One of the most difficult stories of the Imperial family is that of their stay and subsequent death in the town in the Ural Mountains known as Ekaterinburg.
Other sites on the net include pictures of the Bolsheviks responsible for the slaughter of the family. I cannot.

At 10:30 p.m. on July 16, 1918, the family was awakened, along with the few members of the household staff remaining with them in exile, and were told to dress quickly and come downstairs. It was, so they were told, because of the White Army and Checks were approaching Ekaterinburg. They dressed and by midnight they were led to a small semi-basement room void of furniture in the Impatiev House where they had been imprisoned since May 1918. Nicholas requested chairs and two were brought in. Alexandra and Alexei sat. (Alexei was unable to walk for sometime due to an injury acquired in their previous ''prison'' at the Governor's mansion in Tobolsk, another Siberian town).

Yakov Yurovsky, the leader of the executioners, arranged the 11 people (7 family members, and four others who shared the family's imprisonment: Trupp, Nicholas' valet; Demidova, Alexandra's maid; Kharitonov, the cook; and Dr. Botkin, Alexei's physician) because, they were told, a photograph was needed to prove that they had not escaped. Once neatly arranged, the door way crowded not with a photographer, but with another 11 men with revolvers. The statement was brief: ''In view of the fact that your relatives are continuing their attack on Soviet Russia, the Ural Executive Committee has decided to execute you.'' Astonished, Nicholas had time only to look back at his family and then at Yurovsky, saying what, what? Yurovsky repeated the statement and pulled out his Colt and shot Nicholas. This opened up the others to shoot at the family. Olga and Alexandra attempted to make the sign of the cross, but did not have time, both died instantly, as did Trupp, Kharitonov, and Botkin.

But for Alexei, Tatiana, Marie, Anastasia, and Demidova, they remained alive. Marie and Anastasia moved against the wall and covered their heads to ward off the hail of bullets. The jewels sewn into their corsets had ricocheted the bullets around the room. Eventually the relentless stream of bullets mowed them down in the back of the room. Alexei, too, covered his head with his hand while lying on the floor, and reached for his father's shirt. Alexei only died when an executioner kicked him in the head with his boot and put two shots in his ear. Demidova survived the first round, and was brutally stabbed with dull bayonets. After attempting to shield herself with a pillow, she tried holding the bayonets with her hands to protect her chest. The moans eventually stopped and the torrent of gunfire ceased. As the smoke cleared, it is said that pulses were quickly checked on the victims. When they were satisfied there was no life remaining, sheets were brought in. Much to the chagrin of the executioners, as they moved one of the Grand Duchess' onto the sheet, she cried out. The pack quickly turned on her with bayonets and rifle buts. She was still.

The bodies were carried out, stripped, and thrown into a mine shaft. A little later, the Bolsheviks, not comfortable with their grave, removed the bodies and buried them in a mass grave deep in the woods. Acid was used to disfigure the bodies. It was later reported that two of the bodies were not buried, but burned. Nicholas' face was smashed unmercifully. The 300 years of the Romanov Dynasty had ended.

The half-basement at the Impatiev House after the massacre.

Many others of the Romanov extended family had been brutally murdered as well in the Bolsheviks attempt at genocide. To find out more about their fate, and the fate of the ones who escaped the fall of Imperial Russia go to the The Survivors page at Royal Russia for an excellent page that accounts for every member of the family in 1918. If you go there, you must hit the back button to return the Unofficial Nicholas and Alexandra Romanov Homepage. Look for another link soon of the most recent developments (in the 1990's) when the mass grave was discovered and bodies identified.

Nicholas | Alexandra | Olga | Tatiana | Marie | Anastasia | Alexei

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