Anastasia / Anna Anderson

Princess Anastasia before the assassination.


IN FEBRUARY 1920, two years after the execution of the Russian Czar and his family, a young woman attempted suicide by jumping off a bridge in Berlin. She was rescued, but when she arrived at hospital she had no proof of identity on her and would not reveal her name. The hospital sent her to an insane asylum where she was recognised as the Czar’s daughter, Grand Duchess Tatiana. The woman denied that she was Tatiana, but over time revealed that she was actually his other daughter, the Duchess Anastasia. She explained that the bayonets of the Communist death squad soldiers had been blunt and she had survived the assassination attempt. One of the soldiers who came to remove the bodies noticed that she was still alive and spirited her away to Romania. She had come to Berlin to find her aunt, Princess Irene, but fear of not being recognised led to her taking such desperate measures. The woman adopted the name Anna Anderson, and spent much of her life trying to prove she was Anastasia. When news of her appearance first spread, one of Alexandra’s ladies-in-waiting visited the hospital, but Anderson kept her head covered with blankets so the woman declared her a fake. Similarly, Princess Irene met Anderson and refuted her claims, although in private it is said she was not so sure, and her son Sigismund actually declared that he thought Anderson was Anastasia. The community of European monarchies were generally undecided. The Czar’s mistress, Mathilde Kschessinka, believed Anderson was the young princess, and Pierre Guillard, Anastasia’s former tutor, also initially declared his support before changing his mind. The family of another court employee – the monarch’s doctor Eugene Botkin – were utterly convinced of Anderson’s true royal lineage, particularly as she could talk in detail about personal correspondences between the young princesses and Botkin’s children.

In attitude, Anderson certainly behaved like a princess. She was said to be demanding and arrogant, and could be consumed by fits of rage. She spoke excellent English, French and German, and could fully understand Russian although she refused to speak it. She also had scars on her body that matched her execution claims, and facial experts argued that she looked very similar to Anastasia. She had similar physical deformities to the young princess, and calligraphic experts said their handwriting was identical. Anderson was also said to have an amazing knowledge of royal affairs. She revealed that Anastasia’s uncle, Grand Duke Ernst of Hesse, had secretly visited the Russian monarchy in 1916 when the two families had actually been at war. This fact was only categorically proven in 1966, but Ernst always denied the claims. It has been suggested that Ernst started circulating another theory which was that Anderson was actually a Polish factory worker named Franziska Schanzkowski.

People started to claim that Schanzkowski disappeared only a day before Anderson’s appearance in Berlin. It was said that Anderson’s scars had arisen from a time when Schanzkowski had dropped a live grenade whilst working at an armaments factory. However, Anderson was small and frail, whereas Schanzkowski was raised on a farm and supposedly had a very stocky build. Anderson continually tried to prove her heritage, but she never succeeded conclusively in a court of law. In late 1968 she married a wealthy American called John Manahan, and she died of pneumonia in 1984. Her body was cremated, but advances in DNA testing meant her death was not the end of the saga. In 1991, the remains of eight people were found in Siberia. Forensic testing suggests the corpses of Nicholas, Alexandra and three of their children were among the bodies. British scientists compared their DNA with samples of Anderson’s hair, and found no match. However, Anderson did seem to have extremely similar DNA results to blood samples taken from the grand-nephew of Franziska Schanzkowski. So it appears the mystery of Anna Anderson has been put to rest. Except for one thing. When Russian authorities uncovered the royal bodies in 1991, two corpses were missing. One was the Czar’s son Alexei. The other was his youngest daughter, Anastasia.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

I hope this story can be concluded now that the bodies of the last two children have been found and identified by DNA labs all over the world. See recent news stories for more.

x803xkiller said...

i think anna anderson is anastasia. not everything can be proven by science and the obvious facts are undeniable. they just HAPPEN to not find her body, and anna anderson just HAPPENS to have the same scars, bone misplacement in her right foot, does the same exact things in the morning, look like anastasia, and come on, ANAstasia, ANAa anderson, its so obvious anyone with an iq above retard would see it.

