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Messages - Sanochka

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331
The Alexander Palace / Re: China, Crystal, and Silver Used at Mealtime
« on: September 09, 2012, 07:35:33 PM »
You are bringing in many services that gave nothing to do with the AP.  Please keeP this to AP services. The Coronation service was never used at the AP

Which services, other than the Coronation Service, were not used at the AP?

332
The Alexander Palace / Re: China, Crystal, and Silver Used at Mealtime
« on: September 09, 2012, 06:18:33 PM »
More dinnerware.  

A silver spice container.  1891



Pedestal serving bowl from the Coronation Service, aka Coat of Arms Service



A rimmed soup bowl from the same service.  1911



3 goblets from the Imperial Glassworks.  1914



8 dinner plates from the original Orlov Service.  1770.  Provenance:  Count Orlov, Catherine II, Imperial Collection (until 1917), Soviet Government (until 1930), private collection.


333
The Habsburgs / Confession re Ancestry
« on: September 09, 2012, 02:45:50 AM »
My paternal grandmother and her family emigrated to Connecticut from Hanidowa, Ukraine in 1913.  At the time, the region was part of Austria-Hungary.  They were Oborskis; my grandmother's name was Sozha Oborska.  She was born in 1897.  Her father's name was Steven.

During a visit to my grandmother's house in 1975, I told her I was reading "Nicholas and Alexandra."  I related what I'd been reading about; she listened intently, interrupting only now and then to correct my pronunciation of family & place names.  Finally, I asked her if she had ever seen any of the Romanovs.

     "No, honey," she replied, "We live in small Ukrainian town.  Sometimes it's Ukrainia, sometimes it was Poland.  When we live dere, it was Austria."

     "Then did you ever see emperor Franz Josef?" I asked, harking back to a passage I'd read in Massey's book, about a visit paid by N&A to the old emperor.

     "Yes," she answered.  Suddenly, her mood became more serious.  "Franz Josef was my father, you great grandfather's uncle."

     I was stunned.  "When was the last time you saw him?" was all I could think of to ask.

     "At my grandmother, you great great grandmother's funeral," she replied in her thick accent.

     "What was her name?"

     "Olga, honey," she answered, "Olga Oborska.  When my father was born, she keep her last name and give it to him."

     "Who was your father's father?" I asked, completely fascinated.

     "Ludwig.  It was Karl Ludwig.  But dey not married," she added, "dat's why you great great grandmother keep her last name.  When my father was born, Karl Ludwig give her dat farm so she could live."

     "Did you ever see Franz Ferdinand and Sophie Chotek?" I asked, thoroughly fascinated and groping for questions.

     "Yes, I see dem from time to time.  Dey still family.  Sophie was like older sister to me before she die," she added with a faraway look in her eyes, "she give me dresses."

     There was a pause.  I cast about for more questions, but my grandmother leaned closer to me and patted me on the knee.  "Don't you tell nobody, honey," she said firmly.  

     "Why?" I asked.

     "Because I say so.  We better off dat way."

     And that was it.  I didn't ask her about it again.  She died three years later, in 1978.  The following year, I asked her daughter, my elderly Aunt Anna, "Who was Gramma's grandfather?"

     "Karl Ludwig," she said, "Why do you ask?"  When I told her about the conversation I had had with my grandmother, she said, "Honey, that was all so long ago.  Your grandmother never liked to discuss it, nor do I.  You keep whatever you discussed with your grandmother to yourself."

     And so I have, for 36 years.  I still wonder about it, and have many questions.  I wouldn't hesitate to ask about my ancestry now, but my grandmother and her children - the two generations who would know the answers to my questions - are long gone.  I know that the Hapsburgs sired many illegitimate children in the latter half of the 1800s and that they didn't abandon them, but I can't imagine that records exist about illegitimate children born to that House.  Or do they?  If so, where would I look?

