In the "blue Pavillon" you will attend a short performance of some chorus singing in a sidehall with excellent accoustics and at the end you are able to give some donations and/or buy their CDs and tapes.
I really enjoyed their singing a lot, but I did not buy any of their CDs because according to my former experience in other such places in Russia these CDs are never as good as the life performances and in many cases the CDs were even simply of a lousy quality.
You always have to cover your shoes before you are allowed to enter the Katherine Palace of Tsarskoe Selo, that is quite the same for many museums in Russia. They had some kind of a plastic-bag with a rubber around it that would fit all sizes of shoes and they will also last not longer than for the time that you spend walking through the palace.
That way the floor is protected against dirty shoes and your shoes are also less slippery on the wooden floors of the palace.
There are some benches to sit at while fixing these plastic-things on your shoes and they really fit all sizes !
In Ekaterinburg on the night of July 16, 1918 Tsar Nicholas II, his family and entourage were killed in the basement of their house of exile. When William Maples was eleven years old he read Seven Years Boots, written in 1935 by Richard Halliburton, which contained a tale of the execution of the Tsar and his family and thus begun Maples fascination with the Tsar and his family. The story in the book was an alleged account from one of the Tsar's assassins Peter Zacharovitch Ermakov. Ermakov claimed that there were only three assassins, himself, Vaganof, and Jacob Yurovsky and that they alone had murdered the entire family, along with the Tsarina's maid, Anna, Dr. Botkin, the cook, and the valet. Ermakov told the family they were being evacuated because the White Russian Army was moving in, so the family was gathered in the basement where they were read their death sentence and shot. Ermakov then claimed they loaded the bodies into a truck, took them to an abandoned mine and left them there to be burned the following evening after nightfall. Ermakov then built a pyre, stripped the bodies (which were wearing many jewels, as well as having jewels sewn into their clothing), poured sulfuric acid and gasoline onto the bodies and burnt them to ashes, which were scattered to the wind. Ermakov wanted to make sure no bodies were left, to be found by Tsar loyalist.
The White Army did advance on Ekaterinburg and when they learned of the Tsar's murder they searched for the abandoned mine shaft. They found the shaft and remnants of clothing, jewels, a severed finger, and Dr. Botkin's upper denture plate. No other body parts or remnants were found at the scene. Ermakov's story was proven to have many discrepancies in the 1980's when the new Soviet policy of "openness" declassified thousands of documents.
The team traveled to Ekaterinburg, Russia, where they began work on the bones. Maples was quickly able to determine the age and sex of all the skeletons, as well as make tentative identifications. Within on day of examination he had determined what had taken the Russian scientists months to come close to. This earned Maples extreme credibility with the Russians and allowed him access to whatever he needed. Maples determined the gunshot and bayonet wounds that likely killed each victim. He also concluded that Alexei's and Anastasia's bodies were not present among the ones found. Maples determined which daughters were present by the maturation of the pelvic bones and wisdom teeth presence. Anastasia was also shorter than her sisters, and none of the skeletons matched with her height. So where was Anastasia's body?
Maples had identified the three older sisters; the Tsar by his face shape, approximate age, height, and his pelvis which was deformed from many hours on horseback; Dr. Botkin by his denture plate; the maid Anna by her worn joints from doing laborious work, the cook by his brow shape; the footman by his height and age, and the Tsarina by her expensive platinum crowns. The missing skeletons of Alexei and Anastasia were to be explained by the two bodies Yurosky burned before burying the rest. Anastasia may have appeared to be a middle-aged woman because the bodies were badly bloated by the time they were moved, it was also summer so flies and maggots would have been present on the bodies, attracted to the gunshot wounds, and all ornament and decoration had been removed from the bodies, rendering the females indistinguishable from one another.
Once DNA tests were developed in 1993, it was proven with 98.5% certainty that the bones were who Maples said they were.
Maples appeared in many documentary films about the Romanov family, but currently in production is a film about his life and his work in the field of forensic anthropology.
As Ermakov had said, they were gunned down in their basement, but by twelve assassins, rather than three. Their bodies were taken to the abandoned mine jewels and clothing removed, and grenades were thrown into the mine to cover the bodies, which is how the severed finger was found nearby. But tales spread quickly by boasting assassins as to the whereabouts of the bodies, so Yurosky and his men returned to the mine to remove the bodies and bury them elsewhere. They loaded the bodies onto a truck and drove them to another locale. Yurosky tried to burn the bodies, but it took so long to burn two, Alexei and an unidentified middle-aged female he claimed was probably the nurse, that he decided to dig a pit and throw the remaining bodies in to be buried, he then poured sulfuric acid on the bodies so they would not be recognizable. And there the bodies remained until April of 1989 when Soviet mystery writer issued a statement in the Moscow News claiming that he and geologists Dr. Alexander Avdonin had located the skeletons of the Tsar and his family outside of Sverdlovsk in 1979 but had been afraid to come forward until then.
