© Paul Gilbert. 12 November 2019
© Paul Gilbert. 12 November 2019
The multimedia play ‘I Killed the Tsar’, premieres on 25th November, at the Theater of Nations (театре Наций) in Moscow. The role of Nicholas II will be performed by People’s Artist of the Russian Federation Yevgeny Mironov, the role of Empress Alexandra Fedorovna by Alexandrvosky Theater actress Olga Belinskaya, and the role of Tsesarevich Alexei will be performed by 13-year-old actor Ivan Shchenin. In total, the production of ‘I Killed the Tsar’ involves 35 actors.
Using VR-technology, the play is an attempt to recount the events associated with the murder of Nicholas II and his family in Ekaterinburg in July 1918, based on irrefutable facts. The play is based on thousands of historical documents collected from the largest archives and museums in Russia. Materials for the play were provided by the State Archive of the Russian Federation, the Russian State Archive of Phonographic Documents, the Russian State Military Historical Archive, the St. Petersburg Branch of the Archive of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the State Central Museum of Contemporary History of Russia and the Museum of the History of Ekaterinburg.
Theater press secretary Maxim Andriyanov, noted that the creators of the play tell the story of the execution of the Imperial family not only from the victims of that terrible night, but also from those who executed the decision of the Ural Regional Council of workers, peasants and soldiers’ deputies. A significant part of the virtual performance is built on the biographies and testimonies of members of the firing squad.
According to the production’s director Mikhail Patlasov, every detail and every fact used in the performance is confirmed by archival documents. Due to the fact that there are so many documents, it is possible to focus not only on the Imperial family, but also on all participants in the execution, and to trace their fate, he noted.
“It is known that the family of Nicholas II was fond of photography, thousands of images have been preserved that allowed us to create a special optical scheme, a format to which vintage pictures can be turned into videos. With the help of VR glasses, viewers will get inside these photos, inside the story, where the “Tsesarevich Alexei will become the protagonist. It is his questions to the killers 100 years after the execution that will become the core on which the whole plot of the performance is strung,” Patlasov said.
The multimedia component is implemented with the use of virtual reality glasses and headphones.
After the premiere shows in Moscow, which will last until 8th December, the multimedia play ‘I Killed the Tsar’ will go on tour to Ekaterinburg, where it will be presented at the Yeltsin Center, and then the tour will continue on to Tobolsk.
© Paul Gilbert. 11 November 2019
Although the Russians began World War I by losing terribly to the Germans, their battles against the Turks went much better. After several serious defeats, it seemed that Russia was on the cusp of freeing the Armenian people from the Turkish yoke. However, that’s not what happened. Seeing how badly they were losing, the Turks vented their frustration on the Armenian population. The genocide began.
Because of the failures on the Western Front, many troops were siphoned off from the war with Turkey. Despite this reduction, the Russians continued to advance on the Turks through 1914 and 1915. However, the reduced number of soldiers made it impossible for the Russians to prevent the genocide. It began on 24th April 1915.
As soon as the killings began, Emperor Nicholas II ordered his army to do everything possible to save the remaining Armenians. Of the roughly 1.65 million Armenians living in Turkey, 375,000 escaped into Russia. That’s almost 25% percent of the entire population.
According to G. Ter-Markarian’s seminal work on the Armenian Genocide, this is how Nicholas II managed to rescue so many Armenians:
‘In the beginning of the disaster of 1915, the Russian-Turkish border was opened by order of the Russian Tsar. Massive crowds of refugees entered the Russian Empire. I heard eye-witness accounts of the extreme joy and tears of gratitude of the sufferers. They fell on Russian soil and kissed it. I heard that the stern, bearded Russian soldiers had to hide their own tears. They shared their food with Armenian children. Armenian mothers kissed the boots of Russian Cossacks who took two, sometimes three Armenian boys on their own saddles. Armenian priests blessed the Russian soldiers with crosses in their hands.