334
The Alexander Palace / Re: Fine recent photos of AP
« on: September 08, 2012, 12:02:22 AM »
I've looked at these splendid photos many times over the years, and thank you for posting them.  They really are beautiful pictures.  One question:  Could somebody please translate - or paraphrase - the text describing the picture of the chandelier in Alexandra's former bath/wardrobe/dressing room?  I picked out "1941," "reconstruction," and "Catherine Palace."  It makes me hungry for more.

335
The Alexander Palace / Re: AP Rooms from OTMA Diaries
« on: September 07, 2012, 11:51:46 PM »
Please add me to the list, too. 

336
The Alexander Palace / Re: could u live in a house like that?
« on: September 07, 2012, 07:15:38 PM »
I think Sunny has hit the nail on the head.  Alexandra grew up in much less sumptious surrounds, lost her mother at a young age, and things that were her only tangible links to her mother were burned.  At a later (but still young) age, she was thrust into a larger world in a new nation with new people who spoke a different language; a world in which she was a stranger.  I think it entirely understandable that she would strive to keep herself surrounded by comforting things such a books, photographs, etc.  I'm the same way.  When I've suffered a loss, I want to keep everything that reminds me of whom I lost, and I want them to remain in the exact same place they always were.  On the other side of the coin are those who are more comfortable discarding everything that serves as a reminder.  I should know, my partner is just such a person.  This string shows that some of us could live in Alexandra's surroundings, while others could not.  To each his - or her - own.

337
The Alexander Palace / Re: China, Crystal, and Silver Used at Mealtime
« on: September 07, 2012, 08:11:42 AM »
I've become obsessed with researching AP tableware and court suppliers.  One thing is clear:   I erred in one point above.  The white plate with blue border posted the Forum Administrator in the initial set of photos is known by various names but the most common is the "Alexander Palace Service."  For the sake of consistency, I'm going to go with that. 

338
Palaces in St. Petersburg / Re: Private rooms of the Winter Palace
« on: September 06, 2012, 09:17:54 PM »
Russian tulipwood jardiniere mounted with ormolu and Sevres porcelain from the White Drawing Room of Empress Alexandra.  Recorded in inventories of this room in 1850, 1885, and again in 1889.  Photo from Christie's sale, October 21, 2005.  (This piece sold for $156,000.)


339
was there any special item the ladies in waiting had to wear while on duty (a brooch or something)? where they paid, did they have a salary? where they free to go abroad, to marry, to quit?



I've read about the differences between maids-of-honor and ladies-in-waiting of Alexandra - and all such reading does is leave my head reeling.  One detail I do remember and it is that both maids and ladies were each given a diamond-studded cypher of the empress's monogram, which was worn on the left shoulder suspended from the ribbon of the Order of Saint Andrew on ceremonial occasions.  If I can remember correctly, maids wore a relatively simple brooch, while ladies wore more complicated pieces complete with the empress's portrait (dames a portrait?).  Below is such a brooch presented to maid of honor Countess Olga Alexandrovna Nieroth in 1904.



This brooch was made by court jeweler Karl Hahn.  An invoice for it - in the amount of 700 rubles -  was tendered to His Majesty's Imperial Cabinet on January 9, 1904.  The brooch was presented to the countess on October 2 of that year.  BTW, this cypher just sold at Christie's, on April 16 of this year, for $158,500.

340
Alexandra Feodorovna / Re: Alexandra's Clothing; Formal and Informal
« on: September 06, 2012, 06:33:18 PM »
In researching AP tableware, I keep running across clothing worn by Alexandra.  Here is a gown from 1911 that was so vividly etched into my memory that I went back into cyberspace and retrieved it.  It certainly "fits" the descriptions of what Alexandra liked in her dresses and gowns.


341
Alexandra Feodorovna / Re: casual photos of alix?
« on: September 06, 2012, 04:22:42 PM »
This is the most casual photo of Alexandra that I have seen.  She looks as though she has just awoken and has yet to bathe & dress for the day.  It is my all time favorite photo of her.


