Born June 18th 1901 – Anastasia Romanov.
Her father was the Tsar of Russia, Nicholas II, her mother was Alexandra, grand-daughter of Queen Victoria of Great Britain.
She had three elder sisters, Olga, Tatiana and Maria, and a younger brother Alexei.
Alexei suffered from a disease called haemophilia which stops the blood from clotting. If he cut or bruised himself he could bleed to death.
The Russian people did not know that Alexei was sick.
Anastasia was a bit of a tom-boy and loved practical jokes.
She was also gentle and spent time with her dogs and her brother who was not allowed outdoors.
She shared a room with her sister Maria and slept on an army camp bed. Anastasia spoke English and Russian.
Anastasia’s Russian was childish because she had no contact with the outside world.
Anastasia’s mother was desperate to find some way to cure her son.
She heard that a Holy man called Rasputin could help and contacted him.
Rasputin did not act like a Holy man, he was often drunk.
The Russian people were suspicious of Alexandra’s involvement with Rasputin.
A group of Russians who were critical of the Royal family decided to kill Rasputin. They poisoned him, shot him then tied him up and threw him in the river.
In 1917 there were riots in Petrograd and Moscow. Nicholas was forced to abdicate (give up the throne).
Anastasia and her family were taken prisoner.
Anastasia and her family were later moved to Siberia where the girls were not allowed to be alone. Guards even followed them into the bathroom.
On July 16 1918 the family were woken up and taken to a cellar. They were arranged into a group and believed they were to be photographed.
Suddenly armed men burst into the room and began firing. Anastasia’s parents and her sister, Olga, their doctor (Dr Botkin) and two servants died instantly.
The family’s diamonds had been sewn into the girl’s dresses and the bullets bounced off these around the room. The soldiers were amazed at this ‘miracle’ but kept on firing.
Alexei was lying on the floor groaning, a soldier shot him through the head.
It was chaotic inside the cellar. The room was filled with smoke.
Tatiana and Maria eventually died.
Anastasia was last seen huddled against the wall with her arms over her head.
Some accounts of the murder say that Anastasia was bayoneted several times.
There is much confusion about how Anastasia died. Some people believe she did not die at all.
The bodies of the royal family were thrown into a pit in the woods.
The pit was found two years later. Two bodies were missing!