Alexander Palace Forum

Discussions about the Imperial Family and European Royalty => The Imperial Family => Topic started by: Sarai on February 12, 2004, 10:08:38 AM

Title: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sarai on February 12, 2004, 10:08:38 AM
I was wondering what originally got everyone here interested in the Romanovs (specifically, I mean in Nicholas II's family) and what has inspired you to maintain that interest? For me, I first became acquainted with their story in 1992 as a thirteen year old girl when I saw an article about them in ¡Hola! magazine (the Spanish equivalent to Britain's "Hello!" magazine). There were several pictures of the children and I was especially captured by the beauty of the little girls in their 1906 picture that shows headshots of the four sisters in a row. A caption below  said that those lovely little girls would eventually be murdered, and I couldn't believe that such beauty and innocence could be so mercilessly obliterated. I started researching more about their story and the more I found the more I was interested, especially in finding family photographs like those found in the wonderful "family album" books that came out in the 1990's, such as "The Romanovs: Love, Power, and Tragedy" and Prince Michael's "Nicholas and Alexandra: The Family Albums."

The more I read about this family, the more human they became to me and I felt as if I almost knew them personally after having read so much about them. I could actually relate to them as fellow human beings and not as inaccessible royals. I could personally relate to Alexandra's shyness and being misunderstood for it, her love and devotion for her family above everyone and everything else, etc. To me, this family was not just some abstract and arrogant royal family you would just read about in a history book but never be able to relate to, but real people with compassion, charity, innocence, love, and overall good hearts. I like the fact that they were so different than other royals, that they were involved more in their quiet family life than in socializing and politics (although, of course, this was a great detriment for them as rulers), that they cared about their more humble subjects, and how they maintained  tremendous dignity and patience in their last days. They seemed more like ordinary people than great rulers, despite their incredible wealth and prestigious bloodlines. Even when stripped of their ranks and wealth, they could have lived happily just as well among ordinary middle class persons, as that was in their humble souls. I remember seeing pictures of the Grand Duchesses as adolescents kneeling in the dirt with and holding peasant children, and I thought that perfectly captured their essence and made them seem all the more real, as I couldn't imagine many princesses of royal blood dirtying their clothes with mud and dirt to hug poor and dirty little peasants, and even taking care to record their names and put their photos in their albums. They seemed like people we could all be friends with today if we had the chance.

Finally, something to consider as a final thought is would we be nearly half as interested in their story if they had not met such a tragic end? If they were just any other royals who lived out their lives in peace and comfort, I don't think they would have such a following, even if their lives had turned out to be interesting. Knowing their fate is what makes their story that much more compelling, even though of course I wish they could have been spared of that terrible end and not perhaps had such a fascinating story as a result.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Queen_Lei on February 12, 2004, 06:18:57 PM

Ever since I was a small child, I remember my grandfather and my mother talking about our "family" and it always seemed to me that I should be the one to finalize the family of Romanov. By that I mean that I have been working on our family and its history for some 24+ years. I am a Romanov, and proud! So to finalize.....any of you out there who think there are no direct decendents.....here I am! :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Alex V. on February 12, 2004, 08:42:11 PM
Found a little book in the library at age 13 in boarding school "The secret life of the ill-fated Tsar". Was fascinated by it and read it over and over many many times. When I saw the pictures later, I could not believe them, as if I knew these people all along... After I finished school I dived into the sea of information about life at the palace. More than the Romanovs themselves, it is the protocol of the palace that fascinates me.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Alice on February 13, 2004, 03:37:06 AM
I remember watching a film about Anna Anderson when I was 10 (not the film starring Ingrid Bergman . .  I believe the film that I watched was a mini-series). That's how I became interested in the Romanovs. I have always been fascinated. All aspects of Imperial Russia interest me, the palaces, the Romanovs themselves, protocol, historical events, etc.

Do you know that I found, when searching for photographs of the Alexander Palace in Google yesterday, a Sims version of the Alexander Palace? Quite well done, too. I don't play the Sims but I can appreciate the work that must've gone into it.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: investigator on February 13, 2004, 03:54:59 AM
The Romanovs have won many hearts and i am also one of the individuals who has felt the magnitude of the tradegy of their deaths.  Then their is the mystery attached to their deaths.  I first got interested in the Romanovs when i watched Nicholas and Alexandra and a mini series on Anastasia.  I also watched a few documentaries on History Channel.  Ever since then i have not been able to put them out of my mind.  Their lives have also been extraordinary and that continues to increase my interest in the Romanovs.  And ofcourse this forum and this website has provided me with so much information.  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AnneS on February 16, 2004, 07:51:06 PM
First, I want to say how wonderful this website and forum is!  I'm so happy to have found it!  :D

I became interested in the Romanov tragedy after seeing a piece on Unsolved Mysteries years ago.  I believe they were speculating about Anastasia and whether or not she had survived, etc.  I was young at the time and had not heard of the Romanovs but this definitely got my attention.  From there on out, I've looked up information on my own and read several books.  

However, to be honest, I was pushed into doing more personal research after the Fox animated "Anastasia" was released (very cute for a cartoon).  I found it to be an interesting way to introduce children to history (though the movie wasn't exactly historically accurate).  Since its release, the Romanov dynasty has captivated me.  I am almost finished reading "The Flight of the Romanovs" which has encouraged me to delve deeper into their history.  The book has also shown me that we need more information on the other Romanovs.  If there are books on Nikolasha, I'm not aware of any.

Sorry to be long winded in my first post but there is so much more I could say!  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: BeenaBobba on February 17, 2004, 06:24:47 AM
Hi all,

I'm 21 now, but I first became interested in the family when I was 14 - and under rather unconventional circumstances.  You see, I first got interested in the family due to what I was learning about hemophilia in my 9th grade Honors Biology class.  I had always been interested in royalty (particularly British royalty, due in part to my crush on Prince William), so I had a  rudimentary knowledge of the last Romanov family.  Anyhow, at a dinner party with family friends one night, I was asked what I was learning in school.  When I said that I was learning about hemophilia in school, and that I loved history, I was asked if I knew much about the Romanovs.  I replied no - and to that, I was given a copy of Massie's book.  After that, I was hooked.  I've always been drawn to the humanity of people living in somewhat extraordinary circumstances, and the Romanovs more or less encompass everything I find interesting about history.  As lame as this sounds, they've become almost like family to me.

Over $1,000 worth of books and tapes later, the rest is history.  LOL.

Take care,

Jennifer Benjamin
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: The Admiral on February 17, 2004, 03:27:04 PM
In my Geography class we are starting an extensive unit on the Romanovs.  My teacher passed around the "Romanov Family Albums" book and it just amazed me!  So now I am here....
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Em Martini on February 17, 2004, 07:44:32 PM
 ;)The Disney movie Anastasia got me interested in the Romanovs. :) :D ;D >:( :( :o 8) ??? ::) :P :-[ :-X  :-/ :-* :'(
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Helen_Azar on February 18, 2004, 07:02:31 PM
This is so amazing, reading all these testimonials about why everyone is interested in the Romanovs! I am the only person I knew up to this point who was deeply interested in that family, and everyone who knows me thinks it's so weird!
I became interested in the Romanov family in a very strange way too.... When I was a kid I used to love to read the Anastasia Krupnik book series by Lois Lowry. This particular Anastasia had nothing to do with the Romanovs of course, but in one of the books, the heroine asks her parents why on earth they named her Anastasia, since she constantly gets made fun of by kids in school, who had all kinds of nicknames for her, such as "Anesthesia" and "Anaconda".  Her parents explained to her that before she was born, they saw the Ingrid Bergman film and thought the story of this lost princess was so sad and wonderful, and they loved the name. So when their daughter was born they decided to name her after the main character. They went into the story of the last Tsar's daughter a little more and the story sounded so interesting to me, I decided to read up more about it, and I was hooked!
Helen
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Louise on February 19, 2004, 05:04:19 PM
I was 15 when I first read the book Nicholas and Alexandra, and a short time later watched the movie on TV. Since then I have tried to read or watch anything to do the with Romanovs.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: snoopygirl on February 20, 2004, 06:41:36 PM
I saw a book of letters from Nicholas and Alexandra. I also saw various stories on Anastasia. After reading all these stories I was hooked. I then read the classic Nicholas and Alexandra and then after that I had to get a lot more books on the family. I have a good deal of books ( a lot of photo books) and the whole story is just so intresting to me. I love royals but the Romanovs are my favorite royal family of them all.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sushismom on February 24, 2004, 02:04:22 PM
I'd heard about Rasputin and Anastasia for years. When I finally saw a documentary on Anna Anderson, I started getting a little more interested in the Romanovs. After reading a few books on Nicholas and Alexandra, I caught the bug and have been hooked for the past few years.  One of the best books I've read is The Fate of the Romanovs.  I tend to agree with the authors' assessment of Nicholas, Alexandra, and Rasputin.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Olenka on February 24, 2004, 04:09:11 PM
What got me interested? I cannot remember! I know that it was before the cartoon Anastasia came out, as I remenber thinking that it wasn't exactly historically correct...though, I must have been quite young then.

My guess would be that I was looking through our Dorling Kindersly Children's Encyclopedia for nice pictures, and I came across the Romanovs. When I was younger I skimmed over the fact that they were killed, as I didn't want to believe it!

I do remember getting into trouble in 1st year science class for writing everything I knew about the Romanovs over the back of my worksheets.

At first, I was merely interested in Anastasia, only natural, because she was the youngest girl, but gradually I became fascinated with everything in Russian History. Recently, due to some writing sites, I have been introduced to the Greek side of the family, hence the name. I found the alexanderpalace website through reading the original article whilst bored in a hospital waiting room!

I think someone else has mentioned learning about Haeomophilia (how many different spelling versions of that are we going to get?! *grin*)whilst doing Higher Biology. We have these huge thick green textbooks which include lots of 'sideline' information, including a whole family tree of Queen Victoria, showing how the Haeomophilic gene was passed on. It always annoyed me that we didn't learn more, only 'the basics' ; the good thing is that I knew the background already and so probably got more out of it than the rest.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: nerdycool on February 24, 2004, 07:06:07 PM
What got me started was when they were doing the original DNA tests after the grave was found. *I think* there was a special on 20/20 or one of those primetime news shows and I found it interesting, as well as horrifying.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: David on February 27, 2004, 08:20:45 PM
It was 1974 and I was in the throngs of teenage angst. My European history class went to the movies to see Nicholas and Alexandra. What I thought was going to be an uninspired costume epic turned out to be indeed a lifelong passion. I soon gobbled up the meagre selection of books available on the subject of the Romanovs at all the local libraries. In 1975, as a senior in high school, I accompanied a teacher of mine to the tiny and cozy St Davids PA cottage of a Princess Tolstoi. She was minor nobility, or so she claimed, but she did attend Smolny and had vivid memories of the Tercentenary in 1913. While my teacher recorded the interview for a doctorate he was working on, I sat in amazement before this tiny, snowhaired relic of an age long gone. I was hooked!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: jenthered@msn.com on March 01, 2004, 11:42:33 AM
As a child, I was friends with the daughter of the Indian consul in New York, and we spent many happy hours sharing our books. From the Astor Library, she borrowed a work of historical fiction, whose title I don't remember, and it mentioned very frequently the Russian Royal Family. I became instantly fascinated, and pestered my parents to get me anything on the family, to no avail.  However, when my father was transferred to Minneapolis, the small neighborhood library had a great selection of Imperial memoirs, making it easier to keep my interest alive.I never forgot my obsession; my family didn't either, and bought for me Robert K. Massie's classic work when I was fourteen. (I was seven when I first heard of them)  I grew up to be a portrait painter, and was so fortunate to be able to see the monumental exhibit of the family artifacts in Delaware several years ago, as well as the magnificent Faberge eggs and jewels in museums and special exhibits around the world. The Imperial family has figured in my art, partly because I specialize in portraits of people in period costume, and partly because their lives and terrible deaths seem to be a microcosm of representation of the extraordinarily violent and brutal 20th century. When I paint them, I can more readily comprehend with at least a glimmer of comprehension the whys of that century. Because of the enthusiam with which paintings of the Imperial Family have been received, I knew that there is still a lot of interest, but on line has been a revelation and a joy.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Jackswife on March 01, 2004, 03:36:28 PM
 Years ago, I read Massie's wonderful book "Nicholas and Alexandra" and was hooked. I watched the movie made from the book several times, and tried to read all I could find on the Romanovs. I also developed an interest in the English royals as a result, and that lead still further to an interest in the jewels of both royal families. I never seem to get tired of reading about the family and their history, and there are so many interesting facets to their lives, both as historical figures but most importantly, as ordinary people who just happened to be Romanovs.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: LisaDavidson on March 03, 2004, 12:16:04 AM
In the mid sixties, I was walking through the libary of my middle school when "The Last Grand Duchess" fell off the shelf and on to my head. Of course I checked it out - and I read it in one sitting.

It all started then, over 35 years ago, and my Romanov collection is now spilling into a second bookcase.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Leksa on March 04, 2004, 09:38:48 PM
I was first interested in the Romanovs when I saw the animated film Anastasia... I know it's entirely inaccurate but it caught my interest.  I then got a book from the library about Anastasia and her family.  I think it was a family album.  Anyhow I've become more interested as I've learned more and also the fact that we have the same birthdate intrigued me.  (Or at least it's the same by one of the calendars- at that time in Russia they used 2 different ones)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Adele on March 14, 2004, 05:30:44 PM
I'm originally from Ontario, Canada.  When my family moved to Detroit, Michigan, my parents, who talked endlessly about the Romanovs, told me that the Tsar's sister lived in a small farm house, in Southern Ontario.  I wanted very much for us to drive by there (this was the 1950's, if I recall correctly), but we never did.

Still, I could feel her presence.  I know that sounds strange, and perhaps it was just the imagination of a young girl, but it felt real to me.

My parents, who had a passion for Russian history, passed on  that passion to me...

So...here I am.  What a delightful dicussion group.  I'm so glad I've joined in!

--Adele
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: JM on March 14, 2004, 06:07:39 PM
   I was born in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. I'm pretty sure most people in my family still believe we're in the midst of the Cold War. I've never heard anyone speak of Russia at all and I didn't know anything until I was around ten. At that age I stumbled upon a book about the Romanovs, a book which I forget, however that's what got me interested in the Romanovs. An anonymous book. Interesting.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Reed on March 22, 2004, 11:47:30 AM
I like many others first got the Romanov bug when I read Nicolas and Alexandra by Massey.  That was when I was 16 and found it in the high school library.  I've been reading about them since.   :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Linda_G on March 24, 2004, 02:15:32 PM
My family in Canada are decended from the Doukhobors who emigrated from Russia in the early 1900's.   I was raised surrounded by the Russian language and culture. As I researched our family history and the role of the Tsars in the persecution of this sect, I was captivated by the tragic story of the Romanovs.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sarai on March 28, 2004, 12:15:53 PM
Along these same lines of getting to know each other here, I am curious to know what categories people here would consider themselves to fall into as far as being either professional historians, authors, scientists, or just regular people interested in this subject (or a combination of these)? Does your career directly involve the study of the Romanovs? For instance, I know we have professionals here such as authors Greg King and Penny Wilson, jewelry & antique expert/author Nick Nicholson, etc.

From reading some of the other people's posts, it seems that some of you have quite a bit of knowledge and influence with regards to this subject matter, meaning you have met important people connected to the Romanovs, know authors of Romanov books, and some of you have even personally met some of their descendants! I admit I feel a bit jealous of you having had these privileges ;), and am curious to know how people who started as just regular fans of this subject could have achieved so much?

As far as myself, while I majored in History, I am not a professional scholar, and would categorize myself more as an amateur historian and just a "regular person" who is simply very interested in this subject.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: nerdycool on March 28, 2004, 01:32:27 PM
I too, am just a regular person who is very interested in the Romanovs. My history major didn't have any classes on Imperial Russia (though there was one on the Soviet Union), so I see this as a supplement to my degree. But this doesn't make me a professional scholar... it's for my own personal enjoyment. I am however a professional daydreamer and I often visualize scenes of the family life at Tsarskoe Selo.... hmmm......... maybe I should write a book (fiction of course).
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: sara on March 28, 2004, 06:39:39 PM
I remember sitting in my western civilization class, listening to my professor speak about late imperial Russia.  He talked about Nicholas II and I instantly became fascinated. I soon bought Radzinsky's The Last Tsar (the only non fiction book to make me cry) and have been intrigued ever since.

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: sara on March 28, 2004, 06:41:52 PM
I just noticed Sarai's post and I'm a history major with plans to go to graduate school. I would very much like to do more in-depth study of the last Romanov family.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet_Ashton on March 29, 2004, 06:17:18 AM
Quote
Along these same lines of getting to know each other here, I am curious to know what categories people here would consider themselves to fall into as far as being either professional historians, authors, scientists, or just regular people interested in this subject (or a combination of these)? Does your career directly involve the study of the Romanovs? For instance, I know we have professionals here such as authors Greg King and Penny Wilson, jewelry & antique expert/author Nick Nicholson, etc.  


Another Romanov author I'd specifically like to mention is my friend (and the friend of several others here too)  Gretchen Haskin. This is because Gretchen (who is posting under a screen name) wrote "An imperial affair" which in my opinion is the best work of Romanov escape fiction ever written (and I've read a lot, because I did an article on the last imperial family in fiction!). A lot of other escape fiction consists of pulpy adventure stories or is too terribly romantic. "Imperial affair" though is beautifully written as well as being pretty down to earth about Nicholas II -all the characters are plausible, I think....
Anyway, I'd recomend that people read it if they get a chance!

Janet

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: CarolynnB on March 29, 2004, 06:59:33 PM
I have to weigh in with Robert and Suzanne Massey being incredibly influential in my fascination with Russian history, along with 2 terribly gifted teachers.  

The first teacher was my high school freshman Amercian History teacher.  He saw that I was incredibly bored with basic American history, and loaned me not only his personal copy of "Nicholas and Alexandra" but his copy of Hedrick Smith's "The Russians."  Understand, this was still cold-war America---a 14-year old kid in central Missouri knew absolutely nothing about Russia except that it was "the enemy."  Imagine my surprise.  I can still remember that I was sitting in his class when I read the section in Massie about the execution of the family---I remember that I was outraged--I had no idea that the book would end that way, and I can remember that I acutally yelled at him that he had gotten me hooked on this stupid book and on these people that I had come to care for, and that they had died!  Well, that was the beginning.  

In college, I decided to take classes in Russian language so that I could fulfill my foreign language requirement, and learn a little bit more about Russia.  I was blessed with an absolutely brilliant professor, who introduced us to Russian literature, Russian history, and Russian music.  I was hooked.  I changed my major from economics to Slavic Studies, and took 3 more years of language, Russian history, literature, economics, politics, and culture (I think basically everything that was offered).  I have never regretted my choice, and I love that now I am teaching and can pass my love of Russia on to other students.  The greatest latest blessing has been a non-traditional, older student who has taken maybe 3 of my Russian history classes.  She has also grown to love all things Russian, and found out recently that she has terminal cancer.  This dear lady gave me all of her Russian history books so that I could pass them on to other Russian students---that's what this passion that we all share does for us, I think---it gives us a connection that makes us a "family" in some way.

Joy!
Carolynn
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: JM on March 29, 2004, 07:39:58 PM
      You are very lucky to have had such excellent teachers. Unfortunately for myself and the rest of my History10 class I know more than the teacher. It's quite sad. I had to correct him because he said Louis XIV was the one who gave aid to the American colonies during the American Revolution. He also said the dauphin was taken to a peasant family to be raised so that he could never claim the French throne. Talk about fairy-tales! ;D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: _Rodger_ on March 29, 2004, 08:50:41 PM
Here's an article for your teacher.

http://www.bioforensics.com/conference/mtDNA/badmtdna.pdf
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Crazy_Claire01 on March 30, 2004, 01:39:20 PM
Hi, my name's Claire, age 15 and  when I was 13 my mum brought a book about Queen Victoria's Family, I first got interested in Kaiser Wilhelm , then when I had learned all I wanted about his life, suddenly I got hooked on Princess Alix of Hesse's life and then that's what drove me to learn about these rich, misfortunate people. When I read Greg King's The Life and Times of Alexandra Feodorovna, it all seemed like a horrible fairytale but now I can accept the awful truth.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet Whitcomb on March 30, 2004, 02:38:11 PM
Welcome to the discussion board, Claire!  Queen Victoria's children and grandchildren are a good starting point. I have a theory that once a person can understand all the complex families relationships and individual stories re: Victoria and Albert's descendants, that person can understand almost anything!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Olenka on March 30, 2004, 03:24:49 PM
In our Biology class we have these brilliant thick green textbooks that have a whole chapter on haemophilia, and a page devoted to Victoria's family tree, showing how the geneatics were linked to all the royal families of Europe. Unfortunately, we don't use them, as we now have more 'specific' (ie, more boring!) textbooks...'related to the course'. Phfa...pig and filth,,,why can't we have the interesting ones?!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Melissa_J on April 02, 2004, 11:38:24 AM
My junior year in high school ( I went to a private school), we had a new teacher who loved Russian History and started a class for students who wanted to learn something new and had fulfilled all their history credits already and this would be extra credit. I have always loved history and said I would do it, no question. In the class we learned the history, about the culture and a little language also, now I just can't stop reading more and more - I love it! I'm currently getting my master's in education so I can be a history teacher and pass it along. :D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Antonio_P.Caballer on April 06, 2004, 09:51:57 AM
Hey Thomas,
Endless thanks for sharing this wonderful information about your family with us. It´s so sad you lost your gand mother so soon. I loved my grand parents and learnt a lot through them. If your g. mother knew the grand duke and was invited to the Neues Palais(and this is just like a dream!), perhaps your great grand mother or great great grand mother knew Princess Alice! Some of us look for books describing the palaces and you only needed to ask your grand mother, it´s amazing. I feel a profound admiration for Princess Alice, don´t you? Did your family have some opinion about Viktoria Melita? I´m sorry to say that i´ve always disliked her...not only because of her attitude towards Alix but also because of behavior as grand duchess of Hesse and mother.I think she failed to do her only work in the Grand Duchy, only willing entertainments and never fulfilling her official duties. Thanks to God Ernst and Eleonora married...
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet Whitcomb on April 06, 2004, 10:57:31 AM
Thomas, so glad you've joined us!  My grandparents all died before I was able to formulate really good questions, but I did have a close and ongoing relationship with my maternal grandmother until her death at age 79, when I was 15, and I treasure the things that she did tell me.

It sounds just like the Grand Duke that he would have been so kind and complimentary of the little girl who grew up to be your grandmother. And how fortunate you are to have such terrific souvenirs!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Greg_King on April 07, 2004, 01:53:39 AM
My experiences may inspire someone else.  One night, in autumn of 1976, I saw an ad in the TV Guide for the old program "In Search Of..."-an oval picture of the IF, with the line, "Did this Princess escape a massacre?"  I was intrigued and watched-the show on Anna Anderson; before this I'd had no interest in the Romanovs.  That night, by one of those odd moments of synchronicity, the late Saturday movie was "Nicholas and Alexandra," which I watched.  Next night, the CBC in Canada ran the 1956 "Anastasia" film.  So I got 3 Romanov programs in 24 hours, at the impressionable age of 12.  And was hooked.  I went to the library and got everything I could find.  One Sunday night in November, 1976, I finished reading "Nicholas and Alexandra."  I set the book down, and said to myself, with all the certainty that you have at that age, "I'm going to write about her."  And that was that.  I started reading more, buying books, researching-on and on it went for the next 15 years (half of which were spent coming to terms with learning how to write what I wanted).  And facing the usual assortment of friends, family, teachers-all wondering what I thought I was doing and why I was wasting my time.  When my bio of Alix was published, I felt vindicated, and haven't looked back as I've continued to publish other books.

The lesson: I firmly believe anyone, with enough passion, conviction, and above all-drive-can do what I've done.  I didn't know enough when I started to believe the people who said I couldn't do it, and so I always tell groups of students I often speak with today the same thing-follow your dreams, and if YOU believe, you'll see them come to fruition.  Which gets a bit away from how I got interested in the Romanovs, but is a message so central to what I believe that it's inseparable from my involvement.

Greg King
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Penny_Wilson on April 07, 2004, 02:26:31 AM
Quote
The lesson: I firmly believe anyone, with enough passion, conviction, and above all-drive-can do what I've done.  I didn't know enough when I started to believe the people who said I couldn't do it, and so I always tell groups of students I often speak with today the same thing-follow your dreams, and if YOU believe, you'll see them come to fruition.  Which gets a bit away from how I got interested in the Romanovs, but is a message so central to what I believe that it's inseparable from my involvement.

Greg King


I think this is absolutely true.  I can remember Marvin Lyons telling me that the absolute best piece of history he ever read (and he's read a LOT!) wasn't written by an Oxford don or a multiple PhD residing in an "ivory tower."  It was written by what he called "an Iowa housewife" who wrote it at her kitchen table over a period of twenty years -- two or three hours a night, while her family watched tv or did homework.  She did all her research by mail, sometimes waiting months for pieces of information to arrive.  I never did ask him who she was or what her book was called (duh!) -- I was just so inspired and excited at her story of success that I guess I forgot!

I got interested in the Romanovs at a party.  It was 1974 or 75, and I was seven or eight.  At the time, we lived just outside of New York City, and my parents were active in the social world of the ex-pat British.  This night, it was their turn to throw the party, so I was bundled down into the rec room (wood panelled walls, huge red lava lamps, lime green shag carpet -- we were SWISH!) to watch TV.  "Nicholas and Alexandra" was on, and at various times during the show people would drift in and out.  One lady stayed to watch.  We started talking (I was never shy) and in the silence after the last horrible scenes (probably the first time I ever saw death so vividly portrayed), she said, "They were my family, you know -- distantly."  And they were.  She was a connection of Princess Tatiana Konstantinovna, by that time, Mother Tamara.  By the time she mapped it all out for me in a genealogy (first time I saw one of those, too!) I was just thrilled at how close the Romanovs seemed.  

I think I've always been excited by the six degrees of separation thing.  When Antonia Fraser's bio of Charles II was published, I remember seeing her on a tv interview, talking about her interest in Charles.  She described a very old professor at Oxford (or maybe Cambridge) when she was there:  His father's grandfather often recalled an old children's nurse who lived in their house when he was a child himself (she must have been a faithful old retainer or something) and she could remember being a child and seeing King Charles II playing with his dogs in St. James' Park.  I was SO enchanted with that -- it made it so that Charles was touchable... It was very cool!  8)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Thierry on April 07, 2004, 05:50:09 AM
Hi !
Certainly because of my Russian connection (no, I am not a descendant of OTMA or Alexei  :P), I began to be interested in the Imperial Family and I think that the first book (in French) I bought and read about them is : "Enquête sur le massacre des Romanov", by Marina Grey. Then I bought the Ferrand books, the memoirs of Princess Paley (a moving reading) and the memoirs of Prince Yussupoff (I think I have been able to read between the lines and it was great...).
A few years later, during my studies, I had the chance to work on the Pierre Gilliard fund (the family photographs). My best souvenir of my studies and a deeply moving one, too...
So I never stopped to be interested in the Romanovs since my first reading.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet_Ashton on April 07, 2004, 01:25:36 PM
OK, perhaps I'm going to be the only person to admit to this, but I bet I'm not the only person for whom it's true....
What got me interested was hearing Boney M's song "Rasputin" at a party when I was ten! :-)
Hated the song, hated the lyrics even more when I got to know them, but was intrigued as to what they were singing about....then a couple of years later after Lord Mountbatten was murdered I remember reading a coffee table book about him which my grandmother owned, and seeing a picture of his Russian cousins, and thinking, "Huh - well - I didn't know they were THAT closely related!" - I suppose it made what had seemed a rather distant and strange wolrld seem very familiar to me....so I got out the encyclopaedia and started looking people up...


Janet
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Katia on April 07, 2004, 02:43:06 PM
Hello everybody!
I'm new here, but I've been visiting Alexander palace time machine for years.
My mother has always been interested in royal families and she also owned Massie's book Nicholas and Alexandra. I first read it in 1973 or 1974 when I was 13 or 14 years old. I was hooked!The other royal families didn't impress me much, but the Romanovs were something else! The drama - especially the illness of the tsarevich Alexei, and the revolution and the murder of the innocent children - was horrible, but at the same time very, very interesting. Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia looked so heartbreakingly beautiful in the photographs and I felt such a pity for them for they died so young. I have read so many books of the family since then and I've collected books and photographs of the family whenever it's possible.
Last year I had a possibility to visit Sankt Petersburg for the first time and I also visited the church where the remains of the family are buried. It was an emotional moment. I bought a beautiful book "Nicholas II. The imperial family" during my visit.
It's nice to read how everybody else here has been hooked! BTW I'm from Finland, next to Russia!
Katia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Jane on April 07, 2004, 02:53:51 PM
Great story, Janet!  :)

Well, let's see.  It's been so interesting for me to read this thread to see what drew other posters to the Romanovs.  I'm not sure what it was that first sparked my interest, but I can't remember when I wasn't interested in the Romanovs!  My grandfather taught history so perhaps I inherited my interests from him.  I recall reading Massie's "Nicholas and Alexandra" fairly early on, then about 20 years ago or so (oh my word, is it that long already?),  I came across an edition of the "Romanov Family Album"--forward written by Mr. Massie, of course, and I devoured it, fascinated by the sepia-toned photos and the "Edwardian" splendor of it all.  I still have that book in my  (now much larger) collection, worn and a bit tattered, but treasured nonetheless.   My "Russian Book Collection," which is ever-expanding, now covers Imperial Russia, the USSR, Faberge, architecture, etc.  It's great to be able to interact with others who share the same inclination.  I'm sure there are books at my local library that have been checked out to me five times or more (some people use drugs, my addiction--thankfully--just books).

Jane
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet Whitcomb on April 08, 2004, 12:40:40 PM
Like a lot of us, I became interested via the Nicholas and Alexandra phenomenon of the late sixties and early 1970s.  I confess that I first saw the film, partly because I was a history fanatic, and partly  :-/ because one of the stars shared my name! But I was far more interested in British history at the time, and all I knew about Russia was what my history teacher had told us, what I gleaned from Dr. Zhivago, and of course all I'd heard about the Cold War and its trappings of mutual fear and distrust.

Seeing Nicholas and Alexandra, then, was a revalation!  And although I can now spot problems with the film here and there, I will always feel a profound grattitude to all connected with its production.  Robert Massie's book (which I consider a "bible" of sorts) came next, then I spent the following years absolutely obsessed, collecting information wherever and whenever (and often to the detriment of my proscribed university studies, alas), watching films, taking classes and attending museum exhibits, and ultimately being part of a tour to Russia and Ukraine led by my former Russian Studies professor.  The "Six Degrees of Separation" concept intrigued me long before I even heard of it, in fact, since my prof had actually met and interviewed Alexander Kerensky during his own university days.

It's wonderful to know that the multi-layered story that has obsessed my thoughts for so long also has been important to others as well.  So far we've learned that teachers and writers have been inspired by their initial exposure to the Romanov saga, and through the years I've learned that people such as Jackie Kennedy Onasis and Judy Garland also were fascinated.  Perhaps current or budding statesmen (or stateswomen)  ;) also exist who have taken the story to heart and will at some point use their knowledge of what went wrong with the world in general and Russia specifically, plus their own skills of diplomacy, to prevent a World War III.  One can only hope.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: equinox on April 08, 2004, 02:02:44 PM
In 2001, my Junior year in High School, in vocal music class, my teacher let the class watch Fox's animated film Anastasia because we were going to sing some of the songs for our concet.

Some time later, in my history class, we were studying Russia and I saw documentaries on the Romanovs. Seeing these documentaries sparked my interest.

Kimo Gant
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: jackie3 on April 08, 2004, 03:47:45 PM
When I was a small child in the 1980s I remember watching some "Mystery of Anastasia" program on PBS (I think it was NOVA) - this was during the time when the Fake Imposter who called herself Anna Anderson was still alive and fooling people. Even then I didn't believe it, since I had family members killed by Bolshies in the Russian Revolution and I knew how cold-blooded they could be and that they would never have let someone get out alive from Ekaterinburg,

Anyway I become interested in the REAL Anastasia and my mother brought me my (now dog-eared) copy of Massie's Nicholas and Alexandra and that book has remained my favorite Romanov book of all time (even though its now somewhat dated) and started me on my fascination and even love for the doomed Imperial family. Since then I've brought every decent Romanov book I could find - excepting those which purport to expound on Anastasia/Anna Anderson since I believe that pathetic woman abused the memory of that poor innocent child enough while she was alive.

As to what has maintained my interest in the family - well the number of new books (like Greg and Penny's) that come out and the number of websites (like this one or livadia.org) that have popped up have certainly kept their presence in their forefront bit most of all I think its looking at their photographs, reading their words, reading what others said or though about them, knowing how they faced their deaths with courage and grace and faith and the cowardly way they were butchered (and I don't think thats too light a turn) and then how the butchers both bragged about their crimes and at the same time denied it and covered it up for 70+ years.

