Nicholas and Alexandra - EXECUTION of the ROMANOVS

By the time the Imperial Family moved into the Ipatiev House in 1918, Russia was in full-scale revolution. Vladimir Illych Ulanov, the Bolshevik leader who had changed his last name to Lenin, was in charge of his political party. Lenin and his comrades were referred to as the "Red Army." Military supporters of the Tsar were called the "White Army."

By July of 1918, the White Army was approaching Ekaterinburg. No doubt the Reds had great concern about the Whites' potential for victory. If they were victorious, would they reinstate the Tsar? The Reds were not going to take that risk. Later, it would be easy to believe the final act of terror against the Romanov family came from Lenin himself. ("Lenin's constitution" was ratified on July 10th. Historians have always wondered whether it was just a coincidence that the Tsar and his family were dead soon thereafter.)

During the late hours of July 16, 1918, Yakov Yurovsky awakened Eugene Botkin, the doctor who had stayed with the royal family. Yurovsky told Botkin:

The Romanov family must be moved from upstairs to downstairs as all is not calm in town.

Unknown to Dr. Botkin, Yurovsky had been appointed chief executioner of the Romanov family.

It took about thirty minutes for the family to dress. They were taken from their bedrooms in the Ipatiev House to a room in the cellar.  According to Yurovsky's own account:

A downstairs room was selected that had walls of plastered wood (to prevent ricocheting); all the furniture was removed. The detachment [the execution squad] was at ready in the next room. The Romanovs suspected nothing.

 

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