Author Topic: Visiting the Palace  (Read 32391 times)

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Offline Antonio_P.Caballer

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #30 on: April 23, 2004, 09:29:18 AM »
 Hello Joanna,
I have a book with old cards of Tsarskoe selo before the revolution, they are not high quality reproductions but you can see the building. The book i bought in Russia and is quite cheap so don´t miss it if you go to Petersburg.I will send you the photo.

And for Melissa: I want you to have the very best time in Russia!!!

Antonio.

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #31 on: July 08, 2004, 12:03:10 AM »
Dear Joanna,

My father-in-law was born in the Tsarist province of Estonia near Unikula. He went to the university at Tartu in Estonia, and from there was offered the apprentice position at the Court Pharmacy in Tsarkoe Selo. He was a brilliant man, so must have been an outstanding student to get that opportunity when he was young.  His family stayed in the place he was born, so we know he went to Tsarkoe Selo on his own.

He lived in Tsarkoe Selo, but we do not know where. He left Russia on the last train that was allowed by the Bolsheviks to cross the Russian border into Estonia. He ten served as a medic in the Estonian War of Independence. After that, he continued his work at hospital pharmacies in Estonia.

He brought a red gold man's ring and a Tercentenary Ruble out of Russia with him, and cherished them for the rest of his life. Like so many of his countrymen, he kept his Tsarist connections to himself while his children were growing up.

He did share with the family's Lutheran pastor that the medicines he made up for the Alexander Palace always had "nom de plumes" ...false names for security purposes. So he never knew exactly who the medication was for in the palace.

He was born a subject of Alexander III, and his wife was born a subject of Nicholas II. It is sad that neither of them lived to see Estonia regain its independence in 1991. The first time we went back, in 1998, I felt we were doing it for them as well as ourselves. Hope this is not too long and boring!  Melissa

Sunny

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #32 on: July 08, 2004, 06:43:44 AM »
Melissa, "boring"...how about exactly the opposite  :)

Sunny

Offline ChristineM

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #33 on: July 08, 2004, 08:39:02 AM »
Two remarkable coincidences in the last few postings - the son of the Lutheran pastor in Tsarskoe Selo, Rene Beerman, was a friend of ours.   Sadly he died in 1998.   He was then ninety four years old and with a memory as clear as day.   Rene's uncle was the pastor in the Lutheran Church set back off Nevsky Prospect in St Petersburg.

The City Hospital I know only too well.   It is in a dreadful state of repair.   The conditions are indescribable, probably the worst of all the hospitals we have visited in the St Petersburg Oblast.    Nonetheless, somehow or other the staff, and patients, cope valiantly.  Our charity sent humanitarian aid to it over the last few years, but this is really a drop in a huge ocean.  

It was to this hospital that Anna Vyroubova was taken after being seriously injured in a train crash.   She was visited there by Nicholas and Alexandra, and, very dramatically, by Grigory Rasputin.

tsaria

david_Johnson

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #34 on: July 08, 2004, 09:28:57 AM »
Tsaria,

Im sorry to hear about Rene's passing, he was very  loved in the community and your right his memory was as clear as if the events happened yesterday. When did you last visit the city of Pushkin?  8)

« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by david_Johnson »

david_Johnson

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #35 on: July 08, 2004, 10:36:31 AM »
Joanna,

I know that your question was for "Tsaria" but Semasko is the community hospital in Pushkin. Tsaria is right when she wrote about the current condition of the hospital-- it's horrible! :-[

David
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by david_Johnson »

Offline ChristineM

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #36 on: July 09, 2004, 09:19:13 AM »
Dear David

Rene Beerman was indeed a remarkable man.   He was actually born in the Lutheran Church in Tsarskoe Selo.   The church was on three floors.   The crypt - where they kept the dead!   The ground floor - which was the family home.  The first floor - which was the Church.   He lived  there all his life, until in 1918 the family left for Lithuania.   He trained as a lawyer and eventually came to work at Glasgow University.   He was loved and respected by all who were fortunate enough to cross his path.   His memories of his life in Tsarskoe Selo were crystal clear even though his eye sight was dim and his recent memory impaired.

To return, approximately, to the thread.   The City Hospital is, as I said previously, in a dreadful condition.   They do not have proper laboratories.   They requested our help in securing more up to date laboratories, but this kind of financial commitment is way beyond our possibilities.   We have tried to help in other more simple, humanitarian ways.

The hospital in Pushkin with which we are most closely linked is the Turner Paediatric Orthopaedic Institute.   It serves the whole of the former Soviet Union - 300,000,000 children (up to 17 years of age) who suffer from a variety of difficult orthopaedic conditions.   I like to call it the place where miracles are made.   The staff are superb.   The conditions are grim.   Some of the children are from Kamchatka, for example, and the nature of their diseases can mean they are inpatients for a year and more.

Because it is an Institute. it is funded directly from the Department of Health in Moscow.   The City Hospital is funded by the local authority.   The fact that the Turner is a renowned centre of excellence does not help its funding.   A couple of years ago we had an appeal from its Director.   They had run out of funding for food over the winter.   We were able to send containers of food.   The famous soup company, Baxters of Fochabers (By appointment to HM the Queen), gave us forty tons of soup which we sent out in two containers.   Simple generosity - no hype... no publicity... just good heartedness.