342
The Alexander Palace / Re: China, Crystal, and Silver Used at Mealtime
« on: September 06, 2012, 03:58:38 PM »
According to Greg King, remnants of the Orlov Service were used.  I've done some research and found that this service - in the style of Louis XV - was commissioned by Catherine II in 17-1770-1771 for her beloved Orlov.  The original service was made by Roettiers of Paris and consisted of 3,000 pieces.  In 1793, the two had a falling out and Catherine ordered the service returned to the Winter Palace.

Throughout the 1800s, the service was added to by successive courts.  Even so, a 1907 inventory recorded only 1,000 pieces.  Here are some I found:

A pair of wine coolers with mark of Roettiers, 1770.  Sold at Christies on April 19, 2002 for $933,500.



A pair of scalloped shell dishes in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  Both bear the mark of Roettiers and are part of a set of 22 that belonged to the original service.



A group of silver-gilt plates and serving pieces bearing marks of Carl Tegelsten, Nicholls & Plincke, and Ivan Morozov, Saint Petersburg.  These are examples of later pieces and date from the mid-19th to the early 20th century.  This lot was sold at Christie's on June 8, 2010 for $115,071.  Another 15" oblong serving platter similar to the one propped up behind the round plates recently sold at a separate sale at Sotheby's for $10,000.




343
The Alexander Palace / Re: China, Crystal, and Silver Used at Mealtime
« on: September 06, 2012, 11:46:19 AM »
Another photo of the Purple Service, obtained from Angelfire.  According to Bob in "Dining With the Tsars," this service was used only twice, for luncheons in 1909.


344
The Alexander Palace / Re: China, Crystal, and Silver Used at Mealtime
« on: September 06, 2012, 12:22:28 AM »
Thank you for the informative replies and breathtaking pictures!   I've seen pics of the china and glassware on Romanov Russia (I really do need a desktop shortcut to that magnificent site!).  I have not seen pictures of the linen and silver.  The napkin is particularly arresting.  

Research shows the white plate with blue rim to be part of the Coat of Arms service, manufactured by the Imperial Porcelain Factory and consisting of 47,000 pieces.

According to Greg King in his "Court of the Last Tsar," the Purple Service was commissioned in 1903 and consisted of 1,690 pieces.  It, too, was made by the Imperial Porcelain Factory.

Below are photos gleaned from ekaterinas.com of the Raphael Service, begun in 1883 by Alexander III.  Production continued for 20 years, with new pieces presented to Nicholas II each Christmas.  In 1903, the service, ultimately consisting of 50 place settings, was completed at a cost of 125,000 rubles. During production, the service was stored at the Winter Palace.  Appropriate numbers of place settings were sent to the Alexander Palace when required.  In 1904, the entire service was transferred to the Anitchkov Palace for use by the dowager empress.





345
The Alexander Palace / China, Crystal, and Silver Used at Mealtime
« on: September 05, 2012, 01:34:48 AM »
I have not seen any message strings devoted to this topic.  The closest I have found is the string concerning dining at the palace, but that appears to be limited to meals, menus and foods.

What china, crystal and silver was used for daily meals by the IF at the Alexander Palace?  Years of research have turned up little more than the fact that  much of the china used at table was made by the Imperial Porcelain Factory, but not much more than that.  What patterns were used?  Where were the table items stored when not in use?  Who cleaned it?  Where was it cleaned?  I believe it was Robert Massey who described Tsesarevitch Alexei being taken on a tour of the palace basement and being shown a room in which two men were engaged smashing pieces of cracked and chipped china so that nobody else could have it.  Cases of new china and glassware must have been kept on hand to replenish broken pieces - do large lots of it survive in Russian state repositories?

If information about specific china and glassware patterns is scarce, information about table silver used day to day by the imperial family is practically non-existent.  Does anyone know of purveyors of table silver to palace?  There must have been multiple flatware services of various patterns.  The services must have been large - and valuable.  Where would it have been stored?  Does any survive?

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