‘At the border, many tables were set up. Russian government workers accepted the Armenians without any papers. They gave each member of a family a single ruble and a special document that allowed them to travel anywhere in the entire Russian Empire for a year. The document even gave them free public transportation! Soup kitchens were set up nearby as well.
‘Russian doctors and nurses handed out free medicine. They were present to offer emergency services to the sick, wounded, and pregnant.’
A number of committees and organizations were engaged in the Armenian refugee relief effort, among them the Committee of Her Highness Grand Duchess Tatiana Nikolaevna. The Tatiana Committee, established on Sept. 14, 1914, was a major initiative. Among the committee’s main responsibilities were providing one-time financial support for refugees; assisting in repatriation or resettlement, as well as refugee registration; responding to inquiries from relatives; and arranging employment and housing assistance.
The state treasury supported the activities of the Tatiana Committee, and donations from various institutions, committees, and individual donors offered significant sums. The committee also deployed the power of the press and placed appeals in newspapers to raise money. As a result, by April 20, 1915, it had raised 299,792 rubles and 57 kopeks (about $150,000). Acknowledging the potential of artistic events in promoting fundraising, the Tatiana Committee hosted charity concerts, auctions, performances, and exhibitions. A.I. Goremykina, the wife of the prime minister, organized an arts night in Marinskii Palace on March 29, 1915, which was a great financial success. An auction of paintings by famous Russian artists brought the Tatiana Committee 25,000 rubles from that one event alone.
As a result of the 375 thousand Armenians saved, that is, the Russian Sovereign Emperor Nicholas II saved 23% of the entire Armenian population of Turkey. As historian Paul Paganutstsi wrote: “For one thing it is his [Nicholas II’s] salvation for which he can be counted among the saints.”
At the insistence of Nicholas II, a declaration of allied countries was adopted on 24th May 1915, in which the genocide of the Armenian population was recognized as a crime against humanity.
On 24th October 2015, a monument to Emperor Nicholas II was unveiled in the Armenian Museum in Moscow. It is regrettable, however, that in Armenia itself there is still no monument to Emperor Nicholas II, and in Armenian publishers books of falsifiers and Russophobes are coming out, which are trying to slander the great emancipating mission of the Russian Empire. But the memory of the Armenian nation Russia will always be a liberator.
© Paul Gilbert. 2 November 2019
At long last, the Tsarskoye Selo State Museum Reserve have broken their long silence on the re-opening of the Alexander Palace. On 24th October 2019, a press tour of the Alexander Palace was held, in which members of the media were given a first-hand look at the progress of the restoration of the former Imperial residence.
The Alexander Palace was closed to visitors in August 2015. Since that time, an army of craftsmen, artists, and other experts have been working diigently to recreate the historic interiors of the private apartments of Emperor Nicholas II and Empress Alexandra Feodorovna, who made the palace their permanent residence from 1905
After numerous delays, the first eight interiors located on the first floor in the eastern wing of the palace, are now expected to open by the summer of 2020. The renovations have so far cost some 2 billion roubles ($42.7 million).
In 2011, specialists from the Studio 44 architectural studio, led by Nikita Yavein, developed a project for the reconstruction, restoration, technical re-equipment and adaptation of the Alexander Palace for museum use. According to the project, the palace will become a multi-functional museum complex, which will include: permanent exhibition halls, halls for temporary exhibitions, halls for scientific research and conferences, a library, a children’s center, and premises for administration. On the ground floor (basement) there will be a cafe, lobbies with ticket offices, a cloak room, a tour desk, a museum store, as well as technical and auxiliary rooms.
Work on the reconstruction, installation and restoration work was carried out in the basement of the building (basement deepening, reinforcement and waterproofing of foundations), most of the general construction work was performed in the above ground part of the building, as well as work on the installation of external and internal engineering networks, equipment and automation systems. Strengthening the supporting structure of the building. These works were carried out between 2012-2016.
