Author Topic: Did any of the Romanovs survive?  (Read 138142 times)

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Offline _Rodger_

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #120 on: June 19, 2004, 06:41:22 PM »
We have a thread here on this very board dedicated to this question.  Feel free to peruse at your leisure.  ;D
WARNING!!!!  This post may be hazardous to one's sense of things.  Read with caution.

Offline AGRBear

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #121 on: June 19, 2004, 06:45:03 PM »
Greg King >> Cathy Oakes is indeed a world-famous hair and fiber specialist (and is now married to Dr. Levine) but she had little to do in Ekaterinburg as the Moscow team refused to provide her with any samples or even to tell her what their test results had been. <<

Do we know, now, what the test result is?

AGRBear
"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

Joubert, Pensees, No. 152

Offline Vera_Figner

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #122 on: June 19, 2004, 10:14:02 PM »
15.  others ???

Anyone have any other names?

AGRBear
[/quote]

AGRBear,
Why yes, I do! I would be happy to tell you all about it. You probably will not be terribly surprised. Due to the  "seriousness" of the individual in question, the information is not appropriate for the thread that was recommended to you.  The truth of the matter, however, will give you such a laugh.

And it will really make you wonder about some things.

Pakka,
Vera

Offline Greg_King

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #123 on: June 20, 2004, 03:03:18 AM »
Rodger-

I think perhaps the answers to your questions are resolved by looking at the situation of the Ural Regional Soviet and Ekaterinburg.  The Ural Soviet wasn't a tight, "famously ruthless, methodical, and motivated" group of Bolsheviks-they were hanging on to power by a thread, faced with evacuating the Urals, and caught up in in-fighting and conspiracies that summer of 1918.

As a member of the Cheka, and a more fiercely determined man than Avdayev (who flat out refused to go along with the idea of killing them and even tried to object before the event-hence his removal as commandant), Yurovsky was perhaps the best they could get.  They did have people around with experience in murder-like Ermakov-but the last thing they wanted, after the breakdown in security and thefts-was to put an irresponsible person in charge.  Yurovsky may not have been the ideal choice but he was their only choice given the circumstances.

You have to remember, too, that before his appointment Yurovsky was full of the usual revolutionary bluster and revenge, which may have gone a long way in convincing them he would be up to the task.  After he spent time among the Romanovs, as he wrote, he had a different view and this made the murder more difficult, but he carried out as his "revolutionary obligation" if you will.

I seriously doubt that any of the men in the Ural Regional Soviet had much idea about the French Revolution or Robespierre with the exception of Peter Voikov-they were not, on the whole, highly educated nor politically experienced or widely read.  They were men caught in the middle of the Civil War fighting for their survival and convinced that Moscow didn't know what was going on.

As to the issue of bombs versus guns: during the captivity in Ekaterinburg, there were a number of shots fired accidentally by guards-none of which got any attention in the city, whereas when one of the guards dropped a grenade the story about a "bomb" at the IH spread like wildfire, with tales that Alexei had died "of fright."  Having no practical experience, I'm sure Yurovsky thought guns were the quickest and safest option-especially given throwing bombs on the first floor, with exposed walls and an open window, versus a volley of guns in a semi-basement room where the walls were twice as thick as above.  He expected it to go easily-they'd be shot, they'd die, and probably no more than two dozen bullets fired.  But with no experience he didn't anticipate what would happen.

Incidentally, of the 103 possible shots, we calculated-based on wounds, statements, memoirs, forensics, and recovered evidence-that something like only 50 or so were fired-half were not, owing to the smoke and the chaos.  The only witness who recalled hearing the shots remembered them as "indistinct" and "muffled" owing to the thickness of the basement walls.

Greg King

Offline AGRBear

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?I had asked ea
« Reply #124 on: June 20, 2004, 12:04:25 PM »
I had asked earlier about the bullets found in the shallow grave where the bones were found by Avdonin and Ryabov.  I found on p. 40 of Massie's Bk. that fourteen bullets were found.   What data has been released about the bullets?  Was there any that could have been shot from the Colt 45?

AGRBear
"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

Joubert, Pensees, No. 152

rskkiya

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #125 on: June 20, 2004, 12:25:45 PM »
AGRBear,

   I think that some of those bullets were meant to open up containers of sulfuric acid - intended to further disfigure the bodies and to limit the stench of decomposition. Some of the bullets may have already  been in certain corpses.
    I cannot confirm whether sulfuric acid actually affects cadaverine or putrosine...but it ought to have damaged some of the flesh on the victims.
    I dont know where those bullets are now, or what tests might have been done on them...
(Please be charitable with me as I am no expert about this!)