Maybe I am one of those "romantizers" of the Romanovs that Greg and Penny speak of on the fateoftheromanovs website but I can't help look at those pictures of Alexis and the girls and think "what-if", without picturing the pain and desperation they went through and without thinking of of all the innocent children still killed without warning and reason in our own "civilized" world today. I don't think of them as "perfect" but as human beings, on the whole good decent people, who were killed for WHAT they were (and represented) and not WHO they were inside their souls and in a manner I would not even wish on my worst enemy.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Katia on April 11, 2004, 02:20:33 AM
Hi Elisa and thanks for your nice words!
No, I have not visited Anna Vyrybovas's grave, although I lived many years in Helsinki where she is buried. Don't know why... I'll do it some day for sure! Anna lived in Helsinki (our capital city) from 1940 and she died there in 1964. She and her friend and servant Vera owned a little two-room apartment there and also a little villa in Järvenpää near Helsinki where Anna loved to relax and paint and draw cards to send her friends on religious holidays. I've read that queen Louise of Sweden (who was tsarina Alexandra's niece) paid a little pension for Anna.
In Finland, which was a part of Russian empire from 1809 to 1917, people didn't really like the last tsar, but nowadays very many people here are intersted in Romanov family. Many of the Romanovs who were able to emigrate from Russia during and after the revolution lived here for a while - for example grand duke Vladimir, son of grand duke Kyril, was born in Finland. He is buried in the same church in Sankt Petersburg as tsar Nicholas II and his family and servants...

During the early years of 1900's, Nicholas II and his family visited Finland for several times. They made cruises on Standart and stopped for swim and fish, play tennis and picnic in Finland. I've once visited the villa they owned in Langinkoski and the family (including OTMA) wrote their names on the wall there.
Next summer there will be a exposition in Lappeenranta, Finland with the belongings os the last tsar's family (clothes, uniforms, paintings, photograps etc.) Guess who's going there!
Where are you from, Elisa?
Katia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Katia on April 11, 2004, 08:54:14 AM
Hi Elisa!
Yes, I've seen the book you mentioned (Keisarit kesälomalla Suomessa), it's actually written by a finnish couple Jorma & Päivi Tuomi-Nikula in finnish! There may be translations in russian and other languages, too. Great photos innit! And I took some photos in the Langinkoski villa when I visited it. It was haunting to see the signatures of the grand duchesses there...
Katia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: magus on April 11, 2004, 09:53:24 AM
I have always been moved by the character of Nicholas II and the Family.I happened upon the Romanovs and their story while reading around on WWI back in 1983 and since then I've read about two dozen books and what not.
The Romanovs are and have always been a source of strength comfort and encouragement to me as I struggle through psychotherapy for my depressive mania.I pray for them often and they are like gaurdian angels for me.they were the victims of gun violence just as the kids at Colombine High School were.
Oh yes...I wish you a very Happy Easter!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Namarolf on April 12, 2004, 09:55:30 PM
Well, in the future some of us would be included in the '6 degrees of separation' phenomenom thanks to Anna Anderson's endless life, telling our grandchildren "I was born while she was still alive..."
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: HRHLaurie1894 on April 16, 2004, 06:10:04 PM
When I was a teen ager I saw "Dr. Zhivago".  When I heard the Imperial Anthem I became very upset and kept telling my friends "that is his song".  That began a lifetime of researching - first to identify the tune that would not leave my head, then to find out everything I could about the family.  After reading "Nicholas and Alexandra" - my goal was to find all the books he listed in his bibliography - I did get many of them.  The era from about 1880 to 1918 is my favorite in history - this is when it must have been fun to dress - with Worth gowns etc.  I can't seem to read or hear enough about the Nicholas and Alexandra.  I would love to own a replica of Alexandra's wedding ring - I believe I read some where it has a pink diamond??
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet Whitcomb on April 16, 2004, 06:20:11 PM
I agree there's something really magnetic about the Romanovs, especially for those of us who may be going through our own "time of troubles."  So many things went wrong for Nicholas and Alexandra, and yet they did enjoy their lives, whenever possible.

Also, I just finished looking at Doctor Zhivago again, and it is very compelling--on its own, and also for those of us who see the film through "Tsarist" eyes.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet Whitcomb on April 19, 2004, 05:01:13 PM
Melissa K., that is a fascinating account!  When I was in Russia in 1991, I did take along my film edition paperback of Nicholas and Alexandra, but I did so very carefully, showing it only to a couple of people--I was afraid of confiscation!  Looking back, though, I don't think it would have happened at that time. (I understand, however, that the Soviet government was dismayed by the renewed interest in the Romanovs after the book and film developed a following, and your experiences bear that out.)  I had some interesting conversations with the "floor lady" at our St. P hotel, and by the time we were in Yalta and I spoke--quietly--to our tour guide about my interest, my comfort level was improving . . . and then, minutes later, we were shown wax models of NAOTMAA in a small museum adjacent Livadia palace, right on the grounds!  Our tour guide was so wonderful that I ended up giving him my copy of N & A.  And he, in turn, has sent me increasingly sophisticated published-in-Russia materials about the Romanovs in the intervening years.  So, I have a feeling your upcoming trip to Russia is going to be quite a contrast to your former visit! Feeling about the Romanovs will probably vary from person to person, and I believe the Russians are, as a whole, rather dismissive  about our obsession with N & A. (In turn, I was astonished to learn about the obsession some British friends of mine have with Elvis!)  All the same, I think your upcoming visit will be quite a contrast, and I hope you'll share your experiences with us in article format after your return.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: CayteGrL911 on April 19, 2004, 08:55:56 PM
Honestly, I got interested in the Romanovs by Alan Rickman. He's my favorite actor so once 'Rasputin' came to video, I wanted to see it because he was in it. At first I honestly thought the movie was kind of boring (hey, I was young and naive), but once I saw the murder I was captivated. And now here we are...

.::Cayte::.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet Whitcomb on April 20, 2004, 12:47:06 PM
Hi Melissa K.--

After looking at this website:

http://eng.tzar.ru/alexander_park/alex_landscape/children

. . . I am all the more excited about your upcoming visit to Alexander Palace!  Amazing . . . check out the amenities, etc.!  Such a difference from when I was there in 1991, and could only peer longingly through the fence while the rest of my tour group finished up their time at Catherine Palace.

Your comment about the buildings reminded me of something Katharine Hepburn said about 30 years ago, which went like this: "I tell everyone I'm older than I really am. People seem to have a special awe for old people, like they do for old buildings!"
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Joanna Mayer on April 23, 2004, 12:34:11 PM
I  think my personal interest stems from my love of Russia-- her language and culture, but not from any love of Autocracy .
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Merrique on April 29, 2004, 07:30:01 AM
I can remember being about 9 years old when I first got interested in the Romanovs.I had gotten into trouble by my dad because I had a low mark in school because my handwriting was crappy.So to help me improve my handwriting my dad had me copy pages out of an encyclopedia.One of those pages was on the Romanovs and I found it interesting.Then a couple of years later I saw the miniseries on television about Anna Anderson.Seeing this and remembering copying that page out of the encyclopedia got me hooked.I've been in love with the Romanovs and Russia ever since. :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rjt on June 11, 2004, 10:14:38 AM
I came to know of the Romanovs in a rather roundabout way. I've always been a history buff, for as long as I remember. (True story--I didn't read a word of fiction by choice until high school!)  I picked up a biography of Queen Victoria in 4th grade. What fascinated me was all the history she herself saw as her life passed by. Somehow WW2 became my particular passion around that time and I read all I could about it.

In 7th grade my American History teacher noticed my particular interest in WW2 and asked me what I knew about WW1. I was surprised to realize that I knew absolutely nothing aside from the dates and that it was called The Great War.

Being 13 and not wanting to admit I didn't know everything :) I started researching WW1 and discovered Russia's role. That led me to Nicholas II and the horrors of the Revolutions. Shortly after reading N&A, of course, the Amy Irving version of the Anna Anderson story played on television. Surprisingly alot of my classmates had watched it and we engaged in furious debate. After that, I read Once A Grand Duke and kept returning for more.

Unfortunately real life has a way of pushing one's interests aside for a while. Now, at 31, having misspent my youth peddling shiny stones (as a jewelry salesperson/store manager) I find myself returning to my passion--history and writing.

I'm going back to school finally and hope to combine the two in something useful. Perhaps I can be among the first to write a truly accurate portrayal of the Imperial Family?!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Reed on June 11, 2004, 10:19:32 AM
Shiny stones are ok, rjt, there are many in the story of the Romanovs   ;)  Good luck on your writing.  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: DeAnochka on June 11, 2004, 02:50:31 PM
I became interested in the Romanovs after my best friend let me borrow the movie "Rasputin." The only reason she bought it was because her favorite actor, Alan Rickman, was in it. After she saw the massacre scene at the end of the movie, she just had to learn more about the real story of the IF. Then she called me that night and told me all about it. I watched it about a month later and I too was hooked on learning more, more, and more about the last Romanovs. Well, that was over a year ago, but I would say that my journey has only begun.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: jfkhaos on June 11, 2004, 02:55:19 PM
I became interested in the Romanovs by sheer chance.  I read a wide array of world and royal history and came across Nicholas and Alexandra by Robert Massie in my uncle's law office......since then I have absorbed all I can about the family.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Guinastasia on June 21, 2004, 02:52:11 PM
This is kind of embarassing, but after seeing the animated "Anastasia" movie.  (I know it's inaccurate and a lot of people hate it, but I still love it, as a piece of fiction).  

It got me intrigued as to the real story, and it just kind of took off from there.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Merrique on June 21, 2004, 03:08:15 PM
I don't think that's embarassing Guinastasia.I love that movie too.I know it's not acurate but i love it anyway.The colors and computer effects made some of the movie seem so real.You gotta love technology.Eventhough it wasn't real I loved that music box of Nicky and Alix.It looked so real and to me it showed a symbol of their love for one another. :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet_W. on June 21, 2004, 03:54:00 PM
I don't think it's where you start, Guinastasia--it's what you do with that start!  ;)

I donate white blood cells every so often--a procedure lasting about 1 1/2 hours--so the Red Cross always has videos for donors to watch, and on one occasion I selected the animated Anastasia. I enjoyed most of the animation and felt the cartoon, in many respects, paralleled the 1956 Ingrid Bergman film. The treatment of Rasputin, of course, was purposely way out of kilter . . . I've since thought that Osama bin Laden would make another great animated villain, with his scary bearded visage and tendency to keep reappearing!!

I would imagine that at least one of the fictional Anastasias (i.e., Anna Anderson, or the portrayals by Ingrid Bergman, Amy Irving, and/or Meg Ryan) is what has piqued the inital interest of at least 50% of us logged on to this website. The really wonderful side benefit is that for most of us our initial interest is the key to unlocking a lot of other subject areas--most of which are sooner or later addressed at this site--and ultimately going way beyond the Anastasia story.  ;)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: meg kees on June 22, 2004, 05:12:47 PM
I have always been fasinated by the Romanov's as long as I can remember.  I was born in 1950, and at some time when I was a young child, I must have seen the Ingrid Bergman movie when it first came out, becuse I remember being very excitted when Dr Zhavigo came out in the mid 60's and even more excitted when Nicholas and Alexandra was published. I just returned from Russia last week, and was fun to imagine what St Perersburg looked like 100 years ago.  So many of the bulidings will probably not survive much longer.  I have been to many places around the world, but I have never seen such opulence as the palaces there. Row, after row, after row, of huge structures. I think it's sort of like our fasination with the "old south". It's a way of living  that is gone forever.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on June 22, 2004, 08:30:05 PM
The year was about 1947 and I was about five years old.  It was a Sunday and several men had come to visit my grandfater and his brother, who was, also,  visiting.  They were speaking German with a sprinkle of  Russian.  Now, and then,  my grandfather would tell me a sentence or two in English to keep me from getting bored.  Then,  he pointed at one of the men.  He told me that the man had a story to tell me and that I was supose to pay attention and remember the story.  The man and I didn't stay with my grandfather or his brother,  we took a walk along the old country road.  The man and I chatted about little things. We walked into an  field where a large old oak had fallen.  I remember he had a German accent like my grandfather and brother.  When we reached the fallen tree,  he picked me up and sat me on the old trunk. Then, the man started his story.  He talked about a Kaiser Nicky, his wife and children.  I listened.  The man told a good story and in such a way a child as young as I was would and did remember.  When he was finished,  we walked back to my grandfather's house.  I was told to go inside and have some of my grandmother's coffee cake.  I didn't need to be told twice.

No one ever asked me about the story the man had told me.  I never mentioned it to my parents.  Neither my grandfather nor his brother ever asked me questions or ever reminded me to remember the man's story.

Years passed.  And, I had forgotten about the man and his story.  That is, until I was about fourteen....  

While I was in a high school  drama class,  our teacher handed out our next project.  Everyone was set into pairs and then he handed us play books with a marked section that we were to act. Each pair had scenes from different plays.   For whatever reason,  I was given the part of Anastasia and my counter part was given the part of the Dowager Empress.  The play was from the original screen play of Anatasia.   I had not seen the movie with Ingrid Bergman, which had just come out earlier that same year.   That night I read the play.  I couldn't believe what I was reading.  It was about a woman who claimed she was Anastasia, the youngest daughter of Tsar Nicholas II.  I rushed out to the kitchen where my mother was working and asked her about this women whom everyone knows, now, as Anna Anderson.  My mother explained what she knew from what she had read through the years.  And,  then I voiced, "But this isn't what hapen."  My mother wondered what on earth I was saying.  I told her about the man and his story and that Kaiser Nicky must have been Tsar Nicholas II....

My mother explained that German-Russians used the term Kaiser instead of Tsar or Emperor....

My ancestors were Germans who had migrated to Russia in the late 1700s or early 1800s then migrated to the USA in the late 1800s or early 1900s ....  The label given them was German-Russians.

My mother couldn't, however, explain why I was told what I was told and who it could have been that told me.  Her father had a great many friends.

So,  here I am, in my 60s, talking about this mystery man and his story on a computer with people I don't even know.  

Anyway,  that's how I became interested in Russia and the Last Tsar Nicholas II and his family.

AGRBear
 
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: meg kees on June 22, 2004, 09:03:17 PM
So what exactly was the story he told you?  Was he somehow connected to the imperial family?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on June 25, 2004, 12:19:41 PM
Sorry it took me so long to get back to answer.

I do not know who "the man" was.  For a long time,  I thought I did, but it turns out that  I don't think that was his name.  I, now, just refer to  him as Mr. XXX .

Mr. XXX must have been in Ekaterinburg or knew someone who knew first hand as to what happen in Ekaterinburg on the night of 16/17 July.  I'ver never found evidence that has disproved what I was told about that night.  The part of the story all of you want to know is what he said about Alexis and Anatasia.  He told me in 1947:  "two bodies will be missing"  "the crown prince" [referring to Alexei/Alexis, son of Nicholas II]  and ______  [at this time I will with hold the name because I'm still waiting to see what I know can or cannot be proven, however, I will say it was one of his sisters].

If you have any doubts. let me state:  Back in the 1970s,  I wrote down the place where the bodies could be found and the names of the two Romanovs who would be missing from the grave.  This has been offically marked if it needs be present in a court of law.

I've just recieved the book Fate of The Romanovs and will dash through it to see if they have proof that Mr. XXX's story was true or just another "red herring"....

AGRBear

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: anna on June 25, 2004, 07:48:58 PM
AGRbear,

This is an exceptional story. Why did Mr.XXX choose you in particular to tell you his story as you were only five at that time, why didn't he tell your grandfather? It's obvious a five year old child couldn't understand any of this. Why didn't you asked your grandfather? He could have known his name.Is it possible Mr. X was one of the guards in Ekaterinburg?

Did you kept this story a secret all those years or did you make investigations to find out, if, like you said this story turns out to be a red herring." The Fate of the Romanovs"is of course a great source but there are other sources to check I think.

A lot of questions, but interesting to get some answers.

Anna

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: cdianec on June 26, 2004, 12:14:28 PM
I suppose I was about eleven when I first learned about the Russian IF in world history class.  I had always been interested in history, but everything seemed to be about old, gray men.  I saw the photo of the IF in my textbook, and was delighted  :) that here, at last, was history in which children played a role.  I was fascinated to learn about Alexei's haemophilia, having been a sickly child myself, and was horrified to learn the fate of this beautiful family.  I decided to try to learn all I could about the IF.  My interest intensified a bit when I discovered that I shared a birthday with the Grand Duchess I considered to be the prettiest!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Olga on June 26, 2004, 07:54:43 PM
You'd share your birthday with Olga Nikolaevna, then, cdianec?   ;D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dasha on June 27, 2004, 03:40:58 PM
I go tintersted in the Romanovs after visiting site that was dedicated to Alexei.  That's what brought on my desire to actually start reading books.  My first introduction to the family happened when I was around ten.  My Grams and I were discussing the Bolshevik Revolution, and she told me that the murder of the family was cruel.  What really got me is the fact that Nikolai's last request was not followed.  He asked that Alexei's eyes be bound, but it was ignored, and he bsically had to watch his family be slaughtered.  I was born in Russia, and lived there till I was ten and a half, and my whole life I was taught to believe that the Revolution killed the "evil Tsar and his family".  I was a child and believed it.  However, after my Grams told me that story, my feelings changed drastically.  I had no access to any materials on the family, so I just kept questions to myself, but since then I was always curious about the "evil" Tsar and his family.  Sorry if the post is long.  Can't help ranting.  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Olga on June 28, 2004, 02:29:29 AM
Dashenka, what's this you say about Alexei Nikolaevich being blindfolded?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dasha on June 28, 2004, 11:07:55 AM
Olga,
to answer your question, the last request of the Tsar was to have Alexei blindfolded so that he wouldn't have to see his family be murdered.  I heard it from my Grams when I was ten, so I apologize in advance if it's a bit of misinformation.  

Dasha
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sarai on June 28, 2004, 12:09:56 PM
Dasha,
Just to clear things up, at their execution Nicholas did not have time to make a last request. Basically, he was told by the lead executioner that he and his family were about to be killed and he only had time to utter a few words before being shot, those words being "What? What?"
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on June 28, 2004, 01:21:22 PM
Anna wrote:  >>This is an exceptional story. Why did Mr.XXX choose you in particular to tell you his story as you were only five at that time, why didn't he tell your grandfather?
    It's obvious a five year old child couldn't understand any of this. Why didn't you asked your grandfather? He could have known his name.  Is it possible Mr. X was one of the guards in Ekaterinburg? Did you kept this story a secret all those years or did you make investigations to find out, if, like you said this story turns out to be a red herring." The Fate of the Romanovs"is of course a great source but there are other sources to check I think.
     A lot of questions, but interesting to get some answers. <<

Answer:
Since it was my grandfather who told me to remember every word Mr. XXX told me,  I assume, he knew and his brother knew what it was I was told.  

Since my last entry, I have read a great deal of the Fate of the Romanovs and in my eyes it appears  Mr. XXX's story is quite  possibly closer to the truth of what happen that night of 16/17 July 1918.

As to why I was told the story,  I really don't know.

So, that is how I became intersted in the Romanov and the events which occured on the night of 16/17 July 1918.

For farther comments,  I'll be over on the thread which talks about: Did any of the Romanovs survive?

AGRBear
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dasha on June 28, 2004, 02:00:13 PM
Quote
Anna wrote:  >>This is an exceptional story. Why did Mr.XXX choose you in particular to tell you his story as you were only five at that time, why didn't he tell your grandfather?
     It's obvious a five year old child couldn't understand any of this. Why didn't you asked your grandfather? He could have known his name.  Is it possible Mr. X was one of the guards in Ekaterinburg? Did you kept this story a secret all those years or did you make investigations to find out, if, like you said this story turns out to be a red herring." The Fate of the Romanovs"is of course a great source but there are other sources to check I think.
      A lot of questions, but interesting to get some answers. <<

Answer:
Since it was my grandfather who told me to remember every word Mr. XXX told me,  I assume, he knew and his brother knew what it was I was told.  

Since my last entry, I have read a great deal of the Fate of the Romanovs and in my eyes it appears  Mr. XXX's story is quite  possibly closer to the truth of what happen that night of 16/17 July 1918.

As to why I was told the story,  I really don't know.

So, that is how I became intersted in the Romanov and the events which occured on the night of 16/17 July 1918.

For farther comments,  I'll be over on the thread which talks about: Did any of the Romanovs survive?

AGRBear


Thank you for clearing that up.  I'm so sorry for posting wrong info.  I appreciate any corrections that can be given.  Again, most sincere apologies.

Dasha
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sarai on June 28, 2004, 02:25:37 PM
Quote
Thank you for clearing that up.  I'm so sorry for posting wrong info.  I appreciate any corrections that can be given.  Again, most sincere apologies.


Dasha,
No need to apologize, people here are more than happy to clear up misconceptions. All one has to do is ask :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dasha on June 28, 2004, 03:04:56 PM
Thanks again Sarai.  Much obliged for your corrections.  I actually read about Nikolai's las words being "What?  What?".  I guess I just didn't give any thought to the fact that he in fact had no opportunity to make any last request.  I have been rather foolish. :-[  

Dasha
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on June 28, 2004, 03:49:21 PM
No one knows for sure what Nicholas II's final words were.  They could have been brave and glorius.  If they were,  I doubt the CHEKA and later the communists would have repeated such words through the years.  

Did your "grams" ever tell you from whom she heard her story about what Nicholas II may have voiced that eventful night?

AGRBear

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dasha on June 28, 2004, 04:27:04 PM
Quote
No one knows for sure what Nicholas II's final words were.  They could have been brave and glorius.  If they were,  I doubt the CHEKA and later the communists would have repeated such words through the years.  

Did your "grams" ever tell you from whom she heard her story about what Nicholas II may have voiced that eventful night

AGRBear



The story was passed to my grandmother by her grandmother, who was a member of the gentry class, and lived through the Revolution.  She told my grandmother a lot of stories from the life in the Tsarist Russia, and I'm guessing somehow the story I posted got told as well.  I'm sorry again for posting something that is misinforming.  I was ten when I heard it, and I guess it just made an impression on me.  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on June 29, 2004, 02:48:50 PM
Quote

The story was passed to my grandmother by her grandmother, who was a member of the gentry class, and lived through the Revolution.  She told my grandmother a lot of stories from the life in the Tsarist Russia, and I'm guessing somehow the story I posted got told as well.  I'm sorry again for posting something that is misinforming.  I was ten when I heard it, and I guess it just made an impression on me.  


There is no need for apology.  You were repeating a story you were told.  History is written by people who repeat stories they were told.  Now,  we just have to fiqure out what the truth is.  And, just by chance,  your grams may have been told the truth.  Or,  stories, like your grams, were made up to help others feel better because of  what happen in Ekaterinburg on the night of 16/17 July 1918. And your grams thought she was repeating the truth.  I'm sure your grams wouldn't have repeated the story  if she hadn't believed...

AGRBear
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dasha on June 29, 2004, 04:25:26 PM
Quote

There is no need for apology.  You were repeating a story you were told.  History is written by people who repeat stories they were told.  Now,  we just have to fiqure out what the truth is.  And, just by chance,  your grams may have been told the truth.  Or,  stories, like your grams, were made up to help others feel better because of  what happen in Ekaterinburg on the night of 16/17 July 1918. And your grams thought she was repeating the truth.  I'm sure your grams wouldn't have repeated the story  if she hadn't believed...

AGRBear


Thanks for responding to my posts.  From a child's confidence in an adult, I never even questioned whether Grams has been telling the truth or not.  The only thing that makes me stumble is the fact that no records of that incident exist.  I'll keep looking into all that stuff, and I'll try to cut down on the apology posts.

Dasha
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rskkiya on July 03, 2004, 02:22:49 PM
AGRBear,

We know Nicholas' last words were  "What, What" because a number of the executioners testified to that fact when they were questioned by the Whites. Its mentioned in Massie's books.

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on July 07, 2004, 12:19:04 PM
Quote
AGRBear,

We know Nicholas' last words were  "What, What" because a number of the executioners testified to that fact when they were questioned by the Whites. Its mentioned in Massie's books.



Were these executioners the same ones who claimed they burned and buried the bodies of Alexis / Alexie and one of his sister [Anatasia or Marie] near by?  

Tell me one good reason why anyone should believe just part of their story and dismiss this part which so obviously is in error????

AGRBear
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rlgil on July 07, 2004, 03:11:45 PM
This is my first time posting to the board -- what fun!

My interest in the Romanovs goes back almost four decades.  I was an old movie fan even when I was a child, and I watched Ingrid Bergman's Anastasia every chance I could.  I didn't understand it completely when I was six or seven, of course, but the story appealed to me so much.  My grandfather came to the U.S. from Russia when he was about 12, right before WWI, and I'm sure part of my interest in the film had something to do with his background.  He wasn't a fan of the tsar by any means, but when I begged to hear stories about his childhood he would tell me about the portrait of Nicholas that hung in his schoolroom.

I don't remember a time when I wasn't interested in history, and Massie's Nicholas and Alexandra and Fraser's Mary Queen of Scots were two of my favorite books when I was in my early teens.  Those two books pulled me into the world of European royalty and genealogy, and I've been happy there ever since!  When I was a sophomore in high school I wrote my big term paper on Nicholas and Alexandra, and my paper got the teacher thinking that the class ought to take the subway into Manhattan as a group to see the new film based on Massie's book. (Most of my friends were bored and I was very critical and superior!)  The next year, in drama, I directed two students in the scene in the play Anastasia where the Dowager Empress acknowledges Anastasia as her granddaughter.

All these years later I have a very large library of books on royalty, including at least a shelf of books on the Romanovs.  My interest in them took me to Queen Victoria and all her descendants, then her ancestors, and on and on.  My continuing interest in Mary Queen of Scots got me going on all HER descendants and ancestors.  Sometimes I feel like Wednesday in The Adams Family, parading around with my two favorite dolls, the beheaded MQS and Marie Antoinette -- royal tragedies have always been my special interest.

Anyway, glad to join the group!

randy
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rskkiya on July 07, 2004, 06:32:04 PM
Rigil -- welcome! you ought to fit in quite well! ::)

AGRBear,
    Well... Penny Wilson has stated that simply because some evidence was given by a Revolutionary/SR/ Communist/ Cheka member that does not nessessarily mean that its all a lie...
     This information that you question has been coroberated by numerous scholars and historians...and there seems no obvious reason to reject the evidence... You might do well to inquire with Mr Greg King, Ms. Penny Wilson, or any other author or academic authority who frequents this site.

ok
R.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on July 08, 2004, 11:41:29 AM
Since this thread is about how one became interested in the Romanovs and I've already told my story [Reply #74], the conversation about who should be believed etc. doesn't need to be on this thread.  I've headed over to the book section where many of us are talking with Greg King and  Penny Wilson about various facts about what happen the night of 16/17 July  1918.

AGRBear
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Annie on July 12, 2004, 08:00:29 PM
When I was in sixth grade, my homeroom/science teacher was a Romanov buff. She was very good at getting off the subject, so we discussed ghosts, UFOs, and the Romanovs instead of science most of the time! It was so interesting. I felt strangely drawn to the Romanovs and couldn't get enough on them! I took my own money and got a money order and sent away for a copy of Nicholas and Alexandra. In seventh grade, I read it every night! In May of that school year, it came on TV! (This was in 1975, long before VCRs) It was 2 parts. I saw part one and was anxious for part 2. But it came on the night of Mother's Day, and we went to my aunt's house, rode on my uncle's houseboat, it was a great time, but... we didn't get home in time to see part 2! I never did see it all until it came on videotape many, many years later. Over the years I have searched for any book or story on the royal family and anyone connected with them. I have several books, have read many at libraries, and was so thrilled to find books on your site that I have been unable to find anywhere, like Gilliard's and Buxhoevedon's! Thank you!

Ever since those days, I have gone on and off of huge Romanov 'kicks.' There are times when I am more interested than others, but the old magic always comes back and I get drawn back in again. Like now!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: otmafan on July 19, 2004, 09:03:04 AM
I first became interested in the Romanovs when my seventh grade geography teacher briefly mentioned that the Tsar of Russia was killed. I decided to check it out. My first book was the Royal Diaries series "The Last Grand Duchess". It showed a few pictures and I loved them. So then I found the book, The Romanovs: The Final Chapter. I loved that too. And now I have read every library book on the Romanovs that is in our library's system! Plus I own a bunch too!!! Anyway, its been almost five years now, and I'm still absolutely stunned when I look at pictures of them and hear of their tragic death.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Alexa on July 19, 2004, 11:39:30 AM
For me it was my mom and a sailor's dress.  When I was about 9 years old my mom bought me a Laura Ashely sailor's dress for special occasions very much like those children of the late 19th and early 20th centuries wore.  One day, when I had it on my mom told me I looked like one of the Grand Duchesses.  I asked her what she meant, and she pulled out Massie's Nicholas and Alexandra and showed me pictures of OTMA.  That sealed it.  I pored over those pics for years.  Then, as a teenager, when I finally felt old enough to read Massie's book and fully understand it, I did.  I've been reading everything I can get my hands on since then.

Alexa
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: BattleAngel on July 19, 2004, 04:58:36 PM
Hooooboy, lessee.

It all began about 39 years ago with a song.
It was the 1812 Overture, and there at the end where they play God Save The Tsar I evidently would wave and bow and grin like the maniacal 2 or 3 year old I was.

My mom used to call it "Baby's bye-bye song"

Of course I didn't know anything about the Romanovs and I somehow can't imagine my mother unfolding such an unhappy tale before a toddler.

Years passed and when the film Nicholas & Alexandra came out we went to see it but I don't recall that it made much impact beyond seeming rather dark and grim to my 8 year old mind.

Time marched on...

But oddly I never forgot the Romanovs. Furtively (I don't know why), I'd read about them, and something about the photos of the IF made me smile.
I was terribly outraged at their fate. It just seemed the apex of barbarity.
Later I tried to forget the sense of almost personal connection I felt to these people, and I forcibly put it all behind me...I thought...and got on with "real life" until...

About a month ago I heard the 1812 Overture again and that sense of strenuously suppressed joy came up at Oh Lord Save Thy People along with the tears of happiness at God Save the Tsar.

I fessed up to my husband about how this song had always affected me, and as he and one of our dearest friends are both interested in Russian history they encouraged me to "come out" about the Romanov thing.

Ever since I've felt like a weight has been taken off of my mind and I adore learning about the IF and all the related Fs.

I'm so happy that there is a place like this out there for Romanov junkies, and Oh isn't it wonderful to know that despite the best efforts of the Bolsheviks the Romanovs are STILL very much alive in our minds and hearts!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: jackie3 on July 19, 2004, 06:32:52 PM
Quote
I'm so happy that there is a place like this out there for Romanov junkies, and Oh isn't it wonderful to know that despite the best efforts of the Bolsheviks the Romanovs are STILL very much alive in our minds and hearts!


Mary, indeed in their effort to kill every Romanov they could find so there would be no "living banners" the Bolsheviks in a way made them immortal. If they had been allowed to live in exile in England or wherever, the Romanovs would be just like other dispossed royalty - the Hohenzollerns, the Hapsburgs, the Braganzas, the Orleans etc. and would have been of interest only to royal watchers or royalists themselves. By killing them in such a manner the Bolsheviks made the IF stand out. Nicholas and his family will probably be more thought about and written about in Russia in the far future because of the way they were murdered then they would have been had they lived and been represented today by Alexis' great-grandson and would-be pretender living in Paris. History is ironic sometimes.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rskkiya on July 19, 2004, 10:14:43 PM
 Hello
Well--I think that one important reason for their continued appeal is the number of charming photos of them. Some are glamourous and some are so very very casual. This may seem an odd statement- but had the RF been unattractive...had the girls been squat & spotty or had N & A been ungainly, dumpy or gangly or just camera-shy --I wonder how many sites might still be dedicated to them?
Sorry if this is putting too fine a point on it --but a lot of people do talk about them as if they have become -- sort of ... well pin ups.

Just something to think about.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Annie on July 19, 2004, 10:23:30 PM
Quote

Mary, indeed in their effort to kill every Romanov they could find so there would be no "living banners" the Bolsheviks in a way made them immortal. If they had been allowed to live in exile in England or wherever, the Romanovs would be just like other dispossed royalty - the Hohenzollerns, the Hapsburgs, the Braganzas, the Orleans etc. and would have been of interest only to royal watchers or royalists themselves. By killing them in such a manner the Bolsheviks made the IF stand out. Nicholas and his family will probably be more thought about and written about in Russia in the far future because of the way they were murdered then they would have been had they lived and been represented today by Alexis' great-grandson and would-be pretender living in Paris. History is ironic sometimes.


"if you strike me down, I will become more powerful than you can possibly image"
                                            ---Obi Wan Kenobi

;)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sarai on July 20, 2004, 10:09:35 AM
Quote
This may seem an odd statement- but had the RF been unattractive...had the girls been squat & spotty or had N & A been ungainly, dumpy or gangly or just camera-shy --I wonder how many sites might still be dedicated to them?