The first visitors to discover the new historic interiors, in which the bulk of the work has already been completed, include the Reception, Working Study, Valet ‘s Room, and the Moorish Bathroom of Nicholas II, as well as the Suite, the Pallisandar (Rosewood) Room, the Mauve (Lilac) Boudoir, and the Imperial Bedroom of Alexandra Feodorovna.
In an effort to recreate the historic interiors, restorers have relied on amateur photographs of the rooms taken by members of the Imperial family, from the Russian state archives, and the 1917 auto-chromes, which provide them with the original colours of the interior elements and decoration. In addition, fabrics have been recreated for the decoration of the rooms, from original samples stored in the Tsarskoye Selo and Pavlovsk State Museum-Reserves. These include chintz (waxed cotton fabric with printed patterns) in the Imperial Bedroom, silk in the Mauve (Lilac) Boudoir, rep weaves (cotton and silk fabric) in the Pallisander (Rosewood) Living Room.
During the restoration, original elements of the historical decoration of the interiors were preserved, including oak wall panels, coffered wooden plafonds, and ceramic tiles.
Work is being carried out at the expense of funds allocated by the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation; the museum’s own funds, as well as charitable donations (the Transsoyuz Charitable Fund allocated 17 million rubles for the restoration of the Marble (Mountain) Hall with a slide). Funds from the federal budget were allocated for general construction work between 2012-2017. Since 2016, the museum has been additionally investing money that it has earned from admission ticket sales to the nearby Catherine Palace. The final completion of work on the Alexander Palace is planned no earlier than 2022.
With the opening of the eight historic interiors, visitors will also have the opportunity to visit the Emperor’s New Study, as well as the rooms of the Library, Empress Alexandra’s Formal Reception Room, and the Maple Drawing Room, the latter of which will be recreated with a historical spatial solution (after the Great Patriotic War, this hall was divided into two), the mezzanine and plaster molding, built-in furniture have been recreated.
The personal apartments for Emperor Nicholas II (then Tsesarevich and Grand Duke Nicholas Alexandrovich) and his wife Alexandra Fedorovna were placed in the former “retinue” half of the Alexander Palace. Alterations began in 1894 under the leadership of Alexander Vidov and Alexander Bach. Then, after the death of Vidov, they were briefly led by Silvio Danini, who, in turn, was replaced by Roman Meltzer.
Reception of Nicholas II
From 1905, the Alexander Palace became the main imperial residence, and therefore the epicenter of the state, and the layout of the working premises strictly followed the court ceremonial. Officials who arrived for an audience with the tsar, arrived in the Reception Hall, where the adjutants were constantly on duty. The room was decorated by the company of the Meltzer brothers in 1899. The walls are surrounded by high massive oak panels with shelves; an oak coffered ceiling and a fireplace of dark green marble in an oak casing with a pyramidal finish in the corner of the interior complete its decoration. The reception has largely been preserved, the finish of which was completed after the German occupation of 1941-1944.
Work in the Reception Room of Nicholas II : restoration of oak panels, parquet, fireplace, ceiling and fabric, manufacturing of a built-in sofa.
The Working Study of Nicholas II
Decorated in the years 1896-1897, it was here that the emperor received his ministers daily, listened to reports, and reviewed documents. The decoration and furniture of the Study – panels, built-in wardrobes, as well as a desk and chairs – were made of walnut wood. Here was the personal library of Nicholas II , which totaled about 700 volumes of military, historical literature, books on state affairs, fiction and periodicals. The interior was destroyed during the Nazi occupation.
Work in the office of Nicholas II : recreation of curtains, fireplace, panels, walnut furniture, carpet.
Moorish Bathroom of Nicholas II
Decorated in the Moorish style, the emperor’s bathroom was designed with a swimming pool with a capacity of more than a thousand buckets of water. The pool was filled with water of the right temperature in a few minutes. From the corridor, the pool was separated by an openwork partition made of maple, from which a ceiling was also made. On the site in front of the pool was a fireplace, tiled with oriental ornaments. The pool and the design of the bathroom were carried out according to the project and under the guidance of the architect and engineer Rochefort. In the apartments of Nicholas II, the Moorish was the only room for relaxation. The interior was lost during the Great Patriotic War.