Offline AGRBear

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #126 on: June 20, 2004, 05:09:18 PM »
Greg King and Penny Wilson:
Just bought your book through Amazon.com so I  can have an informed conversation about what you've written about the Romanovs lives and final days plus the dectective work of those dealing with the remains found in the shallow grave...  Hope to get it end of this week.  

By the way,  what label have you / others placed on the shallow grave near the Isetsk factory which was uncovered by Avdonin and Ryabov in May of 1979?   The reason I ask is because it was easy to remember the Four Brother's Mine as the place where people from 1918 to 1991 thought the royal family ashes were  held....  The "new grave"  isn't a good label. In fact it no longer is a grave but an empty piece of ground with a cross.....  The Koptyaki Pit  isn't quite accurate.  The empty grave near the Isetsk factory isn't a label people will remember.....  This may seem an odd question but I've been calling it the "shallow grave" and this doesn't really seem right either.

AGRBear

"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

Joubert, Pensees, No. 152

Offline Greg_King

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #127 on: June 21, 2004, 06:48:19 AM »
Quote
Greg King >> Cathy Oakes is indeed a world-famous hair and fiber specialist (and is now married to Dr. Levine) but she had little to do in Ekaterinburg as the Moscow team refused to provide her with any samples or even to tell her what their test results had been. <<

Do we know, now, what the test result is?

AGRBear


If I recall, there are two conflicting versions (not surprising in this case).  In the official report it was stated that no results could be derived because the hair was too damaged to conduct any adequate testing; but I recall that at the 1993 Conference in Ekaterinburg this question was repeatedly asked and finally, if my translation was any good, Dr. Svetlana Gurtovaya-who was the Russian serological and fiber expert, DID say that they had obtained certain results like blood group types from some of the hairs.  The actual information would be in a transcript I have, but couldn't possibly locate now without some intensive searches.

Greg King

Offline Greg_King

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?I had asked ea
« Reply #128 on: June 21, 2004, 06:55:27 AM »
Quote
I had asked earlier about the bullets found in the shallow grave where the bones were found by Avdonin and Ryabov.  I found on p. 40 of Massie's Bk. that fourteen bullets were found.   What data has been released about the bullets?  Was there any that could have been shot from the Colt 45?

AGRBear


Twenty five bullets were actually recovered from the Koptyaki grave.  They were a mixture of Mauser, Nagant, Colt, Browning, and Smith & Wesson bullets-I can't recall the exact rundown off the top of my head, though we put it in the "Atlantis" issue on material cut from the book for reasons of space.  There was only one Colt used that night-Yurovsky's 1911 .45-caliber pistol, with a clip of seven bullets.

Greg King

Offline Greg_King

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #129 on: June 21, 2004, 07:00:12 AM »
Quote
Greg King and Penny Wilson:
Just bought your book through Amazon.com so I  can have an informed conversation about what you've written about the Romanovs lives and final days plus the dectective work of those dealing with the remains found in the shallow grave...  Hope to get it end of this week.  

By the way,  what label have you / others placed on the shallow grave near the Isetsk factory which was uncovered by Avdonin and Ryabov in May of 1979?   The reason I ask is because it was easy to remember the Four Brother's Mine as the place where people from 1918 to 1991 thought the royal family ashes were  held....  The "new grave"  isn't a good label. In fact it no longer is a grave but an empty piece of ground with a cross.....  The Koptyaki Pit  isn't quite accurate.  The empty grave near the Isetsk factory isn't a label people will remember.....  This may seem an odd question but I've been calling it the "shallow grave" and this doesn't really seem right either.

AGRBear



Feel free to ask questions as you read.

As to the grave, we call it the grave, or the Koptyaki grave-it was (other than a short period) the only grave involved in the story.

Greg King

Offline AGRBear

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #130 on: June 21, 2004, 12:16:53 PM »
Greg
Meanwhile, more questions with my other books as references:

In the hard cover edition, a map, following page 142 showed the "Ekaterinburg and alleged route to Four Brothers" where at that time the CHEKA and earlier books claim was the buriel grave.

According to what they found the route took them from the House of Special Purpose  gate on Vozenesensky Ave, turned right on Vozesensky St. and right on Glavnaya Streeet which was the road to Kotyaki village.  They show the Verkh-Isetsk Factory and show the train tracks line to Station No. 1. [ There isn't a mark showing distances.]    Also, their map shows the Four Brothers mine farther to the north and the tracks from Perm to Station No. 2.  According to Massie the Koptyaki grave was about 700 feet from the factory.  