Anonymous said...

DNA proved that anastasia was indeed murdered.

THe bones that were missing were those of alexei, anastasia's little brother.

Anonymous said...

There is absolutely no doubt that Anastasia was murdered with her family and that Anna Anderson was really Franziska Schanzkowski. The two missing children were discovered in 2007 and identified through DNA testing. Also, DNA proved that Anderson was Franziska, even though you don't even need a DNA test to know this because the resemblance is pretty obvious.

Voyagefan said...

Personally, I think that Anna Anderson was Anastasia, but I'll have to do some more research to fully conclude my opinions. Either it really was her, or this was one giant trick played by aliens. XD

Anonymous said...

i am on and off researching this and only little proof of her escaping and my friend says also and if any one has any comment in which helps on the subject in any way

Anonymous said...

Princess Anastasia is not Anderson. Princess Anastasia died in the Execution. She was partially cremated, and her body parts were scattered later. Go to this URL to find out more. www.dnai.org/d/ Hope this helps!

Anonymous said...

I think, after several searches, (and 3 years of evidence) that I can conclude Anna Anderson was indeed Anastasia. The reason I looked into this topic was because my grand-parents last name is Anderson. Ethier way, scars dont matter, DNA does, but the bone misplacement does infact signify as does the looks and name creativity and her bayonete story that includes the reason of why she was "attempting" suiside, but I ask you, do you believe DNA results or just certain facts?
Signcerely,
An honest 13year old.

Anonymous said...

Well I'm not sure if Anna Anderson was Anastasia. If they found two bodies missing (Alexei and Anastasia's) then that either mean that they escaped or something else happened. I believe that Anna was a fake. Sure there was some similarities but that doesn't mean that she was without a doubt Anastasia. Besides Anna's DNA didn't even match any family member. I so badly want to believe that poor little girl didn't die with the rest of the family. I HOPE SHE ESCAPED AND IS NOT ANNA.
from
A happy twelve year old

Anonymous said...

Okay i know some people have other says in this topic but don't you want to say that she didn't horribly die with the rest and I guess maybe she could be anna but I hope not because then she doesn't die from the disease that she gets later on.
from
A happy twelve year old

Anonymous said...

I agree with all of you folks who believe Anna Anderson was really Anastasia. We cannot always go by evidence and sometimes we have to go by facts. We will never know why the DNA matched up with Fransika, but folks, hospitals do not keep your DNA! They would throw it all away. They tested her DNA in 1944 and she died in 1984. We all know that DNA testing back then was not top notch, how do we know if someone secertly got in touch with Franziska family and took a piece of their DNA but then lied to the world and said it was Anna Anderson's when it really was not. We will never know the true story of the DNA testing.

Anonymous said...

I'm no scientist and I know that the evidence says that Anna is not Anastasia. We know that science can be wrong. What if she did survive? People say that only parts on Anastasia were found what if Anastasia survived but lost a limb of something. I'm a teeneage writer and my imagination can get carried off sometimes but it's an amazing coincidence.
Curious

Anonymous said...

I think: Anastasia and Alexei (her younger brother) were holding jewels which protected them from the guns (they reflect the bullets). They ran away and somewhere Alexei got injured and, because his blod doesn't clot, died. He told Anastasia that he wanted to be buried so he was. His body was never found. Anastasia (Anna Anderson) was later found.
As for Franziska Shanzkowska, I think the people who tried to kill Anastasia's family were angry because she escaped and tried to get back at her (Anastasia) by making it seem like she is someone else (Franziska). That way, even though she isn't dead, its good enough for them. That's what I think because how else would Anna know such small details about Anastasia's life? And it's almost impossible to forge someonelses handwriting. And the DNA test could have been wrong; humans aren't perfect!!!

-A smart 12 year old girl

Anonymous said...