Works in the Moorish restroom: during the cleaning of the room under the floor, fragments of the original ceramics were discovered, which allowed restorers to more fully and accurately recreate the pattern and determine the color of the tiles. Recreated: fireplace, pool, partition, fabrics, carpet.
Pallisander (Rosewood) Living Room
This interior was designed by Roman Meltzer in 1896-1897. The architect chose rosewood as the main finishing material – an expensive wood, which was imported from abroad. High wall panels with a shelf, framing of a fireplace installed in a corner and furniture were made of rosewood. In the first years of their life in the palace, Nicholas II and Alexandra Fedorovna often spent time in this room, which also became a favourite place for breakfast and dinner of the Imperial family.
Works in the Rosewood living room : fabric patterns of walls, drapes, panels and a rosewood fireplace decorated with fabric inserts and facets with special facets were recreated according to historical samples .
Mauve (Lilac) Boudoir
Over the two decades of Alexandra Fedorovna’s life in Russia, the Mauve or Lilac Boudoir – her favorite room in the Alexander Palace, created by Roman Meltzer – has never been redesigned, despite the change in artistic fashion at the turn of the century. To decorate the interior, silk – mauve with a pattern of interwoven vertical threads – was ordered from the Parisian company Charles Bourget. The wood panels at the bottom of the walls and the furniture designed by Meltzer in imitation of the Rococo style were painted in two colors resembling ivory. Many furnishings, a corner sofa, half cabinets are built-in and connected with wall panels. Here the emperor and the empress with their children often drank coffee after breakfast, gathered for evening tea, and it was in this room where Alexandra Feodorovna spent many hours working and reading.
Works in the Mauve (Lilac) Boudoir: according to historical patterns, fabric upholstery of walls, curtains, built-in furniture, carpet, wood panels, fireplace, picturesque frieze were recreated.
In 1873, mother of Alexandra Fedorovna, Princess Alice stayed here, who travelled to Russia for the wedding of her brother, the Duke of Edinburgh, and Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna. The bedroom was arranged in this room without significant alterations. The architect tightened the walls and the partition with the English chinet ( Charles Hindley ) chosen by Alexandra Fedorovna .
Work in the Bedroom : recreated alcove, fabric upholstery, curtains, carpet.
Other rooms which are also being restored include the New Study of Nicholas II, in which the balcony connecting it to the Maple Room will be reconstructed, the Marble or Mountain, which once housed a great slide, taking up half of the room, as well as the Small and Large Libraries.
The Alexander Palace was constructed in 1792 by order of the Empress Catherine II, for her beloved grandson, Grand Duke Alexander Pavlovich (future Emperor Alexander I ) and Grand Duchess Elizabeth Alekseevna. The creator of the project is the Italian architect Giacomo Quarenghi. From 1905, the palace became the permanent residence of Emperor Nicholas II, who was born here in 1868. The last 12 years of the reign of the Russian emperor and his family were spent here, It was from here that the Imperial family were sent into exile to Tobolsk on 1st August 1917.
In 1918, the Alexander Palace was opened to visitors as a state museum. Later, the NKVD (People’s Commissariat for Internal Affairs) used the west wing as a rest home, and the orphanage was located on the second floor of the east wing, in the former rooms of the children of Nicholas II .
During the fascist occupation of the city of Pushkin, the German headquarters and the Gestapo were located here, in the cellars there was a prison. The square in front of the palace was turned into a cemetery for SS soldiers.