Maples, learning of the discovery in 1992 at the annual American Academy of Forensic Sciences convention, offered his help in the identification of the bodies. Maples had been fascinated with the Romanov's for over forty-four years, and now he was going to get a chance to study their actual bones. Maples organized a team of Dr. Lowell Levine; Dr. Michael Baden, Cathryn Oakes, a hair and fiber microscopists; his wife Margaret, a media specialists, Dr. William Goza; Dr. William Hamilton; and Dr. Alexander Melamud.
In Ekaterinburg on the night of July 16, 1918 Tsar Nicholas II, his family and entourage were killed in the basement of their house of exile.
A lot of organizations took part in withdrawal of the priceless things from the palace collections. That is spoken in the decrees of the Defense Council of 10th October 1919 about " the using the values for turnover" , in theses of Sovnarcom (the Council of the National Knights) about the organization of "tax fund" by using the Jewels for getting credit from the foreign banks, in the decree of Sovnarcom of the 26th of October 1920 established the prize for " the quickest selling things abroad, which were taken off by the Petrograd Expert Committee".
Further the withdrawal of apart art products was made not only by using the writing orders but simply by using telephonograms.
But exepting all problems connected with the new historical period in the country life , the museum life was regulated in the museums and parks of the city. In the 30-s the excursion and exploring works were begun, very modest quantity of quide books were printed, the new exhibitions were opened. At the first time the millions of tourists saw the treasures of the Russian culture.
On the 2nd of March 1917 the Tsar renounced from the throne. Some days later, returning from the Headquarters of the commander - in - chief , he became the prisoner in his own house. The tsar's family spent there some months. In August 1917 the family was sent to Siberia. During the night of 17th of July 1918 the tsar's family was shooted in the cellar of the Ipatiev's house in Ekaterinburg.
1917 was the destroyed whirlwind which carried over the Tsar's village. And it changed all life in the Tsar's village. Pushkin became one of the provincial cities in Russia. But all treasures of palaces were opened for sightseeing. Since 1919 after discharging the leading art quides from their work the squandering of the museum values began. The documents, which were opened at the last time, have shown there was made the whole plan of removing numbers of pictures to the Hermitage. At the same time a lot of " little value" things , which were the ownership of the tsar's family, were given to the workers of the museum - Ekaterininskiy palace - by the decision of Narcompros (the National Committee of the Education).
But especially great losses for the museum collections were made by the activity of Expert committee organized in February 1919 and leaded by A.M. Gorkiy. Its functions included the complication of Antiquarian export fund from the nationalized culture value which cost some milliard gold roubles. Then for organizating and making the communications with the biggest antiquarian firms of the West M.F Andreeva was sent to Berlin, and other members of the committee were sent to Paris, London, Florence and Rome
In the reign of Emperor Alexander III the court lived in the Tsar's village few. His Majesty chose for himself the left wing of Alexander's palace. During that reign the Tsar's village was the first city not only in Russia but in Europe which was full lighted with the electricity. Since 1894 the Tsar's village developed very quickly . Till 1905 the court spent the beginning of winter and early spring in the Tsar's village, and since that year it spent there all winter. By the order of His Majesty in 1895 the considerable changes were made in Alexander's palace. The Tsar's village got the best water - pipe and sewerage.
The Tsar's village became one of the most healthy and well - equipped cities in Russia by the beginning of XX century.
Nicole II who would have to be the last Russian Emperor, was born in Alexander's palace. It was his favourite palace in the Tsar's village and there Nicole II brought his fiancee, the Princes Alice Gessenkaya. Since 1905 Alexander's palace became the constant house for the tsar's family. The sessions of the State Council and the auditions of foreign envoys were in the Alexander's palace. There the ministers came with their reports, since that time the Tsar's village became the small capital of the tsar's empire. .
At the reign of Nicole I the decoration and the development of the Tsar's village continued. The City's Central Cathedral was built in the Tsar's village by the order of His Majesty; in the park on the place of old "Monbizhu " the building of Arsenal was finished in which the richest collection of weapon was gathered which was the ownership of the Emperor. On the place of abolished lyceum passion Alexander's cadet corps for small children was made; the park was decorated by the beautiful gate, Turkish bath and it was made wider.
In the reign of Emperor Nicole I, the first Russian railroad was built from St.-Petersburg till the Tsar's village , which was a new performance for people and unuseful thing in our climate for specialists. In the reign of Emperor Alexander II the city continued to develop and there was opened the classical gymnasium, there wasn't built any new buildings but all that was there was kept in good order and there was founded the new Babolov's park.
People usually bring bread to feed birds on the pond. So, ducks rush to everyone passing by to ask for it. ;-)