I think this is an interesting and good point. I know that part of what first attracted me to their story was a picture of the four beautiful little girls. I do wonder if they would have had the same effect on me if they had been less-than-attractive instead of radiantly lovely. I definitely think that their beauty is part of their attraction for many. Once you get past their appearances, naturally you get to know their personalities and may like them even more because of it, but many of us were first interested in learning more about them from being captured by a charming photograph.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Olga on July 20, 2004, 08:44:25 PM
Quote

"if you strike me down, I will become more powerful than you can possibly image"
                                             ---Obi Wan Kenobi

 ;)


Yes, we always need Star Wars!!  ;D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: meg kees on July 23, 2004, 10:39:31 PM
When I was in St Petersburg last month, I experienced something that is hard to out into words.  But as I visited the Alexander Palace and many of the buildings in the city, I couldn't help but think how everything was 100 years ago.  All of the major events of the last reign were still in the future and the empire would continue to exist for another 13 years.  I thought about all of the terrible events the city and Russia experienced, first with the Revloution, then Stalin and WWII, and there I was standing where all of these monumental events took place, walking around enjoying the beauty of the city, promoting capitalism by spending my money, and they were all gone and in the end they didn't win.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rskkiya on July 28, 2004, 11:10:14 AM
     My interest in the Romanovs came in a  rather roundabout way...As a child I loved to look at my mysterious Grandfather's medals from the first world  war. He had died after the war of a lung ailment - he had been very badly gassed - and my own mother could not properly remember him as she was so very young when he perished. My dear Nana could not speak of him without tearing up...so he was a real fascination to me and my brother.The curious items that had saved from the trenches and his awards became magical talismans to an alien world.    
    As I grew and studied the war I became horrified and intrigued with the huge battles and dreadful mismanagement of so much of the military action on both sides of the conflict. This lead to a study of the Battle of Tannenburg ( Russia Vs Germany) From that grew a grotesque interest in the Russian army, the brilliant and paradoxical hero Brusilov and the all female Battalion of Death --and thus rather by chance I 'discovered' the family of the last Tzar...
   Certainly not under the most auspicious of circumstances!

R
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: otma_gal3 on July 29, 2004, 12:05:13 AM
 I've practically known about them my whole life, ever since I was little. My mother was always interested in them, and I guess it kind of rubbed off on me! I've always loved looking through the albums, I think it is so much fun! LOL.... But, I think the main reason why I got so interested, was just the whole story of them. I always had found it so neat, and so intriguiging! That is pretty much why!

I'm a little shy :-[......I'm new here.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: grandduchessella on July 29, 2004, 11:13:27 AM
Here's it what first interested me:

(http:// http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v441/grandduchessella/img931.jpg)

And don't be shy Otma, the water's fine--jump on in!  :D

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Chris Fulmer on July 29, 2004, 08:09:25 PM
In a book on the first World War (the Great War, although for Alexandra it was almost certainly anything but great) I read around 1991, I read about how the czar was dissolved.  About 6 months later, I read my first account of Rasputin and his virtually free reign inside the royal family, which got me even more heavy interested (he remains my favorite historical figure.  Edvard Radzhinsky's The Last Czar sealed my interested; if you haven't read it yet, ,I suggest you get to e-bay now and buy it, because Radzhinsky knows how to tell a tale better than anybody (with the possible exception of J.K. Rowling, but I digress...).  It's interesting how history can invert itself, how the Romanov were almost universally despised when they were overthrown, and now they're saints, whereas who can remember any of the revolutionaries who overthrew them save Lenin and maybe Trotsky?  Thanks to Stalin's insanity, they've all disappeared into the footnotes of history, perhaps given what they deserved if one looks at it ironically, and since Stalin may well have been poisoned by his secret police, the same may be said for him.  

I still hold out hope that they might put the family back in power one of these days, but only in a ceremonial role, kind of like what Queen Elizabeth is now.  Apart from calling Doc Brown and borrowing his DeLorean to go back through time, I can't see how, but then again, nothing's impossible.    
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rskkiya on July 29, 2004, 08:27:58 PM
Chris Fulmer, (?)

The Tzar was "dissolved?"  ??? Like an antacid? ??? Governments, Parliments and sugar cubes can be dissolved... but not an autocrat -- the Tzar was executed.
    I am sorry-- but  your last post was very difficult to understand...
What were you trying to say?

Y ne'panimiyu.

rskkiya
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: kaatje on August 02, 2004, 04:56:30 PM
If I'm truely honest my interest in the Romanov's began when I was 17 half way though my A'levels (first read Lieven, D 'Nicholas II', then Massie's N&A), but that really is only half the story, for my interest in Russia and many things Russian began much earlier, and I still am not sure quite why.  There are small insignificant thing and much larger ones, for an example of the former, aged 5 I had to say in a school play "meanwhile in a village in Russia" for something, I don't remember this, but my father does and thats were he say's my interest began, half jokingly.  Often I used to watch the tv when Gorbatchov (bad spelling i know!) was on, particularly when the tanks etc used to roll down/across Red Square for a celebration of some kind (did they do this on 7th November? as this is my Birthday so this could be why I remember), anyway I've always felt an affinity with Russia and Russians, maybe this has something to do with never fearing them (my father had always wanted to go to Russia, but it was too expensive so he went to Bulgaria instead during the 70's)
I also remember when they found the remains, it was on Newsround, which is a strange memory to have of a news report, I think, when I was 11/12!
So many things I believe had conspired to make be interested in Russia first, and then the Romanov's particularly.  Though in the past few years this interest/ or obsessive hobby some might say has dimmed somewhat, due to studying other subjects (Dutch Studies and now about to start a PhD in Sept) I have never forgotten them and still collect books on the Romanov's, I was incidently able to bring together a connection between Dutch lit and the Romanov's and write a essay on it! and will need to use some of my knowledge of Russia for my PhD.

I'd also finally like to say that reading Greg King's posting, I wholeheartedly agree with what he say's. If you really do believe in something then it can be achieved, I should know, I got into uni on the skin of my teeth, passed on the skin of my teeth, and then wrote a very good MA dissertation to allow me to do the PhD, which I doubt many people thought I would be able to do except those who read my dissertation that is, well I 've showed them now!

Katie
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: pushkina on August 11, 2004, 05:20:50 AM
what seems like a thousand years ago, when i was very little, maybe six, i saw a hallmark special, anastasia.  it began with a dramatization of the cellar murder. it was the movie with ingrid bergman. i felt as if i had seen the cellar scene before.

then, when i was nine or ten, i saw robert massie on the old mike douglas show.  he was talking about his new book, N&A. he talked about the cellar murder; i decided i needed to know more. the summer i was ten, i bought a paperback copy at the supermarket and read it.  from then on, i was entranced. in fact, when we were little, our cousins used to play a game, hiding from the nazis.  after that, i  changed the game for the younger set: hiding from the bolsheviks. i was always anastasia.

that summer, after i finished the book, i began teaching myself russian from a grammar and dictionary from the public library.  from that time, every summer whilst i was in school, i took up my russian.  but i really didn't learn much until later.

i so loved the family; i felt related to them and so close to them. i was almost delusional. i had three fascinations then: rome, russia (and from then revolutions) and the beatles.  i was still young enough to be playing with dolls and i set my dolls all up as members of the family or the suite. i had a stuffed skunk who was rasputin. then as i grew older the beatles (and music in general) took over for a time.

in university i majored in iranian area studies as an undergraduate.i went to iran and then there was the revolution. then i went to u of penn, where there was not only a great iranian studies department but a famous prof of russian history, alexander riasanovsky. i did a lot of russian history there and decided to combine the study of iranian current events with russian history and did graudate work comparing the two revolutions.

while working on it, i had the chance to meet some of the iranian royals who, seemed to have read their russian history, so they told me. they looked at the example of the tsar and his family and ran when they could.

BTW, i carried that old copy of N&A all over the world with me until someone in tehran asked me to please "lend" it to them.  we were in a bomb shelter during the iraq-iran war, being shelled. we were all terrified but that person most of all. to help her take her mind off the shelling, i did so and i've never seen it since.

and the first web site i found when i first connected to the web in 1995 was...the alexander palace time machine.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Maria_Vanya on August 11, 2004, 10:59:58 PM
2 years ago, I was sitting in class and my teacher told us all to get out a book and read, and knowing how forgetful I am, I didn't have a book with me. My friend sitting next to me had 2 books, one was the diary of Anastasia, from the Royal Diary collection. I grabbed it and was flipping through the back where the pictures are(acting like I was reading ;)) I saw one of the family sitting on thier prison roof and it made me more interested in knowing about them. I am very glad I didn't have a book that day or I probably would never have been as interested in the Romanovs as I am today, and thanks to my friend who even had the book in the first place! It's been 2 years that I have grown to liking their family and I haven't stopped liking them one bit since then. :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: koloagirl on August 12, 2004, 02:59:25 PM
 :) :)
Hello all!   New on the board, so bear with me please!

I guess when I first read the infamous
"Nicholas and Alexandra" book by Massie
and the movie afterwards....
having been a devotee of Queen Victoria
and all things thereabout....
it was natural that I became very interested in the Romanov family as well--easy transition!  And
of course, such tragedy and drama in their lives.

What has kept me interested all these
years is something hard to explain, but
that all of you seem to have also.....that
"somehow I feel I know them"
feeling you get when you read
about them or especially, see pictures.  
Something like the way I felt about the late
Princess Diana.....such warm, genuine
people in such elevated stations....but somehow you can just imagine them as friends!  

They all have that "certain something" that keep us all interested and loving them all this time later, don't they?
I'm sure the fact that they were so lovely looking didn't hurt either!
Janet R.     ;D ;) :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Abby on August 12, 2004, 03:43:21 PM
When I was in elementary school I saw a documentary with my parents about Anna Anderson on A&E or one of those channels and I asked them a bunch of questions about it but all I got out of the conversation was that a Russian king was called a "Czar" and I thought it started with a "Z" and I thought that was weird. LOL I was young.
But then when I was in 8th grade we had to do presentations about something historical in front of the class and for some reason I decided to research whatever it was that the "Zar" documentary on A&E was about. I found "Anastasia's Album" in my school library and after that I was hooked! Here I am 7 years later on this forum!  ;D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dnisi on August 12, 2004, 08:35:15 PM
    This is my first time ever posting a message - so nice to meet everyone here!  I first became interested in the Romanovs because of their fascinating geneology.  In college, I took a Russian history course which I loved.  That led to doing my senior thesis on Rasputin's relationship with the Imperial Family.  I'm planning to go back to grad school and get my Master's Degree in Archival Studies.  Who knows maybe I could someday get to actually see some of the Romanov treasures (perhaps wishful thinking!)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: livadia on August 12, 2004, 09:15:44 PM
Tenth grade.  World history.  Mr. White gave me his copy of Massie's Nicholas & Alexandra to shut me up, because I had finished the readings for our WWI unit and wanted more.  LOL.  When I saw the photo of Anastasia Nikolaievna in her kokoshnik and court gown, I nearly fainted - she looked very much like my mom did as a child.  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: gem_10 on August 18, 2004, 09:46:32 PM
Hi there! My interest to the Romanov Family started when I was 12 years old, about 7 years ago. I visited my friend in their house and we watched the animated movie "Anastasia". Ever since I was a child, I really love watching and reading fairy tales. When I watched the movie, it has a different and lasting impression to me. For on thing, it is not like a usual fairy tale movie. It is something unique and almost factual. I really love the snow scenes, the color of their dresses, their palace... it is really amazing and very unique. I rememberhow it gave me the feeling of mystery. When I was a child, the first thing that comes into my mind everytime I heard the word "Russia" is mystery. I don't know. Perhaps it is the people's way of life, their costumes, the winters, their huge and incredibly beautiful and unique palaces, the onion-shaped domes of the churches, the colors gold and red.... After I had watched the movie, I started looking in our encyclopedia about Nicholas II to see if Anastasia and her grandmother did exist. When I found a picture of Anastasia and her family, everything changes. Ever since then, I started researching in our school libraries and when I had gained access in the internet, I started researching about Anastasia's mother, Alexandra.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on August 18, 2004, 10:02:08 PM
I TOTALLY 100% agree with you on the whole Russia thing, lunarmaiden! :)  Whenever I heard the name Russia I always conjured up this huge vast land of mystery and splendor and lost princesses.  Russia and the aura of mystery it invokes is just astounding. ::)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Eurohistory on August 18, 2004, 11:52:09 PM
Listening to stories told to me by a nephew of the last tsarina when I was a child and teenager...how could one not fall for the wonderful story of splendour, grandeur and utter tragedy...what better human story to study!

Arturo Beéche

:-[
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Eurohistory on August 18, 2004, 11:56:00 PM
Actually HOLA is the precursor of HELLO.

Arturo Beéche
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Martyn on August 19, 2004, 07:19:57 AM
May I respectfully enquire Arturo, if it isn't too personal a question, who was the nephew of the Tsarina?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Eurohistory on August 19, 2004, 09:11:03 AM
Martyn, not at all, I do not mind you asking whatsoever.

I grew up in Costa Rica.  Prince Sigismund of Prussia (middle son of Princess Irene of Hesse and by Rhine, elder sister of Empress Alexandra Feodorovna) and his family (Charlotte Agnes, Barbara and Alfred) settled in my country in the 1920's  At the time my great-grandfather was the governor of our state (province).  Having studied in pre-war London, he knew much about Europe's royal families.  He and Prince Sigismund hit it off and a family friendship started, which is maintaned with Prince Alfred by me to this day.  In fact, Prince Alfred of Prussia was the guest of honor at the III Eurohistory Conference (October 2000), a royal studies symposium we host here in San Francisco every Fall.

Sigismund and my great-grandfather were about the same age.  They became very good friends  and both families visited each other frequently. My grandmother helped Princess Charlotte Agnes with a bee honey business (grandmother had all her friends recycle glass containers) and very ofetn when she went to see Princess Charlotte Agnes at their farm in the mountains outside the town I grew up in, I tagged along.

I love, have loved, books since I was a small child.  Prince Sigismund had an amazing library at San Miguel and he always allowed me to go through it.  I sat down countless afternoons listening to his reminiscences, I guess no one else was interested.

Sigismund died in 1978, my fourteenth year, and I still remember him quite vividly.  I found some photos of him and his wife at my grandmother's not too long ago, private shots, that brought very fond memories. I visit his grave, and that of his wife, every time I go home.

Prince Alfred let San Miguel go to wreck.  he has always been a free-spirit and has very little interest in anything royal.  All was basicaly lost, except some of the books his father owned, which Alfred claims will come to me when he passes.

Arturo Beéche
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet_W. on August 19, 2004, 10:22:46 AM
What a wonderful introduction into the study of European monarchies! And I'm sure many of us would be interested in finding out more about your Eurohistory Conference. Do you have a website?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Eurohistory on August 19, 2004, 10:29:31 AM
Yes my magazine and bookstore have a website at http://www.eurohistory.com

Several posters here are involved in writing/editing of The European Royal History Journal and have given presentations at the Eurohistory Conference.  The next one is on October 16-17, 2004 here in San Francisco at the Sheraton Hotel at Fisherman's Wharf.

This year we have as out guests of honor Prince Alexander and Princess Barbara of Yugoslavia, who will be spending a week with us, courtesy of Eurohistory.  Several events are planned for them and for conference attendees to spend time with them.

Arturo Beéche
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Martyn on August 20, 2004, 11:49:52 AM
Thank you Arturo for sharing that information with us.  I am now totally in awe of you!
I have already taken a quick look at your site, which I think, requires some time to explore fully (and I hope to)
That must have been wonderful to have known Prince Sigismund and indeed to know Prince Alfred so intimately, and to receive those reminiscences directly from someone who was so closely related to the people that we discuss on this site.  How marvellous.
Personally, I can't remember when I first encountered the story of the IF - I think that I may have been 6 or 7 years old (so many years ago) but there was something about their story that captured my childish imagination.
Since I have been visiting this site, I have felt very privileged to be in contact with people who have so much knowledge and love for the subjects that we discuss here; long may it continue.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Eurohistory on August 20, 2004, 12:18:22 PM
Our site at http://www.eurohistory.com is being completely revamped, with new photos and graphics and some more materials.  Stay tuned!

You may also like to look into obtaining a subscription to the European Royal History Journal, to which many posters here subscribe and contribuute.

Thanks,

Arturo Beéche
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: anne on August 23, 2004, 07:27:43 PM
I have written a novel about the last days of the Romanovs.  Can anyone suggest an agent who is sympathetic?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dashkova on August 23, 2004, 08:23:31 PM
What do you mean, "sympathetic"?
Is your writing not good, but you want it published?  If so, you'll be in luck!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: grandduchessella on August 24, 2004, 04:21:31 PM
Quote
I have written a novel about the last days of the Romanovs.  Can anyone suggest an agent who is sympathetic?


I think she means that the market can be pretty hostile towards new writers starting out and you'd want someone who'd be 'sympathetic' as in interested in the book. In today's publishing world more and more is broken down into niches and it can be hard to crack through. If it's a fictional novel, maybe one of the smaller historical fiction presses? If it has a romantic angle, there are a lot of smaller presses there too. Some will take a leap on an unknown with e-book publishing which is less risky. Depending on the length, I've known a few who've self-published smaller ones and advertised in local bookstores and on the internet. Some fantastic books have come out of independent writers and sellers groups (whom I'd google around for to try and find a good match). I worked in libraries and bookstores for years and it was already bad then and I think it's just gotten worse, but diligence can often get you a long way! Good luck. BTW, what's the storyline?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Eurohistory on August 24, 2004, 08:15:19 PM
Unless you get self-published or open your own publishng business!  

Arturo Beéche :-*
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: anne on August 25, 2004, 05:51:49 AM
Thank you grandduchessella for your helpful comments.  The book is historical fiction and opens as the family gets ready to leave Tobolksk for Ekaterinberg.  Maria is the central character in the book and I tell the story of the last few months as it affected her.  
An agent read the book and told me that he didn't like the book and he disliked historical fiction anyway.  His reader read the book and she said she enjoyed it.  Now I'm not sure what to do next, hence this message !
Many thanks for your interest and advice.  Having worked so hard on the novel, I'm loath to just abandon it.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on August 25, 2004, 10:42:25 AM
Oh no Anne!  Don't abandon that idea for any means!  I'm dying to read it!  But it would be even better if it centered around OLGA LOL!! :D ;D ;) :) 8)  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: IlyaBorisovich on August 25, 2004, 10:54:18 AM
Michelle,

I'm working on a project that, as you would probably guess, has OLGA as the central character.  If you'd like to IM me I'll give you a few more details and let you know about future progress.  Until I'm more certain about its potential, I'd rather not discuss it in public.

Ilya
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on August 25, 2004, 10:57:09 AM
Oh you are AWESOME Ilya!! :D :-*
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: anne on August 25, 2004, 06:24:17 PM
Michelle,
of course Olga's in the story - in fact she's a pivotal character.  I see Ana as the humor, Maria as the heart ,and Olga as the harrowing victim.  Poor woman.  What could she have felt, torn between family, a broken romance (I believe the rumours about her and Prince Dmitri) and the only chance she had to get out officially - the proposed engagement to Prince Carol.  I thinks she's the saddest of all the girls.  In fact, that's why I didn't write about her - the book took three full years and filling every day with Maria was tough enough - to fill it with Olga, getting thinner and more certain of her ultimate doom every day would have been too hard a book to write.  Do you think she suffered  a nervous breakdown in Tobolsk when Maria, Alix and Nicky left for Ekaterinberg?  Reading the diaries and notebooks of her comtemporaries, I've been inclined to think so.  It's harrowing to think that she might have known her death was inescapable.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on August 25, 2004, 07:15:18 PM
 I totally agree with you, Anne. :'(  Olga is such a tragic young lady.  She definitely is the saddest of the girls. :'( :'( :'( :'(  

So you said Maria is the heart, Anastasia the humor, Olga the harrowing victim, but what about Tatiana?  Just out of curiosity, haha! :)  :D  ;D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: JM on August 25, 2004, 07:37:50 PM
I don't like limiting people to narrow categories, especially when they are historical figures that I don't personally know. Humans are such multi-faceted, strange, and wonderful beings that I loathe any attempt to label them, even if it is well founded. I personally think that going into anything with pre-conceived notions is unfair to myself and whoever I may be interested in.

But hey, whatever floats your boat!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on August 25, 2004, 08:02:48 PM
Oh I was just talking about Anne's book!! :-[ :-[ :-[

But it is just sometimes fun to discuss those sorts of things..... :) ;) :D ;D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: anne on August 25, 2004, 08:59:18 PM
To JM: Please don't think that I went into the book with pre-concieved notions about any of the girls.  My opinions were formed after reading their letters (limited though they are), and writings of friends and family.  However, after spending years studying them, wouldn't it be odd if I drew no opinions at all about them? Each girl struck me differently, as I mentioned.  Tatiana is the one that I could least identify with.  I'm neither particularly religious nor family(read mother)-worshipping, which is how I found her character to be.  Therefore she's the one that I couldn't really fathom.  I'm intrigued to know if anyone out there has read anything that throws more light on the girls characters.  I thought I had read pretty much everything but there's always SO much to learn, isn't there?
To Michelle: Thanks so much.  It's wonderful to hear a voice of support in the wilderness - mostly I hear people saying "Nah" and "too hard to get published - don't even bother" etc.  A voice saying "hey, I think I'd like to read that" means a lot !! Thanks M.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Lanie on August 25, 2004, 09:05:18 PM
I'm doing a novel myself but it's for a scholarship which I need desperately.  If they pick to publish this thing (it has to be sent in by April or something), I'll get money and royalties and a scholarship and a writing contract.  Woohoo!

Anne, your story sounds interesting, and so does yours, Ilya. :)  We all should e-mail each other with our progresses, haha.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Martyn on August 26, 2004, 05:07:14 AM
Anne, "courage" as they say in French.  I have complete respect for anyone who undertakes to write a book; I don't think that just anyone can do it.
A friend once said to me "everyone has at least one book inside them".  That may well be so but it is the getting it out and published that is the problem.
So to all of you who have dreams of writing, books in the pipeline or waiting to be published - hold fast to your dream and give it your best shot.  Good luck to you all and I look forward to seeing you in print.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on August 26, 2004, 09:51:37 AM
To Anne:  You're quite welcome!!! :D :)

I love almost ANY book about NAOTMAA, especially fiction!! ;D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Genevieve on August 27, 2004, 12:57:20 AM
I was sick at the age of five.   My mom gave me some really old life magazines to look through.   One of these
had Anastasia on the cover.   I was too young to really
read the article but enjoyed the pictures.  My mom told
me that she was a princess that died a long time ago.
Then when I was in high school I had to do a paper on Rasputin.   When I went to the school rearch room I look up the subject and there was my princess.  I read
Rasputin's daugther's book on her father and Nicholas
and Anastasia.  Also I am Anastasia by Anna Anderson.
Sorry but I  still believe that she is Anastasia.   Did any one ever read how her ears are identical to the historical
Anastasia.   How can anyone   be the same age, height,
ears,mole scar from surgery and foot deformitiy as  well
as scars from bayonets and bullets.   I saw a picture of Anna Anderson compared to Anastasia's Aunt Olga at
a older age and the pictures were identical.   Still think the DNA test were fudged.  When the grave was found
and two were missing, there had to be a cover up to
hide the truth.   She was disposable due to being raped and going insane.    Then they lied about her being the
Grand Duchess.   I know that it is not a popular belief but I will believe this to the day I die.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on August 27, 2004, 07:57:14 AM
Welcom, Genevieve!! :)

I'm actually in the same boat as you (Anna Anderson-wise) ;)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: anne on August 27, 2004, 10:22:16 PM
I am curious to know your response to the results of the DNA testing on Anna Anderson's hair follicles.  They identified a close family link with the Franzhowska family.  Since various members of that family had come forward to claim Anna as their sister Franziska prior to the testing, I'm curious to know how you feel about the probability of their claim when laid against subsequent DNA results?  Without doubt, using the class-ist structure of the times, Franziska knew things that could not have been known to a "polish peasant", as she was described. Can you imagine the opprobrium that would be heaped on anyone who made such a class-ist claim today? I wonder how much of the strength of the argument lies in social constaints of the time....

Having read transcripts of GD Olga's visit to Anna in Hospital, and the court transcripts of other related royal visits, I'm inclined to believe that Anna was Franziska but truly believed herself to be Anastasia.  Perhaps the moment I stopped believeing in Anna was when she identified a lady from Chicago as her sister Tatiana (later modified to Maria.)  The lady later confessed to be an imposter.  

Still, it certainly doesn't minimise Anna Anderson's suffering.  Nor does it dispel any of the myth surrounding the two missing (burnt) bodies.  I doubt if two human bodies could have been burnt in the time depicted in the Sokolov diaries, and Sokolov himself proposed the burning as a possibility only.  It had been raining heavily in Ekaterinberg that summer and the ground was unusually wet (witness the debacle as they tried to bury and re-bury the bodies.)  There's no doubt that two bodies were missing from the final grave.  That does not necessarily mean two bodies were burned.  Remember, Sokolov only wrote the "latest" report on the murders.  It became the definitive (i.e. last eye-witness) report only when the Bolsheviks took power, soon to be overtaken by Stalin.  Sokolov's burned bodies passed into myth partly because it took us another 80 years to get back to the Four Brothers mine site to search for clues.  
Enough of my theories.  What d'y'all think?  Am I on-track, slightly off base or have I mis-spent my youth?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Genevieve on August 27, 2004, 10:39:04 PM
If they could fudge one test, why stop there.   The brother of the missing women stood in a court of law
and swore she was not his sister.   They had a court
session for over 50 years and could not prove or disprove her.   What I  think happened when the grave
was  found, they had to arraigned the test to "PROVE"
she was a fake.  I still think of that poor girl so sheltered. seeing and being so horribly shot and bayoneted.   Rescued and going to a palace of her aunts
and not being able to get to her.   I can understand her
being so unstable.   She was a hard to controll child and was likewise adult.   The real crime was the family turning away from her when she needed them after what she went through.  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Abby on August 27, 2004, 11:21:33 PM
Anne you're not off base! I think you give a good statement considering that no one really knows the answer to this matter and I doubt I will ever see the end of it in my lifetime (and I am only 19).
I have never heard the story of Anna Anderson ID'ing a Chicago woman as Tatiana! That is very interesting. Where did you read about it? I also read that she was a supporter of Alexandra Suzana de Graff (the woman who claimed to be Alix's FIFTH daughter) AND a supporter of the Grand Duchess Olga claimant living in Lake Como, Italy, named Margot Boodts. If the bones in the grave are actually of the Imperial Family, than there was no reason for Margot Boodts or this Chicago "Tatiana" to have any credibility, and it would have been a disadvantage to Anna Anderson to publically give her verification.
On the other hand, Anna Anderson was so emotionally unstable that it would make sense for her to not know who she was seeing, even if she really WAS Anastasia. I am always so torn about the Anna Anderson thing, because I beleive that she wasn't Anastasia but then when I hear about her similarities it suprises me so much, especially when no one has really been able to prove that Anna Anderson was fed information or "practiced" for the role of the Grand Duchess.

I just wanted to say that I really love reading everything everyone has to say on this forum! Since I discovered it a month ago I never thought I could talk about my obsession with the Romanovs with a bunch of educated people like yourselves! I am going to a new college tommorrow (with 42,000 people!) and I am going to be away from home and am very sad about leaving  :'( but when I can come and discuss the Imperial Family here it really takes my mind of all the stress and makes me happy ! So thanks, everyone, and don't stop posting!  :D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on August 28, 2004, 08:52:31 AM
Oh, Abby, I feel the same way--if I can't go on this website to talk about the Romanovs, I get so cranky!!  It just makes me feel happy and energy boosted!!! :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Lisa on August 28, 2004, 08:58:16 AM
"Welcome to the Romanovs' addicts Club!!!" ;)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Abby on August 28, 2004, 08:04:22 PM
Proud to be a member! :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on August 29, 2004, 10:15:18 PM
Me too--totally!!! ;D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: mashagirl on August 31, 2004, 08:42:59 PM
What got me interested in the romanovs was the Disney "anastasia", and one the theme songs i can't remember gave it a romantic quality and also it was interesting because i think gr.7 i found a book about anastasia and the book was Called "Anastasia's Album". Their was something about the story, their life and pictures of OTMA that make them look so real and i can't help staring at some of the pictures. In highschool
i wanted to learn more because they were facinating so i started collecting pictures of OTMA mostly, since each of them are like each other's bestfriend and the bond is really close; i can relate to Tatiana, Olga and Marie. Since my personality is a mix of all three of their's. For school i continued my interested when the teacher gave us idea's for a project and i wanted to learn more, so it was a good chance. Now i want to do a website but it's partly finished so here it is and i want to have visitors:
(it's my first time)
http://www.geocities.com/petz_underdog.com
 
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Abby on September 01, 2004, 08:03:26 AM
I am sorry Mashagirl, the link did not work for me.

It is very interesting that you found Anastasia's Album in 7th grade, because I found out about it in 8th grade! Hehe. That must be a popular time for kids to do reports on history of royals or something. LOL

welcome to the board :D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on September 15, 2004, 11:23:17 AM
I have read many articles that show dislike toward the Disney movie and the old Anatasia movie with Ingrid Bergman.  Whatever your own  opinion,  I think, most  will have to admit that it appears that these two productions have helped to keep the interest of the Romanov Royal Family alive.

AGRBear
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Elisabeth on September 15, 2004, 02:07:52 PM
I got interested in the Romanovs because my parents had a copy of Robert Massie’s "Nicholas and Alexandra" lying around the house when I was a kid.  I was intrigued by the pictures (little Anastasia in court dress); the beautiful, exotic names like "Tatiana" and "Anastasia;"  and the elaborate family trees (Alix’s relationship to the British royal family). So I started reading about the Romanovs. I remember one summer afternoon, I must have been eleven years old, bursting into tears over the fate of the poor little Russian grand duchesses – I had just seen the famous official photograph of OTMA taken in 1906 (as reproduced in Gleb Botkin’s "The Real Romanovs").  Oh, how I cried over that photograph!  (This, by the way, is why I think the Disney movie about Anastasia was sick-making.  And that children’s book, "Anastasia’s Album."  Read more about how your heroine was murdered! But I guess children are resilient and you can’t protect them from the harsh realities of this world forever.)

At any rate, I then became fascinated by the story of Anna Anderson, because I so wanted to believe that one of these children had somehow survived. (My dolls were always grand duchesses with jewels hidden in their clothing, successfully fleeing from the Bolsheviks. In my version of history, the girls never died – I don’t recall minding so much about Nicholas, Aleksandra, Aleksei, and the dog!)

It wasn’t until I was an adult that I realized that in real life, there really are fates worse than death, and surviving the massacre of your family is probably one of them.  When DNA testing exposed Anna Anderson as a pretender,  my main feeling was one of relief for the historical Anastasia, may she rest in peace. (Athough I confess I also felt a wee bit annoyed, that yet another Great Historical Mystery had been solved by the experts. What next, definitive proof that Richard III killed the Princes in the Tower? – Actually, I think he did, but that’s not the point. What’s the study of history without a little mystery?  Isn’t the investigation that leads to the truth often more interesting than the truth itself?  But excuse this philosophical digression.)

Maybe passions that begin in childhood are ineradicable, and that explains my ongoing interest  in the Romanovs. I still can’t work up too much grief over Nicholas and Alexandra, by the way. I minored in Russian history in college and grad school (Russian literature is my first love), and it’s impossible to study Nicholas’ reign without feeling exasperated by his obstinacy, indecisiveness, and lack of imagination. .. Of course, it’s also possible I hold a residual grudge against Nicky and Alicky because my inner brat still can’t forgive them for not getting OTMA out of Russia in time!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Ming on September 18, 2004, 05:23:49 AM
Oh, dear.  All these lofty, intellectual ways of coming to the interest of the Romanovs...my reason is going to sound a bit dumb, I'm afraid.  All I can remember is seeing the old Ingrid Bergman movie when I was very young, and I remember my mother telling me it was based on a true story.  Then, that Christmas, I received a book as a gift from an aunt and uncle...it was a Nancy Drew book called "The Clue In the Jewel Box."  It was thrilling to me because it was obvious that the plot was similar to what had happened to the Romanovs.  It's still my favorite book, I think, because it led me to read and research more and more about the tragic Romanov story, and here I am!  So, thank you, Nancy Drew!  Bless all of you who care.  I love reading this board.

Ming
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: george on September 20, 2004, 12:50:07 PM
Well what got me interested in the Romanovs ? The things came together. First I think there is no other family with this tragic history. Second I've seen those old Pictures on the walls in our livingroom with my great-grandfather in this old russian uniform his father in an uniform these old orders and you start to ask questions about these times. You hear storys from the revolutonary time and so on. So then next step is to ask what is all behind this and in the end it is all the Romanovs or the Tsar for whom they served and gave their lives even after the abdiction. Because the Tsar was Russia and Russia was the Tsar. I have to consider, that this reasons did not sound very romantic but it is a reason.
Joerg
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Yoyo on September 21, 2004, 01:24:51 PM
I admit I love to read this section. For many years, before I knew other Romanov buffs existed, I thought I was nuts for being so fascinated with a bunch of pretty and nice but not very accomplished dead people. So its nice to meet y'all.

My fascination started with a history class in high school, when the teacher was dealing with the Russian revolution and mentioned Alexei's illness and Rasputin in passing. It stuck for some reason. I checked the Russian section at my small, local library and found only one book about the Revolution with just two pictures of the IF; I ripped both out (ok, that was wrong). A little while later I found a book with five beautiful children on its cover. Turned out to be "The Snowmountain" by one Gavin, a historical novel with ON as its main character. Lots of stuff but, how much is true, I wondered?