After the war, the palace was mothballed and in 1946 transferred to the USSR Academy of Sciences to store the collections of the Institute of Russian Literature. The building was being prepared for a large-scale exhibition dedicated to the 150th anniversary of A.S. Pushkin. In this regard, in 1947-1951, restoration work began in the building, during which it was planned to restore the preserved interiors of Quarenghi and surviving fragments of decoration. During the work, many elements of the Maple and Rosewood living rooms, as well as the Moorish restroom, were destroyed. In 1951, the Alexander Palace was transferred to the Naval Department, and the palace collection, which was part of the evacuated items in the Central repository of museum funds of suburban palaces-museums, was received at the Pavlovsk Palace Museum.
The palace was transferred to the jurisdiction of the Tsarskoye Selo Museum-Reserve in October 2009, and in June 2010, during the celebration of the 300th anniversary of Tsarskoye Selo, three State Halls were opened after restoration.
The Alexander Palace remains surrounded by a fence
Source: Tsarskoye Selo State Museum Reserve. Translated from Russian by Paul Gilbert
© Paul Gilbert. 31 October 2019
Prior to the 1917 Revolution, more than 1 million bronze bells rang in churches, cathedrals and monasteries throughout the Russian Empire.
After the October Revolution of 1917, church bells were especially despised by the new Bolshevik order. Bell ringing went against the party’s anti-religious campaign, and by the beginning of the 1930s all church bells had been silenced. Under Soviet law, all church buildings, as well as bells, were placed at the disposal of the Local Councils, which “based on state and public needs, used them at their own discretion.” In 1933, at a secret meeting of the All-Russian Central Executive Committee, a plan for the procurement of bell bronze was initiated. Each republic and region received a quarterly quota for their respective procurement of bell bronze. Within a few years, in a well organized campaign, nearly everything which represented Orthodox Russia was destroyed.
The closure of more than 20 specialized bell factories led to the loss of skills in this ancient craft, and the professional knowledge, handed down by many generations of Russian foundry workers, was lost. The bell manufacturers in the city of Valdai, worked longer than others, but by 1930, they ceased to exist.
Until now, no one can say even approximately how many bells have been destroyed over the past century. Some of them were lost when churches were demolished, some were destroyed intentionally, while others destroyed “for the needs of industrialization.” Even the bells cast by glorified masters for some of Russia’s oldest and most famous Orthodox places of worship did not escape this fate. They included the Ivan the Great Bell Tower (Moscow), Christ the Saviour (Moscow), and St. Isaac’s Cathedrals (Leningrad); the Solovetsky, Valaam, Simonov, Savvino-Storozhevsky monasteries; along with thousands of chapels, churches, cathedrals, and monasteries throughout the former Russian Empire. In 1929, a 1,200-pound bell was removed from the Kostroma Assumption Cathedral. In 1931, many bells of the Savior-Euthymius, Rizopolozhensky, Pokrovsky monasteries of Suzdal were sent for remelting. There were no bells left in Moscow.
The story of the destruction of the famous bells (19 bells with a total weight of 8,165 pounds) of the Trinity-Sergius Lavra was particularly tragic – they were handed over to the Rudmetalltorg (the Metal Scrap Trust in Moscow). In his diary about the events in the Trinity-Sergius Lavra, the writer M. Prishvin wrote: “I witnessed the death … the majestic bells of the Godunov era were felled – it was like a spectacle of public execution.”
Most church bells were destroyed. A small number of bells, which were of artistic value, were registered with the People’s Commissariat of Education, which disposed of them based on “state needs.” Other bells seized were sent to large construction sites of Volkhovstroy and Dneprostroy for technical needs, such as the manufacture of boilers for dining rooms! The Moscow authorities found one peculiar use of some of the Moscow bells in 1932. Bronze high reliefs cast from 100 tons of church bells were used for the construction of the Lenin Library.
To eliminate the most valuable bells, it was decided to sell them abroad. “The most appropriate way to eliminate our unique bells is to export them abroad and sell them there on a par with other luxury goods …”, wrote the ideological atheist Gidulyanov.
The bells of the Danilov Monastery were sold to Harvard University in the United States, while the unique bells of the Sretensky Monastery were sold to England. A large number of bells went to private collections.
