On the very early morning hours of this day (July 17th) 100 years ago, Tsar Nicholas II of Russia and his family was murdered by the Bolcheviks in Yekaterinburg.
The Tsar was very unpopular due to his rude treatment of the population and the fact that basically all his advisors and politicians were corrupt.
He also had a tendency of sending democrats and other opposition to working camps in Siberia.
In the heat of Summer 1918 and civil war, the revolutionary Bolcheviks were getting nervous. White forces were advancing ever closer to Yekaterinburg, where the Romanov family was exiled, with the aim of freeing the Tsar. Lenin had a decision to make: To get rid of the Romanov family or to move them elsewhere.
To no surprise, he decided to have them murdered.
Shortly after midnight on July 17th 1918, the family’s “bodyguard” woke them up and told them to enter the basement of the house they were in. They were then told to line up for a photograph, whereafter 11 men entered the 16 square meter room holding rifles and not cameras.
The “bodyguard”, Jurovsky, then took out a piece of paper and said “The Executive Comity of the Ural Soviet has decided to shoot you”.
Nicholas only managed to say “what?” before Jurovsky pulled out a revolver and shot him in the heart. The other men in the firing squad then opened fire too, but had to seek cover because the bullets bounced off the diamonds in the girls’ dresses. They then closed in and repeatedly stabbed them with bayonets until no sounds could be heard and no pulse was left.
The bodies were then thrown onto a truck and taken to the woods where their clothes were burned, diamonds and necklaces taken and the bodies were dumped in an old coal shaft. Hand grenades were then thrown down there.
But Jurovsky was aware that some people knew of the shaft they were dumped in, so the following day he and his men returned, recovered the bodies and drove them further into the woods. They were then thrown in a shallow hole, sulphuric acid was poured all over them and the hole was covered again.