I was a lonely and frustrated Romanov fan for a long while having to live on bits and pieces of information, until the advent of internet and access to among others, this website, satisfied my cravings and showed me I was not  unique in my fascination. Then I went to grad school in Chicago, and had a huge Border's bookstore within half a mile off campus. With the help of the internet, Borders and amazon.com my meager Romanov books and knowledge grew. But so did my interest in the extended family, Russian history and literature.

My Romanov obsession occasionally subsides, but is back with a vengeance since I returned from a long dreamed of trip to Russia this summer. I have been to most of  the major places, the Winter Palace, Tsarskoye Selo, Peterhof, the Kremlin, even Siberia, and I now dream of returning.

The recipe for Romanov addiction is to my humble opinion as follows:
* combine good looks and youth (even N & A were relatively young at death) with;
* a close family of loving but occasionally dysfunctional (thus very human) parents with a bunch fresh and charming kids;
* a privileged lifestyle of balls, yachts, palaces and parades that surpasses everything I will ever experience;
* add as background a country of almost mythical description (for me at least): its gargantuan size, the huge wealth of its aristocracy, the dire poverty of its masses, mysticism, revolution, exile and tragedy;
* top it all with thousands of lovely photographs through which we catch a glimpse of their charming daily life and through which we see the children grow from babies to beautiful young women and a handsome lad. (I remember that when I was first looking through my first Romanov book, prince Michael of Greece's "The Family Albums" it felt so shockingly intimate, I felt like a voyeur). Now they remain frozen in time, young and fresh for all eternity, unblemished by scandals and age, and we get to spend hours looking at those pictures, and letting our imaginations go wild.

No other family (living or dead, royal or not) has ever interested me and I believe it is simply because none combined all these powerful ingredients to keep me hooked for all these years.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rskkiya on September 21, 2004, 01:42:10 PM
Yoyo,
Your post really bothered me...Do you have any close family or friends? Maybe I didn't understand your remarks but there was something a bit weird in my interpritation of your comments.

  AHHH --The Romanovs... Like insects trapped in amber -- The sepia photos just slowly fade...The family (being dead) does not change- does not trouble us with the disturbing tendency of real living people to be unpredictable or spontanious... They are easy to "love" because they are not in any way a threat--they're like celebrities. We can all superimpose our dreams onto them and imagine that somehow we would all be the best of friends...if only!

This is one of the aspects of this site that I do NOT feel comfortable with : the strange "love" so many people seem to have with "NAOTMA" It seems to get creepier and creepier-- at times like a Necrofiliiac Fan Club...

Yoyo, I am sorry if I misunderstood you.

R.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on September 21, 2004, 02:13:14 PM
Quote
Yoyo,
Your post really bothered me...Do you have any close family or friends? Maybe I didn't understand your remarks but there was something a bit weird in my interpritation of your comments.

This is one of the aspects of this site that I do NOT feel comfortable with : the strange "love" so many people seem to have with "NAOTMA" It seems to get creepier and creepier-- at times like a Necrofiliiac Fan Club...

Yoyo, I am sorry if I misunderstood you.

R.


YoYo:

Rskkiya has difficulty with anyone who find any kind of interest, or in your case, a real passion toward the Romanovs.  

I for one thank you for your posting and your honest opinions about your passion and why you think others have this similar passion.

AGRGBear

PS  Head on over to this thread, if you haven't seen it already:
http://hydrogen.pallasweb.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=family;action=display;num=1095098913


Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Jane on September 21, 2004, 02:19:35 PM
Quote
...Then, that Christmas, I received a book as a gift from an aunt and uncle...it was a Nancy Drew book called "The Clue In the Jewel Box."  It was thrilling to me because it was obvious that the plot was similar to what had happened to the Romanovs.  


Haha, Ming!  I too adored Nancy Drew, intrepid girl detective, when I was a young girl.  What a wonderful story!

Jane
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Reed on September 21, 2004, 03:12:04 PM
Well said AGRBear.......It is amazing to me that the minute someone posts on one of these threads (especially newbies) another psychoanalyzes what they have written....and suddenly they become some kind of psychopath.....  Yoyo enjoy the site and take personal comments with a grain of salt.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on September 21, 2004, 03:16:08 PM
Yoyo, nothing you said was "bothersome" or "creepy," so don't pay any attention.  Infact, your post was TOTALLY my thinking; I just could never really put it into words. ;)  Don't let rskkiya discourage you from saying what you feel and think just because it might "creep her out" for some very odd reason.  :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: grandduchessella on September 21, 2004, 03:27:45 PM
I would agree with YoYo (welcome!) about the 'ingredients' making people fascinated with the family. So many things combine--the tragedy, the attractiveness of the family, etc...but I really do think that the photos hold the key to a lot of the fascination. They show the private lives moreso than almost any other royal family--certainly of that pre-WW1 which is so fascinating to many for the clothes, etc...to begin with. That's probably why there are so many coffee table books and probably more to come as archives continue to open. I had posted a photo as my brief explaination of what got me started. That's what really stood out to me as a young girl of about 11 or so--the young Alix with her beautiful long hair. Shallow I know! (I was forced to have a pixie haircut which did NOT resemble Audrey Hepburn's and envied anyone with lush long hair.  :) ) Then as I read Robert Massie's biography more of the lifestory became fleshed out due to his narrative style--it was like reading a novel rather than a dry bio. As for people's attachment and high level of really _personal_ interest, I go back to the photos. Like looking through any album of private photos, even of people you don't know or have any connection to, it can draw you in and make them seem real. They tell you so much more about their lives than a posed photo. I know of a lot of fiction writers who will buy antique photos to get inspiration for stories as they begin writing. I always felt it myself with old photos or antique jewellry--you start to thinking 'what were they like?' 'what path did their lives take?' etc...Or maybe I am just disturbed.  ;)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Alexa on September 21, 2004, 03:56:02 PM
Quote
I always felt it myself with old photos or antique jewellry--you start to thinking 'what were they like?' 'what path did their lives take?' etc...Or maybe I am just disturbed.  ;)


If you're disturbed, then I'm right there with you.  ;)  I grew up in a building that was built in 1926, and as a child I often laid in bed and night and wondered about all the people who lived in my bedroom before me.  Or when I see old photos at flea markets, I wonder who the people were and what kind of lives they led.  I think it's all part of being of lover of the past.  

The Romanovs represent the opulance of the past, and their fates that show that tradgedy can happen to anyone no matter your social status.  I think that's the same reason why the Titanic holds so many captive as well.  It's the stuff Shakespeare and soap operas (and very interesting history!) are made of.

Alexa
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rskkiya on September 22, 2004, 08:33:32 AM
Yoyo

In your last post you closed with this remark  

"No other family- living or dead--royal or not-- has ever interested me..."

I do hope that this is not true and that you have healthy and loving family and friends around you...

Enjoy the Romanovs if you wish (as do many people here, like michelle,agrybear and reed) but just realize that any obsession can get unhealthy. I shall state again that I may have not appreciated what you were innitially trying to say.

Michelle, Reed and Agrbear--please consider that there have been a lot of weird posts on this site (hint hint :-/)

R.



Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sarai on September 22, 2004, 09:53:01 AM
Yoyo,
I too did not find anything creepy or disturbing about your post, and I would not have thought there was anything wrong with it at all until rskkiya pointed it out. Even then, I still can't find anything wrong with it. I think your thoughts reflect what many people here like about the Romanovs, and we like to feel free to admire their beauty and their charming photographs and be captured by them.

However, unlike it has been suggested, this "love" is not necessarily unhealthy. I think that, if anything - and this is especially true of women on the forum - it is more of an almost motherly or sisterly love that we feel for the children. We can't help but feel as if we almost know them, having seen them grow up before our eyes in photographs and reading their intimate diaries and letters. Not everyone sees these people strictly as objective historical figures. We can't help but get emotionally attached to them, knowing their tragic story.

I will acknowledge rssikya's points that obsessions can be unhealthy if taken too far or are too unrealistic. I can also see how some people may find some of the posts on here disrespectful towards the dead, i.e. having schoolgirl crushes on the Tsar, discussing what girl was prettier than the other, etc. But these are all interesting questions to the people involved and they have done it in a respectful manner, for the most part. So, Yoyo, welcome to the board and know that most people here share your sentiments.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on September 22, 2004, 10:56:25 AM
AWESOMELY said, Sarai!!!!!!  :) :D ;)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dashkova on September 22, 2004, 10:56:37 AM
Sarai, I think that was beautifully stated, though I think Rsykkia made a good point, too.

I became interested in the Romanovs in pretty much the same way everyone else here has described. I can clearly see and still clearly remember how exciting it was to learn of their priveledged yet not always easy and eventually tragic lives. I loved being able somehow to relate to this family: as a teenaged girl, as someone who felt at times misunderstood, as someone who would have liked a closer family, and so forth.

Later, some things changed.  Once I studied much more of Russian culture (and most of it existed and exists outside the Romanovs) I began to see how there is so much more to the story of Russia, and I also began to look at  that priveleged life in a very different light.

In other words, these few *had* that golden age only because the rest of the population had absolutely nothing.  I can and will never again look at the photos, Faberge eggs, read the books in the same way.  I am not saying it was N&A's fault, nor their childrens' personally, I guess they knew the real deal but also realized there wasn't anything they could do about it but carry on with what was already in place.  

Maybe they *didn't* realize how many lives were sacrificed so they could have their beautiful homes, clothes, jewels and fine accomplishments.  Either way, I don't really fault them, they too were products of their era, just on a very grand scale.

Even after acknowledging that, the Romanov story will never again have the appeal for me that it once did.  The gilt is off the gold. Others may not have the same experience as I, though I admit I cannot understand such people.  I suspect many (not all) who are Romanov enthusiasts are simply interested in nothing outside the aristocracy.

For those who do possess that mindset, I think they are missing out on the best parts of Russian history. Not just because of the wrongs the Imperial house did to the Russian people, but because the rest of Russia's story is so much more interesting, and so much more significant.  

Everyone has their own specialization, though! I just can't figure out what is so appealing when there's so much in Russian history that is far more deep, profound, and vital.

I'm actually giving a presentation/lecture to a group of AP high school students today on Nicholas II and his family.  Most of them only know about the Anastasia cartoon, so hopefully they will learn about the true story today.

My topic was of my own choosing, because I know what appeal this story has to the young. I truly hope and will encourage them to enjoy the Romanov story and learn all they can, but will make it very clear that they are only a very small part of Russian history.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sarai on September 22, 2004, 01:11:56 PM
Thank you, ladies. Dashkova, that is such a good point you bring up. I know that when I read about the family (and I suspect this is true of others as well), I am completely wrapped up in the beauty and wealth of their lives and tend to forget the fact that the majority of their people were impoverished and had really difficult lives. I think that if we could go back to that time and place, most people would naturally choose to be part of the nobility or royalty, but the reality is that most of us here today would probably be members of the middle or lower classes instead, due to the fact that very few of us here can actually claim noble lineage from Imperial Russia. When I first started reading about the family when I was a young teenager, I was only interested in them and not so much in their subjects. But now I can acknowledge the extent of the poverty and suffering that most of those people lived in, and it is a sad fact that I cannot forget either. Admittedly, I would still prefer to read about the incredible lifestyles of the rich and famous Romanovs rather than about the common people, whose lives actually mirror ours more to a certain extent, but I realize that we cannot forget them, as they were the true Russian Empire.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Yoyo on September 23, 2004, 07:28:18 AM
For all those who thought I sounded creepy, a few explanations might be necessary, though of course you have all rights to your opinion.

Maybe one of the reasons I'm interested in the Romanov family (including the extended family of uncles and cousins, I might add) is that I acually belong to a close family myself of four siblings, and have a large extended family, a lot of whom live within walking distance from me (but no, we are neither rich nor royalty or particularly struck by tragedy). And yes I do I have friends too, thank God.

What I meant "with no other family interests me", is that other "celebrity" families (if I might use that word) interests me (whether be Kennedy's, Windsors, or whatever). I am also relatively uninterested in celebrities in general (be it movie stars, pop singers) because I have other things to do and also because I agree with I don't remember who said that dead people don't threaten us.

And what I meant with a "lonely Romonaov fan" was that I knew nobody personally (none of my family/friends) who was as fascinated as I am, though they do know of about it.

I am a Romanov buff, but I do believe I try to remain objective: in the analysis of my own fascination (or so I thought) and in the characters of the Romanovs. I don't see them as saints or religious figures, they were attractive people and had some great personal qualities, but they were also flawed, like all of us are by the way. And I really believe that those pretty photographs play a huge part in the fascination people have with them, judging by alll those Romanov coffee book tables being sold today. If they did not exist we would read about their attractiveness and charm, but never able to see it. And ironically, had they not died so young and tragically, we would not be spending this amount of time or Mbytes on them.

To conclude I would say that I think that most Romanov fans (including myself) are average, normal people with families and careers, but that for some reason (mine is as described above) were caught by the Romanov bug. It's a hobby, something to do in our spare time and nothing else.

All power to you
Yoyo ;)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rskkiya on September 23, 2004, 08:15:06 AM
Yoyo

  Thanks for the clairification and welcome...I am sorry if I overreacted - but as you can imagine there have been some emotionally unstable people who have visited this site and left some very disturbing posts.
  I hope that you will compare your initial interest in this topic with some of the  other posts here (my own "introduction" to the Romanovs was quite different from yours) - I look forward to hearing from you in the future.

R.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Yoyo on September 23, 2004, 02:44:46 PM
Thanks rskkiya for your concern. You're right, some people get unhealthy obsessions, and bring up weird subjects. But that's their right, and weird or silly subjects (definition of which is highly personal and I do not  want to disparage anyone's feelings) are not in and of itself bad I believe. To talk all the time about dead serious issues will imply that we're all detached, professional historians searching and discussing deep, historical truths, and not "fans" wanting to know everything about our favorite "celebrities" (though this site has some excellent historical info). It would only turn bad if all or most discussions become weird or silly. :-/

But I appreciate this discussion. I agree with Rashkova that we should not romaticize and idealize the era/family and forget the poverty and misery of the largest part of the country at the time and the family's character flaws. Neither should we forget that Russia is so much more. But at least in my case, my Romanov fascination led to interest in Russian history and literature (I'm currently reading "Crime & Punishment" for the second time) and even tourism.

But I also agree with, I think it's grandduchessella, that we humans are still so shallow as to be more interested in wealth and beauty, than poverty and plainness. Otherwise, we won't have the word "celebrity" in our vocabulary, movie actors would be ugly and as famous as your accountant, lawyer or any other professional, and millions of fashion, royalty and celebrity magazines won't be sold each year. And if we don't like high drama with beautiful people, no soap opera will be on the air anywhere in the world.  

So I am a confessed Romanov fan, fascinated by their tragic history and charmed by the photographs of four beautiful girls with the big Eduardian hats, a handsome man in uniform, picnics in the woods and cozy tea parties in luxurious palaces. I am a bit reluctant to say though that I love them. That would imply that I know them. Spending hours reading about them and looking through those photographs we can and do get attached to them, we might even believe we know them personally and thus get upset at their horrible deaths (though on the other hand, we won't be talking if they did not die the way they did). I believe that is not bad in or of itself. The key is to stay balanced and keep a certain distance between the bygone era of the Romanovs (a soap opera written by Fate itself) and our own daily existence with its own charm and occasional dramas.

8)
Yoyo
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Elisabeth on September 30, 2004, 08:03:28 AM
I've noticed that after all the postings here about "emotionally unstable" people and their "unhealthy obsession" with the Romanovs, no new members have shared their stories about how they got interested in the family. Gee, wonder why...

Don't let anyone put a cramp on your style, not to mention your imagination! Ninety per cent of the world’s great artists would be considered "emotionally unstable," or even mentally abnormal, by the average person. And talk about "unhealthy obsessions"!

Leo Tolstoy, usually considered the rare exception, a real paragon of mental health, battled with episodes of severe depression in the second half of his life. And even if you have only a nodding acquaintance with his work, you know that he was "unhealthily" obsessed with death his whole life long.  (Read his diaries or "The Death of Ivan Ilych" and get back to me.)

Feodor Dostoevsky was epileptic and addicted to gambling. He was obsessed with such "unhealthy" themes as murder, child abuse, sado-masochism, and the nature of evil in general. And yet somehow he became one of the greatest writers and thinkers of all time... think there might be a connection?

Virginia Woolf had psychotic episodes and eventually committed suicide.  

Dylan Thomas was an alcoholic.

And so on, and so forth.  And that’s just the writers… I don’t know about you, but I’d rather have the author of "Crime and Punishment" and "The Brothers Karamazov" than some  well-adjusted, cheerful Fedya with the imagination and tastes of a Philistine!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michelle on September 30, 2004, 11:29:07 AM
Very nicely put, Elisabeth! :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Louise on September 30, 2004, 12:59:23 PM
Yoyo welcome to this wonderful board. I read your post and enjoyed it.

I first developed a thirst for history about the time President Kennedy was shot, and I was interested in why all the grown ups were upset. My curiosity lead to books and encyclopedias on Kennedy and as I began venture to the library at the very young age of 9, I would browse through the adult section and look at all the books, the history section of course, and take them out and look at the pictures and read.

Well, of course one interest leads to another, and before long I was interested in Royalty, The American Civil War, and WWII. I have a love for those subjects. This does not mean I have a love for the actions of war or the horror of it. I have a love for the art of history. Again, with one thing leading to another, I found a copy of Nicholas and Alexandra when I was babysitting, and I was hooked. Now back then that was all there really was on the IF, so with time, I managed to build up my collection, slowly, and with the advent of perostrokia, and the internet, my love of the IF and Russian history has grown. So much so, I'm now enrolled in university, taking my first class in what I call 30,000 years.

So Yoyo, you are no more obsessed than anyone else I know that enjoys and loves history, and or the IF.
I encourage you to stay here and read the board as often as you can. The education and knowledge you will learn here is unparrelled, and the people here, for the most part was truly giving of their time and their knowledge.

Enjoy,

Louise
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Elisabeth on October 03, 2004, 03:11:20 PM
Dear Louise,

I found your comments so interesting.  I think that, especially now, with the proliferation of movies like Disney's "Anastasia" and books like "Anastasia's Album," there are a lot of children out there for whom the murder of the Russian imperial family (like the murder of Kennedy for another generation) represents one of their first encounters with evil -- real evil, adult evil.  The more sensitive the child, the more profound we would expect the impact of that encounter to be on him/her. I think perhaps this is one of the reasons why so many people become "obsessed" with the Romanovs in childhood, and especially with OTMA and Alexis.

How many of us read "The Diary of Anne Frank" at an impressionable age and came away forever changed? Those last terrible words: "Anne Frank's diary ends here."  What's it like for children to discover that children like themselves have been killed in cold blood for no other reason than their religion, race, or social background?

I'm curious to know if anyone else has thoughts on this.

P.S. Michelle, thank you for your kind words!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: grandduchessella on October 03, 2004, 09:25:45 PM
Quote
Dear Louise,

I found your comments so interesting.  I think that, especially now, with the proliferation of movies like Disney's "Anastasia" and books like "Anastasia's Album," there are a lot of children out there for whom the murder of the Russian imperial family (like the murder of Kennedy for another generation) represents one of their first encounters with evil -- real evil, adult evil.  The more sensitive the child, the more profound we would expect the impact of that encounter to be on him/her. I think perhaps this is one of the reasons why so many people become "obsessed" with the Romanovs in childhood, and especially with OTMA and Alexis.

How many of us read "The Diary of Anne Frank" at an impressionable age and came away forever changed? Those last terrible words: "Anne Frank's diary ends here."  What's it like for children to discover that children like themselves have been killed in cold blood for no other reason than their religion, race, or social background?

I'm curious to know if anyone else has thoughts on this.

P.S. Michelle, thank you for your kind words!


I think you're absolutely right. I remember reading TDOAF when I was in middle school and just being shocked out of my mind. To think of girls of the same age going through so much with so much character when at the same age I was grumbling about TV restrictions and nagging over homework. It doesn't make our 'normal' lives any less real or problematic but really helps put things in perspective. One book I'm reading to my oldest daughter (9 1/2) is the Royal Diaries: Anastasia. That's a really great series for young girls. She has about 10 of them and we're going to do Queen Victoria next. She only knew Anastasia from the movie but enjoyed looking at a photo book of the family (she thought the cartoon representation of NII was very realistic and gave it a thumbs up). I finally found a 'hook' to get her into royalty as opposed to Pokemon.  ;) She especially enjoys learning about Anastasia because it's the closest royal to one of her names (Kaitlyn Anne). No royals named Katie and the next closest, Catherine, didn't appeal to her. She didn't find Catherine the Great that 'princess-like'.  :) So, we went to the middle name and she felt the same way about Queen Anne and then alighted on Anastasia. So I get to pass my obsessions on to another generations (and in a few years can start on my youngest-- named Elizabeth and called Ella after you-know-who!).
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: RichC on October 07, 2004, 07:55:38 PM
I've been a fan of Bob Atchison's website for several years now and this discussion board is great.  

Like so many of you, I first became interested in the Romanov's when I saw the film Nicholas and Alexandra on TV in the '70's.  I'll never forget the end of the movie and how it shocked me-- the walls splattered with blood.  

I read Massie's novel shortly thereafter.  Also, my maternal grandmother was raised in the Russian Orthodox faith.  Sometimes I would accompany my Grandma to mass at the Holy Ghost Russian Orthodox church in Bridgeport, Connecticut.  It turned out that my great grandparents help found the church in Bridgeport in the 1890's and that the church bells were donated by Nicholas II.  I believe the church is still there.

When I grew up, I studied Russian history, literature and language first at Yale University and later at the University of Chicago, where I earned my BA.  One day I made an appointment with my Russian history professor, Firuz Kazemzadeh, and asked him about the Romanovs.  I will never forget what he said: "They were not nice people."  Interestingly, my Grandma felt the same way about Empress Alexandra.  She, and her contemporaries in Bridgeport's Russian community (my grandmother was born in 1902) venerated the Tsar but blamed the Empress for the downfall of the monarchy and the rise of communism in Russia.  I still remember her claiming that Alexis was sired by Rasputin!  I guess that's what people thought while these events were unfolding.

Anyway, some of you have noted that without Yurovsky, the fascination wouldn't be nearly as strong, and I agree.  As Richard Pipes said (forgive me if he's already been quoted):

"The manner in which the massacre was prepared and carried out, at first denied and then justified, has something uniquely odious about it, something that radically distinguishes it from previous acts of regicide and brands it as a prelude to twentieth-century mass murder."

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Laura on October 09, 2004, 01:26:07 PM
i saw a film when i was about 9 or 10 and it got me thinking then i saw the 1997 fox cartoon of Anastasia and that got me. Im still only 15 but i read alot on them.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Geshtahl on October 11, 2004, 07:50:10 AM
I had an incredible World History teacher in my freshman year of high school. She had about a dozen books (I managed to most of them before I graduated) After that, I was hooked.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on November 13, 2004, 09:55:46 PM
Notice someone has started a new thread on this same subject so,  I thought I bring it back into the limelight so newcomers and see some of our oldies but goodies.

;D

AGRBear

New Thread: http://hydrogen.pallasweb.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=family;action=display;num=1100380985
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: felix on November 16, 2004, 04:36:15 PM
I havnt read any of this but, in  1968 in Holy Cross Church in N.Y.C. the nuns maid  us  read a book Communisn and Everything You should Know, it had the family photo of the Romanovs from about 1914,  I was hooked! At that age  I could'nt unerstand the  passion one photo caused. But its life long. F.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Olga on November 16, 2004, 07:32:15 PM
Quote
the nuns maid  us  read a book Communisn and Everything You should Know


Hmmm....written in 1968......midst of the Cold War......
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: felix on November 16, 2004, 07:57:45 PM
It was the photo with Marie in the top left, and when I asked Sr, Maurice she said Anastasia lived. I didnt by it than and still dont.  F.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Elisabeth on December 13, 2004, 01:40:48 PM
Calling all new members... Please share with us your stories! There are so many of you now, and all of us oldies, moldies but goldies are so curious about your own personal history with the Romanovs! What got you interested in the imperial family? Was it a particular book, movie, or photograph? Was it a special teacher or friend? Or was it this fantastic Alexander Palace time machine? What got you hooked? Spill!! :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Nicholaievna on December 14, 2004, 09:53:19 AM
I'd be happy to share my story, well I knew a little about the Bolshevik revolution in high school, and I think that my teacher mentioned the killing of the imperial family, but I didn't really think about it too much.
But now I am a college student, and taking Modern World Civilization, and one of our essays was on this Article called "Home At Last" about the Romanov burial, and immediately after reading it, I could not stop thinking about it. I went home and looked up all kinds of things, and came across this board. I still cannot stop reading the article. The quote "There lay the house of Romanov" really sticks out for me, I'll say more about it later, I've got to get ready for class.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Val289 on December 14, 2004, 10:37:25 AM
I don't specifically remember being interested in the Romanovs in High School, or College.  While visiting my grandparents house about 6 years ago, I went to their local Barnes and Noble (at the time, we didn't have one close to where I lived).  I walked up to the top floor, and staring me right in the face was a display of Peter Kurth's Tsar.  For whatever reason, I picked up the book, sat down, and started looking at it.  I was just in awe of all of the beautiful photographs.  I looked at it for about an hour and I felt like I was in a completely different world.  My husband bought the book for me as my Christmas present.  So, that's how I got hooked, and I've been buying books, and researching them ever since!  There are so many wonderful people here on this board that have been interested in the Romanovs much longer than myself, and I appreciate everyone here for sharing their knowledge and viewpoints! :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Marie on December 14, 2004, 12:48:17 PM
     When I was in middle school I was bored with the usual subjects so I spent most of my time reading and going to the local library. One day for no particular reason I couldn't find anything new to read so I thought about this story I had heard about the Royal  Family of Russia, I knew that there was something there that interested me but it was nothing specific. I found a book about Imperial Russia and started to read and have not stopped yet. I find everything about the history endlessly facinating. So I inevitably become very interested in the Romanov family and here I am many years later and still indulging in my favorite passion.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on December 14, 2004, 05:25:02 PM
Thanks Elisabeth for getting this thread up and going again and welcome newbies:  Nic, Val, Marie, and hopefully others .  :) :) :)

AGRBear
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Georgiy on December 14, 2004, 08:55:50 PM
I've been interested pretty much as long as I can remember. When I was about 7 I read a picture book about Anastasia (I can't remember what it was called or anything, but it hinted that maybe she had survived). I remember two illustrations from it - one of the GDs descending a staircase in the palace, and one of a surviving Anastasia being spirited away in a cart, poking her head out from under some blankets or something.

I think probably the tragedy of violent death struck me, as at a similar age I ahd a strong interest in the Titanic disaster, and also in the destruction of Pompeii.

I probably found out more about the Romanovs over the following years through library books, but probably my interest being to grow by the time I was twelve, and that children not that much older than me at the time could have had such a horrible fate. Also looking at photos of them makes them seem less remote - not so much as historical figures, but as people who you could have got to know (though of course in reality there would be very little chance of any of us being anywhere near as close to the IF as we may feel we have become through seeing their private photos, reading their writings etc)
And over the years, I just read more about them, more albums of them were published, and my interest has never abated. So, I am quite glad there is a discussion group like this. These days with the internet, it is so much easier to find out more and more about the Romanovs and to be able to get books etc which would be almost impossible to come by (at least in NZ) otherwise.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Olga on December 14, 2004, 09:07:50 PM
Georgi, did your interest in the Romanovi have a factor in your conversion to Orthodoxy? Or were you already Orthodox?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Georgiy on December 14, 2004, 09:23:21 PM
It made me aware of Orthodoxy, but I really knew nothing about the Orthodox Church until later.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Olga on December 14, 2004, 09:37:29 PM
What made you choose the name Georgi?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Georgiy on December 14, 2004, 09:55:02 PM
It's the Russian version of my given name, and is also my Baptismal name (for St George the Great Martyr).
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Labuanbajo on December 20, 2004, 03:21:52 PM
When I was just learning to read, my family bought an encyclopedia and in it I found a photograph of the Imperial family. The little boy (Alexei) looked a little like me and ever since I've been interested in the Romanovs. But I'm not under any delusions that I'm the lost heir!

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: ferngully on December 21, 2004, 10:10:19 AM
i get funny dreams reflecting something and i have to write them down in different forms, sometimes stories, sometimes plays, sometimes articles. the dream that started it off was when i was in the woods looking for something. i researched on what that might mean because it sounded like something i had thought of before. i remembered how fascinated i was by detective stories and remembered hearing about anna anderson, so i reseached and came up with the idea that i was one of the pathologists excavating the bones in my dreams. the rest is history ;)
selina           xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: ferngully on December 21, 2004, 10:26:24 AM
i forgot to mention the book that got my interest of unknown royalty. it was about a woman who had just died and her best friends grandchildren were trying to find out about her through a treasure hunt ending up in her sewing box. she was minor russian royalty fleeing from the reds and it was in the form of her as a child and the children as they were finding out more about her, it caught my imagination because a place like russia was unknown and exciting
selina          xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: ferngully on December 27, 2004, 09:39:33 AM
i had to do an english exam once, part of it was about the romanovs and the theory that anastasia was missing and we had analyse it on context and style of the writing
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Holishka on December 28, 2004, 10:54:22 AM
I was sick one day and my sister went to the bookstore to get me a book I wanted.She couldn't find the one I asked for so she got me a book about Anastasia (it was one of those fake diaries)I  t hought it looked boring so I tossed it aside. One day at school I had to read a book. I didn't have one so searched through my backpack and for some reason it was in there. I skimmed the pages and and after speed reading through the whole book I read the forward. It said how she and her family were led to the basement and killed. I was speachless and for a week or two I couldn't get her out of my head. It has been almost two years and I still can't beleive how much I know about them!!! ;D
Im new by the way!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Elizabeth on December 30, 2004, 10:15:02 AM
I've officially "de-lurked" now and am enjoying posting messages to the boards.  I've been in love with this site for some time, but have never had the "gumption" (as we say in Kentucky) to post.   ;D

Anyway, my story begins in 1972, shortly after my parents went to see Nicholas & Alexandra at the local movie theater (I was out of town on a school field trip -- I was 11 at the time!).  My mom loved it and said, "I've GOT to take you to see this wonderful movie about the last King & Queen (!) of Russia."  It sounded positively BORING (although I was a big fan of history --  just not Russia!).  

Well, time got away from us and the movie left the theaters.  A few years (?) later, "Nicholas & Alexandra" showed up on the "Movie of the Week" (on ABC/CBS?) -- in two parts -- and mom says, again, to me, "Oh, here is that wonderful movie.  You're going to HAVE to watch it, BUT I won't tell you the ending!"  

So we sat down on two consecutive evenings and watched it and I was HOOKED.  Had my Mom take me out the next day and buy me Massie's "N & A" and read it cover to cover in a few sittings (and then read it again and again).  (My mom continues to tell friends to this day that I'm probably the only one with EVERY edition since I've worn the covers off of all of them -- that is, except the first edition hardback!).

So, that's my intro.  After reading N&A, I started in on other Russian books about the family ("The File on the Tsar" came out around that time, plus "Shadow of the Winter Palace" which I didn't care for - very derogatory toward N&A I thought), plus a lot of picture books (Lyons' "Nicholas II: The Last Tsar").

Not thinking there was much use (or $$) out there for a Russian history professor, I eventually got my legal assistant degree to make a living.  BUT, after a few years, I wanted to go back and get a degree in SOMETHING, so I went to the local University (of Louisville) and got my degree (in "Soviet Area Studies" -- now it's Russian studies).  Took some FABULOUS classes -- Russian lit, Russian Revolutions, Early Russian History, etc.  

Oh, and I got to hear Massie speak when he was in Louisville for some event and finally figured out that I had been mispronouncing Rasputin's name for the last 20+ years (it's like Vladimir Putin, but with the Rass in front of it -- hence, Ras -- poo -- tin).  Small piece of trivia -- RKM was born and raised in Lexington, KY, which is "down the street" (well, an hour's drive) from where I live!  

Also, I met Suzanne Massie a few years after that -- she was at a book signing at a local bookstore and we spoke for TOO long (her daughter and son-in-law lived nearby and I got to meet them too!).  What a classy lady -- she signed all of my books (her's and N&A).  A bit of trivia -- she said that when she and her (now) ex, RM, wrote N&A -- they were going to have BOTH of their names on it, but thought it looked better with just his (she said, laughingly, "We didn't want to have TOO many couples' names on the cover - Nicholas & Alexandra and Robert & Suzanne.  People might have gotten mixed up!).  

She's just a GREAT lady (and my two cents worth here, but I thought that RKM's other books after N&A weren't NEARLY as good as his work with Suzanne.  Compare the writing style in N&A with RKM's and SM's other books and you can see that Suzanne has the stronger "voice" of the two in N&A.  

Okay, I'll stop babbling.   :D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Bitoelk on December 30, 2004, 11:50:34 AM
This was a wonderful question and I must express my graditude for everyone's responses, I have enjoyed reading them all very much. As for myself... I grew up listening to my Grandfather tell me stories of Russia and how his father use to work on the grounds of Tsarskoe Selo and of how the family was released they escaped Russia in Feb 1917 before the abdocation.  Thus began a life long passion to discover more about my family history and a deep rooted love of history all together. I was thrilled a few years ago to come across this site, and am even more overjoied now to return and find this discussion board. It has been a wonderful experiance talking with everyone, sharing stories, learning so much and sparing on points of view. Thank everyone  :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Mandie, the Gothic Empress on December 30, 2004, 02:23:36 PM
When I frist got insterested I got Anastasia's diary when I was 12, that time I had a diffiect time reading. A year later I can read much better and hard words then others. Now I love to read, But reading to others is diffiect. because I get nervous and I mess up.

