame and deformed (which he certainly was not).  The real Anastasia would never have made such a mistake.  

The other anecdote which led to my disbelief was a discovery I made when reading an entry on this discussion board about Nicholas II's tattoo. It stated that Nicholas had a large dragon tattoo on his arm.  After reading this and seeing some photographs people had posted and looking at other photos of Nicholas I knew that this tattoo which I had never heard of before (he had gotten it in Japan while still Tsarevich) once and for all proved Anna's fraud. She had been insistent that her "papa" had never had a tattoo and was adamant about it when pressed.  Not only had the real Anastasia seen the tattoo (there are pictures of Anastasia with her Father who has his shirt sleeve rolled up exposing the tattoo) but there was no way of her forgetting it due to its size and bright colors.

There are of course many other mistakes that Anna made (regarding to inaccurate accounts of the Alexander palace, etc etc) but the two I already mentioned are the most striking to me and they cannot be explained away.
 
I was fortunate to be one of many asked by Greg and Penny to read  early manuscripts of their most recent book on Anna Anderson. I was (and still am) so impressed with the level of their research which in my opinion has ultimately resolved this mystery which began nearly 100 years ago. For me there are no remaining issues with her identity.

Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: RealAnastasia on January 19, 2011, 12:39:43 AM
Hello, Tim:

                       You made an excellent account of your evolution to disbelief. It was similar to mine. I remember we knew virtually each other after I've visited your site and you send me some comparison photographies between AA and AN. Then , both of us believed that they were one and the same person. You are more bright than me, since you realized AA couldn't be Anastasia much earlier than me. In your case, it was the "tattoo issue" and the fact that she talked appart with Felix Schanzkowsky for a while, after what he changed her initial assertion about her being her sister. In mine the phrase "we were not allowed to smoke" started me, since I knew that the daughters of the Tsar were indeed allowed to , and all of them certainly did. Then , AA stated that Tatiana was "very cunning in this". Evidently, she had seen the pic in which Anastasia is shown smoking a cigarette, along with her sister. After this incident, I realized she had took many details of AA's life from photos. My doubts, however, were still there, since I wondered where did she saw so many pics of the IF, since they were not published in any book at the time she surfaced in Berlin and the main family album was owned by Anna Vyrubova...

                        I never thought she could have been Schanzkowska, tough. It was a real surprise to me to know this with certainty. If she was...why the only pics of her were retouched? When you are saying the truth, you doesn't need to do such things...I was also doubting for Mrs. Wingender involvement in the case. She seemed so nervous when she went to deliver her testimony before the German judges, so frightened , that I thought she wasn't saying the truth. Pierre Gilliard's attitude also pushed me to believe he was lying...His claim to having burned all the documents he had against AA, was plainly crazy and nonsense. I supposed he was also lying.

                         There was a great amount of misinformation about  this case, and it drove us to fight with each other fiercely, reaching a great level of craziness. I never could understand (not even when I was sure that AA was AN), that such a minor issue could awake so strong reactions in people.Even today it is passion and fury attached to the claim of this woman. It is not that the fact of her being ANR or FS could be important to this degree. It could be other kind of reasons  that pushes people to fight against or pro AA.There was not sanity in AA threads. Never.We wouldn't discuss if a person who really claimed to be this person was really she: it was politics, religion, cultural issues, all mixed up in a thread who was supposed to be opened to discover who she really was.This was the reason for I went away the "Survivors" Forum and never discussed a single claimant here. If I do it today is for, having demonstrated beyond any doubt that AA was FS, I think we can chat in a more aimable way about the whole matter. I'm not ashamed of having been wrong. This is the way a real historian must to act.

RealAnastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: billmcl2 on March 27, 2011, 01:31:16 PM
(somewhere on the Myth threat I previously posted photos comparing Anna with her sisters and brother-to me they were definitive-especially the identical full lips.)


This comment by Kransnoeselo caught my attention. The AA/Anastasia controversy always puzzled me because I didn't think they looked very much alike. In the early photos of AA after she claimed to be Anastasia, I thought her mouth was distinctly different - particularly the lips, which were shaped differently and "fuller" than Anastasia's.

There was an A&E Home Video/History Channel production called In Search Of History - The Romanovs linked on the Frozentears.org website that extensively discussed the AA controversy. The Frozentears link didn't work the last time I tried it but the video is also posted on YouTube as Secrets Of The Romanovs (with the same script but a different narrator, strangely enough).