The gateway 30-meter bell tower of the Church of Simeon Stolpnik in Moscow, was demolished on the eve of World War II, fearing it as a possible landmark for enemy air raids. Holy Russia was silenced, depriving it of a single ringing bell.
© Paul Gilbert. 30 October 2019
In 2018, a DVD entitled ‘Святой Царь в Крыму (Ливадия, 1902-1914)’ / Tr. ‘The Holy Tsar in Russia. Livadia, 1902-1914)’ was issued in Russia. The release of the DVD was timed to the 100th anniversary of the death of Emperor Nicholas II, on 17th July 1918.
The 36-minute DVD is a compilation of 24 newsreels, all filmed at Livadia, the Imperial estate and residence of the last Tsar and his family. All 24 newsreels are accompanied by pre-revolutionary marches and waltzes.
We see vintage newsreel footage of Emperor Nicholas II, Empress Alexandra Feodorovna, and their five children, set against the backdrop of the old wooden palaces in Livadia, and after 1911, set against the backdrop of Nikolai Krasnov’s elegant white Crimea granite palace Neo-Renaissance-style, which has survived to this day.
The vintage newsreels feature a variety of events at Livadia, including the celebration of the birthday of Empress Alexandra Fedorovna and Holy Easter, White Flower Day, parades and receptions. They are surrounded by officers, Court officials, and members of their extended family, including the Grand Dukes and Grand Duchesses, Count Frederiks, Anna Vyrubova, among many others.
The last time the family of Nicholas II visited in Livadia, was in the spring of 1914. They were due to return in the autumn, however, the outbreak of the First World War on 1st August put an end to this visit.
‘The Holy Tsar in Russia. Livadia, 1902-1914)’ – Part I (duration 18 minutes
‘The Holy Tsar in Russia. Livadia, 1902-1914)’ – Part II (duration 18 minutes
© Paul Gilbert. 27 October 2019
I am pleased to offer three NEW titles on the Romanov’s, their palaces and their jewels, from my online bookshop. Please note that a portion from the sale of each book goes towards my work, which includes the translation of articles and news from Russian archival and media sources, as well research to help clear the name of Russia’s much slandered tsar Nicholas II. Thank you for your support!
Russia. Art, Royalty and the Romanovs
by Caroline de Guitaut & Stephen Patterson
The catalogue to the exhibition held in the Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace, London (2018), and Holyroodhouse, Edinburgh Scotland (2019)
Imported from UK. Large Hard Cover Edition. 496 pages. More than 400 Colour photographs!
The Splendor of St. Petersburg. Art & Life in Late Imperial Palaces of Russia
by Thiery Morel & Elizaveta Renne
An unprecedented tour of the most stunning and architecturally significant palatial homes of Russia’s nobility, many not previously photographed and inaccessible to visitors.
Imported from UK. Large Hard Cover Edition. 304 pages. 100s of Colour and Black & White photographs!
JEWELS! The Glitter of the Russian Court
by A. Bijl
The catalogue to the exhibition currently running at the Hermitage Amsterdam (2019).
Imported from the Netherlands. Large Soft Cover Edition. 240 pages. More than 500 Colour photographs!
© Paul Gilbert. 25 October 2019
Earlier this week, Livadia Palace was the venue for the international conference ‘Crimea and the Fate of the Romanov Dynasty. The Beginning and End of the Reign of Emperor Nicholas II.’
The conference was attended by leading Russian historians, publicists, archivists and writers. Several descendants of the Romanov dynasty were also present, including Grand Duke George Mikhailovich.
The objective of the conference was to discuss the truth about the Tsar’s family and the and the achievements that Russia made during the reign of Nicholas II.
The international conference was timed to the 125th anniversary of the accession to Orthodoxy of Princess Alix of Hesse-Darmstadt – the future Empress Alexandra Feodorovna and the 100th anniversary of the escape of members of the Russian Imperial House from Crimea.
In addition, this year marks 125 years since the death of Emperor Alexander III in Livadia. Crimea played a crucial role in the fate of the Romanovs, who played an important role in the development of the peninsula.