But thanks to the Romanovs, that I can read :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: jtareb on January 06, 2005, 10:23:46 PM
I developed a fascination with 20th century Russian history when I first read Robert Conquest's books on the Stalin and the great terror of the 1930's. My favorite book on the Romanov's during this period is R Bruce Lincoln's "Passage through Armageddon" which I still read again periodically.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: KaterinaHalm on January 10, 2005, 10:27:16 AM
I think what I find so compelling is the tragedy of their lives combined with the beauty of the family and their evident love for one another. From the time I was 10 or 11, I've been captivated by Alexandra. I have a PhD in European history, although Russia was not my specialty, and so have a natural passion for history.  But what has really interested me in the Romanovs at this time is an exhibit I attended in November 2004 at the Newark Museum (in N.J.) which displayed letters, clothes and artifacts from the Imperial family. For some reason, although I have a natural sympathy for all members of this loving family, I have just not been able to get Grand Duchess Olga out of my mind.  I'm exploring why!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Nell on January 10, 2005, 04:34:46 PM
I have been reading the AP discussion board for the past month or so and was delighted to find many knowledgeable posters and authors of books I have read here. Thank you for all the new information and wonderful photos!

Many years ago I read an article in Life magazine on Anna Anderson and her claims to be Anastasia. This is where I first heard of the Romanov family.

I have always been interested in history and read many biographies of European royals. When Massie's book on Nicholas and Alexandra was published I devoured that book then saw the film.  After that came the Shadow of the Winter Palace and  I then went to my local library and read every book  they had on the IF. I started purchasing and collecting long out of print books on the Romanovs and attended several wonderful exhibitions on Nicholas and Alexandra. Also visited Hillwood in Washington D.C. with their wonderful collection of portraits and artifacts.

I think the tragic story of the family, the Rasputin connection, all the different personalities involved and the tumultuous period during the fall of the monarchies all fascinate me.

I look forward to reading more on this wonderful site!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on January 15, 2005, 11:56:40 AM
Every once in awhile,  I return to this thread to read how others became interested in the Romanovs.

So good to see so many new stories.

Thanks for sharing.  :)

AGRBear
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: ChristineM on January 15, 2005, 01:52:07 PM
Indeed this is an excellent question, because, probably like the rest of you, I am constantly asked 'What first got you interested in Russia?'   My answer - 'I don't know.'   My earliest memory of an awareness was around the age of three or four - I do not know whether it was a dream, but I remember the night it occurred, even family details of the evening, quite clearly.   I was so young, nearer three than four - still in a cot - when I experienced, what now I can only explain as a couple of visions.   These are difficult to describe - one involved, what I realise now, was an enfilade - the first time I saw the enfilade in the Catherine Palace, I recognised it and its roccoco details immediately.   In the second I recall epaulettes, golden epaulettes and sitting on somebody's knee, running my fingers through the fringes.   Nothing more, just flashes - very vivid flashes, I can still feel the coils of the fringes on the epaulette.  

I am not particularly interested in 'past lives'/spiritulism and etc.   Many years later I worked on a tv documentary series entitled 'Is Anybody There?'   It did nothing to stimulate my interest in the subject.  

From this very young age, my interest in Russia and the Romanov Family ebbed then flowed into a passion some twenty years ago, resulting in regular visits to Russia, particularly Tsarskoe Selo, since 1989.

By the way, Elizabeth, we use the word 'gumption' in Scotland too and a darned good word it is.   I do not know if it is in the dictionary - I'll look it up, but I think it is almost impossible to explain - common sense - comes closest, but doesn't quite capture the essence of the wordl

tsaria
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AlexeiLVR on January 15, 2005, 04:27:56 PM
When i was about 11 my mom would tell me about Russia's history (cause i am Russian) and she told me some stuff about The Romanovs!

But it wasent untill i watched "Anastasia" that i became interested in their story! so i searched up alot about them on the internet!

then i compleately forgot about them! and then i watched "Anastasia" 2 years later (i'm 13 now) and now i'm compleately OBSESSED with them! i've read probably everything about them that i could find, and i have over 10 pics of them!

but my favorite is Alexei Romanov! he is such a handsome boy! and i only wish i lived back then so i could become his girl friend! lol! and most of my pics of the Romanovs are of Alexei! (Alyosha) its just so sad that he suffered so much as a little kid, and that he had to die so young!

may god always be with Alexei Nicolaev Romanov!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: chintz22 on January 15, 2005, 07:27:31 PM
Hi All,

My mother had the first paperback printing of Nicholas and Alexandra. Like so many, it was Massie's book that sparked my interest.  I remember looking at the cover and the pictures from the time I was 5 or so (I was so fascinated with the gorgeous picture of Alix on the cover).  I still have the book, along with a hardcover copy.

I first read parts of N&A when I was 7 or 8 (The Tsar's Village, OTMA and Alexis and Royal Progress--I think I could quote those chapters by heart!).  I started checking books out of the library and I was completely obsessed with OTMA especially.  Ever since I found that Marie's birthday OS was the same as mine (June 14) I always felt a special affinity with her.  

My teachers didn't know what to make of my interest; We did a mosaic project (with the pebbles you use in fish tanks!) when I was in fifth grade and I chose to do an outline of the double headed eagle.  At a show and tell I shared the notebook I made with drawings of OTMA's outfits from the photos I saw in books.  I still remember my sixth grade teacher being shocked!  

I was lucky enough to be able to go to the Beinecke Library at Yale when I was 19 and look through Anna V's albums there.  I was really moved by turning those pages.  When I was 20 I won an essay contest in college, the prize was a paid trip to Russia as an exchange student.  Our accomodations at the Hotel Sputnik were bare bones but I had an amazing time.  Leningrad (as it still was in eighty eight) surpassed my wildest dreams of beauty and I was amazed at how small Red Square was "in person".  However, to my sorrow, I wasn't allowed to break from the group when we went to Pushkin to see the Alexander Palace (I remember the guide said there was nothing to see).  I am hoping to go with Bob on his trip this year, so perhaps fate meant for me not to see it until I was with the expert!

I've loved participating in this group, especially for all the new photos I've seen posted.  It is great to commune with folks who are as interested as I am.

Best,

Sarah
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Olga on January 16, 2005, 02:43:22 AM
Quote
may god always be with Alexei Nicolaev Romanov!


Nicolaev? Surely you, a Russian, should know how to spell the Naslednik's name.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: hissunnywife on January 19, 2005, 01:21:44 PM
Reasons for my interest in the family of Nicholas Romanov II :

1) Entire family was deeply spiritual
2) They did not hook on power or wealth despite being in a ruling position
3) Had high ideals and morals
4) Had a very human side to them which they tried to preserve
5) There was continual humility in the midst of all temptations
6) Solzenitzin said: The Lord tempts those whose spiritual progress He promises. This family has passed the test. The fact that so many people around the world are still intrigued by them speaks plenty about the purity they had as the more pure something is, the longer it lasts.
7) Gives hope to people
8) Gives role models to people, especially in today's world
9) At the end they consciously followed the Christian path of sacrifice. The Russian documentary movie "Ruskaya Golgofa", released in year 2000 by Kinostudio Troitza described this very well
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: bball33 on February 05, 2005, 08:34:52 PM
Quote
Reasons for my interest in the family of Nicholas Romanov II :

1) Entire family was deeply spiritual
2) They did not hook on power or wealth despite being in a ruling position
3) Had high ideals and morals
4) Had a very human side to them which they tried to preserve
5) There was continual humility in the midst of all temptations
6) Solzenitzin said: The Lord tempts those whose spiritual progress He promises. This family has passed the test. The fact that so many people around the world are still intrigued by them speaks plenty about the purity they had as the more pure something is, the longer it lasts.
7) Gives hope to people
8) Gives role models to people, especially in today's world
9) At the end they consciously followed the Christian path of sacrifice. The Russian documentary movie "Ruskaya Golgofa", released in year 2000 by Kinostudio Troitza described this very well

I really like this list. My favorite ones are 1&3. That's what impressed me. They didn't get all snobby and shallow. They stuck with their morals.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: samcr on March 01, 2005, 09:44:50 AM
when we moved into are new family home I was 11 years old  , the lady who use to live there had died , so her husband left all her russia books behind when he sold to house to us, she also used to go and visted " Anna Anderson "  (who I dont think for one moment is anastasia , ) every year. so I started to read her books and thats how I became intrested . and I have been hooked ever since.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: matushka on March 24, 2005, 03:57:08 PM
I found this thread, it is so sweet to read all your stories. My is so banal, I am not sure I must write it (for whom?) but I will try, simply.
So... I was 14. I was young and I felt alone. Scholl s friends were not interesting, my soul was looking for something romantic, something pure, something beautiful wich could take my heart ;). One sunday, the entire family go to grand parents. After a good diner the children started to play, the adults started to chat. I was to old for playing, to young for appreciate conversation about the health of aunts, uncles, cousins and so on. Boring. I took an old numer of "Madame Figaro" and look at these annoying pages about fashion... I do not know that this simple magazine would in a few minutes decide of all my life!!
Suddenly, I saw beautiful, o so beautiful young face, visage of angel, a call from the past. It was made, I just became obsessed in OTMA. My passion grow, I search all that I could find in libraries and bookshops, made photocopies, spent all my time and my pocket money on this.
I grow together with my passion, and started to learn russian, started to have interess in russian history, then in Russia. The romantic passion of a teenager became something more calm, more historic, and first of all more religious.
Some years later, I can say with a smile that without the prayers (and the beauty) of the four daughers of the last Tsar, I never would be where I am, I never would have the husband I have and this wonderful child I can take in my arms :)
That is all. Thank you for your patience and attention! Forgive my mistake.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: griffh on March 27, 2005, 10:47:29 AM
My romance with the Romanoffs and Russia started by hearing stories of an Russian Princess in my family who was quite excentric and very risque.  Both my Aunt and my Uncle would speak of her but the suprising thing was that my Aunt and Uncle were from different sides of the family and never met eachother.  My Aunt knew of the Princess because she was the first wife of my Aunt's Grandfather.  My Uncle knew of the Princess because she was his patron when he was an art student in Paris.  He actually lived in her townhouse though he had his own studio.  

The Princess was one of the many American hieress to marry Russian nobility during those fretful years after the revolution.  Because of this wonder forum I now know exactly who the Russian Prince was and when he married the heirest and the other Russian Prince the heirest married.  I have even been able to contact a hotel that has a room named after her and have been able to fill in details of her life for the owner who was most grateful as she knew very little about her.

As tenuous a connection as this was for me in a family setting highly charged with political and social strife, I found a world of beauty and sorrow and power that I could understand and escape to.  We were all readers in our family and would have contests over the summer about how many books we could read.  

My first passion was the Titanic when I was nine and ten.  Then at the age of twelve, while recoving from a severe illness, I was allowed to spend time each day in the living room.  Off the staircase was the entrance to my father's study which was considered off limits for us children as he had firearms inside glass cases.  However as my confinement became more and more taking I snuck into his study and looking up at his book case I saw the most charming blue and gold book.  The book was among my grandfather's books that my father had inherited.  It was the memoirs of the grand daughter of U.S. Grant who had married Prince Cantacuzene in 1898.  My grandfather had been a messanger boy for General Sherman when Lee surrendered to Grant so I suppose he had purchased the book from that perspective rather than any interest in Czarist Russia.      

I when I opened the book I saw a picture of Alix in her Sister of Charity Nurse's outfit and under it was a quote from Princess Cantacuzene about how the Empress looked like a "Madonna of Sorrows."  From that moment on I gobbled up every memoir I could get my hands on.  I started haunting used book stores and my library started to grow.   It is only now that I have had the courage to share my love of Russia with others.  I loved what Greg King said and I am going to try to write soon.

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: griffh on March 27, 2005, 11:10:52 AM
I thought I might also add my memoir of meeting the Grand Duke Dimitri's son Paul.  It was originally written as a thank you to Bob M. for his lovely tribute to Paul who passed on recently.  I always wanted to add that Paul had the most wonderful combination of dignity and a natural quality of nobility and at the same time he excuded such an healthy, athletic vigor and boyish joy for life.  He reminded me so much of the wealthy but wholesome and fair minded men in my mother' family.  

Well anyway here is the thing I wrote and I am sure some of you have already read it.  

Dear Rob, I read your touching account of Paul’s passing and just wanted to thank you for the respect and gracious remarks you made.  I only met Paul once.  It must have been sometime after 1973 or around 1974.  I had just received my Master of Fine Arts degree from UCLA and had returned to NYC to continue my career as a sculptor.  The head of the UCLA Sculpture Dept. who was also the head of my Master’s committee, Oliver Andrews, had been commissioned by the Warrington’s, in Cincinnati, to make create a titanium water walls sculpture for their garden.  Mrs. Warrington wanted a section of her garden dedicated to St. Francis.  Oliver wrote me in NYC and asked me if I would make the St. Francis out of copper mesh.  I agreed and flew out to stay with Oliver at his agent’s house, A. B. Closson, on Indian Hill.  

After meeting the Warrington’s and a few other things I started immediately to work on sketches.  Mr. Closson was very nice, but I was certainly not a peer and spent most of my time working out ideas.  Oliver occasionally went out but it was very quiet overall.  That is, until Mr. Closson asked me if I wanted to meet the Grand Duke, which is what Paul was called by his friends in Indian Hill.  Oliver had told Closson that I was something of a Russophile and had been reading Russian memoirs since I was 12 years old, so he thought that I would enjoy meeting the son of the Grand Duke Dimitri.    

So the following Sunday we all walked down the street to Paul’s home, a lovely Tudor style house.  When we all walked in the entrance, Paul came down the stairs and said, “Which one of you is interested in Czarist Russia?”  Well everyone said at the same time, “I am.”  However I did not hear them as I saw, across the living room, a miniature painting of the Grand Duchess Ella sitting on the veranda of IIlynskoe.  I had never seen a painting of Ella, only photographs, and without being able to stop; I walked, as if in a trance, across the living room to the painting and said out loud, “But this is Ella sitting on the porch of Illynskoe.”  

Paul was startled and walked over to me and said, “How on earth did you know that.”  I said that I had been reading Russian Memoirs, including his Aunty’s two books, since I was twelve.  I said that somehow when you read, you see things and feel things and I had a sense of what Illynskoe looked like from his Aunt Marie’s books.  I also told Paul that there was a Russian Princess in our family but that it was very distant and it was all my marriage not by blood.  I told him that my Aunt’s Grandfather’s first wife had married, as her forth husband, a Russian Prince and had lived in the Passy at Rue 20 Venuse, in Paris between the two World Wars as a Russian Princess.  

Paul asked me who she had married and I said, “One of the Golitizins, but that I did not know which one or which branch.”  I said the my Uncle was in Paris at the same time as a young art student at the Sorbonne and that he had become the Princess’ protégé and that he had said that the Prince was a scoundrel from the naughty line of the Golitizins.  That made Paul laugh.  

(By the way my Uncle was mistaken about the line of Galitizine's.  The American heirest married Prince Mstislave whose great uncle, Nikolai was killed on the battlefield of Borodino in the famous victory over Napoleon and his other great uncle, Alexander, and his grandfather, Valerian, who were both exiled to Siberia for being part of the revolutionary group, the Decembrists.  

The line also includes dear old Prince Nikolai Galitizine, the last Romanoff Prime Minister who was executed in 1925 in St. Petersburg.   The Galitizines in exile married a great many English and Americans which creates a great many leads for me to follow up on to try and expand my understanding of the world of exiled nobility in Paris during the time the Princess and my Uncle were there.)
 
Paul immediately started taking me on a tour of the house and showed me the Czarina’s black enamel and silver make-up holder that was placed in her car, a curly coral and golden bell baby rattle that had belonged to Czarevitch, lots of Russian Birch Empire furniture that had belonged to his father and that the Grand Duke had removed from Serge Palace when he was banished to Tehran.  

Then he started to show me his American Grandfather’s roll top desk and he looked at me and said, “I see you are only interested in Russia.”  I apologized but agreed that this was so.  Then he stopped and looked at me for awhile, because I had asked him if he had any photographs of his mother and father that I could look at.   Without answering my question, he walked me over to a set of bound volumes and said, “This is a set of magazines that my father brought out of Russia, it was the “Town and Country” of Czarist Russia.”  You can look through them first.”  As I started to touch one of the books he said something to me in Russian, but I did not understand him.  

Then he stopped me and said, “Don’t you know Russian?”  When I said that I did not, he said, “You can come back and look at these books only when you have learned Russian.”   It was an odd moment, but I had been raised to be polite and I simply felt that his honor was involved.  So I said that I would immediately start learning Russian, which I did try to do as soon as I returned to NYC.  I did not work and I never got to see the magazines.  (I can still hear my teacher, Madame Michalovna saying to me again and again, "Open-a your mouth!  Open-a your mouth!  Finally my voice went away altogether and I ran out of the classroom)    

But anyway we spent an absolutely wonder afternoon.  I briefly met his wife and then returned to the Closson’s house.  For the rest of our stay on Indian Hill we started to be invited everywhere, luncheons, dinners, pool parties, etc.  Every time I came to one of these events the entire room would be hushed.  Finally at the last dinner party, I asked the hostess, “Am I hallucinating or did every one stop talking when I came in the room?”  The society lady said to me, “Yes it is true.  You see the Grand Duke told us you were a member of the Russian Nobility.”   I said, “Oh heavens, that’s not true.”  She smiled and said, “The Grand Duke said you would deny it.”  

I have always carried that time with Paul and my visit to Indian Hill as one of the happiest memories of my life.    
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: kamlowsky on March 27, 2005, 06:28:56 PM
Oh griffh, I am so mermerized by your writings. You are indeed such a gifted person and have had the most fascinating life experiences. Please continue to research the morganic Princess and write a book about exiled Royalty. I am so drawn to this Alexander Palace Discussion Board and the wonderful people who post here.

My story is a very simple one. I only have my genetic history and small life experiences to share.  My knowledge is sparse. The only information that I have is that my grandparents came from Russia, the primary reason for being attracted to this site.  I remember my father taking me to the Russian Ballet of Swan Lake as a very small child, maybe 3 or 4 years of age. As I sat on his knee, I was completely overwhelmed by the elegance and beauty of what I was witnessing. He enrolled me in Russian ballet and I was able to perform Swan Lake myself at a much later age.  My family was not geographically close, so I only met my aunts and uncles briefly. They had moved on in American society and continue to live very unique and successful lives.  I am impressed by their intelligence.  My father also took me to see Anastasia and I always had an interest in the old world but being that Russia no longer lived in the grandeur of the past, my interests were elsewhere. My father and uncles were artists and played the violin. I was raise with classical music and spent many hours sitting on the floor by my fathers chair sharing in the beauty that permeated our surroundings.
He was the only one of the siblilings that continued to support my Grandparents who lived in another state. Unfortunately, they died when I was very young.  
I do remember sleeping in my crib, when someone touched my forehead. It frightened me and I pulled the covers over my head and thought, it must have been an angel. Now, I believe it was my Grandmother on her way to heaven but I don't know when she died.  
I was the youngest grandchild and given my Grandmother's name. Once, when I was about seven, a woman came to our house with a gift.  It was my Aunt Marie. She gave me a beautiful gold cross stating that my Grandmother wanted me to have it.  It is one of the few treasures she brought from Russia.
I have spent my life in science as have my sibliing and most of my cousins.  I, therefore, never have had time to acquire knowledge  in history. The closest, I've come to the art world and beauty that my father's world entailed was a picture I painted in kindergarten that was sent to our City's art museum and then onto the Metropolitan Art Museum in New York.  
When I found the Alexander Palace, I was drawn by it's beauty and grace. I also have been able to see the realities of it's violent history. To the people who share their knowledge of elegant world of the past, I thank you.  I would never have the time to familiarize myself without such detailed history of Russia.
I only hope that through my ramblings you can see my small connection and yearnings to learn more about Imperial Russia.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: griffh on March 27, 2005, 07:14:44 PM
Oh Kamlovsky what an equisitely beautiful way you have of sharing your incredible life and your multitude of gifts.  What a natural sense of poetry you have in expressing yourself in prose.  Your past sounds so genuinely Russian to me, so like the magical aura that emanated from the titled intelligencia.  I don't think that there was ever a more natural and demoncratic group than those creative thinkers.  

There is nothing as poignant as the memory of a loved one playing music with all their soul.  One of my first loves was a Debussy Scholar and everytime I hear Eric Sate or Debussy I am swept back to my little apt in the East Village and it is summer time and I am waking up to this glorious music.

I was thinking how the forum gives all of us a chance to express our love and that we are all equally important and all have something unique and wonderful to share that enriches the rest of us.  Your contributions are always so moving and full of beauty and the depth of the human experience.  Have a wonderful Easter.  griff  

 
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: erzsi on March 28, 2005, 05:29:03 AM
When i was 12 years old i saw a film of the Romaows "Rasputin"and some Dokus "the gold of the tsars".
And the Disnay Film "anastasia"came in cinema so in newspaper there where some article about her.And so I want to know more about this Family ;D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Tasha_R on March 31, 2005, 01:01:07 PM
It is so nice to get to know each of you a little more so in reading the replies to this thread.

Like many of you, Robert Massie's "Nicholas and Alexandra" was my first official introduction to the world of the Romanovs.  Such a sensitive rendering of what had only been a historical fact to me before, coupled with the photographs, is what captured my attention.

It is the photographs which have continued to spark my interest over the past two decades.  A few of the people who kept appearing in them seemed so familiar to me.  Indeed, there is a small cameo portrait of Prince Felix Yusupov that constantly nagged at me.  Every time it showed up in one of the books I would think to myself, my goodness, he looks like Opa (my maternal grandfather).  The funny thing was, I never went back to take a closer look, putting the pictures side by side, until just recently.  My astonishment of just how much they resembled one another caused me to rummage through my grandfather's pictures once again, only to find one with him dressed as a lady at a party with something to the effect of "don't I look like a lovely lady" written in German on the back.

Although I had read a number of the stories and devoured most picture books that had anything to do with the Romanov's in the 1980's, I hadn't really noted this until just a few weeks ago when I bought a new book "The Camera and the Tsar".  That's when I started coming back here and found this Forum.

In the 1990's, my interests had taken a slightly different turn - my son had just turned three, and as I browsing in a local antique shop, I came upon some old photographs.  I thought I might find an old Romanov postcard, and so rummaged through the pile.  While there were no Romanov's, there were two pictures of a little boy who looked exactly like my son, Prince Georg von Braunschweig.  The resemblance was so amazing.

So I started doing a genealogy based on my husband's side of the family.  The reason I chose my husband's side is because my son looks so much like him and, well, every member of his family seems to look a lot alike, unlike my own.

While this project proved fascinating, I never was able to uncover any connection.  Then, the book I previously mentioned caught my attention, and imagine my surprise to see a picture of Prince Georg on holiday with the young Czarivitch, Nicholas.  That's when I was brought back to that cameo of Felix and thought to compare it at once against Opa's pictures.

In searching for other pictures of Felix to use as a comparison, I came across the Yale library - thanks to this Forum, by the way.  There is a picture of a young girl and what I take to be her mother and brother by a Christmas tree.  The mother looks familiar, but I can't place her.  The girl herself strongly resembles my mother at that age, with a particular nuance around the mouth.

While it is impossible for Opa and Felix to have been one and the same (although I suppose one could fanticize that, in order to totally escape the awful reality that you have indeed killed someone, no matter how ghastly they might be and how patriotic your intentions, he might have escaped to the one place no one would go looking for him - Germany - and led an underground life), I suppose it must be the resemblances that keep me coming back and attempting to solve my own mystery.

Sincere regards to all,
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: ajv123ajv on March 31, 2005, 02:33:52 PM
I first read "Nicholas and Alexandra"by Massie after seeing the film "Nicholas and Alexandra" which was produced in the late 70's and now out on DVD.

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Vicki on April 19, 2005, 01:02:49 PM
When I was about 12 years old, I was looking through my mother's record albums (no CDs then)  :) and found the soundtrack album from the Ingrid Bergman movie Anastasia.  It looked interesting to me, so I asked my mom about it, and she told me the whole story about the Romanovs and about Anna Anderson.  (This was before the DNA tests.)

Later, during my sophomore year in high school, I had a wonderful history teacher who loved Russian history.  She showed us a slide show about the Romanovs.  It was largely because of this teacher's class in European history that I decided to major in history in college.
Title: outRe: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Romanov_Fan_NAOTMA on April 22, 2005, 02:55:43 PM
I first became intrested in the Romanovs when the movie Anastasia came out ;D. But then I was only interested in Anastasia :-/. But last year I became obbsed with the whole family ;D ;D ;D.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Stolypin on April 30, 2005, 10:18:59 AM
I was reading a book on unsolved mysteries and there was a chapter on Anastasia. One of the tercentenary photographs was included as illustration. I looked at the faces in the picture and wondered what these people had been like in life. The book really gave no information on this point. So I headed off to the library (this was pre-Internet) and found Robert Massie's "Nicholas and Alexandra". I was hooked from that point on as the faces in the picture ceased to be those of anonymous historical figures. These were people I liked and could relate to. The tragic circumstances of their deaths probably does account for
much of the interest on the IF , as so many books on Russian Imperial history focus on them. For me though, it is still about that photograph.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Katharine on April 30, 2005, 11:13:47 PM
What an interesting topic :)

It was pretty much my parents, specifically my mum, that fuelled by interest for Nicholas and his family. She's been interested since she was a young girl too, even going over to Russia with a friend back in the '70s just to see the palaces; where they lived.

For Christmas '95, when I was 11, nearly 12, my dad got her the beautiful Peter Kurth book Tsar: The lost World of Nicholas and Alexandra and during the holidays I found myself thumbing through it and becoming more and more fascinated. It just took hold of me, got inside me. The beauty and the tragedy of it all.

It was also shortly after that that I became sick for about a year, and as strange as it is, I sort of clung to the Romanovs, and found strength and comfort in them.

In the 9 years since then I've collected 29 books, about 20 films and documentaries, and various other pieces of memorabilia about Nicholas and his family. and My sisters and I are planning to visit St. Petersburg (and maybe Ekaterinburg and Tobolsk) in the middle of 2007.

That, in a nutshell, is my story :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: grandduchess_sofia on May 01, 2005, 06:47:51 AM
I first heard of the Romanovs when i watched the cartoon Anastasia, i was only nine and i really wasn't paying attention to the history behind it (actually i was really only paying attention to John Cusack's voice!)
Then last year we were doing the Russian Revolution in History and i saw a photograph of the family. I went home and watched the film again and felt really sad that i didn't recognise who was who so i went on the internet and found out all about them and yeah thats what got me hooked.
sops
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: XJaseyRaeX on May 23, 2005, 04:19:02 PM
1st off this is my friends account so I'm speaking for myself not this account....

sadly, it was the disney movie. i started reading books about them and then my attention drifted. Then last year my one of my friends was making a family tree and was able to trace her family to Alix of Hesse so the two of us have really gotten into it.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: RealAnastasia on May 27, 2005, 06:50:55 PM
What got me interested in the Romanovs? When I was a 11 years old girl, I read a new in a newspaper that surprised me deeply: it was related to Anna Anderson death. The new said: "The Woman who claied almost all her life that she was the Grand Duchess Anastasia". The article was very interesting, and I loved very much the photos that showed in the newspaper...There was an Anna Anderson photo when she was old, and then some other photos from Olga and Tatiana and Anastasia playing in Tsarkoe Selo in the garden. I loved them and I get interested in the whole family story. When I saw Anastasia's photo I thought...It's the same old woman whom you may see in the other photo!

  Some months later, I purchased "Nicholas and Alexandra" by Robert K. Massie and I felt in love woth the whole IF. At first, I thought that Anastasia was the better of the daughters, and Alix gave me nuts, but now, Olga is my favorite daughter and I like very much Alexei and Alix. I also liked Ella. The Massie book didn't have many photos of the IF, and I was interested to know the girls face's better. That was accoplished when I got Greg King's work about Alexandra, and after this, I collectioned reviews, magazines, old books etc that have IF pohtos...And when I discovered the internet world I became amazed! What an amount of photos, articles, etc!

  Of course, this site is great, and when I knew it I was in Heaven!

RealAnastasia. ;) :D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: zoya_konstantinovna on May 29, 2005, 11:02:17 PM
um well i read a book called Zoya and i always loved the movie anastasia and its all so sad and interesting so i joined
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: aka-Romanov on June 02, 2005, 02:41:26 PM
As far back as I can remember....I would hear my grandfather Paul and my mother talk in wispers about the "family".  Grandfather would not talk out loud about any thing to do with his "other life" except with my mother who was his first born. He did show me once a picture ( or lithograph) of the castle with the Romanov's and the peasants, which showed them ( the peasants) on the land. Which I understand they would be allowed to roam, I believe once a year.
Any how....my mother gave me all his documents , upon his death. I would love to meet or chat with any one here in Michigan who is a decendent of the Romanovs.   ::)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Fawzia on June 02, 2005, 07:46:57 PM
You know, I was just thinking about that question last night.   As long as I remembered, I was always interested in royal history, but it took a while for me to really catch on.   What's always interested me about Russian history the most is just that it is so vast and so different.   I know all history is vast and different yadda yadda yadda, but Russian history just really strikes me as particularly so, the history is just so rich and fascinating, the big difference for me is that other royal countries' history interests me, but Russian history fascinates me.  

Anyways, I think I was in fifth grade and that Disney movie Anastasia was being played that day, and I didn't pay close attention because I've never cared for cartoons, but I remember being sort of struck by what an interesting, odd and unique story it was, and then I became a tad obsessed with it and reall read in to it(as much as an eleven-year-old can anyway!).   And then, a few years later, I know this is a cliche but I watched Dr. Zhivago and became even more fascinated, and then I read the book and fell into it even more.   And my mother indulged me, she gave me her copy of Nicholas and Alexandra and took me to a Faberge show and we'd watch all the documentaries, and now a few more years later I'm a full blown addict!    :D   I love all things Russian, the history, the music, the art, the literature...that's why this site is perfect!   ;)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Fawzia on June 02, 2005, 07:50:42 PM
Oh, wow Real Anastasia!   I hadn't seen your post when I made mine, they're pretty similar.   We both fell into Anastasia first, we were both eleven, and we both went for Nicholas and Alexandra first.   But I guess N&A is sort of like an Imperial Russia Bible, is there anyone here who hasn't read it lol!  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: zoya_konstantinovna on June 02, 2005, 08:18:51 PM
lol im reading it right now haha but its sooo good!!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: mariah on June 10, 2005, 06:52:13 PM
I live in Finland and our country was under of Russian from 1801 till December 1917, when we became independent. So in school we had to study things of Russians history, because it was part of our own too  ::)

But the important thing is my grandgrandmother. She was born in 1902 and died in 2003, of course she told me what life was "those old days". Expecially she spoke things about Carl Gustaf Mannerheim. He was a finnish man but nearly thirty years Mannerheim served as an officer in the Russian Imperial Army (1887-1917) Example he had a commission in the Chevalier guards of H.H. Maria Feodorovna from 1891 till 1904. Later he was a president too. When I was just a kid, I started to read books about C.G.E.M and in that way I also read things of Royal family. http://www.mannerheim.fi/valokuva/05/d116.jpg (Mannerheim is the officer on the right in front of the Nicholas and Alexandra)
Romanovs story was so enchanting and tragic...  It just touched me.. The last thing was when I readed a fictional book about Sofia Orbeliani. And after that I started my own "researches"...

So now I can also blame Romanovs that they inspired me too mutch, may be... I falling in history and some day, I will be a history teacher... Hope so :o
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Anastasia_R on June 11, 2005, 10:50:30 AM
My best subject is Social Studies(History).I became interested in the Romanovs in 2004,just after I finished 5th grade.I was going to Waukesha Library and my grandmother told me about the Anastasia movie w/ Ingrid Bergman.I became hooked.On my birthday when I turned 12,I bought Massie's book NICHOLAS AND ALEXANDRA.I was surfing the internet for more info,and I came across this site.:)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: David_Pritchard on June 14, 2005, 07:04:42 PM
Quote
So the following Sunday we all walked down the street to Paul’s home, a lovely Tudor style house.


Your description of the former Ilyinsky home on Drake Road, under estimates the scale of the house. It is quite a large house made of fine materials as such houses were in the pre-war days. Paul's son Michael told me that the barn to the rear of the property was a functioning dairy as his father liked his milk fresh.

DAP
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Marialana on June 15, 2005, 06:12:34 PM
I got interested in the Romanovs 18 years ago at the age of 12.  Our social studies class watched a very edited version of Nicholas & Alexandra during our unit on the Soviet Union. Our teacher didn't show the end, so at the end of class I asked her what happened to the family. When she told me that they'd been murdered I was beyond stunned, and instantly felt a hard-to-describe feeling of empathy that got me instantly hooked on all things Romanov. 18 years later, I still feel the same pull that I felt on that day. I've read everything I could get my hands on, and extended my interest to all things Russian. I became a European history major in college and even worked on a master's thesis concerning Nicholas II. One little movie changed my life in a major way!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Janet_W. on June 15, 2005, 07:23:36 PM
Marialana, kudos to your highly creative teacher for piquing the interest of her class by showing the film and then omitting the ending. In my opinion, this type of inventive approach is the way history--and lessons in humanity--should be explored. Numbers representing years and populations and square miles and so forth rarely are relatable. But when a specific person or family is studied, we learn much more . . . and not only about that family, but about ourselves.