The following points are from memory so please excuse the lack of citations or any errors. (Some of them are probably from the video.)

1. When AA first appeared in Berlin she was initially mistaken for Tatiana and did not contradict this until later, when she claimed that she was actually Anastasia. (The initial mistaken ID probably planted the idea that she was a member of the imperial family.)

2. Anastasia spoke 3 languages (Russian, English and French, I believe). AA spoke some Russian but her native language was Polish, which Anastasia did not speak.

3. A private investigator was hired by some Romanov family members to investigate AA (1920s or 30s?) and identified her at that time as FS, a factory worker from Poland.

4. AA knew a lot of details about the imperial family but did not know some things that she should have. For example, the layout of the rooms in the Alexander Palace.

I never believed AA's claims to be Anastasia, mainly because of the issues of appearance and spoken languages - which I thought were obvious red flags.


PS: I think I've botched another effort to post a quote. I can't seem to find directions for doing this correctly. I would appreciate it if someone could explain the procedure briefly or direct me to the right place in the "Help" menu - thanks. 
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Naslednik Norvezhskiy on March 27, 2011, 03:46:53 PM
[ quote author=billmcl2 ]
PS: I think I've botched another effort to post a quote. I can't seem to find directions for doing this correctly. I would appreciate it if someone could explain the procedure briefly or direct me to the right place in the "Help" menu - thanks.  
[ /quote ]

Remove the spaces between the brackets, and voilà:

Quote from: billmcl2

PS: I think I've botched another effort to post a quote. I can't seem to find directions for doing this correctly. I would appreciate it if someone could explain the procedure briefly or direct me to the right place in the "Help" menu - thanks.  

Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on March 27, 2011, 10:04:32 PM

The following points are from memory so please excuse the lack of citations or any errors. (Some of them are probably from the video.)

1. When AA first appeared in Berlin she was initially mistaken for Tatiana and did not contradict this until later, when she claimed that she was actually Anastasia. (The initial mistaken ID probably planted the idea that she was a member of the imperial family.)

2. Anastasia spoke 3 languages (Russian, English and French, I believe). AA spoke some Russian but her native language was Polish, which Anastasia did not speak.

3. A private investigator was hired by some Romanov family members to investigate AA (1920s or 30s?) and identified her at that time as FS, a factory worker from Poland.

4. AA knew a lot of details about the imperial family but did not know some things that she should have. For example, the layout of the rooms in the Alexander Palace.
 

Hi Billmcl2:

To your points above:

1. Marie Clara Peuthert, a fellow patient at Berlin's Dalldorf Asylum with AA in 1921, believed that AA resembled Tatiana and misidentified her as such when she left the asylum in early 1922. In fact AA had previously claimed to two of the nurses there that she was Anastasia-the idea that she somehow "switched" her claim or that someone else gave her the idea is an old canard that is unsupported by the evidence.

2. Anastasia actually spoke German in addition to the three you mention; AA's languages were German, Kashubian, and Polish.

3. AA was indeed identified as FS in April 1927 by Martin Knopf, working for the Berlin newspaper Berliner Nachtausgabe and Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig of Hesse

4. AA really did not know that much about the life of the Imperial Family. For more on this I would point you to the new book by Penny Wilson and myself.

Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: billmcl2 on March 27, 2011, 11:11:46 PM
Remove the spaces between the brackets, and voilà:


Thank you!
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: billmcl2 on March 27, 2011, 11:19:43 PM
To your points above:

Thanks for the clarifications, Greg. It is a privilege to have access to your expertise on this forum! This meticulous attention to detail is what I enjoyed most about FOTR. I haven't read ROTR yet but it is definitely on my list.

Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on March 28, 2011, 05:42:44 AM
You are quite welcome!
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: LondonGirl on September 10, 2011, 10:54:33 AM
I was always amused that anyone thought for one moment she was Anastasia - she had no resemblance to Anastasia nor to any other member of the family whatsoever! lol.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on September 10, 2011, 11:43:55 AM
One big reason is that, for a long time, there was no concrete proof that the real Anastasia was dead.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Alixz on September 10, 2011, 06:40:02 PM
Hope springs eternal.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: LondonGirl on October 15, 2011, 03:16:31 PM
She was able to 'pull it off' because clearly no-one was able to see. ;D

Seriously - it seems to have been encouraged - due to relatives being involved in a semi-positive role. Makes one wonder why, unless of course half a survival truth is better than the whole thing?
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Romafan96 on August 20, 2012, 03:32:34 PM
I think another reason why Anna Anderson was able to claim she was Anastasia rather successfully was due to the fact that the memoirs of the executioners had not been released. Yurovsky's Note only came to public light in the 1990s, I believe, in Edvard Radzinsky's book. Perhaps investigators could have compared Anna Anderson's account of the Imperial Family's last days and murder with the accounts of Yurovsky, and see if any details matched up. The executioners may have also been able to identify if AA was really Anastasia as they were the last ones who saw her alive, so to speak. One HUGE flaw in AA's version of events is one Alexander Tcaikovsky (sp). Research has shown that no such person ever did guard at the Ipatiev House.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Alixz on August 20, 2012, 06:50:05 PM
I don't think I have ever read that the executioners were in a position to compare anyone to to anything after 1918.

Many of them disappeared and many died.  Also,with the Soviets in charge, I don't imagine that anyone was going to be allowed to talk about whether or not any one of the Imperial Family was alive because Lenin had disavowed all knowledge and or participation in the executions.

Remember it was thrown at the door of the Yekaterinburg Soviet and no one in Moscow was admitting to anything. Soviet citizens were not exactly free to travel to other countries or to give evidence in court in any other country. Citizens of other countries were not allowed into the USSR either.

Also, the AA mystery gave the Soviets "plausible denial" so why would they want to show anyone any kind of proof?
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on August 21, 2012, 12:07:08 PM
The Soviets, by their cover up of the murders, inadvertantly helped AA.  Since for decades, no one could prove the real Anastasia was dead.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Romafan96 on August 21, 2012, 12:10:41 PM
The Soviets, by their cover up of the murders, inadvertantly helped AA.  Since for decades, no one could prove the real Anastasia was dead.

Absolutely. Great point.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: aleksandr pavlovich on August 21, 2012, 01:01:40 PM
The Soviets, by their cover up of the murders, inadvertantly helped AA.  Since for decades, no one could prove the real Anastasia was dead.

    Thereby giving rise to, and the spawning of, the numerous silly "cults" of Anastasia "worshippers", concerning the ".....least important of the five children......, " as authors Greg King and Penny Wilson describes her (p.23) in their book, "The Resurection of the Romanovs."

    If indeed, IMO, there had been no "Anna Anderson," the GD Anastasia N. would have remained "least important" and deserving of a simple footnote within the scope of Russian history, until the graves were discovered and genetic/numerical accounting done of the remains.    AP.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: edubs31 on August 21, 2012, 02:13:37 PM
Quote
Thereby giving rise to, and the spawning of, the numerous silly "cults" of Anastasia "worshippers", concerning the ".....least important of the five children......, " as author Greg King describes her (p.23) in his book, "The Resurection of the Romanovs."

Who is Mr. King considering to be the most "important" of the five children?

Hold on, I'll answer my own question...it's Alexei of course! But not because of anything he did either...more because of what he was, yes? 1) Male, 2) hemophiliac. Other than that I think it's only fair to consider the four daughters as roughly equals. By placing one over another you are suggesting a bias towards one...which is perfectly fine as there are many Olga, Tatiana, Marie and Anastasia devotees out there...but to suggest "importance" is pretty silly don't you think? Maybe one could bring up the nursing of Olga & Tatiana (because of age and not really by choice mind you) as elevating them above the Little Pair...otherwise these daughters had strikingly similar existences and did most EVERYTHING together!

I've read before that Tatiana was probably the most popular while she was alive. Aside from the nursing I attribute that to her physical beauty. It's not like the common Russian knew her personally and, in fact, a few who did (namely the guards while in captivity) were not as fond of her as her sisters...considering her a bit too "proud". If you think Anastasia followers are latching onto her legacy for superficial reasons than I could claim the exact same thing about Tatiana's popularity in Russia during her time...

And while on the topic how many people out there really single out the Imp as being most important? Many people came to the story of the Romanovs through the Anna Anderson saga, but once they get here I'm sure they are perfectly aware of her siblings. It's not like anyone with genuine appreciation for the subject looks at Anastasia like she's a queen and her sisters like they are peasants. If you took a poll of AP members asking them who their favorite of the GDs was I'll bet you Anastasia fares no better than her other sisters...and I'll also bet you that none would poll much higher than 30%.

