Anastasia was born on June 5th 1901 according
to a Russian calendar which was 13 days behind
the rest of the world at the time. She was born
at the amazingly opulent Petrodvoretz Palace
(Peterhof) outside of St. Petersburg, Russia and
lived 16 priveleged years as the youngest of a
group of very charming, elegant and
well-educated young Romanov princesses.
Anastasia never achieved the physical stature
of her older sister, Tatiana, who was often
referred to as the tallest and most beautiful
Romanov princess. Olga and Marie were two
more older princesses known for their beauty
and charm. Anastasia was very close to her
younger brother, Alexii, who was the baby of the
family and a hemophiliac.
Lenin, the cold hearted political idealist who in
1917 brought down the kingdom of Anastasia's
father (Nicholas II), was the real evil character
in the tragic true story of the young
princess. Rasputin existed in real life but, as
naughty a man as he may have been, he would
not have been the type to specifically kill
17 year old Anastasia and her family the way
Lenin's brand of "communists" were able to
arrest the 16 year old Anastasia and her family
and soon claim power to rename Russia the
"Soviet Union." But the Soviets (also called the
"Reds" and the "Bolsheviks") were actually
not able to subjugate all of the Russian people
for another 4 years. During a cruel 4 year Civil
War, Lenin, for political reasons, needed every
last heir to the Russian crown eliminated so as
to give the anti-communists no hope to rally
around in restoring the revolutionary Russia
to the "stability" of a monarchy instead of a
totalitarian communist state (noone seriously
considered democracy in Russia at the time,
except for the secret U.S. Army unit which tried
to help the "White" Russian monarchists battle
Lenin ordered that Anastasia's entire family be
murdered. In a room of the country house in
Yekaterinberg, Siberia where they had enjoyed
a relatively pleasant imprisonment they were
gathered around Midnight on July 16-17, 1918.
Anastasia had just turned 17. They were told
they were being transferred to another prison
venue. The girls, including Anastasia,
reportedly wrapped their bodices with their
many jewels as a way to avoid being robbed by
guards who were not allowed to touch the
princesses. All the family assembled for what
they thought was a portrait to be taken before
they went on their journey.
When eleven guards suddenly began firing
bullets into the Romanov family the young
women started screaming and they were the last
to die because the jewelry was like a suit of
armor for each princess. In fact the guards
apparently had to go up to the wounded
princesses and stab them with bayonets in order
to finally kill them.
In 1991 the skeletons of the Romanov
family were dug up in Siberia. But the
skeletons of Anastasia and Alexii were
apparently not identified. It is remotely
possible that Anastasia's life was spared in
the middle of that horrible July night. But why
would those cruel murderers have risked
Lenin's wrath by sparing her life? Her sisters'
bullet ridden skeletons exist as evidence of a
Maybe the executioners conducted the
massacre of the Romanovs to avoid being killed
themselves by Lenin, but they drew the line
at killing the two children (defined as being
under 18). Rumours have existed for 79 years
that Anastastia did survive to assume the
identity of a Soviet woman, but this is unlikely.
The skeleton of Anastasia's little dog
Jimmy was found among the skeletons of the
rest of her family.
Because of the rumors, a Polish factory worker
in Germany would declare herself to be "the
lost princess" Anastasia in 1922 after a failed
suicide attempt. Anastasia's real grandmother
in Paris dismissed this woman as a fake. The
"imposter" was, however, accepted by Park
Avenue society in New York and was able
to live the high life there until she lost too
many friends for being arrogant and until she
was institutionalized for being mentally ill.
Naming herself "Anna Anderson" to avoid the
paparazzi, she moved back to Germany where relatives of the Romanov's blocked her court
actions for 30 years in a successful attempt
to stop the "imposter" from cashing in on her
pretense of being the real Anastasia.
DNA evidence has now proven that Anna
Anderson was definitely NOT the Princess
Anastasia. The princesses' grandmother in
Paris had correctly rejected Anna as
an imposter and the German courts had been
justified in not awarding any Romanov money to
Nicholas II (born 1868, ruled 1894-1917). His Danish mother was a sister of Queen Alexandra of England, wife of Edward VII.
Nicholas had great charm but was hopelessly indecisive as the all-powerful head of the Russian state. He was greatly influenced by his wife Alexandra Feodorovna. She was a granddaughter of Britain's Queen Victoria.
The imperial couple fell under the spell of the scheming Siberian monk Rasputin. Alexis, their only son and heir to the throne, had hemophilia, a blood disease. When the boy began to bleed, for some unknown reason only Rasputin seemed able to stop it.
Nicholas and Alexandra thus came to believe that Alexis' life depended upon Rasputin. The monk therefore gained great political power and in the process offended many of the nobles.
In spite of his efforts, a powerful military bureaucracy pushed Russia into a disastrous war (1904-05) with Japan. The Russo-Japanese War was followed by widespread revolutionary movements.
Nicholas called for the election of a duma, or legislative assembly, as a step toward constitutional government.
The duma was not a success, and public discontent grew, particularly in the cities. The discouraged emperor withdrew almost completely from public life. Rasputin continued to meddle with government affairs until he was assassinated by Russian nobles in 1916.
In the summer of 1914 Russia and the other great European powers became involved in World War I (see World War I). War again proved a disaster for the imperial government. There were corruption at home and defeat on the war fronts. The Russian Revolution came in 1917. Troops in St. Petersburg attacked and looted the Winter Palace. The emperor abdicated both for himself and the sickly Alexis, leaving the throne to his brother Michael, who disappeared during the uprisings and was never heard from again. The imperial family was kept under guard until they were finally sent to Siberia. There, on July 17, 1918, in the town of Ekaterinburg, Nicholas, Alexandra, and their five children were brutally murdered by the new Bolshevik rulers.
But there have been stories that one of the children survived. Numerous women have come forward claiming to be the youngest daughter Anastasia.