I am reminded of an experience which I think I shared earlier on this website. I was expected to give a dramatic speech at my Toastmasters club, so I selected a narrative from an anthology of reminiscences by friends of Anne Frank. Finally I came to the end of my monologue and, as I was in the process of sitting down, a club member (man in his late twenties) seated to my right leaned over and whispered (fortunately the applause was still going): “That was great! Whatever happened to Anne?"  

:o

Just as has been said, if we forget (i.e. don't teach) the past, we'll repeat it. And while there are many, many other families besides the Romanovs who have been eliminated by war and revolution, unlike the Romanovs, most of them are lost to us forever. But when we make a study of a well-documented family we learn that, just like us, these people lived, loved, played, and sorrowed . . . and that unless we understand ourselves and the world around us, we are likely to repeat their tragedy.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: RealAnastasia on June 15, 2005, 07:55:55 PM
Yes, Fawzia! "Nicholas and Alexandra" is like a Bible for all us, "Romanov Fans"!  ;) I read it, at least three times all the years!  :D

RealAnastasia.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Mashka_Fan on June 16, 2005, 03:17:09 AM
When I was younger, I had watched the cartoon 'Anastasia' a couple of times at my friend's house. I thought it was just a disney movie and didn't have any idea that the person Anastasia had actually existed. Then, in 6th grade, my English teacher had our class read 'Anastasia's Album'. I was totally enchanted by that book, and stayed in during recess for weeks just to read it over and over again. After that, I began to search everywhere for any Romanov book I could find, and ever since then, I have been hooked! :)

I'm so glad there are other Romanov fans out there! A couple years ago I thought I was practically the only one!  :D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Marialana on June 16, 2005, 06:51:03 AM
Quote
Marialana, kudos to your highly creative teacher for piquing the interest of her class by showing the film and then omitting the ending. In my opinion, this type of inventive approach is the way history--and lessons in humanity--should be explored. Numbers representing years and populations and square miles and so forth rarely are relatable. But when a specific person or family is studied, we learn much more . . . and not only about that family, but about ourselves.

I agree 100%. She was a remarkable teacher whose approach definitely got me more interested than I otherwise might have been. Teaching facts & figures is important, but she made the Romanovs flesh & blood to me. In doing so, ultimately she made me look at all of history as a conglomeration of individuals, not statistics.
For that, I am forever grateful
BTW, that Anne Frank story is a little disconcerting!  :o At least he learned about her from you, though, so that's a plus!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on June 24, 2005, 09:41:06 AM
Really enjoy this thread and thanks everyone for your stories.

AGRBear
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Margarita Markovna on July 22, 2005, 02:48:54 PM
A lot of things got me into the Romanovs. One was not the disney movie but the doll that came from my kids meal at burger king when that movie came out. I asked my mom about her because I hadn't seen the movie and she told me a bit about her. She had told me before that I looked like one of the grand duchesses so now I knew what she was talking about. Skip a few years, and zoom in on me reading the entire Royal Diaries series. The Anastasia one was my favorite, and I went to the library and got a bunch of books about Russian history. I found myself attached to OTMA.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: rosebud on August 12, 2005, 05:13:21 PM
I was quite young, with my family and in our car, when I heard from the radio that Anna Anderson, a lifelong princess pretender, was dead. The announcer told about her and a strange image was stuck into my mind; for years I imagined a frightened young woman running and running, trying to find a place to hide, just glancing around with fear in her eyes. This sad story came back every now and then, and when I was in my pre-teens, reading a magazine, I found an article about Alexandras last diary and my heart went instantly to my throat; I combined these two things with each other, the words in my head and this fascinating story which was to read from this womans diary.

I was already interested in history and reading a lot, like young girls mostly do. I read every book I found about the IF. Their story just took me with it. The IF also represented kind of an escapistic place for me, a romantic teenager. They really helped me over that difficult period of life. My interest never went away but the passion of a teenager died a bit down after I grew older. I have bought books throughout these years but not all of them. I have become a bit sceptical or chynical about it all, but the IF is never going to let me go and I dont want to either. I also made my life choices partly inspirated by them, studied subjects that helped me to understand more previous generations and different cultures etc.

Part of my believe that AA was A is about the feeling I got when I heard the first time about her. About emotions, intuition, a childs deep trust in that people must be trustworthy or there is no logic or rules or society what so ever.

I know I am not wrong.

R
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: grandduchess_42 on August 12, 2005, 06:26:53 PM
i read the royal diary's books!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Prince_Christopher on August 12, 2005, 06:58:39 PM
I had never looked at this thread before, but I find it fascinating....all the many ways we were drawn to the Romanovs....

In my day, there were no Royal Diary books, animated movies, or Internet.  There was one thing: the library  (and a few old movies).

I remember first seeing one of those famous pictures of the tsar and his family in my 6th or 7th grade history book.  You know, one of those haunting images of the Tsar, Tsarina, Alexei, and the 4 lovely girls all dressed so beautifully.  The brief story told about them in the book and expanded upon slightly by my teacher was bone chilling.

History has always been my primary interest, and at that time, my mother was working on her graduate degrees at the university.  Evenings, I would wait in the college library for her classes to end.  I would do my homework, and then spend hours with my nose buried in books.  Here I soon discovered the world of the tsars and European Royalty.  Early on, I discovered the story of Anna Anderson and I have followed that story most of my life.  I devoured all the books I could and of course soon came across Queen Victoria and her brood.

One thing that greatly interested me and still does, is the often elaborate family tree charts contained in many of these books.  I started then collecting books on royalty and still do.  

Now I teach History (though not European) and work on my own familiy's genealogy....
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Angwen on August 13, 2005, 11:43:46 AM
First it started with the movie,but I was only six at the time.

Then I read the Diary books.But in fifth and sixth grade I was really into Greek & Roman Mythology so that didn't last for long.

Reading has always been a joy,but I have always prefered fantasy and history above all else.

My eight grade history teacher Mr.Obot is responsible for my renwed interest in the Romanovs.It was the second day of class and we were talking about government systems.I think I said something about communism being evil.He showed me a book that stated that what Stalin and Lenin did was very different from the original system Marx proposed.

Also on the page was a paragraph on why Nicholas lost power.I did more research and rediscovered this love.

I like alot of different things.I like comic books,Harry Potter,Star Wars,and most recently Tolkien.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Grigorevna on August 14, 2005, 09:06:19 AM
Well, a bunch of things. I have been interested in history as far as I can remember. In 1990, as you know,  there were some turbulent times in Europe - the Eastern block fell. I was 17-18 by then and naturally the events sparked and interest in me. What had Russia been before the Soviet Union?

Another thing was that I had heard a name been mentioned here and there: Rasputin. Who was this person and had he ever lived? If so, certainly in the middle ages, I thought. Ha! I nearly fell of my chair when looking the man up in an encyclopaedia. He was connected to the last tsar and had lived in the same century as me! :o

I went to "Nikolaj" in the encyclopedia, and when I read about the fate of his family, it was like the history literally leapt of the page and hit me right in the chest. What drama, what a tragedy!!! And now I wanted to know more and more and more... I read everything I could get my hands on. Then I got hooked on Russian. The alphabet was beautiful, mysterious and oh, how I longed to learn the language! It took me a couple of years, then an opportunity came along. I started to take Russian lessons and something in me said "click". I really love going to Russia and being there. Some still think that I am nuts, but I really feel that this is a life-lasting love.

//Grigorevna



Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Olga_Anna on August 14, 2005, 01:39:18 PM
The 1997 'Anastasia' cartoon. I've been interested in the Romanovs for about 2 years.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: koloagirl on August 14, 2005, 03:22:12 PM
 :) :)

The book and movie "Nicholas and Alexandra" by Robert Massie (the book, not the movie - I don't know who that was by  ;D).  

I probably saw the movie, that sparked an interest - and then the book-- and lo these many years later --- still hooked!   :D

Janet R.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: reashka on August 18, 2005, 12:04:47 AM
i was looking for the site of the cartoon movie Anastasia a year ago, i saw the first result: My Name is Anastasia, so i thought it was the one. when i started reading the contents i found it different from what ive watched; i learned that ive entered a wrong site but i kept reading, until ive reached the part that she (anastasia) was murdered with her family and i realized that it was a true story i was startled coz of this, thats when i started to become curious and search more about the Romanovs until now, and now the more i know them the more they become attached to me.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Fay on August 18, 2005, 02:36:55 AM
Generally all existing films (cartoon "Anastasia", "Anastasia - the mystery of Anna", "Rasputin"), and books ("The mysteries of the Romanov family", "The Romanovs: The final chapter", biographies) about the family. It is also my longest fascination, I've been in love with their history for about six years now (I'm seventeen).
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Paul on August 18, 2005, 05:56:34 AM
Since my family is from eastern Germany, I'd grown up quite aware of Communism. Even then it had occured to me that Communism hadn't always existed. What had it come before it?
I found a book entitled Russia Under the Czars in my junior high school library. After that came Massie's Nicholas & Alexandra. Librarians didn't seem to mind loaning me books years above my grade level.
It took off from there.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Alixz on August 18, 2005, 09:36:20 AM
When I was a freshman in high school, (1964) I read a magazine article about Anna Anderson.  My history teacher brought the subject up and we discussed it in class.  

I always remember her saying that we shouldn't romanticize the Grand Duchess as a young and beautiful lost soul, because if she were alive, she would be 60 years old! (Remember this is long before DNA and many years before the fall of the Soviet Union)

She also jarred us out of our romantic notions of Sleeping Beauty type characters by reminding us that the Romanovs had cars and elevators and electric light!

Even at that time, I had begun to study the time period of 1860 though 1900.  It amazed me to put the different countries together in one time chart and compare what was happening in each place.

That QV was on the throne of England during our Civil War astounded me!

My family is of German descent and came to the US during the 1848 Prussian unification.  One story has it that they were tax collectors and came with a trunk full of tax money that didn't belong to them.  The names that came with them were von Jeager and von Geiger.
There is even supposed to be a "castle" somewhere in the old "East Germany".

Because of all of this history and historical interest, hearing about Anna Anderson, just increased my historical study period from 1860 to 1917.

I fell in love with Nicholas and proceeded to villanize Alix.
I still have my opinions, but hope they are now more moderate and with all of my reading, more fully informed. (I still think she was a foolish woman but I am no longer a "jealous" 14 year old.)

In 1979, I met a woman who was likewise interested in history, but she was more interested in British history because she is related to General Gage  on the British side of the American Revolution.

In November of 1980, she and I began to write an historial novel about the two "look alike" cousins, Tsarevich Nicholas and Prince George.  Four hundred and eighteen pages and a whole lot of reaearch later, we finished our book titled Love's Royal Moment.

Dell Publishing was briefly interested and did send back our draft for more work, but twenty five years later, the manuscript languishes with no one to read it except our families and friends.

One of my favorite things to do is try to imagine what crucial event in time could be changed to prevent the slaughter at Ekaterinburg or even the long road that took the family there.

How far back would one have to go to insure that the Romanovs were not overthrown in such a way and that perhaps that Lenin and the Bolsheviks would not come to power.

Sorry for such a long post, but I want to include one last thing.  During the 1990's I worked with a Russian woman who had imigrated just after the fall of the Soviet Union.  I posed the question to her, "Do you think history would have been different if Lenin had not died so early in the revolution?"

Her answer.  "I have not yet met an American who has ever asked me about Lenin.  Why do you ask?"

Our conversation went on from there.


Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on August 18, 2005, 06:12:50 PM
I got interested in the Romanovs when I read Nicholas and Alexandra, by Robert Massie, about 15 years ago.  Since then I have  been  collecting books on the subject and now I have about 150 of them, plus movies.

Amelia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: RealAnastasia on August 18, 2005, 09:02:58 PM
You are amazing, Amelia! 150 books? And movies? May you quote the list of books and movies? I would like to know them all!!!  :)

RealAnastasia.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: infracaninophile on August 22, 2005, 06:16:40 AM
I must be of Bob A's vintage, because I well remember my first introduction to the story was the same as his: finding "I, Anastasia'  on the shelf in my  elementary school library and being enthralled by the story (I think I was in about 7th grade at the time). I went through quite a "Russian" phase, reading all the novels, history etc. that I could find -- LOVED "The Brothers Karamazov."  Since then have regularly cycled back to my interest in things Russian, about  every decade or so; joined a choir at an Orthodox church for awhile in my graduate school days and had Russian friends off and on.. Some 3-4 years ago I discovered Massie's second book   and followed that up with everything else of recent publication that I could get from the library. The history, the forensics, the human interest -- there's so much that makes this family's story grab you in a visceral way. The incredible abundance of detail -- the photos, diaries, letters -- make them come alive in a way that is rare for that period.

The complaint is sometimes made that millions of people died horribly in those days (and continue to do so) so what is the point of obsessing over these particular people?  I think it's our human limitation to be unable to really comprehend the suffering of millions -- we can only grasp the enormity of human cruelty when it is personalized for us, in lives we can relate to. Strange to say, I think what draws us to the IF (at least in a way) is their ORDINARINESS --  in contrast to the glitter of their titles and worldly affluence they (in contrast to many frankly weird  celebrities of our own day) are unpretentious,  very "real" folks whose concerns, values and cares as people were not that dissimilar to our own. We feel like we would have liked to know them as friends or relations -- so we care about their fate in a very personal way. This kind of empathy is at the root of compassion and the desire to make the world a better place.   Far from minimizing the suffering of millions, an interest in the story of the Tsar and his family opens the door to understanding and dealing with it.

The dramatic irony is another powerful factor -- from hindsight we can ponder many hypothetical possibilities - if only Nicholas had taken this into account... if only Alexandra had realized... if only the  family had seized an opportunity to excape ...if only...it's so easy to see how things "might have been" different.

I don't remember if I first considered the AA story a likely one -- I was fascinated with the whole idea, though. Given that we lack proof what happened to two of the imperial children, I am always willing to consider the possibility that someone MIGHT have escaped, though I deem such an eventuality unlikely in the extreme.  I wish they'd do the DNA tests on some of those claimants to give a definite answer yes or no on some of them.

Oh well, after lurking on here for a long time I finally registered so that I could post a question. Will have to start a thread for that so I'd better get on with it.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Tania+ on August 22, 2005, 12:41:01 PM
Never thought I'd live long enough to share my thoughts, let alone my father's story, well some of it. One day, hope to write in length about it all. My father as many russians who went through the russian revolution, and survived, rarely spoke of it. I knew my father had in his teens, gone through the revolution personally. [He came from a well known family, on his mother's side. Prince/Count/Field Marshal Alexandre Italiski Suvorov]. My father had I believe, three sisters, of course his mother, father. My father was known at that time as a 'white russian'. He attended a white cadet military school. To make a long story short and not bore everyone, he escaped on the trans-siberian railway to Vladivistock. He secretly saw his parent's before he left Siberia. [He escaped from an early communist white prison, where he actually escaped from a firing squad. Perhaps many of you have located and or read about the early gulag prisons that the whites were thrown into. He used to tell the stories of hunger, and names being called out each day for being taken out into the courtyard to be shot. Age did not matter. My dad was only in his teens as a young cadet]. He escaped on one of the last ships to leave Siberia, before the communists took over the area, and arrived in the United States in the 20's. He knew many emigres from Russia, in fact lived with Rachmaninoff, Prime Minister Shulgin, Dudaroff, to name a few. I'm getting on in age, and slowly time is starting to take my memory as well.

There is much, to much saddness in all of his story, and our families to go into it all. Like many families, and individuals whose loved ones escaped, life in a new country, with a new language, etc., can be more than daunting. It can be even more daunting, if you come alone and have no records, no family, nobody.] I undertand how revolution can change a peoples, a country, a state of being. I now sincerely pray that no time in history again, shall such devistation, savagery, and unconscienable actions as transpired during the communist occupation of Russia, ever occupy any home or heart again. It's terrible to think brother fighting brother, etc., not just fighting, but killing each other.

Many families and individuals, not only became distanced from their families, loved ones, and never had closure, let alone allowed to stay to bury their loved ones, youth to elderly. Some never had the chance to know the outcome of what happened to their families.
Then there was of course properties, monies, etc. But nothing was more important than "life", and still remains that today.

I was named after one of the Tsar's daughter's, HIH Tatiana. Just to read all the stories on this site, brings it ever closer to my heart of not just the hopeless and terrible tragedy that affected the IF, but also the inspirational and wonderful courage of faith that they took with them to the very end. I'm proud to be of russian heritage, and to bear the historical linage of my father's ancestors. I cannot forget ever, even more, now that my name was chosen to remember a very brave young woman.

Many hearts, went through not only the revolution, but then the terrible trials of Lenin, Stalin, Beria, etc. Then there was the Starvation of the Ukranians in the 30's where millions more perished; then Hitler, the II War.

Most hopefully, Russia and the Russian peoples may one day claim their lives, their hearts, their homes in a free land that will speak and live with total peace and harmony.

Each morning and evening, I close with that prayer. I hope many more will join in it with me. Thank you for allowing me to share.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on August 22, 2005, 01:00:44 PM
Dear Tania,


Thank you so much for sharing with us.  It is a wonderful story.  Do you still have family in Russia?  Have you ever been there? I was in St. Petersburgh 2 years ago and I intende to go back next year. You know, once you have been there, and if you are interested in the Romanovs it isa almost sure you want to go back

Amelia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on August 22, 2005, 01:09:19 PM
Dear RealAnastasia,

Yes I have 150 books on the Romanovs, I evern had a special bookshelf built for them.  About 4 years ago, I was in Palm Beach(where we spent our winters - you know I am old), and I met Prince Paul Illinskoy (son of Grand Duke Dimitry Pavlovich, and I ask him if I could have a photograph with him, to put on my bookshelf, so it will be something I will leave for my sons when I pass. But unfortunately, the Prince died and he was very kind and had agreed to the photograph.  He told me he was a professional photographer himself.

As for the books, I have the Youssopov books (3), Grand Duke Alexander Michaelovich (2), Pares , Grand Ducchess Maria Pavlovna, Kerensky, Captain Bulgin, Radzinsky, Robert Massie, Count Radzilly, and more and more, I do not have the list here in front of me.  As for the movies, I have all of them that are on sale in the shops.  One that I like very much is Nicholas and Alexander (a fiction movie).  But the real ones, like the ones from Discovery channel and History channel are very good, because you can see the ImperialFamily.  If you want more details of the movies, I can make a list and post it.

I love the subject, and I am new in this forum and I love it

All the best
Amelia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Tania+ on August 22, 2005, 03:40:39 PM
Dear Amelia,

If there are any family members I hope they are well. Several years ago, I went with my husband to Russia. I tried in russia to find relatives, but I was unsuccessful. I'm 63 years of age and doubt any direct living relative would be alive today. I would love to go back to Russia, and spend at least three months, with a major point of visitation in St. Petersburg. When we were there, and people found out the linkage of my last name, they could not have been kind enough. The city of St. Petersburg is brilliantly breathtaking. We were in Russia also when it was the 'white nights'. Don't know if I could take winter. brrrr the thought is not warming, lol.

I've a few books, but the major part of russian books, antiques, etc., my sister and her son walked off with, as well as other irreplaceable objects, etc. But, I've come to understand, as well taught our daughter: it's not to focus one's life on obtaining all that glitters, rather  to be at home with your conscience, and be proud of your heritage, your name, and staying honest. With that, you can die with your soul intact.  For me, for our daughter, we are proud enough just to have the linkage to history. That you cannot break, nor be selfish about. Of course in all of this I believe, one's faith must be strong in order for one to face so many adversities. It is.
Nice to meet you :)

Tatiana


Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: King_James on August 22, 2005, 03:49:42 PM
It was realy strange i was watching Fraiser and the episode they talkt about that they goud be relaited to the tsar.
So i wanted to find out who it was.
And after that i was hookt
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on August 22, 2005, 07:03:05 PM
Dear Tatiana,


What a nice posting.  I hope you realize your dream of spending 3 months in Russia. my dream is to go back to St. Petersburgh and then go to Siberia - Yekaterinbugh and Tobolsk.  I understando that the house where the IF lived is still in Tobolsk.

So nice to talk to you

Amelia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Tania+ on August 24, 2005, 02:49:43 PM
Dear Amelia,

Per your quote:

'my dream is to go back to St. Petersburgh and then go to Siberia - Yekaterinbugh and Tobolsk.  I understand that the house where the IF lived is still in Tobolsk'
So nice to talk to you'

Amelia

Your braver than I, but you did not state if you were going to Siberia in the Spring or Winter. I just can't imagine anyone going in Winter. brrrrrr.

I wish we had been able to go those cities when we were in Russia, but we went in '75, and one did not ask then to go to such sites. I would love to see pictures if possible of your trip, especially the cities you have mentioned in particular. People on this site have been especially kind in sharing such treasured photos of their trips, the IF, etc. I'm very thankful to come each day just to see the varied entries, the pictures.

Thank you so very much for responding, and sharing your thoughts.

Respectfully,

Tania
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on August 24, 2005, 03:42:05 PM
Dear Tania,

So good to hear from you.  Actually, we are going (myself and my husband) next year in mid August to mid September.  When I wento to SP it was late Sept early Nov and it was not too bad - we had to wear a coat everyday.

We intend to go by ourselves, as we did the first time.  We are going to try and book some hotel in those cities and take the transiberian.  I understand that in Yekaterinburgh you can stay either in peoples houses or monasteries, which will be interesting.  In the moment we are browsing the internet to see what we can find.

in fact when I was in SP, there were two american ladies who just went to the train statio, bought the tickets and went To Irkutz without any kind of hotel reservations. Do you know, they told me it was the nicest place they have ever been and , yes, they stayed in a monastery,  So we will see.

Of course I will post as many photographs as I can.  As you say, this is a wonderful website for us who love the subject of the Romanovs.  

Allthe best to you and so nice to talk to you

Amelia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: isabel on August 29, 2005, 03:33:46 AM
I remember in the library of my mother, an special book wich i always loved to look. It was a french edition of Prince Michael´s  "Nicholas and Alexandra family albums". As a little girl, every time i wached those explendid pictures of OTMA, i thought that they were the most beatiful princesses i will ever see...Also their tragedy always impressed me. Many years later, exactly june 2002, my family an I, went for a crusier across the Baltic Sea, our last stopping place was St. Petersburg.

I can´t explain what happened to me in St. Petersburg, but I felt enchanting and I promissed my self that one day i will returned. Back to Madrid, i begun to read about Romanov´s, it´s not easy to find books in Spain, but afortunatly i found them in Amazon. When i sow "The Camera and de Tzars" i was so delighted that my husband offered me a journey in St. Petersburg for my birthday.

I returned...., summer 2004, 6 days...i think that no one in the world was more happy than me in those days. It´s very difficult to me to explain in english the feelings i had visiting this so magical city. I only can say that my eyes were plenty of tears when i set foot in Alexander Palace.

After this i continue reading about IF. I don´t have much time (children, work....) , but almost evey night i get sleep with some book of the Romanov´s. Even my children knows their story!!!.

Two weeks ago i discovered this website. Tank you for it. It´s wonderfull!! i am sure that i am going to learn a lot reading your discussions, it´s incredible the knowledges you have about!!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on August 29, 2005, 06:21:54 AM
Dear Isabel,


Welcome.    

Don't forget to look into the books on this site.  They are wonderful and very difficult to find.  Thanks to the enormous effort and dedication of Bob Atchinson, we can read them.

I hope you enjoy the forums as much as I do.

Welcome again.

Amelia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: isabel on August 29, 2005, 11:26:50 AM
Dear Amelia,

Thank you for your welcome. I have print some of your articles, they are so interestings¡¡ I have to read them very slow because my english is not as good as i wanted, and i have to find some words in my old diccionary, but i am so happy to have find this forum¡¡¡. Some of my family and friends thought that i am a little crazy because they don´t understand this passion i have for this piece of history, i can´t explain them the reasons, because they are not reasons but feelings¡¡.

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sainte-Claire1875 on August 30, 2005, 06:59:43 PM
I wasn't going to say anything, but since I saw that others have made similar comments, I guess I'll say it. Apparently I'm related to them,  but it's a very long story, and I don't feel like telling it right now. I would say I'm proud to be related, if it's true that I am, but I have some doubts--I just find it hard to believe that I'm related to Russian royalty--it seems somehow impossible to me. I mean, I do have many things about my physical characteristics that could link me to them, and my personality greatly resembles that of the last IF, but that could just be coincidental. My father would never lie to me, and he's the one who told me the story about it, that his mother told him. I haven't been able to ask her myself if it's true. It would be the most amazing thing if it's true though. To be somehow related to Nicky and Alix, and to Ksenia--that would at least give me something to be proud of in my life...  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Anastasia15 on August 31, 2005, 10:08:37 AM
Quote
;)The Disney movie Anastasia got me interested in the Romanovs. :) :D ;D >:( :( :o 8) ??? ::) :P :-[ :-X  :-/ :-* :'(


yes me too but actually I´m from russia and thats why the romanovs interest me too it´s a part of my home
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: imperial angel on August 31, 2005, 07:08:20 PM
I first became aware of the Romanovs when I saw Anastasia's Album ( a kids book) in a book catalog in 1996. But I didn't read it or order it. In late 1997, The Anastasia movie came out, but I didn't see it until it was released on video Spriing, 1998. All through the winter of 1998, I became more interested in the Romanovs because I had made the connection between the movie and the book I saw two years before that. The romanovs were much in the news at the time due to the remains, and that made me further aware of them.

Once the Anastasia video was out I watched it again and again. I wanted to know the differences between the real Anastasia and the fiictional one, so I read James Blair Lovell's the Lost Princess in June, 1998. That was the first Romanov book I read, but it was a little confusing since had more to do with Anna Anderson than the real Romanovs. I was 11 almost 12 at the time.From that time on, I was hooked. I read Nicholas and Alexandra in Spring, 1999. Interestingly enough, when we got a computer and I first learned how to use one in Autumn, 1999, one of the first websites that I discovered and learned how to surf was The Alexander Palace. This site fueled my passion for the Romanovs, so I read even more books about them in Autumn, 1999. This website was the first one I learned how to surf, and I love it as much now as I did then. By now, I am 19 and have read most of the books in English about the Romanovs. There are only a few I haven't read (ones can't get my hands on from libraries). Now and then, I love the Romanovs ( especially OTMA).
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on September 01, 2005, 01:11:09 PM
Dear Tania,


I read again your posting of Aug 22nd, I would like to know if the Prime Minister Shulgin that you mentioned is the same Shulgin who was present at Nicholas II abdication?  Is he the same who came to the West but then later returned to Soviet Union.

Thank You
Amelia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Tania+ on September 01, 2005, 03:37:46 PM
Dear Amelia,

He is the same, and I believe his son is a professor, perhaps retired now, from a major university here in the United States. I don't know though that he returned to the Soviet Union. How do you know about this man?

What do you know of him, and can you share the information here?

Thank you for your kind inquiry.

Tania


Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on September 01, 2005, 04:31:06 PM
Dear Tania,

I have read somewhere, I do not remember where - my age!!!!But I read that he had come to the West and then became very unhappy and he made an arrangement with the Bolshevicks that he would go back and would write a book, very negative about the west.

There is a book written by a Shulgin - when I browse to find new books in Amazon or Barnes and Nobles, a few times I saw a book written by a Shulgin, but I do not have it.

Perhaps someone in the forum could tell us something about this subject.

I find fascinating that your fater knew him.

I find your story very interesting.

Amelia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on September 01, 2005, 04:42:10 PM
Dear Tania,


I just checked in Barnes and Noble. There is a book, Memoirs of a member of the Duma 1906-1917, written by V.V.Shulgin.  Do you think this is the same person?

Thank you
Amelia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Tania+ on September 01, 2005, 08:24:43 PM
Hi Amelia,

Thanks for looking the information up.
I would imagine that it is one and the same gentleman.
Will have to wait to see if it comes to the library.
Wish it could be accessed online.
I look forward to reading it someday.

I'm wow'd by your extensive reading, in fact so many of the posters have offered wonderful understandings about so many subject matters.

I really look forward to dropping by here each day to read the many posts. I thank you and all the wonderful people on this board.

God keep you safe, well and happy.

Tania
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Tania+ on September 01, 2005, 08:30:17 PM
Hi Amelia,

Thanks for looking the information up.
I would imagine that it is one and the same gentleman.
Will have to wait to see if it comes to the library.
Wish it could be accessed online.
I look forward to reading it someday.

I'm wow'd by your extensive reading, in fact so many of the posters have offered wonderful understandings about so many subject matters.

I really look forward to dropping by here each day to read the many posts. I thank you and all the wonderful people on this board.

God keep you safe, well and happy.

Tania
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on September 02, 2005, 07:02:26 AM
Dear Tania,


The book is very cheap at BN - about 8 dollars, so I ordered one, and we will compare notes when I finish reading it.  Right now I am reading the Last days of the Tsar, by Bykov - it is very rare but my local library got it for me.

The Romanovs is my hobby, and I love reading about the subject.  I have about 150 books, written mainly by the people who left Russia after the Revolution. I re-read them sometimes and I love to do that and specially this forum.

All the best
Amelia
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Tania+ on September 02, 2005, 11:29:24 AM
Dear Amelia,

Just have to say this before continuing my thoughts.
I have never enjoyed the ability to 'connect to another human being' as I have today.

With what has been transpiring to the thousands and thousands of people in the eye of the storm, and after, I will never take communicating in any form for granted again.

It's strange, but here we are on these many threads, echoing to one another on the actions and instances in time, in which people were denied so much, and again we now face it ourselves, right here in our own country. May we all learn from this terrible tragedy.

I will ask my husband, or daughter to go to the library and see if they have it. I'm glad I'll have a chance to read a new book. Someone got me two books on the Peterson murder, and there they both sit, unread. I had a chance to come by and see this website, and it's the best choice I ever made.

You can't imagine how much I look forward to reading yours and everyone's input on these threads. It fills the times I can get up and gain further insight to a history that deserves scrutinity in every way.

Thanks again for taking time to write and respond to me.

Take care and stay well.

Tania

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: amelia on September 02, 2005, 02:35:58 PM
Dear Tania,


I feel the same.  European History and specially the Romanovs has always fascinating me.  And to have a forum like this where we can write our thoughts and people really read them and respond is wonderful.  Also we learn a lot.

So, I thank you all the members to take time and read my posts, which enriched my life so much.  I should not forget Bob Atchinson for starting all of this.

I just received from ly library, the book The last days of Tsardom, by Bykov and I will read it, and then when I receive the Book written by Shulgin we will exchange notes.

You must be very proud that your father knew him and others, in fact he knew HISTORY.

I wish you all a nice holiday.

Amelia
Title: e Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Mir_Maria on September 13, 2005, 03:51:27 AM
it started with i where at my grand mothers house some years ago and she had one of thoes magazines about royalty and i read in it untill i came to a page where there was ritten the last Romanovs and i sore a picture of the family and when i looked at Maria i was amazed that she kind of looked/reminded of my self that look in the eyes just captured me.. i got the next day to the libary and found all books of the romanovs i was amazed with there storys and it was so sad.. then i read a book about Maria Feodorovna (former known as the danish princess Dagmar) and i where in the world of the Romanovs... so much reminds you of things lost but not forgotten and hopefully never will be.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Caleb on September 14, 2005, 02:58:28 PM
If I remember right I first saw "Russia: Land of the Tsars" with my cousin. I wanted to finish it so sometime later I got it out of my local library. I then watched "Nicholas & Alexandra". First it was just the movies I was going after. I soon began to go after the books. Partially I got interested in the Romanovs because I am also intrigued with the Chinese Emperors of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) & I could make a comparison to the Russian Tsars to the Chinese Empires & their intrigues, reigns & scandals in the Forbidden City in Beijing.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: isabel on September 14, 2005, 03:12:04 PM
Welcome Caleb¡¡¡

It´s very interesting your interest in Chinese Empire.
I am sure that you are going to enjoy in this Forum.

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: andrewp on September 20, 2005, 01:43:14 PM
The Fox cartoon movie-Anastasia. I really liked the movie but and was interested in what was fact and what was fiction so I studied and eventually found myself here.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: bernard_timbal on September 26, 2005, 04:56:07 PM
When I was about 10 years old, I saw in abook about great mysteries a chapter about the dissapearance of the Romanov family and the most famous picture of cellar-room has fascinated me a lot because I found it terrific. It sound slike it was haunted...

This photo was the starting point of my passion about Romanov end...

I started reading book about this subjet and became more and more obsessed about the place where this terrific photo was taken and the circonstances. At the end, I have spend a lot of time creating material I put on my website because of the simple photo of cellar-room...
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Laura Mabee on September 26, 2005, 09:52:10 PM
Which I appreciate. Your site is fantastic and a contribution to the "Russian History" sites out there.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sarushka on September 26, 2005, 10:47:47 PM
Holy cow -- that's your site Bernard?

