The Romanov family

The Russian Imperial Romanov family (Tsar Nicholas II, his wife Tsarina Alexandra and their five children Olga, Tatiana, Maria, Anastasia, and Alexei) and all those who chose to accompany them into exile (Eugene Botkin, Anna Demidova, Alexei Trupp and Ivan Kharitonov) were shot and murdered by Bolshevik troops, led by Yakov Yurovsky under the orders of the Ural Regional Soviet, in Yekaterinburg on 17 July 1918.

Amber L. Carter
As of 2011, it is still a mystery as to who gave the order to execute the family. There has been no conclusive evidence that either Lenin or Sverdlov gave the order.

15 intimate snapshots of the Romanov family

Many of these rare pictures of the imperial Romanov family were taken by head of the family and Russia's last tsar himself, Nicholas II. An insatiable photographer, the tsar took great care of his pictures, filing them carefully in numerous albums. He passed down his love for photography to Maria, his third daughter, who was responsible for coloring most of the pictures. Within a year of the last pictures, the Russian Revolution took place. The tsar was forced to abdicate and the family was exiled. In Yekaterinburg on July 17, 1918, they were shot on Lenin's orders.

Depiction of the Romanov Family execution

"The prisoners were told to wait in the cellar room while the truck that would transport them was being brought to the House. A few minutes later, an execution squad of secret police was brought in and Yurovsky read aloud the order given him by the Ural Executive Committee: “Nikolai Alexandrovich, in view of the fact that your relatives are continuing their attack on Soviet Russia, the Ural Executive Committee has decided to execute you.” Nicholas, facing his family, turned and said "What? What?"[17] Yurovsky quickly repeated the order and the weapons were raised. The Empress and Grand Duchess Olga, according to a guard's reminiscence, had tried to cross themselves, but failed amid the shooting. Yurovsky reportedly raised his gun at Nicholas's torso and fired; Nicholas fell dead. Yurovsky then shot Alexei. The other executioners then began shooting chaotically until all the intended victims had fallen. Several more shots were fired and the doors opened to scatter the smoke.[17] There were some survivors, so Peter Ermakov stabbed them with bayonets because the shots could be heard outside.[17] The last to die were Tatiana, Anastasia, and Maria, who were carrying a few pounds (over 1.3 kilograms) of diamonds sewn into their clothing, which had given them a degree of protection from the firing.[18] However, they were speared with bayonets as well. Olga sustained a gunshot wound to the head. Maria and Anastasia were said to have crouched up against a wall covering their heads in terror until they were shot down. Yurovsky himself killed Tatiana and Alexei. Tatiana died from a single bullet through the back of her head.[19] Alexei received two bullets to the head, right behind the ear after the executioners realized he had not been killed by the first shot.[20] Anna Demidova, Alexandra's maid, survived the initial onslaught but was quickly stabbed to death against the back wall while trying to defend herself with a small pillow which she had carried that was filled with precious gems and jewels." - Wikipedia

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