Excerpts from "the first rough draft of history" as reported in The Washington Post on this date in the 20th century.
After Czar Nicholas II was deposed from the Russian throne and held prisoner with his family during the Bolshevik Revolution, romantic stories about the escape of his daughter Anastasia abounded. Less well known is the tale of another daughter, Tatiana, who The Post erroneously -- but with great detail -- reported was able to flee her captors and come to America. Unfortunately, both Anastasia and Tatiana were murdered along with the rest of the czar's family in 1918. An excerpt from The Post of Nov. 26, 1917:
New York, Nov. 25 --
Miss Tatiana Nicolaievna Romanoff, second daughter of Nicholas Romanoff, deposed emperor of Russia, has escaped from Siberia through a fictitious marriage to a son of a former chamberlain of the emperor and now is on her way to the United States chaperoned by an English woman, according to information made public here tonight by persons connected with the Russian civilian relief.
The former grand duchess, who is 20 years old, made her escape from Tobolsk, the present home of the exiled emperor, to Harbin, in Manchuria, and thence to Japan, where passage was taken on a steamship for the Pacific coast.
The New York officers of the Russian civilian relief, including Daniel Frohman, Ivan Narodny and Dr. Thomas Darlington, have been informed the young woman will arrive in New York some time in December to play a prominent part in the work of the recently formed organization.
According to an announcement tonight by the news bureau of the Russian postoffice department, Miss Romanoff intends to remain one year in this country and while in New York her guardian and companion will be Mrs. Margaret Barry Carver, of Denver, who left this city last Friday for the Pacific coast.
Mr. Frohman said tonight that Mrs. Carver is a "wide-awake American woman," who has lived in Petrograd, and from her he had learned that Miss Romanoff soon would arrive in the United States. ...
Ivan Narodny, who is connected with the Russian-American Asiatic Corporation, told tonight how Miss Romanoff succeeded in leaving Russia. He said news of her escape was sent to him by the former emperor's former second chamberlain, named Frederick. ...
He explained that the daughters of the former emperor were permitted to leave Tobolsk and visit relatives elsewhere, but they were forbidden to leave Russian territory. The plan was then conceived of having her "marry" a son of Frederick, as this would give the former grand duchess greater freedom of movement about Russia. The formalities of the ceremony were carefully carried out with every apparent reality, and only those who knew the secret understood it was a ruse to effect Miss Romanoff's escape. ...
Miss Romanoff is coming to the United States to "work in any capacity for the Russian civil relief," according to a statement issued here, but she prefers "to write fairy tales, give dance performances and talk to the women of America about the terrible conditions now prevailing in Russia."