The Turner was built for victims of the Russo-Turkish War.   It is situated close to the Orlov Gate in the Alexander Park.   It was here that Alexandra Feodorovna first introduced the concept of rehabilitation to Russia.   It was also here that Tsarevich Alexei was fitted with 'lifts' for his boots when after the episode at Spala the affected leg shrunk.   This is visible in a number of photographs from the period.

I am certain the Imperial Children would be very happy to know that children with some of the most awful disablities and deformities one could imagine are loved and cared for in this little corner of their home.

tsaria

Offline ChristineM

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #37 on: July 09, 2004, 09:26:27 AM »
Dear Joanna

The City Hospital in Pushkin is situated in Hospital Street.   It is not so close to Sofia.   It is near the ponds.   I have both old and new photographs of it.   Little in the original building has changed.   I am sure in 1916 Anna Vyroubova enjoyed much more clinical surroundings.  

There are additional departments spread across some streets.   These newer buildings, eg the Maternity Department are far from wonderful, but are not nearly so harrowing as the original hospital.

tsaria

Offline ChristineM

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #38 on: July 09, 2004, 09:27:31 AM »
Dear Rob

Don't be annoyed with me, please.   I know we have moved miles off the thread, but I did not know where else to post.

tsaria

david_Johnson

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #39 on: July 09, 2004, 12:18:11 PM »
Dear Tsaria,

The world needs more people like you! Your an angel!  ;)

David

NAAOTMA

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #40 on: July 09, 2004, 02:23:25 PM »
Dear Tsaria,

The thought that Rev. Beerman and my late father-in-law most likely brushed elbows at Tsarkoe Selo is amazing to me. How wonderful it would have been to hear his stories of his life there, and search his memories for any regarding a young Estonian pharmacy apprentice at the Court Pharmacy.

The Estonian Lutheran pastor who officated at both my in-laws' funerals was well into his nineties when my mother-in-law died in 1991. He was a tough, vigorous man deeply dedicated to his country, and was fierce in imparting his own "lost world" to the younger generation.

Thank you for sharing the information about your work. Something good has arisen out of a place that has so much loss and sadness associated with it.   Melissa K.

Offline ChristineM

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #41 on: July 09, 2004, 05:42:32 PM »
Dear Melissa

Even more remarkably is the fact that the Beerman family originated from Estonia.   Even in those days the world was a small place.  

I agree, to know people who shared similar experiences in a world long gone is part of the pleasure of existence.   They most likely knew of each other.

Rene Beerman has two daughters.   I am sorry since Mrs Beerman died, I do not know how to contact them.   I will try through a mutual acquaintance.  

As so often happens in families, they did not seem to have very much interest in their father's time in Tsarskoe Selo.  This was long before he met and married their mother and began a new, different life.

What I can tell you is that Rene Beerman recalls seeing Nicholas, Alexandra and the children frequently.   He remembered how they rode in an open carriage, most often down Pavlovskoye Schosse.   The Emperor always rode his own horse alongside them.   Rene Beerman was born the same year as Tsarevich Alexei.   Whenever they drove past, young Rene would bow and wave.   The family always returned his wave.

The Grand Duchess Constantine did not convert to Orthodoxy on marriage.   She attended services in the Lutheran Church in Tsarskoe Selo on the Sundays she was resident in Pavlovsk.

tsaria

Offline ChristineM

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #42 on: July 09, 2004, 05:46:52 PM »
Dear David

Thank you for your generous words.   There are many more people who try to help than me.

I overlooked one of your earlier questions.   After the revolution, the Lutheran Church was used as a car maintenance workshop.   This it remained until the late 1980s when it rwas reconsecrated amd returned to the Lutheran Church.   It became the principal Lutheran Church for the North of Russia.  

There is a new, young pastor and family who live in a wooden house a short distance away from the church.

tsaria

NAAOTMA

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #43 on: July 12, 2004, 03:07:01 PM »
Dear Tsaria,

Thank you so much for telling us all, and me especially, about Pastor Beerman. It means so much to me and my family.  Melissa

Chris Aubanel

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Re: Visiting the Palace
« Reply #44 on: July 12, 2004, 09:53:46 PM »
I am just back from St. Petersburg, and I had arranged a tour to Tsarkoie Selo with a private car, driver and guide so as to see more of the Alexander Palace. It is open daily except on Tuesdays, but the visit is fairly short since there is only a limited number of rooms open. The exhibits are moving but not very well presented. I had seen a much better exhibition in Wilmington, DE in 1998. However it is so well worth the visit.
There are some explanations in english, but not many, and guides do not translate much.
The best help I found to prepare my trip was from the pages of "The Rough Guide to St. Petersbourg" 4th edition, which is available on Amazon. It is the only guide I found which tells you a lot of accurate details about the past state of the palace. I could not find out if restorations are going on or not in other parts of the palace. The grounds are open, and you can walk all around. Plan a whole afternoon at the Alexander palace, and do not get caught in the long lines of tourists at the Catherine Palace next door.