I LOVE that site!
:-*
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: KayDee on October 03, 2005, 07:28:59 AM
It has been very interesting to read how various members got interested in the romanovs. My experience has been a bit different. (here in india, we had only one national govt. controlled channel till 1992 so the world electronic media was closed to us till then and niche` books were not easily available). As a student of the 10th grade,way back in 1975,in a small town Nagpur in central india, I had learnt in my histroy class that "the Tsar and his family were murdered as the "capitalist forces" were approaching Ekaterinburg in july 1918" and that was it.
Fortunately,i have always been a voracious reader and one day while looking for something to read,from the vast collection of books in my home,i stumbled across N&A by robert.k.massie in one of the volumes of readers' digest condensed books. my first thought on reading the title was that maybe its a misprint and it should be Edward(VII)and Alexandra,as i was well versed with the British Royal Family from the age of 13 thanks to my mother's collection of books and magazines on the windsors!! once i started reading N&A,i was hooked. Shortly after, we had an exchange student, charles,a 10 yr old from NY,who stayed with us for a week and i unhesitatingly asked him to send me a copy of n&a when he got back home. thats how i got to read the original,unabridged book and it started a lifelong quest to build my romanov collection.
luckily, i shifted to mumbai(Bombay) after my marriage and now it is much easier to buy the books that i want. ofcourse,having a sister-in-law in the U.S. also helps!!  i now have about 20-25 books on the romanovs. the latest is that we got a PC at home in april 2005 and i happened to discover this forum in august 2005 and since then i have been addicted and it is heartening to know that there are many other "crazy" fans(as my husband and children say)like me, and i thoroughly enjoy spending many happy hours here.
i admire the energy and enthusiasm of various members of this forum and it gives me great pleasure in reading all these posts.my heartfelt thanks to the forum administrators for starting this wonderful website and discussion board.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Aliss_Kande on October 03, 2005, 06:21:03 PM
When I was seven, I had a friend named Anastasia.  A year later, I was telling my class about her and the teacher said, "Oh, there was a princess named Anastasia".  I thought that was cool.  Later that night, the television was on and had a preview for some documentary about royal people in Russia, so I half listened.  Then it said, "Anastasia, dead or alive".  I put the puzzle pieces together and asked my mom about it.  She really didn't know that much, so I began pouring into nearly everything I could about her.  My interest faded for a while, but I got back into it about a year and a half ago when looking up stuff on royalty in general and found pictures of the Romanovs on the Worldroots websight.  
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michael_Reden on October 04, 2005, 10:17:54 PM
My mother's side of my family has always said that they were related (somehow) to the Romonovs.  I've never attempted to establish a link because I've never heard any surnames in my family history which sound as if they are Russian and now most of that side of my family are deceased.  However, they were all quite versed in the Romonovs and had numerous objects relating to the Imperial Family.  Enough to picque my interest when I was younger, even if I didn't buy into the familial link.  But, as a possible testament to my family's belief, the first time I grew my beard out when I was still dating my wife and before she had heard these stories from my family, she said to me, "You know - you could be a twin to 'that' Tsar - Nicholas was his name?"
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: AGRBear on November 13, 2005, 12:50:12 PM
Bumping this up because I think the interest of Nicholas II and the Romanovs touches all of us.

AGRBear
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sarushka on November 13, 2005, 01:09:33 PM
And I'm trying to add on all the other little threads on this subject!

How did you become interested in the Romanovs? (http://hydrogen.pallasweb.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=family;action=display;num=1111523009;start=0#13)

How I got interested in the IF (http://hydrogen.pallasweb.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=family;action=display;num=1124329248;start=0#11)

Why are we so fascinated by the Romanovs? (http://hydrogen.pallasweb.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=family;action=display;num=1131730088)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: nata-kun on November 17, 2005, 06:03:39 PM
well i just stared them when i first saw the movie the after that  i became interested with the romanovs. then ijust started to read more and more on them. :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Sainte-Claire1875 on November 19, 2005, 03:37:25 PM
Quote
As for the books, I have the Youssopov books (3), Grand Duke Alexander Michaelovich (2),


Amelia--

The two books about Grand Duke Aleksandr Mikhailovich--those are his memoirs? Where did you find them? I've searched all over for them, to purchase copies myself, as his wife, the Grand Duchess Ksenia Aleksandrovna is my favourite member of the Imperial Family--and his memoirs, of course, would have a wealth of information about her, him, and their children. Is there any specific place online where I could find them for sale?

Thanks, R.S-C. :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: historyblogger on November 28, 2005, 04:22:06 PM
I guess I can see how some people can find Russian royalty interesting- their personalities can shine forth under a microscope.  Though Nicholas II really needed a reality check.

John
http://russian-history-blog.blogspot.com
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: tzarevich charlie on June 05, 2008, 05:26:18 PM
what got me first intrested in the Romanov's was the Disney..was it Disney? film from 1997.
however i when i watched it i was around 7 and have since realised how inaccurate the film was and how it could been seen as missinforming and slanderous to the Romanov family.
i have since remained interested in their story and continue to annoy my friends with the new Romanov facts i keep learning!!! ;D
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Michael HR on June 05, 2008, 11:31:34 PM
Hi all,

For me it was in the 1960's at School and history class and found the subject matter very intresting. Then I made the mistake of going to see the film Nicholas and Alexandra and from then on I was hooked. Mind you I know very little compared too thers on thus forum and the extent of knowledge is tryly awsome.

Michael HR
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Nemos on August 31, 2008, 01:55:18 PM
(http://s59.radikal.ru/i166/0808/aa/7968c92cc1a8t.jpg) (http://radikal.ru/F/s59.radikal.ru/i166/0808/aa/7968c92cc1a8.jpg.html)

Довольно интересное фото ... Кто на фото? Скорее всего это манеж в Царском Селе ?

Interesting enough photo... Who on a photo? Most likely it is an arena in Tsarskoje Selo?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Nemos on September 09, 2008, 02:34:20 PM
Но вот с этим так и не разобрался ...
But here with it and has not understood...
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Alixz on September 10, 2008, 08:58:57 AM
Quote
As for the books, I have the Youssopov books (3), Grand Duke Alexander Michaelovich (2),

Amelia--

The two books about Grand Duke Aleksandr Mikhailovich--those are his memoirs? Where did you find them? I've searched all over for them, to purchase copies myself, as his wife, the Grand Duchess Ksenia Aleksandrovna is my favourite member of the Imperial Family--and his memoirs, of course, would have a wealth of information about her, him, and their children. Is there any specific place online where I could find them for sale?

Thanks, R.S-C. :)


R.s-C - You can find copies of Yusupov's Lost Splendor and Alexander Michailovich's Once a Grand Duke and Always a Grand Duke on most of the out of print book sites.  Try Abebooks.com Alibris.com Addall.com Biblio.com BookFinder.com or just Google "out of print books" and all of those sites will come up.

Depending on the condition of the book and whether or not you want a first edition, the prices can be low $1 USD to several hundred.

Try eBay, too.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Nemos on September 10, 2008, 02:26:49 PM
Собрал немного видео хроники Романовых, подскажите ещё ссылки именно с кинохроникой ...

Has collected a few video of the chronicle of Romanovs, prompt still references with a newsreel...

http://pushkin-history.info/video-arhiv/4.html
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: nena on September 11, 2008, 08:51:20 AM
Оно поэтому интересно, Nemos, вы так много!

It is so interesting, Nemos, thank you very much!

I got interested in IF after reading Newspaper Article in 2005. Then I looked at web, looked for some books, found AP boards.......
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Nemos on September 12, 2008, 06:41:09 AM
http://pushkin-history.info/video-arhiv/videodirectlink-166.html

Больше понравилось вот это 1918 год Александровский дворец. Как и предполагал в 1-м зале была "выставка" туалетных принадлежностей (в конце ролика), это в какой то мере подтветждает, что Изенштейн использовал расположение комнат Александровского дворца и его вещи. Хотелось бы увидеть весь ролик.

Можно заметить большое количество подвешенных яиц на стенах, Изенштейн в своём фильме их количество умножил, хотя в действительности как я понимаю при жизни Императора их не было.

More it was pleasant here it is 1918 the Aleksandrovsky palace. As well as assumed in 1st hall there was "exhibition" of toilet accessories (in the end of a roller), it in what that to a measure podtvetzhdaet that Izenshtejn used an arrangement of rooms of the Aleksandrovsky palace and its thing. It would be desirable to see all roller.

It is possible to notice a considerable quantity of the suspended eggs on walls, Izenshtejn in the film has increased their quantity, though actually as I understand during lifetime of their Emperor was not.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Nobility on March 21, 2009, 05:40:42 AM
Мой Великий Grandfther написал книгу о жизни в те годы, прежде чем они, к сожалению, были executed.I был вдохновителем и вынужден снова опубликовать его работу.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: DNAgenie on April 17, 2009, 12:05:51 AM
I first got hooked when I read “The File on the Tsar” by Anthony Summers and Tom Mangold in 1976.  I’ve always been interested in historical mysteries, and here was a cracker of a mystery!  What happened on that fateful day in 1918 at Ekaterinburg?  Did the Royal Family die in that awful room, or were they spirited away alive to Perm before being lost to all human knowledge?  Was Anna Anderson really Anastasia of Russia? Did Alexei survive?

That was long before the Internet existed, so I had to read other books to find out more: “Anastasia, the Lost Princess” by James Lovell Blair in 1983, and then the well-researched “The Lost Fortune of the Tsars” by William Clarke in 1995. Clarke’s book included the first results of DNA tests, showing that the skeletons found outside Ekaterinburg probably belonged to the Imperial Family, and that Anna Anderson wasn’t Anastasia, but Franziska Schanzkowska.  That was sad, as I’d hoped that Anna Anderson, against all the odds, just might have been Anastasia after all.

Life moved on and, out of the blue, I encountered an old family story that my great great grandmother was a princess. I expect most families have such legends, and 99% of them are rubbish, but it had come down three different lines of our family, how our ancestor had been the illegitimate daughter of Prince Wilhelm, later Kaiser Wilhelm I of Prussia, before emigrating to Australia with her husband in 1848, the “Year of Revolution” in Europe.

So what?  How did this relate to Russia? It turned out that Prince Wilhelm’s younger sister Princess Charlotte of Prussia had married Tsar Nicholas I of Russia.  If the family legend was true, my father would have been the fourth cousin of Olga, Tatiana, Maria, Anastasia and Alexei of Russia.

I’m a professional scientist (now retired) but I’ve kept up with the latest developments in DNA tests.  I’ve had my own DNA tested in several different ways for genealogical purposes, and I’d persuaded my sister to be tested as well. So a couple of weeks ago I was fascinated to see the detailed results of the DNA tests of the entire Russian Imperial family finally published by two independent teams of scientists – one Russian and one from the USA. Luckily, their results are identical (as one would expect from reputable researchers in both countries) but I was interested to check whether there might be any similarities between the DNA signatures of Tsar Nicholas and Tsarina Alexandra (his second cousin) and me and my sister. The relationship is so distant that the paternity testing companies won’t touch it, as fourth or fifth cousins are almost impossible to confirm by DNA tests. However there were enough similarities for us to conclude that we could be related to Tsar Nicholas II and Tsarina Alexandra.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Marie-Mathilde on August 13, 2009, 11:12:09 AM
My interest started with the Disney cartoon "Anastasia". I always loved the film, but I was so little at the time that I'm not sure if I knew it was based on a true story. Anyway, my first memory of royalty is when I was four years old and Princess Diana died. I can just remember sitting in my neighbours kitchen whilst she and my mother talked about Diana's death. I was so little, but Diana's death stuck a cord and I burst into tears right there! It's one of my earliest memories lol. Eventually history became my favourite subject at junior school and I became fascinated by Henry VIII and the Tudors. This in turn lead to my grandmother purchasing a couple of books which listed all the Kings and Queens of Great Britain with short biographies on each. For a few years at the start of secondary school I never really read about royalty or gave much interest to it. Then, when I was about 14 I found those books again and began flicking through them once more. This lead to me researching British royalty of the 19th and 20th centuries on the internet, mainly by looking at the biographies on wikipedia. Eventually I came across the Last Imperial Family. I was struck by what an attractive family they were and how tragic their ends were. I was so taken aback and since then I've been fascinated by them and royalty of the 19th and first half of the 20th century. Some people find it strange that one might take an interest in things like royalty and society of a bygone era, but I just find the subject endlessly fascinating, unlike royalty and society today which is completely different and pales in comparison. Royals of today bore me, they have no mystery and the younger ones have little dignity. Gosh, how old do I sound?! I'm supposed to be sixteen but I spend so much time reading about old time royals, historical figures and film stars of Old Hollywood that I feel as though I were born in 1893 not 1993! I wish!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: imperial angel on August 13, 2009, 01:32:54 PM
I didn't know you were so young- your posts are indeed very mature for your age. I have always appreciated them, I thought you were older than me and I'm 23. I partly became interested in Anastasia through the movie too- it's actually by Fox, not Disney.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Marie-Mathilde on August 13, 2009, 02:10:27 PM
Lol Yeah I probably sound older because I read all the memoirs of people from that era and I end up taking on their writing style. I was thinking how much older I sounded when I read my posts back and was "Did I really write that?". It's funny because I was thinking the exact same thing.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: RomanovsFan4Ever on August 14, 2009, 05:51:16 AM
My interest for the Romanovs started when I saw a portrait of Nicholas II and Alexandra feodorovna with their older daughters Olga, Tatiana, and Maria, it is posted here in the forum.
I don't know why, this portrait particularly attracted my attention.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Father Gregory on August 14, 2009, 01:24:49 PM
I became interested in the Romanovs just this June when I visited Alexander Palace.  I knew the story on a superficial basis prior to the trip, but after seeing the palace, even in its poorly "restored" state, I could feel the history emanating through the walls.  I know this sounds weird, but I felt a connection with a real family that lived in that building and have reading and watching everything on NAOTMAA since then.  I am amazed by the wealth of information that is available in books, documentaries, film and the internet, and especially from the lively discussions on this forum.  Now that I am much more informed, I can't wait to go back for another visit, especially after AP is restored (the restoration began only a few days after I left). :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Royal Bulgaria on August 17, 2009, 03:59:02 PM
What got me interested?Well i saw ofcourse the cartoon about Anastasia  before 5 years and after the end my father told me that there really was this tsar but the cartoon is fiction so first my older sister start researching and found the beautiful Livadia site and after her month later i started research until today....So almost 6 years interested....
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Ally Kumari on August 22, 2009, 06:30:24 AM
2,5 years my interest lasts. Of course that as a kid I saw cartoon Anastasia, but even though I liked it I never really cared much....

Then one day I didn´t have anything to do so remembering the cartoon I wrote Romanov into the google search bar. The first picture it gave me was the famouse photo of Maria with kokoshnik from 1911. I stared at it and stared.... And this strange urge inside began to find out more about the girl..... From the girl I moved to the whole family.... Then to Alexander III. family.... and now I simply love everything associated with the name Romanov.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Mimì on September 15, 2009, 02:00:35 AM
I'm writing a pamphlet against rationalism in the Western history, included communism. The provisory title is "The age of the antichrist" and about one month ago I found for only 1 Euro a book about the end of the IF, surely the most famous victims. Of course I'll insert something about them, even if I have still serious doubts about the opportunity of canonizing all of them.  :-\
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: RomanovMartyrs on September 15, 2009, 03:28:15 AM
I became interested in the Romanovs just this June when I visited Alexander Palace.  I knew the story on a superficial basis prior to the trip, but after seeing the palace, even in its poorly "restored" state, I could feel the history emanating through the walls.  I know this sounds weird, but I felt a connection with a real family that lived in that building and have reading and watching everything on NAOTMAA since then.  I am amazed by the wealth of information that is available in books, documentaries, film and the internet, and especially from the lively discussions on this forum.  Now that I am much more informed, I can't wait to go back for another visit, especially after AP is restored (the restoration began only a few days after I left). :)

Hearing this makes me wonder- which do you think is a more impacting experience (question to everyone): Seeing the palace(s) before researching the Romanovs, or after? I could see both sides of the argument really.



I guess I learned about the Romanovs the same way as most people- the cartoon movie. Though I didn't actually see the movie until my coach picked out a song from the soundtrack for me to do a figure skating routine to. That's when I really fell in love with the Romanovs- skating to music inspired by them, in front of a crowd. It sounds odd, I know, but it was a very moving experience. I was about 11.

~
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Father Gregory on September 15, 2009, 08:13:45 PM
I am not sure, but I certainly wished that I knew what I know now before I visited AP.  There would be so many things that I would have paid more attention to, especially after viewing so many photographs of NAOTMAA in and outside of the palace over the last four months.  There is also something to be said for looking at something without any preconceived notions and the feeling that I got when I was there was pure and will always be with me.  I know that someday I will return to see AP again, and whenever that comes, I can answer the question for sure.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Nayomini on November 07, 2009, 03:25:54 AM
Like most of you, I got interested in the Romanovs when I picked up Massie's Nicholas & Alexandra a while ago in 1987 - I found it accidently at a flea market while living in Germany with my father who was a diplomat. I read and re-read the book many times. I am from Sri Lanka, in South Asia near India and didn't think that there would be many more resources on the ill fated Romanovs accessible from here in Sri Lanka . But then internet grew and I got busy with the magazine publishing company I run. Around 1999, while doing some research for the magazine, I came upon the treasure trove of Alexandra Palace Time Machine. I have been hooked ever since. I am usually busy with work or my kids - when I finish work, this is where I surf to. I am fascinated and read up everything here.  I enjoy being a part of this community here - sharing and exchanging info on the Romanovs, learning new tid bits etc. My eleven year old son has been watching me and guess what, he too is very interested he says in the Romanovs. A second generation of Romanov fans! All thanks to Bob and his wonderful team - and everyone else who contributes to this site.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: toscany on November 10, 2009, 03:13:07 PM
I was adopted at 3 days old by a wonderful family.  My adopted father's side immigrated to the United States, through Ellis Island, from Odessa, Ukraine in 1897.  Growing up, I learned and sampled the wonderful ethnic foods that his family would prepare.  My adopted father would tell us the stories of his family living in Odessa.  One of the most interesting, was the escape of his father from Siberia, after shooting a cossack in self defense. His father returned to Odessa, and he and his wife and family left the country.  Many relatives of my father, fled Russia, and most immigrated to other countries.  Relatives can be found in Argentina, as well as Monterrey, Mexico. 

As I got older, I wanted to learn more of the place called, "Mother Russia".  I read Robert Massies's book, The Romanovs, The Final Chapter, and The Romanov Legacy, by Zoia Belyakova. 

I also viewed various films, that not only centered on the Romanovs, but also classics like Doctor Zhivago (David Lean 1965), and the novel, by Boris Pasternak.  This film, I can watch each Winter!  The sleigh ride out into the country is one of my favorite scenes.  Of course, I have also viewed "Russia, Land Of The Tsars", which is a History Channel documentary.  I have a copy of it. I have also enjoyed learning about the famous AA, and have seen the fantastic film "Anastasia", starring Yul Brynner, made in 1956.

I am now reading two books written about the Grand Duke Mikhail. One is written by the Crawfords, and the other, Pauline Gray.             

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: morvilaRomanov on December 07, 2009, 07:08:51 PM
The Anastasia's cartoon

a smal correction: THE ANASTASIA'S CARTOON IS NOT FROM DISNEY BUT FROM 20 FOX.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: MarshallHowell on December 16, 2009, 02:11:41 PM
When I was 12, I watched the cartoon Anastasia and then when I was 15, I by chance found Massie's book Nicholas and Alexandra. I have been interested ever since then.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: MarshallHowell on December 16, 2009, 02:16:11 PM
Does anyone know if any of the Palaces can be stayed in today, by civilians?
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: blessOTMA on December 16, 2009, 07:55:01 PM
I read my older sister's paper back of the Massie's Nicholas & Alexandra book in the 60's and I've been hooked since. However something about thier faces caught me even before reading about them though..I believe I read the book because of the photos. I have had dormant periods over the decades ,when I'm interested in other things. But  when the Romanovs comes back, the interest is  always stronger than before! This time during the current" Romanov jag",as I call them, I discovered you tube and this marvelous Alexander Palace form...and I have to say it's amazing to be able communicate with others who are as interested as myself and far more knowledgeable than myself,  plus the fabulous photos and even the family being recovered, are all things I didn't expect to see....it's a dream come true! Like so many others, I greatly appreciate this form and the wonderful people on it   
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Jessamy on December 17, 2009, 10:29:54 AM
My interest in the Romanovs began in 1996 when my first daughter was just a baby. I remember holding her and feeding her while watching A&E's Nicholas and Alexandra.  Their story was absolutely heartbreaking to me. I just couldn't get over the fact that the children and Alix were so brutally murdered along with the Tsar. The next time I was in the bookstore I happened to find "A Lifelong Passion", and that was it. I was hooked. Since then I have read everything I can about them. I totally understand the depth of the feelings of other members in their posts.  The Romanovs' story is just so compelling, so tragic that you just can't get over it. It stays with you and becomes a part of your own life.  I remember having a dream once that I was on a bus trip and we were going to visit one of the palaces (apparently I was in Russia) and when we arrived they said the Tsar was busy that day and could only see us briefly.  I felt so amazed and excited "They're still alive!!" was my only thought.  We walked in the palace and there was Nicky standing beside a long table in a large room full of men in uniforms.  I was so thrilled to see him I started gushing, and he turned and looked at me very sternly and held up one hand as if to say, "You are NOT to speak to me unless I address you, which I have no intention of doing", and then he shook his head and turned away from me. I was crushed. I remember waking up and thinking "I may be obsessed with these people".  I swear if I win the lottery I would donate millions to have the Alexander Palace restored!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Nemos on March 02, 2010, 02:46:55 PM
Пример страницы списка.
(http://southwc.ru/1/9/thumbs/m_893207530-bfi_nemos19_9.jpg) (http://southwc.ru/m_893207530-bfi_nemos19_9.jpg.htm) (http://southwc.ru/1/9/thumbs/y_791667218-opt_nemos19_2.jpg) (http://southwc.ru/y_791667218-opt_nemos19_2.jpg.htm)
Формцлярный список цесаревича Александра Николаевича на 1847 год.

http://book-old.ru/BookLibrary/00200-Romanovyi-i-dr/1847.-Formulyarnyiy-spisok-o-sluzhbe-naslednika-Aleksandra-Nikolaevicha-za-1847-god.html
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Anekezout on March 05, 2010, 04:44:53 AM
My interest to the Romanov begin in 1958. I was a child and a woman came with a little girl (8 years old) and said that now it was a new sister for us. Later we discover that she was daughter of princess Ekaterina Ioanovna. Since this time I was very interested about the family of KR and his son Ioan grand father of my "sister" and also the family of Montenegro and Serbia. In 1986 my "sister" go to NY to visit his mother her 2  sisters and brother. In june 2009 we went to St Petersburg and visit Pavlovsk and the marble palace (inside the apartment of KR) It was wonderful and so emotivy.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: bestfriendsgirl on February 23, 2011, 09:47:58 AM
I read my older sister's paper back of the Massie's Nicholas & Alexandra book in the 60's and I've been hooked since. However something about thier faces caught me even before reading about them though..I believe I read the book because of the photos. I have had dormant periods over the decades ,when I'm interested in other things. But  when the Romanovs comes back, the interest is  always stronger than before! This time during the current" Romanov jag",as I call them, I discovered you tube and this marvelous Alexander Palace form...and I have to say it's amazing to be able communicate with others who are as interested as myself and far more knowledgeable than myself,  plus the fabulous photos and even the family being recovered, are all things I didn't expect to see....it's a dream come true! Like so many others, I greatly appreciate this form and the wonderful people on it   
I could have written this post - I'm a total "Romanov jaggist" myself! I became interested when I stumbled across Nicholas and Alexandrain Readers' Digest condensed form in high school. This was in the Cold-War '70s and my first thought was "Ewwwww! Russians! Bad Guys!" But then I saw the beautiful color pictures and saw that it was from the "olden days" so I read it and have been hooked ever since!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Vanya Ivanova on May 24, 2012, 09:41:01 AM
My first encounter with the Romanovs was when I was about 12 years old. I was staying at a friend's house and she had a rather tacky book called 'Unsolved Mysterys'. In amongst the UFO's etc was a chapter on Anna Anderson, I turned a page and there was one of the formal photographs taken of the family in 1913. I still don't really understand why but I was absolutely transfixed.

My father's mother was of Russian descent but she died a few years earlier and at that time I had no interest in Russia or being part Russian beyond getting to celebrate Easter twice = twice the chocolate! I really regret not having discovered this interest when my 'Baboushka' was still alive. She taught us Russian fairy stories and nursery ryhmes but I'm ashamed to say I wasn't that interested then.

From about 12 to 15 years old I was nothing short of obsessed, while other girls at my school had pictures of singers or ponies above their beds, I had the Romanovs and a various assortment of icons! It got to the stage where I started having recurring nightmares about them and my father boxed up all my pictures and books and they became a banned subject. My mother died of cancer when I was 11 so just before my Romanov interest started and looking back I think that's why I related to the family. My sister had gone off to college and my brother had also been sent away to a boarding school at this time so the Romanovs in a way became a surrogate family for me.

I appreciate that probably makes me sound absolutely 'barmy' but as a grief stricken little girl they were a real comfort to me. On a spirtual level I really do think they radiate a kind of healing/comforting energy for many many people.

As an adult I find the Soviet Era in many ways more interesting and I have a difficult time now with the Tsar's autocratic regime. Nevertheless I shall always to some extent feel (however irrational I now know it to be) an emotional connection to them.




































































































































































Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: edubs31 on May 24, 2012, 10:50:30 AM
Vanya, a very warm and lovely description of your bond to the subject/family...thanks for sharing! By the way, there is nothing irrational about having an emotional/spiritual connection to them or anyone else from history who has a story and experience that touches you.

My Romanov obsession can be divided up in three small parts. The first was through my mother around the age of 12. She was in the midst of her own phase having read "Nicholas & Alexandra' (of course!) for the first time. I remember getting some lite reading on the subject and since this was the early-90s there was a flurry of post-Soviet stories, TV specials, etc, on the subject. Of course I was aware of the Anna Anderson mystery as well but never bought into her being Anastasia. I did, however, believe that the Imp had survived, possibly was still alive and living in America but that hardly anyone knew how or where exactly, lol...I even went so far as to read Massie's book tying it in with summer reading requirements for school even though it was a bit beyond my full grasp - lots of big words for a twelve year old with but a standard, ordinary education :-[

My interest faded after about a year but in the late-90s it momentarily sprung up again when the famous Romanov jewel tour came rolling into Wilmington, De (passing over the "Anastasia" movie buzz). I was briefly fascinated again but this was a bit of a false starter as I was reluctant to dig any deeper.

My most recent obsession dates back about a year now although it wasn't until the beginning of this year that I became a member of the AP and my passions went from a simmer to boil. Hard to say what exactly lit the spark most recently...possibly a more general spiritual reawakening and desire to reclaim certain discarded items from my youth, like Romanov books collecting dust!

I'm with Vanya in that I too am quick to recognize the shortcomings of the Tsar, the Empress and stubborn, conservative, autocratic government in general. I don't dislike Nicholas & Alexandra but I struggle with them and my overall perceptions can shift depending on what I'm reading or who I am listening to at any given time. I'm also careful to recognize and mention 'OTMAA' rather that the entire 'IF' as the objects of my true affection.

All in all it's a combination of things, and my general love of history, that generate powerful emotions inside both good and bad, and draw me to the subject! Sorry to ramble on  :)
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Vanya Ivanova on May 24, 2012, 12:31:21 PM
Thanks Edubs31, you are very kind. I'm the same as you in that this site is also what 're-ignited' my interest in the family. Its like group therapy for Romanov fans!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: blessOTMA on May 24, 2012, 11:29:44 PM
I'm with Vanya in that I too am quick to recognize the shortcomings of the Tsar, the Empress and stubborn, conservative, autocratic government in general. I don't dislike Nicholas & Alexandra but I struggle with them and my overall perceptions can shift depending on what I'm reading or who I am listening to at any given time. I'm also careful to recognize and mention 'OTMAA' rather that the entire 'IF' as the objects of my true affection.
Well said as always....no one can dispute the children played no part in the family's down fall or had any say in the Empire's style of governance, and so the issue is side stepped...
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Jen_94 on May 27, 2012, 03:28:52 PM
I agree Vanya, it is like Group therapy for Romanov fans!

So what got me interested? Well I'll start off from when I was younger, I was around...8 years old? I think my intrest started off with the cartoon film. I was very young, and I just loved watching it. However, for some reason, I did not take much interest to the REAL family. I suppose that was because I was very young. But I knew there was a real Anastasia and Tsar Nicholas II/Alexandra, but that was about it. I did not know about OTM or Alexei.

It was only recently my proper interest started with the Romanov family. Well, I guess it began around 2 years ago or so. I was reading about various royals, I guess, and I 're-discovered' Anastasia again. Then I started reading about her, and discovered she had sisters and a brother. The story really interested me and I began to surf the internet looking for more information, and read and read and my knowledge grew and the more I read into it, the more interested I became!

Title: Very good people
Post by: anastasiasguy on September 25, 2012, 02:06:49 AM
Hey everyone! How you all doing? My name is Dave I just joined this site to read some messages and maybe learn a little more on the Romanovs. I just became so fascinated by them and their history not to  mention the whole Russian Revolution pretty interesting subject all the changes they went through. I have always been into history more current stuff though mostly 20th century.  I just wanted to post a message on why I really liked  and admired the Romanovs and was moved to tears over how some evil monsters could just take these good hearted wonderful people away from us.

    So anyway to start with what I liked and got from reading and watching the movie was they were real nice people. Nicholas truly loved his family and treated them so good. They all were there for each other and had each others backs. Little Nicholas had that blood disease and they loved him even more treated him no different. In spite of being rich and royal they were down to earth and good people. I read when the first war broke out Alexandra would visit the hospitals with her daughters talking with the wounded helping them out just being there for them. I also read that Nicholas did try and listen help his people out he and the family would go in the towns and meet with different people ask about their problems, he might not have done much but hey it was something.

    I know in the few months before the first revolution Nicholas was pretty much out of touch with what was going on. The poor were getting worse and he wasn't spending much of his loot to help the country-hey king how about putting some money into the economy, road, jobs, food instead of just spending it on yourself! The duma tried to tell him it was time for change but he didn't listen. When he went to war and things got worse he didn't really take it seriously with all the telegrams informing him all hell was breaking loose. Maybe if he had listened to them and did a lot more for his people standard of living was better bastards like Lenin wouldn't have come to power.

    The first thing I got real upset about was how no one couldn't have gotten his family out and the execution of them a few months later. Why in Gods name did Kersney not get them out right after he sent them to the Governors mansion! He was concerned about their safety then get them the hell out of Russia! He had to have known at some point the soviets would try and take over that's why he moved them in the first place. Put them on a train to Finland from there go to France, Switzerland I'm sure some of those countries would have taken them in. Hell put his guards to watch them on the train until they reach safety or hide them in the box sections like Lenin did when he came back to Russia! Old Kersney sold them out as soon as Lenin took over he was out the back door couldn't have warned the romanovs or got someone to get them out right after Lenin took over. It was a few months before Lenin got his soldiers to them and he had to make peace with Germany first. England was just as bad they were going to come and rescue the family and then the king got all weird because he thought that bringing them would cause revolution feeling with is people! 
  
     But what really upset and pretty much much made me in tears was the Lenin's goons executing the poor family. I watched a few videos of it on youtube and was sick in my stomach! Originally they were going to send the tsar to Moscow for his crimes with a trial but the train got stopped from men in Ekaterinburg the soldiers there cut and took them to the house of special purpose. Why did Moscow let them do that could never figure that out. There has been speculation that the man who was transporting them to Moscow was going to help them escape. He knew some men from Ekaterinburg were talking to officials from Moscow so he took a another train route that would bypass Ekatterinburg but the plan was foiled. The Romanovs were pretty much gone by that time although they still could have been rescued, some group could have gotten them out.

    All I can say is and if this bothers anyone please let me know Lenin and his army goons were a scumbag piece of crap! It's bad enough he tricked the people into believing they would get free elections and democracy after the revolution. Then setting up his cheka police force throwing people in jail or executed because you said something bad about the Government or read a book you weren't supposed to!  Forcing farmers to give up half their stock to the Government and if you didn't you had your whole farm burned down and you had nothing! But to execute a family of young women and a sick child is so disgusting I get sick in my stomach just thinking about it.  Why would you kill 4 beautiful women-I would have taken anyone of them out for coffee and a poor sick child is just beyond any sense of evil and monstrosity. Lenin must have brainwashed so many people. You would think the guards would be like " hey we have to kill innocent women and a sick child. This isn't right we aren't doing it and will do whatever we can to help them escape". All of Lenin's evil army can rot in hell for all I care and if I ever go to Russia I would personally like to take a whiz on his and the executioners graves! Major scum trash!

    So yeah I hope you liked and found my message interesting. This is my first time writing on something like this so if you liked or not please write back with comments good or bad. I know it was a little long but I really wanted to voice my opinion on how the family were good people and no way did they deserve the fate they did and that Lenin was a beast who should have been executed himself. I'm the type of person who feels everyone deserves human decency regardless of age, smarts, color, religion no one should be persecuted in any way unless you do something evil and monstrous.  No one has the right to control others and make people conform to a way of living that they choose not to. Don't get wrong there are some basic conformity we should all follow learning to read, working to pay our bills, not sponging off welfare unless you really need it, knowing what's going around you and most important try and be good to others even if it's some people you don't get along with. A little kindness can go a long way maybe if everyone in the world just tried some of these things the world wouldn't have so many problems.

