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Czar Nicholas II: Topics in Chronicling America

Remembered as the last Tsar of Russia, Czar Nicholas II was Russia's last autocrat when he abdicated in 1917. This guide provides access to materials related to "Czar Nicholas II" in the Chronicling America digital collection of historic newspapers.


Sketch of Czar Nicholas II. February 7, 1904. The Indianapolis Journal (Indianapolis, IN), Image 35. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers.

Nicholas II (1868-1918), crowned in 1894, was the last Russian emperor. Characterized by some as shy, weak, vacillating, and indecisive, he was nevertheless a stubborn supporter of the right of the sovereign under growing pressure for reform. Discontent at home, plus losses of territory and massive casualties in two wars, precipitated the February Revolution on March 12, 1917. Nicholas II abdicated on March 15, 1917. In April 1918, the Bolshevik government moved him and the Imperial family to Vekaterinburg in the Urals, where they were executed on July 17, 1918, as anti-Bolshevik forces approached the city. Read more about it!

The information in this guide focuses on primary source materials found in the digitized historic newspapers from the digital collection Chronicling America.

The timeline below highlights important dates related to this topic and a section of this guide provides some suggested search strategies for further research in the collection.


November 1, 1894 Czar Alexander III dies. His son, Nicholas II, becomes the emperor of Russia.
May 26, 1896 The coronation of Nicholas II.
January 23, 1905 Bloody Sunday; the Russian people lose faith in their Czar.
1905 Russian Revolution of 1905 leads to hunger strikes and riots. Czar Nicholas is forced to create a constitution and the Duma.
March 15, 1917 Nicholas II forced to abdicate throne.
July 17, 1918 Nicholas II, his wife and his children slaughtered by the Bolshevik government.
November 28, 1920 Secrets of Nicholas II’s murder revealed in official reports.