How far from town is the factory?

Which track is closest to the Koptyaki grave?

Was is it east or west of the road to Koptaki Road?  

I guess I should ask if this map is  accurate?  

Did you conclude that one/ two or done of the bodies ever were thrown into the pit at the Four Brother's Mine area?  Or was just their clothing and other items that were destroyed at this spot?

AGRBear


"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

Joubert, Pensees, No. 152

Dashkova

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #131 on: June 21, 2004, 01:23:10 PM »
To Greg and Penny,

I am reading your book (for the second time, first time around it was skimming, due to my schedule) and I can't say enough how much I am impressed not only by your research but your strong narrative.  

I must admit I do have questions from time to time, however.

One that has been occupying my mind the past couple of days is the murder scene, particularly as it concerns Alexei.

On page 309 in your book (and which is repeated in a few other books), Alexei is described as remaining seated on the chair in the center of the room following the murder of his father, while his mother and sisters huddle together in a corner.

Considering how precious he was to all of them, it's odd that he would be left sitting there. Surely Alexandra would have been happy to die trying to save him.

Various thoughts might cross a reader's mind when reading this passage:  1. Alexandra and the others were afraid to try to get to Alexei from where they stood, 2. they were prevented from attempting to approach him, 3. The women figured that the killers were only after the Tsar and the heir and the best they could hope for would be to stay out of the way.
4.  That part of the story was inaccurately recorded, perhaps intentionally, or just the typical and maybe most accurate -- human memory is simply not very reliable.

I would really enjoy hearing any further thoughts you have on this topic -- I am thinking that perhaps more information about this may have been cut from the book and I have not yet read the Atlantis issue that includes the cut material.

Offline Antonio_P.Caballer

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #132 on: June 21, 2004, 08:35:59 PM »
Quote
The entire execution took less than ten minutes.


Hello Penny,

I´m quite confussed about that phrase, since after reading the book i had the thought that it took much more time. I mean all that about the bodies being carried away in blankets, and then discovering some of the girls were still alive, and so on...

Offline Greg_King

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #133 on: June 21, 2004, 09:45:53 PM »
AGRBear:

Again, I'll not quote but try to answer the questions.

The Route: It's conjecture as to what it was, and there have been several variations-no one that night left any account of how they got to the Koptyaki Road.  We think it was probably the most direct-right onto Voznesensky Prospekt, right on Voznesensky Lane to Lower Iset Pond, left onto Yakova to Moskovskaya Prospekt, right and across the bridge and then on to Isetsky Road.

Verkh-Isetsk is about 2 miles from the former edge of Ekaterinburg; the actual Koptyaki grave was another 8-9 miles up Koptyaki Road at Pig's Meadow, near the old Grade Crossing No. 187.  It isn't anywhere near the factory.

The closest rail line to the grave was the Kungursk spur across the meadow at No. 187; the Perm line crossed at No. 803 near the entry to the forest.  The grave was on the southwestern edge of the meadow.

There were two open pits at the Four Brothers, and two shafts-a narrow one 36 feet deep, and a wider one 9 feet deep.  When they threw the corpses in, Yurovsky assumed both shafts were the same depth; after half of them had gone in, they started to pile up, and were no longer covered by the water-it was "very shallow" as he recalled-no more than 10 feet deep.  The water he said "scarcely covered" the first few bodies.  The rest were thrown in anyway, though, and Yurovsky attempted to blow up the shaft with grenades, then when that failed he covered them over with brush and dirt and returned to Ekaterinburg to report.  He returned later to exhume them.

Greg King

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Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« Reply #134 on: June 22, 2004, 12:59:08 PM »
Thank you for the clarification, Penny!  It must have been one of those surreal moments where time flew and yet stood still, for all involved. And of course, none of us know how we would react in any extremely high stress situation, let alone something as horrific as the scene in question.

And again, though I really am so impressed with how you and Greg went over the research and accounts, minute by minute, (second by second?) and wove together what is (for me anyway) the most clearly articulated account of what most likely happened, it must have been a very painful thing to write.

The 35 minute episode (leading up to the 3 a.m. departure) seems astonishing, but when one thinks about how the murderers must have been terrified over what they had done and so eager to somehow make the results disappear, I can totally believe they moved very quickly.

Also, the portrayal of the guards and soldiers, I can't say enough good things about this. It must be a first in Romanov studies literature.