The Mystery of Anastasia
Was Anastasia the only one of her family that survived the brutal execution of her family? Did Anastasia suffer the fate of her family, who was condemned to death? No one except the executioners knows if she died that night with her family or if she got away. The rumors of her survival started way back when the Russian populous first learned of the Romanov family’s execution and they still continue today (‘’Anastasia”). This is the story of her life up until her families execution and possibly her own. According to the Roman calendar, Anastasia was born one June 5 of 1901.
She was born in Peterhof, later known as Petrodvoets, Russia, which is near St. Petersburg (‘’Anastasia Romanov”). Her full name is Anastasia Nicholaievna Romanov. Physically, she was diminutive, bright blue eyes that were said to shimmer like sapphires, and blonde hair that some people say had a red tint to it (Welsh). Her personality was active, very obstinate, strong willed, quick witted, and a great sense of humor.
She also had strong intellect, which enabled her to learn many languages and became very fluent in each of the languages she had learned. She was the youngest of the three daughters of Nicholas the second, as it turns out he was the last tsar Russia would ever have. Her mother, Alexandra was the Princess of Hessedarmstudt before she married Nicholas. There were many people who opposed their marriage because Russia at the time was on bad terms with Germany, which caused them many enemies among the years he served as the tsar (Gerus). She has 3 sisters, who were all older than herself, by the names of Olga, Tatiana, and Maria. She also had a little brother, whose name was Alexei.
He had a rare blood disease called hemophilia. If he got cut his blood couldn’t clot, so they had to be careful because he could bleed to death. Very few people knew of this illness because they were afraid if it got out that the tsar’s enemies would use it against them. She was favored by her grandmother on her mother’s side of the family. Out of all the siblings, Alexei was the one Anastasia was closest with (Appleton).
Despite growing up as royalty, the kids had to sleep on hard cots, take cold baths, forced to learn four languages and become fluent in them, and Alexandra insisted they make their own beds and pick up their own toys. Though they lived in a house with over 300 rooms the girls shared their rooms with one another. The family often traveled to different palaces and winter homes, but they preferred the isolation of the Alexander palace. When they traveled they would either use the royal yacht or the blue imperial train. (‘’Anastasia”) When war struck Russia, little did the tsar and his family know it, but it was only going to be the start of their problems.
The war started when she was only 13 years old. Anastasia and Maria where both too young to work as a nurse like their mother and older sisters, but they often stopped into visit the hospital in hopes of raising soldiers’ spirits. During the war, almost eighty percent of the Russian populous was in poverty (Gerus). Alexei’s illness got worse. They called many specialists to try and help him, but none were successful. A year later the family was introduced to a man named Rasputin.
He was to said be a religious man. He was also said to have hypnotic eyes. He was able to control Alexei’s bleeding. He also gained control of Alexandra and her fears. When Nicholas took of the sole command of the military, he left Alexandra in charge with Rasputin as her advisor. They fired many important people and Rasputin replaced them with his allies.
The family began to fear Rasputin. They tried to poison him, but it had little effect. They shot him, but the wounds just healed, even wounds that in many cases proved to be fatal. They finally tied bricks to his feet and threw him in the river, where he drowned. Some people in the Russian population started to think of Nicholas as a weak leader, so Nicholas was in the process of trying to avoid a mutiny, but he after realized there was no hope he gave up his thrown.
Though he gave up his thrown it was already too late. The Bolishuits captured the family. The kids were sick at the time, so they were confined to their beds. The bolishuits waited until they were well again before the moved them to Yekaterinburg. Before the girls left they hid jewels in their clothes in hopes of bribing their captures for their release (‘’Anastasia Nicholaievna Romanov”).
They stayed in Yekaterinburg for a total of seventy-eight days. It is said that Anastasia often stuck her tongue at Yurviorsky the head of the Bolishuits and the other guards. Yurviorsky said he would take great pleasure in the killing of Anastasia. On July 16, 1918 the family was woke up at midnight, and they were told to get dressed because they were supposed to be getting photographed. Then, they were driven to what Yurviorsky said was the ‘’House of Special Purpose”. From there they were taken to a cellar where the parents, the family doctor, and three other servants were lined up and shot.
Next, they lined up the kids and shot at them. Bullets bounced off certain spots of Anastasia and Maria because of the jewels they had hidden in their clothes (Gerus). They ran out of ammo, so they bayoneted Anastasia for about twenty minutes until she didn’t move or make a sound. They assumed she was dead. When they left some people say she was somehow able to climb up the steps and get outside were a solider found her and brought her back to his house and fixed her wounds.
She would have been 17 when this tragic event happened (Appletion). The Bolishuits didn’t admit to the murders until 1919, because they feared the Soviet Union’s control. By the time they admitted to the murders, rumors of Anastasia survival were booming throughout Russia. Many people started pretending to be Anastasia in hopes of gaining her inheritance. The most famous was Anna Anderson.
She jumped off a bridge in Berlin on February 17 of 1920. After she was rescued, she was taken to the hospital. When she got to the hospital, she has no identification and refused to speak at all. From there she was taken to a mental institution. One of the nurses thought she resembled Princess Tatiana. Anna was given a list of the Tsar’s daughters and she crossed out all of the names except one, Anastasia (‘’Anastasia Nicholaievna Romanov”).
Upon further examination it was discovered that she had similar scars, cuts, and bruises to what Anastasia would have had after the brutal attack. They brought one of Alexandra’s maids in to visit her, but by the end of the visit the lady stormed out of Anna’s room screaming she was an imposter. They also brought in Princess Iren who said she was definitely not Anastasia. Princess Iren’s son after asking Anna several questions which she answered to his satisfactory said she was Anastasia. Anna also knew Romanov secrets only close family would know.
Anna eventually moved to America, where she got married and died of pneumonia. Up until her death, no one could prove that she was or wasn’t Anastasia. After she died they took some of her body tissue and they compared it with one of Anastasia’s cousins, but it wasn’t a match. The DNA test proved that she was not Anastasia but Franciscka Schanzkowska. Three years later they found the burial site and they discovered two missing bodies. They believed that the two bodies that were missing where Anastasia and Alexi (‘’Anastasia Nicholaievna Romanov”).
To this day only the Bolishuits know if she escaped that day. There is no significant proof whether or not she survived. The world may never know if she escaped that night or if she died with her family.