Bottom line is that it's not a sin to like someone or like a family just because they didn't or wouldn't have (under different circumstances) altered history.

- If I were to say "what if" Hitler had gotten into art school and left a career in politics aside? Someone would respond...but he didn't!
- If I were to say "what if" Lincoln had lost the Civil War and been forced to repeal the Emancipation Proclamation? Someone would respond...but he didn't!
- If I were to say, "what if" Pontius Pilate had declared that Jesus was to be freed and protected instead of crucified? Someone would respond...but he wasn't!

Maybe Anastasia's life, death, and the mystery surrounding her for decades was written in the stars. There was destiny involved and greater powers at work. Who knows! But who are you, me, or Greg King to assert otherwise? All we know is what did happen and what did happen is that Hitler became a genocidal world leader, Lincoln became a great US President, Jesus helped create what would become the largest religion on the planet, and little Anastasia Romanov became symbolic and a door that has led many MANY people to this enchanting and tragic story...
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: blessOTMA on August 21, 2012, 06:46:42 PM
Quote
....and little Anastasia Romanov became symbolic and a door that has led many MANY people to this enchanting and tragic story...
edubs, your writing skill  quite takes my breathe away and not for the 1st time . I also remember "...and the last shall be first"
Even if people  do not know her name or the history, everyone has heard of Anastasia's story. It has become an enduring myth ...it's
just about  entered the collected subconscious . Quite remarkable . I think how it turned out, who would wind up the best known  among them 100 years later,  would surprise, but then not surprised everyone of her  circle. Her personality  stood out and quite superseded her lowly position even then. One had to notice and take account of  her.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on August 22, 2012, 04:56:33 PM
One good thing the whole Anna Anderson case did was attract people to research the real Anastasia and the Romanovs.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Kalafrana on August 23, 2012, 04:23:59 AM
 
'One good thing the whole Anna Anderson case did was attract people to research the real Anastasia and the Romanovs.'

The only good thing.

Ann
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Romafan96 on August 23, 2012, 07:07:24 AM
 
'One good thing the whole Anna Anderson case did was attract people to research the real Anastasia and the Romanovs.'

The only good thing.

Ann

Without Anna Anderson the Romanovs would have been forgotten about.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: edubs31 on August 23, 2012, 07:42:20 AM
 
'One good thing the whole Anna Anderson case did was attract people to research the real Anastasia and the Romanovs.'

The only good thing.

Ann

Without Anna Anderson the Romanovs would have been forgotten about.

How do you figure? They, and more specifically Nicholas & Alexandra, are still significant players in one of the most significant periods in world history. Did history forget about Kaiser Wilhelm just because none of his children had survivor claimants?

The fact that they were all brutally murdered makes their story all the more compelling.

When Massie wrote his book 45-years ago did he do anything more than give passing mention to Anna Anderson? Certainly he did not attempt to perpetuate her survivor myth. Remember his description of the basement killings and how "it was ended"?

I don't disagree with the Anna Anderson story making the Romanov saga a bigger deal and of interest to more than it would have ordinarily been...but to suggest they would have been forgotten is basically the same as suggesting the Russian Revolution and World War I would have been forgotten also...nonsense!
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Vanya Ivanova on August 23, 2012, 10:00:08 AM
I feel that survivor fantasists are unwittingly rather lacking in compassion. This is because they want Anastasia/etc to have survived but fail to think of  what a terrible fate that would be for a 'flesh and blood' human being. To see all those you love suffer and die around you and survive to a very unsafe, uncertain and utterly isolated existence would IMO be a fate worse than death. Its not something I would/could wish on anyone.

I have read many holocaust survivor testimonies whereby exactly that happened and its almost beyond human endurance.

I saw some video footage of Anna Anderson on youtube a while ago, when she was living with her 'husband' Jack Manahan in Virginia USA. It was hilarious but very tragic. Mr Manahan was discussing a picture of the four GD's and asked his 'wife' who was who in the picture, the look of utter contempt and exasperation on her face when he asked this was very telling.

