“Re-examine all you have been told. Dismiss what insults your soul”
– Walt Whitman
I have devoted more than 25 years to researching and writing about the Romanov dynasty and Imperial Russia. During that period, I published dozens of books and journals.
In the 1990s, I organized special Romanov Tours to Russia, which included visits to St. Petersburg, Tsarskoye Selo, Moscow, Crimea, Livadia and Ekaterinburg. In 1997, I led the first tour group from the West on a tour of the Alexander Palace in Tsarskoye Selo, and in 2000, the first tour group from the West on a tour of the Grand Kremlin Palace in Moscow.
I also organized and hosted the 1st International Nicholas II Conference, held on 27th October 2018, in Colchester, England. The 2nd International Nicholas II Conference will be held next year, on Saturday, 19th May 2021, at the Holy Trinity Monastery in Jordanville, NY.
In my closing words at the 2018 Conference, I announced that I would be dedicating my efforts and resources to clearing the name of His Imperial Majesty Sovereign Emperor Nicholas II (1868-1918). I am now a full-time independent researcher on the life, reign and era of Russia’s last emperor and tsar.
My personal crusade to clear the name of Russia’s much slandered tsar, is to challenge the popular-held negative assessment of Nicholas II, which exists in the West to this day.
Part of that mission will revisit – and criticize, if necessary – books, newspaper articles, documentaries, etc., which present his life and reign based on these very negative myths and lies. While I have no personal interest in fighting with scholars, historians and authors, I am, however, prepared to challenge their research, based on new information and facts.
Through the publication of new articles and book titles, researched primarily from Russian sources, my efforts to take a fresh look at the life, reign and era of Russia’s last monarch have been met with both praise and indignation.
The praise comes from monarchists, members of the Orthodox community, and adherents to Nicholas II, all of whom do not share the widely accepted negative assessment of Nicholas II.
The indignation comes from Nicholas II’s many detractors, among them are Russophobes, Communists, Leninites, anti-monarchists, historians and authors. They accuse me of “hagiography”, “romanticizing” or “whitewashing the truth”, or viewing Nicholas II through “rose tinted glasses”. So be it!
It is these same detractors, who are content to rehash the same negative assessment planted more than a century ago, and allowed to germinate over the past century. Much of it based on parlour room gossip among the aristocracy, and even worse, Bolshevik and revolutionary propaganda which poisoned the minds and hearts of so many of the tsar’s subjects.
What is especially frustrating is that it is these “historians” and “experts,” who refuse to examine new documents and research discovered in Russia’s archives by a new generation of Russian historians since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. These include new documents that have been declassified, diaries, letters, testimonials, among others.
Russian historian Pyotr Multatuli hit the nail on the head when he wrote:
“We combine indifference to our own history with our maximalism and categorical judgments. Thus we lose the ability to hear others. Everybody is content with his own biases without thinking that in the case of the holy passion-bearer his opinion is borrowed and that he was too lazy to form his own opinion. More than twenty-five years have passed since the collapse of the USSR, and truthful books on the Imperial Family were published since as early as perestroika. But most people don’t read them and retain the outdated stereotypical views.”
A few months back, I created a shorter version of this post on my personal Facebook page. I was overwhelmed with the show of support which followed: 831 ‘LIKES’, 81 ‘COMMENTS’ and 43 ‘SHARES’.
Below, are just some of the encouraging words of support from people all over the world, who support me in my personal mission to help clear the name of Russia’s much slandered Tsar:
“Paul, never mind what the detractors say. A fresh look at something never hurts and Nickie would be the first one to take that very approach if there was something he wanted to study or evaluate fairly and accurately. If you find positive accomplishments of his reign that amount to unassailable FACTS, able to stand on their own, then you have done scholarship in general a tremendous service. It’s only a “hagiography” if it is devoid of the foibles of human nature and willfully excludes the mistakes, the flaws, or the prejudices that we humans all have, Nicholas and Alex included, but you are out to bare the truth. What is and was, as opposed to what a preconceived ideology seeks to hide or distort. The man had character yet at least one oft-quoted Russian historian said he “lacked insides”. The man was never afraid to act, especially when he thought he was right. That’s a sure sign of character. The most reliable window into his character can be seen in his response to the months of final captivity. He trusted in events, kept his head, never wavered in fear, always displayed a controlled, patient form of quiet but impregnable courage. That’s the man you will ultimately discover. Good luck to you.” – W. Gifford
“Paul, you are to be applauded and admired for your marvellous historical work. I cannot tell you how much truth-seekers appreciate you. Much rubbish was published about Tsar Nicholas II and Empress Alexandra. The truth must be told. The Imperial Sovereign and his consort must be recorded accurately and not sensationalised for any political advancement of Bolshevism or republicanism. They were good people, loving, loyal and patriotic as well as devout.” – A. Adar
“Congratulations for your involvement and your great efforts to “restore” the memory of Nicholas II, our last tsar, so defamed! May God willing give you long life! God bless you!” – M. Rovanova
“Thank you, Paul Gilbert, for your dedication and goal. May you be guided and rewarded by the intercessions of the Holy Martyr Nicholas II.” – B. Bennette
“I support you Paul! Thank you for your hard work.” – E. Davis
“Paul, be not distracted by negativism. More honor to you!” – A. von Pinoci
“What a wonderful life’s work and legacy.” – R. Zisman
“Keep up the good work Paul. If you are copping flak then you are definitely on target.
The honour and name of his majesty Nicholas II must be cleared, he deserves more than what he got and still gets from conformist historians.” – D. Adams
“You are an example for all of us who desire the truth about Tsar Nicholas II.” – L. Young
“Paul, he who strives to speak the truth is often berated. Do not be discouraged. Many support you. And your supporters fair outnumber those who wish to silence you.” – R. LeJeune
© PAUL GILBERT. 27 February 2020
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