In 1977, while he was first secretary of the Sverdlovsk Region, Boris Yeltsin gave an order to destroy the Ipatiev House. It had become a kind of shrine for pilgrims. For more than twenty years thereafter, the only evidence of its existence was a white cross. Since 2003, a new church - the Cathedral of the Blood - marks the place where the Romanovs were killed.
After the Tsar was executed, headlines in the Ural Worker (the local paper) told of his death, but not the deaths of his family members:
EXECUTION OF NICHOLAS, THE BLOODY CROWNED MURDERER SHOT WITHOUT BOURGEOIS FORMALITIES BUT IN ACCORDANCE WITH OUR NEW DEMOCRATIC PRINCIPLES
Because no one was sure what had happened to the Tsar's children, folks began to speculate whether some of the family members had survived. Most notably, a young woman named Anna Anderson surfaced in Germany in 1920, after surviving a suicide attempt.
Although she did not speak Russian, the young woman seemed to know a great deal about Russian protocol and she looked like the Tsar's youngest daughter, Anastasia. Many people thought she was Anastasia.
Anna Anderson died an old woman, in 1984. She was cremated but a hospital had preserved a section of her intestines which had been removed years before her death. Her DNA was compared to the DNA of Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh (a Romanov relative). They did not match.
Meanwhile, in Canada, a man called "Heino" died of a blood disorder in 1977. His tombstone says:
His Imperial Highness, Alexei Nicolaievich, Sovereign Heir, Tsarevich, Grand Duke of Russia, August 12, 1904, June 26, 1977
It's interesting to compare pictures of "Heino" to the picture of Alexei. But how could "Heino" claim to be Alexei? Yurovsky said he and his colleagues burned Alexei's body after they killed him. And - even more unlikely - how could a hemophiliac survive the Ipatiev blood bath?