It struck me that AA started off as a desperate Polish factory girl who went along with this story to begin with but then quickly became dependent on it for a living and thereby utterly trapped by it. People believed her because they wanted to be part of history, they wanted her to be a lost Russian princess. Judging by the expression that passed over AA's face at that moment in the video, I don't believe she shared in their delusion for one moment.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: blessOTMA on August 23, 2012, 12:16:25 PM
Like edubs, I have to disagree the Romanovs would be forgotten with out Anna A...rather the other way around ! lol! But she did keep the story on the bubble from the 20's when the retainer memories were published  to Massie's book.

 Vanya Ivanova ,  I also  think Anna  might of been exasperated he hadn't done his damn  homework! lol. She was cunning though, exasperation at that moment  would be far more convincing than reciting the names, even correctly! I've always  thought Sando's idea, that AA was channeling Anastasia was interesting and certainly more plausible than she was physically Anastasia lol ...But it seems Like Rasputin, Anna Anderson had SOMETHING that  kept her from being altogether rejected. People certainly wanted to believe someone had made it out of the cellar...very likely why  the Botkin children believed
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on August 23, 2012, 07:38:16 PM
Maybe that helped Anna, that the Botkin children, whose father was close to the IF, and died with them, believed she was Anastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Romafan96 on August 24, 2012, 04:25:16 AM
 
'One good thing the whole Anna Anderson case did was attract people to research the real Anastasia and the Romanovs.'

The only good thing.

Ann

Without Anna Anderson the Romanovs would have been forgotten about.

How do you figure? They, and more specifically Nicholas & Alexandra, are still significant players in one of the most significant periods in world history. Did history forget about Kaiser Wilhelm just because none of his children had survivor claimants?

The fact that they were all brutally murdered makes their story all the more compelling.

When Massie wrote his book 45-years ago did he do anything more than give passing mention to Anna Anderson? Certainly he did not attempt to perpetuate her survivor myth. Remember his description of the basement killings and how "it was ended"?

I don't disagree with the Anna Anderson story making the Romanov saga a bigger deal and of interest to more than it would have ordinarily been...but to suggest they would have been forgotten is basically the same as suggesting the Russian Revolution and World War I would have been forgotten also...nonsense!

Sorry, what I meant was that there would not have been such an interest in the reports of the family's survival. Nicholas and Alexandra would have been remembered, but probably not Anastasia, at least not in the way we remember her now. She was not the most popular Grand Duchess during her lifetime and she didn't live long enough to establish  a legacy. It was really Anna Anderson who elevated her to pass the popularity of her brother and sisters and made the Grand Duchess an icon on her own, remarkable because during her lifetime she was always grouped with her sisters. There's been claimants of Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Alexei but none of them has got as much coverage as Anna Anderson. That could be for a number of different reasons. The countless books and movies which deal with Anastasia's survival would not have been made had it not been for AA. President John Kennedy once said to a cousin of the real Anastasia that the Anna Anderson saga was the only part of the Romanov story he was interested in.

Also, Anastasia and her siblings had nothing to do with the Russian Revolution and World War I. You mention Kaiser Wilhelm II. Yes, he too was an important figure in history but how many of his children have been the topic of books, movies, documentaries and forums such as this one?
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Kalafrana on August 24, 2012, 04:38:47 AM
'Also, Anastasia and her siblings had nothing to do with the Russian Revolution and World War I. You mention Kaiser Wilhelm II. Yes, he too was an important figure in history but how many of his children have been the topic of books, movies, documentaries and forums such as this one?'

Indeed. It would be perfectly possible for someone to be interested in making a documentary about the Nazi links of the Crown Prince and August Wilhelm, but I doubt that interest would go any further.

Ann
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: edubs31 on August 24, 2012, 07:58:00 AM
Fair points. I did address this before but when talking about the popularity of the GDs with actual Romanov "crowd", as in we here on the AP, and NOT casual observers or general history fans, Anastasia is no more highly regarded than any of her sisters.

Take a poll of the AP. I'll bet you she doesn't crack 30%...maybe not even 25%. I actual believe that Marie is probably the most popular of her siblings within the hardcore audience, and that's a perfect example of how opinions differ from the broader crowd of casual fans. The Jack Kennedy's of the world so to speak :-)

Marie is probably the least popular (or the least known) in the broader circle. Anastasia obviously has AA, along with her more "attention seeking" personality and was also the youngest. Olga has the advantage of being the oldest and a couple of other smaller attributes to work with. Tatiana was regarded as the most beautiful and elegant and was most productive in her hospital work. But sweet Marie, other than being a stunner doesn't really stand out at first glance...a little bit of middle child disadvantage there as well.