© Paul Gilbert. 24 October 2019
Nicholas II (center) arrives on the Imperial Train at the Imperial Pavilion in Tsarskoye Selo
During the reign of Russia’s last Emperor, three railway pavilions were constructed solely for the use of the Tsar and the Imperial Train: St. Petersburg, Tsarskoye Selo and Moscow.
All three Imperial Railway Pavilions have survived to this day.
Imperial Railway Pavilion: St. Petersburg
The Imperial Pavilion was constructed at the Vitebsk Station in 1900-1901, by the Russian architect S. A. Brzhozovsky. It had a separate track, in which the Imperial Train could transport the Emperor and his family to Tsarskoye Selo. The line was also used by his ministers, who travelled from the Imperial capital to Tsarskoye Selo, to have an audience with the Emperor, when he was in residence in the Alexander Palace.
Traffic on the Imperial branch of the railway was opened in 1902.
The lobby of the Imperial Pavilion was crowned with a glass dome, providing natural light. The right side of the pavilion was reserved for the Imperial chambers with a luxurious hall and lavatories, and the left side consisted of a hall for the retinue of Their Imperial Majesties and premises for administration. The platform and track was covered with a special canopy.
Imperial Railway Pavilion: Tsarskoye Selo
The original Imperial Pavilion was constructed of wood in 1895, however, it was destroyed by fire on 25th January 1911. A new stone pavilion designed by architect V.A. Pokrovsky, was constructed in the same Neo-Russian style as the buildings of the nearby Feodorovsky Gorodok. It was here that the Emperor greeted many foreign dignitaries. A special road was laid from the station to the Alexander Palace.
The richly decorated interiors were stylized as chambers with heavy stone vaults. The rich decoration of the facades and interiors corresponded to the grand presentation of the station, being an example of a synthesis of architecture, monumental painting and decorative art, which successfully combined the forms of ancient Russian architecture of the 17th century. with construction technologies and materials characteristic of the modern era.
The imperial chambers of the station were painted by the artist M. I. Kurilko, reflecting the chambers of the beloved suburban palace of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich.
In 1918, the station was renamed the Uritsky Pavilion, and was closed in the middle of the 20th century. The pavilion was badly damaged during the Great Patriotic War (1941-45). Sadly, it remains in a terrible state of disrepair. It has been mothballed, waiting for an investor.
Imperial Railway Pavilion: Moscow
The Imperial Railway Pavilion, also known as the Tsar’s Pavilion Building, was constructed in 1896 by the architect G.V. Voinevich.
The pavilion was designed specifically to receive the Imperial Train, carrying Emperor Nicholas II to Moscow for his Coronation in May 1896. It was built of beautiful facing bricks and decorated with Tarutino stone, crowned with a domed roof and a tower with a spire. The interior decoration and furniture were magnificent.
The plans, however, were changed – the coronation train from St. Petersburg arrived at the Brest Station (now Belorussky). Later, the Imperial Trains carrying the Emperor and his family still made stops at this station.
© Paul Gilbert. 23 October 2019
Last week, Russian journalist Olga Koshkina asked me for an interview, the article of which was published in the October 22nd 2019 issue of ‘Oblastnaya Gazeta,’ a daily newspaper published in Ekaterinburg.
‘Oblastnaya Gazeta’ is the official publication of state authorities of the Sverdlovsk Region, the founders of whom are the Governor and the Legislative Assembly of the Sverdlovsk Region.
Koshkina’s article ‘Пол Гилберт: «Екатеринбург – мой любимый российский город»’ – ‘Paul Gilbert: “Ekaterinburg – My Favourite Russian City,” describes my love of the Ural city, my interest in the Romanov dynasty, my efforts to clear the name of Nicholas II, and the ‘Imperial Route’ project.
NOTE: this article is only in Russian. If you use Google Translate, you can still get the gist of the article in English
© Paul Gilbert. 22 October 2019