    God bless your souls dear Romanovs you are all good people to me. If I would have been in Russia at that time would have tried everything to save you guys-just set me with one of your daughters! All of you will be in my prayers and will put roses on your graves when  I get over to Russia. Your American friend and number one defender Dave. Peace everyone  

            
Title: Re: Very good people
Post by: feodorovna on September 25, 2012, 02:39:29 AM
I rather think that how much you wanted to save them would have depended largely on where in the social strata you were. To my certain knowledge Tsars didn't allow their daughters to marry members of the proletariat!!!!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: edubs31 on September 25, 2012, 09:19:17 AM
Welcome Dave! Just a few thoughts on your introduction statement if I may...

Quote
Hey everyone! How you all doing? My name is Dave I just joined this site to read some messages and maybe learn a little more on the Romanovs. I just became so fascinated by them and their history not to  mention the whole Russian Revolution pretty interesting subject all the changes they went through. I have always been into history more current stuff though mostly 20th century.  I just wanted to post a message on why I really liked  and admired the Romanovs and was moved to tears over how some evil monsters could just take these good hearted wonderful people away from us.

Nice sentiment certainly. I encourage you to read more. The AP is a tremendous resource as is also the discussion forum wbut there are any number of books (many available on Kindle if that's more to your liking) that myself and others could recommend. The good hearted wonderful people you talk about might apply less to Nicholas & Alexandra as you start to learn more but that'll be up to you to decide...

Quote
So anyway to start with what I liked and got from reading and watching the movie was they were real nice people. Nicholas truly loved his family and treated them so good. They all were there for each other and had each others backs.

I imagine that movie to be the 1971 Nicholas & Alexandra film, yes? In my opinion it did roughly as good a job as possible considering it's restrictions as a theatrical release catering to a wide audience...and subsequently the need to take any number of artistic liberties. That along with the fact that there was far less information available at the time on the subject than there is now. It's full of distortions but I think it does a pretty good and honest job overall in depicting the Tsar, Empress and their relationship dynamic.

Nicholas was a decent good fellow. A product of his times certainly. But I think you'll also learn that his kindness and desire to do what was right for his people existed within the parameters of his very narrow vision and, at best, questionable intellect. Worse things could be said about Alexandra.

Quote
Little Nicholas had that blood disease and they loved him even more treated him no different.

AKA the Tsarevich Alexei :-)

Quote
In spite of being rich and royal they were down to earth and good people. I read when the first war broke out Alexandra would visit the hospitals with her daughters talking with the wounded helping them out just being there for them. I also read that Nicholas did try and listen help his people out he and the family would go in the towns and meet with different people ask about their problems, he might not have done much but hey it was something.

No shortage of information on here about their nursing stint during the war. I'm not sure how much the Tsar really listened to his people or sought their advice but that's for you to look into and decide on your own.

Quote
I know in the few months before the first revolution Nicholas was pretty much out of touch with what was going on. The poor were getting worse and he wasn't spending much of his loot to help the country-hey king how about putting some money into the economy, road, jobs, food instead of just spending it on yourself! The duma tried to tell him it was time for change but he didn't listen. When he went to war and things got worse he didn't really take it seriously with all the telegrams informing him all hell was breaking loose. Maybe if he had listened to them and did a lot more for his people standard of living was better bastards like Lenin wouldn't have come to power.

lol, well I guess that about sums it up. Obviously nothing is ever so clear cut and simple but I think the number of pre-revolution errors committed by Nicholas and Alexandra will shock you as you read on.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: edubs31 on September 25, 2012, 09:19:35 AM
Quote
The first thing I got real upset about was how no one couldn't have gotten his family out and the execution of them a few months later. Why in Gods name did Kersney not get them out right after he sent them to the Governors mansion! He was concerned about their safety then get them the hell out of Russia! He had to have known at some point the soviets would try and take over that's why he moved them in the first place. Put them on a train to Finland from there go to France, Switzerland I'm sure some of those countries would have taken them in. Hell put his guards to watch them on the train until they reach safety or hide them in the box sections like Lenin did when he came back to Russia! Old Kersney sold them out as soon as Lenin took over he was out the back door couldn't have warned the romanovs or got someone to get them out right after Lenin took over. It was a few months before Lenin got his soldiers to them and he had to make peace with Germany first. England was just as bad they were going to come and rescue the family and then the king got all weird because he thought that bringing them would cause revolution feeling with is people!  

Interesting assessment. I could offer you a lengthy response but I think it better to do some of your own investigating on the subject. It's Kerensky by the way :-)

Quote
But what really upset and pretty much much made me in tears was the Lenin's goons executing the poor family. I watched a few videos of it on youtube and was sick in my stomach!

It was certainly awful. Imagine how much more so in real life than has been depicted in film and documentary :-(

Quote
All I can say is and if this bothers anyone please let me know Lenin and his army goons were a scumbag piece of crap! It's bad enough he tricked the people into believing they would get free elections and democracy after the revolution. Then setting up his cheka police force throwing people in jail or executed because you said something bad about the Government or read a book you weren't supposed to!  Forcing farmers to give up half their stock to the Government and if you didn't you had your whole farm burned down and you had nothing! But to execute a family of young women and a sick child is so disgusting I get sick in my stomach just thinking about it.  Why would you kill 4 beautiful women-I would have taken anyone of them out for coffee and a poor sick child is just beyond any sense of evil and monstrosity. Lenin must have brainwashed so many people. You would think the guards would be like " hey we have to kill innocent women and a sick child. This isn't right we aren't doing it and will do whatever we can to help them escape". All of Lenin's evil army can rot in hell for all I care and if I ever go to Russia I would personally like to take a whiz on his and the executioners graves! Major scum trash!

Well now, that's quite an articulation! Believe you me I feel the same away about the man and subsequent Soviet reign. The one book a lot of people are going to throw out to you here as required reading on the subject is "Fate of the Romanovs" by Greg King & Penny Wilson. I myself have mixed feelings about it and think it but one of a few valuable resources on the subject. I'm not sure if this is the first thing you should read, if you haven't read anything yet, but it will be recommended. Not that it will make you feel any better but perhaps understand things better...

Quote
So yeah I hope you liked and found my message interesting.

Passionate certainly. Never a bad place to start...

Quote
I'm the type of person who feels everyone deserves human decency regardless of age, smarts, color, religion no one should be persecuted in any way unless you do something evil and monstrous.  No one has the right to control others and make people conform to a way of living that they choose not to. Don't get wrong there are some basic conformity we should all follow learning to read, working to pay our bills, not sponging off welfare unless you really need it, knowing what's going around you and most important try and be good to others even if it's some people you don't get along with. A little kindness can go a long way maybe if everyone in the world just tried some of these things the world wouldn't have so many problems.

Amen!

Quote
If I would have been in Russia at that time would have tried everything to save you guys-just set me with one of your daughters!

Haha, you should read one of my first posts on here. It was a dream about that. I was time warped with limited but important knowledge regarding their fate in around 1915. I was positioned as a trusted adviser and friend of the family and attempting to alter the path Nicholas was travelling on and carrying his reign. All the while I was courting Olga and even as a non-royal was hoping to win her hand in marriage, lol...not likely but fun to imagine!

Quote
All of you will be in my prayers and will put roses on your graves when  I get over to Russia. Your American friend and number one defender Dave. Peace everyone

And to think I always just assumed that I was :-) Nice thoughts...enjoy your time on here!
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Duchess Hydrangea on September 25, 2012, 12:25:05 PM
For me it went something like this. Anastasia was always known in our house. My sister had to watch the live action movie for school. Later out came the cartoon. So I always felt pity for Anastasia though we always believed she had died with her family. Then later in school we got new history books and they had a picture of Anastasia in there. (the one from 1910) It was the first I'd ever seen of her. My mother remarked: "She looks like a true Princess doesn't she". Still it took a few more years for me to become very interested. I was board one day and I was thinking about the cartoon's depiction of her sisters and I began to wonder what were their names and what did they look like. So I looked up the family and the rest is history. No pun intended. I am a child of four -all girls- so the story was very inspiring to me. Also the birth years of me and my sister are close to mirroring OTMA's.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: anastasiasguy on September 26, 2012, 01:00:50 AM
 Hey Ed! How you doing? Thanks for the comments. I'm glad you liked my message. This is new for me never really joined a message site before wrote a few things on the internet movie database that's about it. Yeah I made sure not to bad mouth anyone here and not put any false facts down just stating why I am interested and respect the Romanovs. One of these days get over to Russia and see all their history, culture, castles cites and most importantly the Romanovs Graves. God bless the Government that they finally gave them a proper burial and ceremony after all these years. After what they did to them in 1918 the Government should reimburse their relative for life! I watched a video on youtube of a church in Moscow that had a real nice service for the Romanovs. People were crying and holding pictures of them and lighting candles. I was touched that after all these years there are still lots of people who admire and truly respect them. I'm glad the Government is finally paying their respects to them, after what happened to them the whole country should. Hell I do and I live in America!

   So anyway just wanted to say a few things and ask about your replies. First of the movie I watched was The Romanovs An Imperial Family on youtube very good film accurate in portraying the history as well as showing what kind of people they were. I don't think it was biased in any way they showed the good and bad in old Nic. Really good film I recommend it. There is a real good scene where the guards are taking criminal pictures of the family and Anna just has fun with it laughing and making faces getting her family some joy. She was such a cutie God love her I wanted to give her a big kiss and hug-not to mention take her out for dinner! Wonder if the king would have let me? I'm just working class guy probably not but hell she is a adult can make up her own mind! Come on Nick get with the times!

     Next wanted to ask why do you think old Kersney didn't try to help get them out of the country? He was concerned about them that's why he sent them to the Governors mansion. Should have gotten them out of the country not long after that. He could have done it had some soldiers who still liked them go to the train station and have guards watch until they were out of the country. Not all the soldiers hated the Romanovs. In fact some got to know them by working and talking with them over the months and had a change of heart. When Lenin took over Kers should have gotten them right out that day instead he just took care of his own ass! He should have went to Tobolsk and got them out of there. Any thoughts or answers would be appreciated.

Next why didn't more people try and up rise to take over Lenin. There was whites but they were outside the cities. Maybe if more people living in them would have uprised and fought the police along with the service away fighting the whites they could have won. Old Lenin must have paid the police and military a lot better then factory workers for them to stay so loyal to him. That's my guess "hey just being a police terrorist bullying and throwing people in jail for pathetic simple things is justified because I'm getting pay a hell of a lot more and can have some better things in life" What jackasses they were if were their mother or wife they had to arrest or torture might be a different story. Just goes to show you how pathetic and gullible people that they blatantly follow what others tell them to do! if some guard told me to execute a family with young women and a sick child. I'd be like "yeah sure" then later try and get their asses out of there! Could I have with the house so guarded and one guy probably not but I would have tried something. One guard who was there said he felt so bad about it he was like" I pitied them" You hemmoroid don't pity them help them!       

    Finally why did it take the whites so long to get there. It was only a couple days after the execution that the white got here and took over the town. If they knew they were there why didn't they work on getting there sooner they had to have known there was a chance of them being executed. Wouldn't have been nice if they caught the guards just ready to execute the Romanovs and stopped them in a nick of time. God bless the whites they could have pinned Yurovsky and his piece of crap guards up on the wall and had the royal family torture them for a few hours! Everyone would get a turn even little Alexis before the whites exterminate them! I would pay to see that laugh in their faces before they died scumbag garbage excuse for human beings "duh my boss tells me to kill  a nice family young women and a sick child because the father didn't rule the country the greatest! Okay no problem" Lenin tells you to jump you ask how high! What Yur did to the bodies after they were murdered he should have been tortured for months by as many people as possible before being burned while still alive and then be thrown down a mine shaft just like what he did to the family. Scum of the earth waste human excrement trash have more respect for a rabid sick wild dog

    So yeah when you get a chance read over my message and reply back. I know there are some things I don't know about the Romanovs that are probably not the greatest. I'm sure more on their earlier history might be some things I just know about Nick and his reign and the revolution. Sorry but I guarantee you nothing will change my mind on them getting executed. If Lenin would have took him to trial and put him away for some time like he was originally planning to do I would have not any problems even though he's still a scum. As long as the family was left alone and no one hurt them that would have worked for me. Why would you kill a family over one persons bad job of running the country the wife, girls and boy had nothing to do with that. They were good people who had a leader that didn't really know how to run the county very well. Maybe the Duma should have abdicated him way before the revolution and take over do more for the poor and get the country on the right track. The 1905 disaster should have warned them about things escalating. So yeah to me they are still good people always be in my heart. Watch a video on youtube called The Romanovs don't give up. It has scenes from the movie I mentioned along with the song really hits your heart and shows they were a decent good family who should have been saved and treated with respect. Anna when are we doing coffee! You are so beautiful and sweet give me a hug cooking you a slammin dinner!

   Take care and hope to hear from you soon. Sincerely biggest Romanov fan Dave   
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: edubs31 on September 26, 2012, 10:28:06 AM
Quote
First off the movie I watched was The Romanovs An Imperial Family on youtube very good film accurate in portraying the history as well as showing what kind of people they were. I don't think it was biased in any way they showed the good and bad in old Nic. Really good film I recommend it.

Ah, OK. Sorry I guess I was thinking you were referring to "Nicholas & Alexandra" from 1971 based off the Massie book. Honestly I've never seen "An Imperial Family" the whole way through but bits and pieces amounting to about half of the film. I know that it really focuses on the final year to year and half of their lives and that's it. I'd say it's decent...critical opinions seem mixed. One thing that stuck out to me was the length of OTMA's hair at the end. In the film, if I remember correctly, it shows them walking to the cellar with very short hair still. In reality I believe by July of 1918 it would have grown back to about shoulder length and looked far more traditionally feminine.

Quote
She was such a cutie God love her I wanted to give her a big kiss and hug-not to mention take her out for dinner! Wonder if the king would have let me? I'm just working class guy probably not but hell she is a adult can make up her own mind! Come on Nick get with the times!

lol, alright then. I'm sure if you had been able to time warp and save them your odds of getting a date would have improved dramatically. I wouldn't expect more than that though. You're not of royal lineage (although technically they weren't either by this time) and, furthermore, you're American born and raised in a democratic republic...of all things!

By the way it's not Nicholas you should be worrying about as much as Lady Macbeth standing next to him with her arms folded...

Quote
Next wanted to ask why do you think old Kersney didn't try to help get them out of the country? He was concerned about them that's why he sent them to the Governors mansion. Should have gotten them out of the country not long after that. He could have done it had some soldiers who still liked them go to the train station and have guards watch until they were out of the country. Not all the soldiers hated the Romanovs. In fact some got to know them by working and talking with them over the months and had a change of heart. When Lenin took over Kers should have gotten them right out that day instead he just took care of his own ass! He should have went to Tobolsk and got them out of there. Any thoughts or answers would be appreciated.

Kerensky's concern with the Romanovs had more to do with him not wanting their blood on his hands than it had to do with any type of allegiance toward the family. He was after all a revolutionary greatly opposed to the Tsarist regime. He was not radical like the Bolsheviks however. He also probably wasn't expecting to lose control over the government which is ultimately what sealed the Romanov's fate. Had PM Lloyd Geroge and King George V excepted them into Britain as exiles the decision for Kerensky would have been made much easier.

Quote
Next why didn't more people try and up rise to take over Lenin.

The revolution was taking place with or without Lenin. The rest of your questions requires a pretty lengthy and detailed response. In the interest of time and space I encourage you to visit the many topic threads where this has been discussed.

Quote
Wouldn't have been nice if they caught the guards just ready to execute the Romanovs and stopped them in a nick of time.

Perhaps it wasn't meant to be. The family had a destiny.

Quote
God bless the whites they could have pinned Yurovsky and his piece of crap guards up on the wall and had the royal family torture them for a few hours!

The White's committed their fare share of brutalities as well you know? Yes I wish they had won their struggle, but ultimately it was a case of rooting for the lesser of evils.

Quote
Everyone would get a turn even little Alexis before the whites exterminate them! I would pay to see that laugh in their faces before they died scumbag garbage excuse for human beings "duh my boss tells me to kill  a nice family young women and a sick child because the father didn't rule the country the greatest! Okay no problem" Lenin tells you to jump you ask how high! What Yur did to the bodies after they were murdered he should have been tortured for months by as many people as possible before being burned while still alive and then be thrown down a mine shaft just like what he did to the family. Scum of the earth waste human excrement trash have more respect for a rabid sick wild dog.

Easy now! Many of us have those same basic feelings but you're going to have clean yourself up and articulate things a bit better if you want to be taken seriously on this forum. Just some friendly advice. I also recommend giving yourself over to the IF spiritually, since you're obviously very passionate about them to begin with. It might allow for some closure. Remember Dave, it was they who faced down the bullets and the bayonets and the riffle butts, not you and I. And it was they who did not hate but accepted their fate. You should as well.

By inflicting unnecessary wishes of pain and torture on those you despise you not only act in an inhumane fashion (as the killers did), but you legitimize them and their actions. I find it easier to look at Yurovsky and those guards as dubious & unwitting accomplices acting out a role that they had no real control over. In my view God had plans and it didn't matter who the thugs were to take care of the actual dirty work.

Quote
Why would you kill a family over one persons bad job of running the country the wife, girls and boy had nothing to do with that.

As has been said they did not want a "live banner to rally around". I for one believe the argument for political expediency to be utter nonsense. It was a combination of bad people with bad intentions making live or death decision and their normal human emotions and desire for revenge getting the best of them.

Quote
Maybe the Duma should have abdicated him way before the revolution and take over do more for the poor and get the country on the right track.

That's not how it works. Nicholas needed to learn from his mistakes and open his eyes to the rapidly changing world around him. It may or may not have been too late by 1905.

With that I'm going to stop posting on here since we are getting off topic. If you have some specific questions to ask me feel free to send me a PM...
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Alixz on September 26, 2012, 02:42:01 PM
OK -Thiis is very strange.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Robert_Hall on September 26, 2012, 03:23:25 PM
Indeed. Alexandra innocent wifey ? She was a major part of the problem !  Sounds rather juvenile to to me, alomg with the extreme language.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: TimM on September 26, 2012, 03:31:49 PM
Welcome to our board, Dave.  Your posts are interesting, to say the least.

As to why Yurovksy and his goons did that horrible crime, no doubt they would give the same reasons the Nazis would at Nuremburg:  "We were following orders."  Different time, same old excuse.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dru on September 26, 2012, 07:27:46 PM
I agree with Alixz and Robert.  This is just strange.

I'm sure I'll be lambasted for saying this, but in the Bolsheviks' minds, their actions were probably justified.  Now, I do not believe the Imperial family as individual people deserved that fate, especially the innocent children (I adore OTMA and think their deaths were indeed a horrible crime), but let's face it:  the Russian people suffered long and hard under the tsarist regime, which no one can deny was a cruel one.  But the revolutionaries viewed themselves as freedom fighters, not as "goons."  They thought they were liberating a nation from tyranny:  what gives someone divine rights over others because they possess the surname Romanov?  Nicholas and Alexandra were perhaps good people, but they were terrible leaders, and their only qualification for the job was saids surname.  After 300 years of bloodshed under Romanov rule, who can blame those oppressed by the system for their anger?  To me, violence is never the answer, regardless of who perpetrates it, but those people were reacting to their subjugation in the only way they understood.  Imagine being poor and cold, sleeping in the shadow of a palace, knowing that someone in there is rich and warm without a care in the world.  Why does one deserve to live in luxury while another lives in squalor and misery?  A working man might say, "Why should the daughters of "Nicholas the Bloody" be wrapped in furs and bedecked with jewels while my children yearn for a scrap of bread?"  That anger had brewing for centuries; it did not simply explode overnight.  No one woke up and said "I think I'll shoot poor, innocent grand duchesses today."  It was a long time coming.  Those people reacted violently because violence was all they knew.  Why would anyone not fight against an establishment so unjust?

I sincerely apologize if I've offended anyone, as that was not my intention.  I'm just trying to understand both sides here.

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: edubs31 on September 26, 2012, 07:54:18 PM
Agree with most of the what you said Dru minus the following...

Quote
their only qualification for the job was saids surname.

Well not their only qualification but I see your point. Nicholas grew up a Tsarevich and while his father did a lousy job in preparing him for his eventual responsibilities, growing up around other people of power certainly gave him better qualifications than a peasant or factory worker.

Quote
Why does one deserve to live in luxury while another lives in squalor and misery?

Well all too often the children are both the undeserving beneficiaries and the innocent victims of their parent's successes and failures. And not that it applies to this particular situation but there are many people who live a lap of luxury because they've worked hard for it, showed diligence and had vision, and then there are those who often live in relative squalor because they were just the opposite of that.

Quote
A working man might say, "Why should the daughters of "Nicholas the Bloody" be wrapped in furs and bedecked with jewels while my children yearn for a scrap of bread?"

And yet those same people idolized their Tsar's...so much so that they barely criticized them. Until "Bloody Sunday" it was mostly the fault of the ministers and imperial guards separating the Tsar's from their people and understanding their plight. Russians didn't seem to want their monarchs getting their hands dirty, even if only symbolically. Perhaps this explains their borderline contempt toward Alexandra's nursing and Nicholas's role as Commander in Chief at the front. Even today after 300-years of "oppressive" Romanov rule and another 73-years of the even worse Soviet reign they have resisted democratic values. They seem to love their "Tsar's" whether they been named Romanov, Stalin, Putin, etc, but then complain about the unfair distribution and ongoing class struggle. A lot of what brought about the Russian Revolution and allowed the Reds to become victorious was opportunism and luck. Before anyone had a chance to assess things and decide whether or not the whole fight was such a good idea the Bolsheviks had seized power.

Quote
No one woke up and said "I think I'll shoot poor, innocent grand duchesses today."  It was a long time coming.

I disagree. I think there were many who were foaming at the mouths for the opportunity. Some of these were just common men placed in an awkward situation, but some were ruthless trained killers. Remember the truck that carried the bodies to Pig's Meadow and how pissed off some of the men were when it arrived having missed their chance to kill everyone and God knows what else? Yeah these were thugs, and if it hadn't been four GDs and a sick boy they would have found someone else to rape and/or butcher. The idea that killing innocents between the ages of 13-22 is never condonable no much how long a time it was coming...

Quote
Those people reacted violently because violence was all they knew.

You're quite correct about that.

Quote
Why would anyone not fight against an establishment so unjust?

Never mind for a minute that the establishment you speak of had been out of power and on house arrest for sixteen months. They weren't the "establishment" by July, 1918 and they never were going to be again. The excuses made about political expediency and the concern over a live banner for their opponents to rally around are nonsense. BUT if you're talking about the establishment. Why did they not simply kill the two who represented it and let the other nine go free, send away to exile, etc. Only 18% of that room represented the true establishment.

Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Dru on September 26, 2012, 08:11:43 PM
Perhaps I went a little overboard, but I was just trying to make a point.  Never mind. 
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: anastasiasguy on September 26, 2012, 11:04:55 PM
Hey people! How you all doing? I'm glad some of you enjoyed my messages. This is my first time trying something like this so bear with me. All of you guys know so much about the Romanovs and Russian history. I have got the basics down trying to learn more in depth stuff reading watching videos when I have the time of course do a lot of other things plus full time job it's tough. I've always liked history mostly American from the 20th century up. Maybe a little before that but not much. I think I got into the Russian Revolution and Romanovs from reading WW1 very interesting subject lot going on. I want to get over to Russia sometime see all their cities, cultures, castles very unique cultured city. Would stop by the Romanovs graves and put some roses down pay my respects. Would be nice if I could meet some of their relatives wonder if you could ask to get in touch maybe take them out for lunch-well not all of them I need spending money to! Hey it would be a nice thing to do.

    So anyway from reading and learning about the Romanovs and especially their cruel fate I actually changed some of my views on different things. I have always been against wars that don't involve my country. Why should we loose troops and others come back all messed up from war like Vietnam, Korea, hell even Irag. I always felt we should take care of our own why should we worry about bad things over seas when we have poor in our own country. Hell we lost Vietnam look how many troops were killed and messed up over that. Why were we involved with that? Yes the north were bad apples who would probably terrorize the south just like Hitler, Stalin, Mao Zedong. There are butchers everywhere. How do they stay in power is what I want to know. My guess is they take care of the people in the Government and the military so good that why should they try and overthrow when they are doing better then just about all of the country. Lenin must have taken care of his cheka forces so good that they stayed loyal to him.

    But yeah after seeing the Romanvos get executed I was like something should have been down for these people. I know the Tsar didn't do a good job ruling his people the poor stayed poor and he stayed rich-hey king put some of that money back in the country! But no way should he have executed with his family. Maybe there should have been some kind of special forces group go in and get them out. Sneak into Ekaternburg round up all the guards and get the family to safety. I would not have had any problem with that. There were groups who did want to rescue them but nothing ever came about it. Someone should have dome something. I would have had a problem if America and England just throw bombs all over Russia destroying their cities, land nothing is left then we have to help rebuild their country for years. No hospitals, schools, electricity, water everything is gone. Plus if we did land invasion thousands of our troops would killed. I know we did that in WW1 and 2 but that directly involved us. Plus we had to help countries there all ready taken over by the Germans. My point is maybe there other ways of helping countries without just bombing and ripping there them to sheds. If a country isn't very big and the Government is small maybe send some troops a few bombs nothing to heavy. But a big country like Russia or Irag you can't do that. If we invaded Russia we would have casualties galore and with being so big we would have to bomb the crap of out of them there goes the cities, town, land everything is gone. That isn't worth it if they never bothered us

    What is the solution? Wait I know how we could have saved Russia from Lenin! Get the B52s over to play a show for everyone. They bring so much joy and happiness with their music and live performances. All they would have to do is play Dead beat Club everyone would be holding hands hugging and smiling. The four girls can be backup singers-sweet Ana!  How can you not do that to Dead Beat Club it's such a nice, sweet, fun song, I can have the worst day of my life and when I listen to that song it all goes away in a second. Kate Pierson can invite Lenin and the Romanovs up on stage to sing along dance. At first old Lenin stays away but after a few minutes breaks down and has a good time, comes over to the family and hugs them " you guys are all right no more fighting and hating everyone is cool with everyone". Getting teary eyed sniff sniff God Bless Kate!

   I all hope you enjoyed that just having a little fun. Talking about real serious stuff just threw in a little humor if it made anyone's day a little better nicer then I did my job. You guys all seem cool. Someone told me on here not be so rough edged when talking about certain  Bolsheviks tone it a little. That's fine but it doesn't change how I feel and would call them on their atrocities any chance I get. I'm 100% on people being treated right everyone deserves decency. So yeah a little humor can go a long way. Would have been a cool show huh. As Woody Allen once said " don't you wish things could be like this in real life" 

  Anyway when you guys get a chance please let me know what you thought of this. I will certainly look at some other posts see what I can learn and talk about. As I stated before the Romanovs are all right in my books yes the old king could have done a lot more but they were a good nice family. No one deserves what happened to them. May they rest in peace. Number one Romanov fan Dave   
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: TimM on September 27, 2012, 10:15:26 AM
Quote
but in the Bolsheviks' minds, their actions were probably justified

I'm sure the Nazis said the same things.  Same old excuse:  "For the greater good."  Only the names change.


Quote
What is the solution? Wait I know how we could have saved Russia from Lenin! Get the B52s over to play a show for everyone. They bring so much joy and happiness with their music and live performances. All they would have to do is play Dead beat Club everyone would be holding hands hugging and smiling. The four girls can be backup singers-sweet Ana!  How can you not do that to Dead Beat Club it's such a nice, sweet, fun song, I can have the worst day of my life and when I listen to that song it all goes away in a second. Kate Pierson can invite Lenin and the Romanovs up on stage to sing along dance. At first old Lenin stays away but after a few minutes breaks down and has a good time, comes over to the family and hugs them " you guys are all right no more fighting and hating everyone is cool with everyone". Getting teary eyed sniff sniff God Bless Kate!


If I ever get around to building that time machine, we'll give this idea a try. 
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: anastasiasguy on October 02, 2012, 01:07:04 AM
 Hey Tim! How you doing buddy? Thanks for the replies I'm new at this never did a message board before. Mostly just use the internet for email, looking up information maybe watch a few things on youtube don't want to become addicted on this like some people do. God I hope it never gets so bad that you have to do everything on the internet book stores, record stores are all gone do all your billing, shopping hell I'll move to Canada! I don't think it will ever get that bad-lets hope not!

   So anyway just wanted to say I'll try and be a little less rough edged on talking about certain Bolsheviks I don't care for. I don't want to upset or make people feel uncomfortable in any way. I'm not going to sugar coat my feelings either for scum like Yurovsky and his ilk. No way never not in a million years. I feel that way about any groups of people who want to wipe out certain individuals for their skin color, religion, smarts, political views. Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot they are filth to me. if you don't like someone stay away from them no one has the right to hurt others period if only it could be that easy right! Just to execute a beautiful loving family because the dad didn't do the best job running the country it's just horrible something should have been done for those people they didn't deserve that. Hell I hated President Bush think he should have been thrown out on his ass! Should he have been executed hell no!

    Just curious have you ever been to Russia? I want to go there like now. Maybe down the road saving some money it's not cheap actually want to go to Germany also big WW1 and 2 fan. I don't know why just have this fascination with Russia they are so different from other countries like England, France, Ireland. We have always competed with them over things technology, sports, military. Hell for a little we were cool with them in WW2 a common enemy always helps. That was the best thing Hitler ever did was invade Russia just think how much more machinery, troops and fighting power he would have had if he didn't. Stalin and Hitler that's what you call the lesser of two bad apples. America had to work with a butcher. Then after WW2 we were enemies for what thirty years or more. At least until communism fell apart.

    Another thing wanted to ask you what did the Government tell the people or release on the Romanov's during the later years like the 60s to the 80s. I mean what if you were family and wanted some honest answers or closer what did the Government tell you? From what I read it was a little less rough during that era then back in the Lenin Stalin times maybe not much but a little. I know when Gorbachev came to power he was the start of getting Russia with the times and making changes Glasnost all that. Always was curious how the Government handled it during the 60s up to the 80s.  If they covered up in those times lied to people never gave the family a little respect they are scums also just as bad.

   Anyway that's about it don't want to make these to long I know my last couple were try and shorten them. I'm glad you liked my little fun story on the b52s playing in Russia_is kate P a sweetie or what! All this talk on execution, monsters controlling people, torture scumbags I just wanted to throw a little light out instead of darkness. If anyone else enjoyed that it makes my day. Oh just real quick what did you think of Anastasia the movie. I just watched that very good for a family film it worked just as good for adults. The writing, songs, animation story wow I was impressed. They actually looked almost like the real characters the Tsar, Anna, her grandmother. God bless whoever made this film to create such a sweet, beautiful family oriented  fairy tale over such a dark horrible disgusting time in Russia history. I wonder what the Romanov's felt about it would be interesting to find out or just the Russian people in general. Hey I liked that's all the counts. Watch a video on youtube called the "Romanov's don't give up" good stuff really shows they were decent people loving family Maybe we can chat again sometime nice meeting you Tim.

   Sincerely number one Romanov fan and friend Dave   
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Chris_H on December 22, 2012, 05:27:55 PM
That's a good question.  I remember when I was little buying The Last Tsar by Edward Radzinsky on Nantucket Island one summer, that was my first view of the Romanovs, I didn't know anything about them, after that book I began to read more on the Romanovs. I remember reading a huge book on the Romanovs haha. As I got older I saw a show on tv that totally got me interested and there was also my own origins, German and Eastern European, tha t made me feel very connected haha. 
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: Превед on November 02, 2013, 07:21:20 PM
I think my interest in the Romanovs started when I was researching some Hessian royals in a German context and noticed that their Wikipedia pages also had Russian versions. When I clicked it and discovered that Wilhelmina Luise Prinzessin von Hessen-Darmstadt (i.e. Paul I's first wife Grand Duchess Natalia Alexeievna) was rendered in Russian as принцесса Вильгельмина-Луиза Гессен-Дармштадтская (Gessen-Darmshtadtskaya - how wonderfully funny isn't that!), then it dawned on me that some of these staid royals from petty German states had quite fabolous and dramatic destinies as brides of the Romanovs and that I actually could decipher the so far inapprochable Russian language through the medium of these well-known royals. It really was the German connection of the Holstein-Gottorp-Romanovs that drew me to them.
Title: Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
Post by: VedranDimach on November 09, 2013, 07:24:09 PM
Well, I got interested in Romanovs quite a while ago.Before 3 months this summer I had my most conscious dream to a level that I was aware that I was dreaming during sleep.In that dream, I had my first and probably the last encounter with then 7 unknown figures to me.
Then about 2 or 3 weeks later I watched a documentary about a certain imperial family.Shocked at first, remembering that thoes were the people I saw in my dream, I went to search on the internet about them, and my thoughts were absolute, they were Romanovs.The moment I realized it, it brought chills down my spine.But after It got into my head that the experience I had definetly wasn't paranormal, but of good and mystical nature, I calmed down.Since then, I read every single detail about each member of the family, and they almost completely matched the way they were behaving and looking in my dream.And I will never let go of them from my thoughts, not in a million years.The chronicles of that faithful dream will forever be locked in my head, never to be forgotten.