This article was researched from Russian media sources and written by Paul Gilbert, Founder of Royal Russia © 2018
For the past week, curators from various Moscow museums have been overseeing the finishing touches on the Museum of the Family of Emperor Nicholas II in Tobolsk. After several delays, the museum is scheduled to open on 28th April. The new permanent exhibition focuses on the ideals of traditions and values of Russia’s last emperor Nicholas II and his family.
The new museum, which is housed in the former Governor’s Mansion in the Siberian city of Tobolsk has an historical connection with the family of Nicholas II. It was here that the Imperial family were sent from the Alexander Palace where they were under house arrest in Tsarskoye Selo into exile. The Imperial family arrived in Tobolsk on 6th August, 1917 and housed in the former Governor’s residence until 13th April, 1918 when they were transferred to Ekaterinburg, and subsequently murdered in the Ipatiev House on the night of 16/17 July 1918.
During the preparation for the opening of the museum, a great deal of work was done on the restoration, and repair of the building.
The main aim of the restoration was to preserve the elements of historic authenticity. Visitors to the museum will be able to see the original stairs, stoves and parquet elements dating back to the time of the Imperial family’s stay in Tobolsk. Over the past few years, a number of unique items were assembled and restored, including personal items belonging to Nicholas II and Alexandra Feodorovna, as well as those produced by the suppliers to the Imperial Court.
The pearls of the collection are a plaque made of mammoth bone bearing the signature of Tsesarevich Nicholas Alexandrovich (future Emperor Nicholas II); a standard which the Tsesarevich carried through the rivers of Siberia from Piraeus to Vladivostok; a family photo album with amateur photographs taken by the Imperial family, accounts of food supplied by the St. John Vvedensky Monastery, provided for the “residents of the Governor’s and Kornilov’s houses” from August 12, 1917 to May 19, 1918; a silk shawl belonging to Alexander Feodorovna; a “Holy Gospel” bearing a stamp from the Empress’s library. The authenticity of these items are confirmed by entries in the museum’s accounting records and examined by curators.
“We are still not fully aware of this huge, large-scale event that will allow us to open new facets of our history,” said Svetlana Sidorova, general director of the Tyumen Museum and Educational Association, “We are very grateful to our consultants from the fund “Elisavetinsky-Sergievskoe Enlightenment Society (ESPO) who helped create this museum, carrying a special mission to return people to our traditional family and civic values. “
Visitors to the new museum, according to the idea of the creators of the exposition, will not only see how the August prisoners had their breakfast, sawed wood, walked, read books and staged amateur theatrical performances. “I am completely immersed in the atmosphere of this house, and I am confident that anyone who visits the restored rooms of the new museum will be able to feel how unique and amazing this family was and how we for many years had been deprived of an understanding of the truth about the last emperor and his family,” – said Sidorova – “This understanding will give future generations a better understanding of our nation’s history. I am confident that the museum will help strengthen our national unity and spirit.”
The Museum of the Family of Emperor Nicholas II will be included in the tourist project “The Imperial Route”, which is being implemented under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation, together with the Elisavetinsky-Sergievskoe Enlightenment Society Foundation, the Department of the Consumer Market and Tourism and the Department of Culture of the Tyumen Region.
There are plans to promote the museum as a social and cultural venue in the Tyumen region, to add it to the federal list of Historical and Cultural Landmarks of the Russian Federation, and to expand links between the museum and the scientific community with organizations studying the history of Russia and the Romanov dynasty.
Click HERE to read more about the restoration of the Governor’s Mansion and the Museum of the Family of Emperor Nicholas II in Tobolsk
© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 3 April 2018