Speeking of humans not being perfect, I, the smart twelve year old girl, missed 3 commas and 2 apostrophes (unless I proofread wrong). My language arts teacher would not be proud... But my forensics teacher would be. :)

Anonymous said...

I believe that it could have been possible that Anderson was Anastasia. I don't know how, but I don't believe that scientist are always right. Why did Anderson have the same scars and bone fractures that Anastasia did and why did the people who came to see her believe that she was Anastasia? Also , why wasn't her body found? I might be wrong but sometimes you gotta look at the facts , not the evidence.

Anonymous said...

you all have very good points to this all, however your age is what is keeping you from seeing that if u did proper reasearch, you wil see that the Tsar was 1st cousins with King George the 5th, the closets living realtive that was tested to the remains of the family buried underneath the road was Prince Phillip duke of Endinburg.they discovered that the bodies were infact the Tsar and his wife and 3 of children. Later when the last 2 were discovered they could not say for sure which of the sisters could be with their brother since medical examiners who conducted the examinations on all of the bodies could only determine age of the bones by measuring and comparing to other children and using the last known photos of the children. When the last two bodies were recovered it was tested against the other samples known to be the tsar and his wife and were than was confirmed they were in relation to being children to them, if reaserch shows when DNA testing was drastically improved that all children to the tsar is accounted for, the woman with similarties would infact be proven not the grand dutchess. anyone with similiar cases of having the same condition in the same foot is known, now if she was the only person in the world to have it than i would put weight on it however many people have the same condition.if you look further because i have a feeling you are only using google and sites as such for reasearch u will see that the 2 remains of alexi and either tatina,maria or anastaia( since they do not know which it was) were laid to rest at the orthodox church with the family. The entire famiy using mitochondrial DNA was found and is now together, so anna anderson is infact not the grand dutchess anastasia.. links for u to check out...http://www.accessexcellence.org
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Avdonin
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2007/aug/25/russia.lukeharding

Anonymous said...

Why would a hospital in Charlottesville VA keep anyone's appendix for years? That is the tissue supposedly used for the DNA tests. I do not believe it. Hospitals do not save such tissue. Also, the person who donated his DNA was Prince Phillip, who would be a close relative of Anatasia. It is said that the Tzar deposited millions in the Bank of England. What if this were a hoax and that the DNA which was supposedly Anna Anderson's wasn't hers at all? What if there was a large of amount of money in the Bank of England>? Who would have gotten it? A Romanov, not a Windsor if Anna Anderson was Anastasia.
Also, the Tzar's mother fled with many family jewels which were purchased by Queen Mary at a fraction of their value. The present queen settled with the Romanov's in the 50s.
How convenient that the DNS matched a Polish factory worker. Maybe the DNA used as a control was obtained from her nephew?
Too many questions and too much money.

Anonymous said...

In regard to the halux valgus, that is not a determining factor. I have it myself and I know I am not Anastasia.

Steve Edge said...

So Much good research on this page. As someone who has studied this mystery for almost 40 years, I would say beyond all doubt that Anna Anderson was indeed The Grand Duchess Anastasia Nicolaievna of Russia. The DNA evidence was fraudulent and was designed only to release the Battenberg(Mountbatten) family from the guilt of having claimed monies in Berlin that were rightly the property of the Grand Duchess. The facts of better than 60 years of history cannot be erased with a fraudulent set of DNA results.

curious writer said...

If Anna is indeed Not Anastasia, then where did she get such vital information? Another patient? Possibly that of a lone survivor of that terrible tragedy? It boggles the mind of so many possibilities.

SvartKatt said...

Anna Anderson was definitely Franzisca Schanzkowska. That's why she could not speak Russian or English when she appeared on the scene, but only German. That's why she knew nothing about life at the Russian court, but invented her "memories". That's why nobody close to the real Anastasia did not recognize her, and that's why she did not recognize any of them. That's why she looked so much older than the real Anastasia. That's why her face, her ears, her hair, her feet and her handwriting were different.