Back to the 'Kaiser' comparison...my point about bringing up the revolution and WWI has nothing to do with whether OTMAA had anything to do with those events. But Nicholas & Alexandra certainly did and when people start getting interested in the two of them naturally that interest takes them deeper into the story. You learn next about Rasputin, and Alexei's illness, and eventually their other children be they impactful or not on world events. The clincher is the Ipatiev House. The Kaiser and his offspring didn't have that. So whether millions of people had believed Anastasia escaped or not...the brutal murder of the imperial family (along with relatives) stands as a notable and symbolic moment in how it introduced a regime that would make such behaviour commonplace over the next several decades.

Did any of the Goebbels children survive? Yet plenty of people remember and have taken some interest in them and they were much younger than OTMAA even!

You mention Anastasia not being the most popular GD in her lifetime. I agree, but what does it matter? OTMA is seen overwhelmingly as a group these days. The difference between what Olga and the Imp "accomplished" in the grand scheme of things is marginal at best. I've claimed that Tatiana was the most popular during their day but it's not like she went on to be an influential world leader and Anastasia married a commoner and lived on a farm. The differences between the GDs are negligible except for those of us who are willing to take a close look...and for that crowd it winds up being Anna Anderson who becomes but a footnote.

Massie, above all, is the one who reignited interest in the Romanov saga 45-years ago. Aside from being an obvious lover of history, and Russian history more specifically, it was Alexei Nikolaevich suffering from the same illness as his own son, NOT Anna Anderson, that inspired him to tell their story...
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on August 25, 2012, 02:22:55 AM
AA/FS was the only real impersonator to last.  the other quickly faded into obscurity, but not her.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Kalafrana on August 25, 2012, 08:29:30 AM
I think a lot of AA's success was that the various people who met her inadvertently gave her 'inside' information which helped fuel her deception and make her sound convincing (to some, at any rate). Plus the people who wanted to believe in her skated over the inconsistencies in her tale.

Years ago I was a practising solicitor working in conveyancing. Clients used to come and see me having found a house to buy and had a discussion with a mortgage advisor. This was the great era of endowment mortgages linked to life insurance policies, and when  I asked what type of mortgage they were planning to get, many used to say, 'The one where you get some money back at the end'. Endowment mortgages were not guaranteed to produce a large enough capital sum to pay off the mortgage at the end of the term, still less to produce any extra (this is why they have gone out of use), and any responsible mortgage advisor should have told them that. But the clients' brains had screened out all these reservations, and I think a similar process was at work in the minds of AA's supporters.

Ann
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on August 25, 2012, 10:53:23 AM
The words of Fox Mulder (from the X-Files) comes to mind here:

"I want to believe."
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Vanya Ivanova on August 26, 2012, 09:29:54 AM
I first came across AA in an 'Unsolved Mysteries' book for children when I was about 11 yrs old myself, I can honestly say that when I read that AA couldn't (or supposedly wouldn't) speak Russian I dismissed her claim immediately and was baffled that despite this really glaring factor, people could still believe she was a Russian princess despite the fact that she didn't understand and could not speak Russian- amazing!

I think there is potentially a lot of mileage in the theory that she was schooled and fed information via soviet agents to deliberately create divsions in the Russian emigre community and surviving Romanovs etc, as AA's story really did just that much more than any other. Peter Kurth cited GD Andrew Vladimirovitch as a possible double agent in this regard. AA certainly knew very intimate and surprising details about the IF that as an uneducated Polish peasant its still difficult to account for.

Part of me thinks fair play to her as she was from a very deprived background and got to be feted by New York society, and European Royalty etc which must have been really heady stuff for a factory worker from a peasant background in 1920's Poland. However the pain and distress she must have caused to the likes of GD Olga Alexandrovna, the Dowager Empress and Gilliard etc would have been very real and is quite unforgivable really. GD Olga A certainly took it as 'par for the course' but it still must have hurt to get her hopes up and realise it was just another adventurer and not her lost niece.

Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Forum Admin on August 26, 2012, 09:32:35 AM
Greg King's book is really the definitive work on this exact topic.  It should be required reading for anyone interested!
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Kalafrana on August 26, 2012, 09:55:21 AM
I too first heard about Anna Anderson when I was about 11 (my mother talked about 'the Anastasia woman in America' over the ironing - I learned a whole lot from my mother over the ironing, including the Pugachev Rebellion!). I began as a sceptic on the basis that it seemed to me obvious that the execution squad would have made very sure that everyone was dead. when I was about 15 I came upon a copy of I, Anastasia and the inherently unlikely story of her 'escape' only made me even more of a sceptic.

I've never really felt sorry for her. Plenty of people have rotten starts in life and don't become confidence tricksters, which is what, effectively, she was. She may have reached a point where she genuinely did believe she was Anastasia, however. The people I do feel sorry for are Olga A and co., who had their hopes raised and then dashed, as Vanya says.

I'm not convinced by suggestions of Soviet involvement either. They might have found all this useful once it had got going, but there were other mechanisms at work.

Ann
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on August 26, 2012, 05:53:42 PM
Quote
She may have reached a point where she genuinely did believe she was Anastasia, however

I think she did, towards the end of her life.  She had played the part for more than sixty years by then.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on August 26, 2012, 11:44:28 PM
hey guys-it should be Greg King and Penny Wilson's book!
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Jen_94 on August 27, 2012, 04:35:55 AM
Quote
She may have reached a point where she genuinely did believe she was Anastasia, however

I think she did, towards the end of her life.  She had played the part for more than sixty years by then.

Exactly. I think this too.

Greg and Penny's book I am currently reading and it is definitely a good resource for those who want to learn more on this subject.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Forum Admin on August 27, 2012, 08:36:49 AM
hey guys-it should be Greg King and Penny Wilson's book!

Sorry Greg, yes, of course. My apologies. Was in a hurry and hadn't had enough coffee yet! I meant no offense or slight, of course.

Rob
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on August 27, 2012, 10:37:25 AM
Quote
Greg and Penny's book I am currently reading and it is definitely a good resource for those who want to learn more on this subject

I agree, this is THE book to own for anyone interested in this case.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on August 27, 2012, 10:23:37 PM
No problem Rob!
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Romafan96 on August 30, 2012, 01:21:22 PM
What baffles me most about this whole saga is the support AA recieved from Gleb and Tatiana Botkin. The support from the Botkins made Anna sound all the more credible seeing as they had been part of the IF's inner circle. Even after the DNA testing came out disproving Ms. Anderson's claim Gleb's daughter, Marina, still belives she was indeed Anastasia.  If they were familiar with the IF surely just by looking at the face they would know that AA was not the real McCoy. I have family members I only see once every 5 or 10 years, and even though they age the basic features still remain the same.

It's easy for us to demonize Anna Anderson because we now have all the evidence which tears her stories to shreds but ultimately it appears she was very troubled individual, and people may have taken advatnage of her fragile mental state for finanacial gain. The fact that she was willing to fight in the courts for over 30 years compliments the theory that she truly believed she was the Grand Duchess Anastasia.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on August 30, 2012, 07:05:57 PM
Gleb and Tatiana Botkin's father was very close to the I.F.  So I just think it was a case of "I want to believe" when AA turned up.  By the time DNA testing was available, Gleb and Tatiana were both dead.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: Greg_King on August 30, 2012, 09:45:36 PM
Gleb and Tatiana were NOT that close to the Imperial Family, and as you can see by reading their previously unpublished statements in our book, they were both forced to look for perceived similarities between AA and Anastasia. But there was nothing nefarious going on-they were both simply wrong.

But as for the late Marina Botkin Schweitzer, whom I knew fairly well: her position is in reality no different than someone like Ernst Ludwig.  Marina believed completely what her father Gleb told her to be true and accepted his word that AA was Anastasia.  Ernst Ludwig never met AA but completely accepted the word of his sister Irene that AA was not Anastasia.  In both cases, they each relied on the integrity and word of family members to help make their decisions.
Title: Re: How did AA/FS pull off the masquerade of "Anastasia"?
Post by: TimM on August 31, 2012, 12:57:17 AM
I never meant to imply that Gleb and Tatiana had an ulterior motive for siding with AA.  I believe as you believe, that they were just wrong. 

Mind you, at the time they were alive there was still no conclusive proof that the real Anastasia was dead.  That would not come out until after the collapse of the USSR in 1991.  By that time, both Gleb and Tatiana Botkin had died.