Note: the video depicts places associated with the final days of Grand Duchess Elizabeth, and other members of the Russian Imperial family at Alapaevsk. Included are the Grammar school where they were imprisoned, and the Monastery to the New Martyrs and Confessors of Russia. Later in the video you will see the Holy Trinity Cathedral at Alapaevsk.
In 1918 the small Ural town of Alapaevsk hosted very unusual prisoners. Among them were members of the Russian Imperial family and their faithful retainers: Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna with her sister in Christ Varvara, Grand Duke Sergei Mikhailovich and his secretary Fedor Ramez, Princes Ioann, Constantin and Igor Konstatinovich, and Prince Vladimir Paley.
Here, in a Grammar School on the outskirts of Alapaevsk, the prisoners spent several trying months full of horror and suffering. On the night of 17-18th of July they were taken outside the town towards the Verkhne-Siniachikhinsky Factory, and their bodies were thrown in to the abandoned Staroselimskaia Shaft 12 miles away from Alapaevsk.
The White Army started an investigation of the murders immediately after they took Alapaevsk on September 28, 1918. On October 9-11, 1918 the bodies of the martyrs were taken out of the shaft, and on October 19, 1918 they were buried in a crypt of the Holy Trinity Cathedral with great honor. In July 1919, as the Red troops were advancing to the city Hiegumen Seraphim (Kuznetsov) transferred the coffins with the relics first to Chita, and later to Beijing (China). In January 1921 the relics of the Grand Duchess Elizabeth and nun Varvara were transferred to Jerusalem and buried in the crypt of the Church of Mary Magdalene of the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission, where they remain now.
Today at Alapaevsk there is a Veneration Cross and a small chapel dedicated to Grand Duchess Elizabeth built near the old shaft. In 1996 a monastery dedicated to the New Martyrs and Confessors of Russia was built nearby.
The classroom of the Grammar School, where Grand Duchess Elizabeth and Sister Varvara were held captive is now a memorial museum.
© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 20 March, 2013
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