No "Mass Murder In Cellar"


Carl William Ackerman, a reporter and the first dean of the Columbia School of Journalism, was in Siberia in 1918. He inspected the room in the Ipatiev House where the Russian imperial family were supposedly mass executed on July 17, 1918. He remained unconvinced there had been a “mass murder in the cellar.” [1]

Commandant Joseph Lasies, a deputy to the French Parliament, was present in Ekaterinburg on May 18, 1919. Lasies had made inquiries into the disappearance of the Romanovs from the Ipatiev House, site of the infamous cellar, “and strongly doubted the theory of death in the cellar.” He argued with Robert Wilton, reporter for The Times of London. Wilton travelled also to the Ekaterinburg aftermath, and received £1,100 through British government channels. “One of the most famous British agents in Russia, Brigadier George Hill, was to say later that Wilton was indeed a British agent.” Lasies and Wilton disagreed strenuously about the “mass murder in the cellar” story. Exasperated, Wilton finally exclaimed, “Commandant Lasies, even if the tsar and the imperial family are alive, it is necessary to say that they are dead!” [2]

Why would it be necessary to say that Tsar Nicholas II, his wife Alexandra Feodorovna, and their children were dead, even if they were not? Perhaps it had something to do with a secret section of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, promising safety for the Tsar and his family. Or perhaps it was necessary that the royal family be believed dead in order to thwart any pursuit.

The fable of “mass murder in the cellar” was concretized by Nikolay Sokolov, who investigated the disappearance of the Russian imperial family. In 1976, two British journalists, Anthony Summers and Tom Mangold, in the Preface to their book, The File On the Tsar, revealed how they had unearthed the original dossier of the Nikolay Sokolov investigation and found that whole areas of vital evidence had been deliberately suppressed. But why would Sokolov have been biased? Two reasons appear: (1) Sokolov, favoring the Monarchist faction, wanted to make the Bolsheviks seem especially evil; (2) Sokolov wanted to help protect the escaped Romanovs by making it seem they were dead. [3]

But once you are “dead”, there can be problems if you decide to reappear. This happened in the case of Anna Anderson, who first appeared in the 1920s claiming to be the surviving Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna of Russia. There consequently began to be great danger to Anna Anderson. (Background: Great Danger To Anna Anderson, Ersjdamoo’s Blog, October 15, 2014.)

At first, because she was already in great danger, Anna/Anastasia basically adhered to the arranged story of “mass murder in the cellar”, with a slight variation that she had survived the horror. Later, in the 1970s, when time had passed and the “heat” had diminished, Anna/Anastasia told Summers and Mangold, “There was no massacre there… but I cannot tell the rest.” [1]


Given the above, it comes as no surprise that Marga Boodts, who claimed to be the surviving Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna of Russia, basically adheres to the “mass murder in cellar” story in her posthumously published autobiography, Estoy Viva (I Am Alive). In the Marga/Olga version, a mysterious Cossack, Dimitri K, plays a key role. Dimitri infiltrates the Bolshevik Cheka and warns the Tsar, at the Ipatiev House, “Tonight, barricade your doors and do not open them for any reason, unless you hear my voice.” The royal family accordingly lugs heavy furniture to the door, the night of July 16-17, 1918. Later, in the wee hours, the guards pound and push at the barred door. At first the Tsar won’t let them in. But the guards keep trying to persuade him they are only trying to help. The Czech forces, enemies of the Bolsheviks, are about to begin bombarding Ekaterinburg, the guards say. The imperial family must be moved to the cellar for their own safety. [4]

At last the Tsar decides he will trust what the guards say. Contrary to the warning of Dimitri K, Nicholas removes the barricades. The royal family is ushered down to the cellar. Present at the Ipatiev House, in Marga/Olga’s account, are female Bolsheviks. They are even meaner than the male Bolsheviks. But it is some of the male Bolsheviks who do the actual shooting. Among these, pretending to be a Red, is Dimitri K. The cellar is dimly lighted. Dimitri fakes killing Marga/Olga by conking her head with his revolver. Marga/Olga loses consciousness and awakens later in a peasant’s cottage. [4]

Her basic adherence to the “mass murder in cellar” storyline does not necessarily injure the overall credibility of Marga Boodts. Remember: It was dangerous to reveal too much. However Lt. Colonel Michal Goleniewski, who claimed to be the surviving Alexei Nikolaevich, Tsarevich of Russia, dared to defy the “approved” cellar scenario. My friend, the late Sherman H. Skolnick, personally interviewed Goleniewski in the 1970s and was convinced Goleniewski was indeed the lost Tsarevich. “In 1974,” Skolnick later wrote, “I and research associates of mine, spent two whole days in New York interrogating the one who claimed to be Alexei Romanov, heir to the throne, and son of Czar Nicholas 2nd. He candidly and accurately without hesitation answered each and every one of my critical questions to my satisfaction.” Skolnick called the July 1918 seemingly total disappearance of the Russian imperial family one of the great secrets of the 20th century. [5] What Goleniewski dared to say about July 17, 1918 was that the Romanovs had escaped in various disguises. The Tsarevich Alexei (Michal Goleniewski) was given a sleeping potion and smuggled out in a trunk. The sleeping Tsarevich was accompanied by the Tsar, Tsarina, and their daughter Maria, also disguised. The other three daughters, Olga, Tatiana, and Anastasia, left separately that same night. [6]

Which brings us back again to Carl William Ackerman who, within a year of the vanishing act, remained unconvinced there had been a “mass murder in the cellar.”

——- Sources ——-
[1] “Fate of the Tsar”, Ersjdamoo’s Blog, August 21, 2014.
[2] The File On the Tsar, by Anthony Summers and Tom Mangold. New York: Harper & Row, 1976
[3] “Tsar Was ‘Man In Iron Mask'”, Ersjdamoo’s Blog, October 1, 2014.
[4] Estoy Viva, by Olga Nicolaievna. Madrid: Ediciones Martínez Roca, 2012.
[5] “Great Secrets Of The 20th Century – Part One”, by Sherman H. Skolnick. July 8, 1999.
[6] “How the Tsar Escaped”, Ersjdamoo’s Blog, August 22, 2014.

About ersjdamoo

Editor of Conspiracy Nation, later renamed Melchizedek Communique. Close associate of the late Sherman H. Skolnick. Jack of all trades, master of none. Sagittarius, with Sagittarius rising. I'm not a bum, I'm a philosopher.
This entry was posted in Ekaterinburg, Margda Boodts, Romanov family and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to No "Mass Murder In Cellar"

  1. Pingback: Great Danger To Marga Boodts | Ersjdamoo's Blog

  2. Lila says:

    Very interesting, maybe this is why the Empress Dowager refused to ever meet Anna Anderson nor even entertain that she might be Anastasia? She claimed it was because she did not believe they were murdered, possibly she knew this to be true?

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