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Messages - nigbil

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Tsarskoe Selo Palaces / Re: Ropsha Palace
« on: May 26, 2005, 02:33:48 PM »
Yes I agree.
In the 3rd picture you can see its a ruin (you can look through the windows to sky behind) so I guess you are right about the scaffolding. Its a pity because it's a gem.

I wonder if someone has seen interior pictures from pre-revolutionary times? There are pictures (interior and exterior) of all the other palaces as photography was
of great interest to most of the Romanov's as well as other rich Russian families - so there must be pictures of Ropsha and its occupants.

Tsarskoe Selo Palaces / Re: Ropsha Palace
« on: May 26, 2005, 12:23:10 PM »
Great pictures, thanks.
It looks like restoration has started...............does anybody know what condition the interior is in?

Tsarskoe Selo Palaces / Re: Ropsha Palace
« on: May 24, 2005, 01:53:40 AM »
Thanks for the map and picture. Do you know who lived there just before the Revolution?

Thank you. I will send them an email if you can give me the address. I hope I can write in English!

There may of course be people out there with old pictures, one of which, if I am lucky, might show one or both of these gentlemen.........

Can any of you military experts help me do some tracing?

I live in a tiny village in the south of France and have made the acquaintance of another resident, an elderly Russian lady called Olga Igoraevna Sokolnikova.

She says she still has relatives in the Moscow area but her main anticedents came from St Petersburg.

Her grandfather: Hypolytte Nikolaevitch Sokolnikov. She says he was general of artillery in WWI and was killed late in the war. She says her family had close connections with either an artillery or engineering school/college in St.P

Her father: Igor Hypolotovitch Sokolnikov. He was a Lieutenant in the artillery in WWI and escaped in 1920
She says her mother left at the same time as her father but that they did not leave together.  

Olga was, I believe born in the 1920's (I have yet to ask the exact date!) but what is interesting is the General Deniken was her God-father as they shared a house in Paris (1925).

I have promised to do some research for Olga so any help with any pictures/details would be greatly appreciated.

Rasputin / Re: Yusupov courtyard where R was shot
« on: March 31, 2005, 12:38:02 AM »
Yes,  :D tell tell us more and I will let you know the trials and tribulations in getting the courtyard picture................

The Alexander Palace / Re: What's in this Area
« on: March 26, 2005, 11:42:24 AM »
Looking at the picture of the staircase, it is original though I'm not 100% certain about the banister.

Its certainly not ornate and looks like its use was primarily by servants. But I assume that it was also used by the children as well. I wonder if the children were allowed to use the lift? I suppose Gilliard would say something. Lifts are great fun for children to play in and I would imagine that the children, when young, were forbidden to use it unescorted.
On the subject of the lift, and I believe this topic is of special interest to the FA, was it the type that had someone sitting in it all the time 'operating it, or did one get into it and press the buttons oneself? Did it have glass doors or the type still used in elderly French hotels with a metal grill you pulled/pushed to open/close.

Tsarskoe Selo Palaces / Re: Ropsha Palace
« on: March 25, 2005, 04:36:18 PM »
Can someone please tell me about this palace, who lived there, what was its function and location?

Thanks, yes I guessed it might be her. What interested me was the publication date - it may be gossipy, unreliable etc but it is at least contemporary.

Could anybody tell me more about this book:

Russian Court Memoirs  
Full Title The Fall of the Romanoffs
How the Ex-Empress and Rasputin Caused the Russian Revolution

Place of Publication  E. P. Dutton and Company, New York  
Year of Publication  1917  

The 'author' appears under the title of "Russian Court Memoirs" which is not very helpful.

Thank you Daniel for the minutiae of the abdication - it is fascinating and it has been so often overlooked.

I wonder, like Erichek, what might have happened if Nicholas had been able to talk to his wife - either by telephone or by Hughes telegraph (was there one at the Alexander Palace?) on 1st March. She, presumably, might have persuaded him to try to stick it out by rallying whatever loyal generals he could find. Or indeed, what would have happened if, face to face, he demanded the loyalty of those around him in the name of Russia and 300 years of Romanov rule. Ever the fatalist, he went like a child, without resisting. Daniel is probably right when he says he was a broken man - but I don't personally have much sympathy for him at this point.

He clearly over-estimated his own abilities and should never have taken over the conduct of the war from NN. Had he been able to stay in the capital running the civil administration, he might have realised that feeding the cities was a higher priority than it was given. And as to having " ministers whom he didn’t trust much" strikes me as folly beyond belief..........

The Alexander Palace / Re: What's in this Area
« on: March 17, 2005, 02:58:36 AM »
This is certainly not the main entrance to the Palace, which is through the colonnaded portico between the two wings.

I suspect, though I have no evidence for it, that most people attending an audience with either the Tsar or the Empress, would enter through the main entrance and then be escorted through the rooms in the centre of the palace to emerge, on the ground plan, in the Small Library (2). If they were having an audience with the Empress, it would probably take place in her Formal Reception Room (1) or the Maple Room (70).
If the audience was with the Tsar, they would have gone from (2) into (1) then (69) then into the  (68) the New Study.

Maybe only family members or regular visitors would use the entrance you are talking about. I say this because I suspect security officials would worry about the easy access into the heart of the Imperial accomodation that this latter door gives. Its just 3 doors to the Imperial bedroom..............
Anyway, I've just managed to buy Spiridovitch, so if anybody knew he would.......................

Daniel, that is fascinating.
So the poor man stewed on what he was doing for almost 9 hours before signing the second act. I know he did not contact the Empress but was that because the telephone lines were down?

Also within the Orthodox calendar, whose name date was March 2nd. If it was Job (I'm sure it was not) that would fit with the fatalism that shrouded his life.

Lastly, and its probably part of another thread, is a legalistic question; if he had signed once (in favour of his son) presumably in law he was no longer Tsar and Emperor of All the Russias? Therefore by a strictly legalist reading, he could not abdicate again?

Pskov, March 2nd 1917 3:00pm (OS)
This is the 2nd and final abdication in favour of his brother GD Mikhail Alexandrovich.
(source: "The Russian Revolution & the Soviet State 1917-1921 Documents" by my old tutor Martin McCauley.)

Nicholas II / Re: Nicholas II's Typical Day
« on: March 01, 2005, 01:53:25 AM »
I'm not clear about this diary comment. Does it concern a 24 hour train journey from TS to Mogilev - leaving on the Thurday, arriving on the Friday? In which case why would he take Alexei with him if he was not well? Surely he would leave him at AP with his mother and the doctors.

Was this a 'serious' Alexei bleeding like the famous 1912 Spala incident? Do we know if Rasputin had any involvment in its 'cure'?
Lastly, do we know if Nicholas took his collies with him to Mogilev/Stavka?

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