On this day: July 17

POSTED: 11:56 AM PDT Jul 16, 2012    UPDATED: 11:00 PM PDT Jul 16, 2014 

Air conditioning is born, the "happiest place on Earth" opens up, and the Beatles get animated, all on this day.

OTD July 17 - Nicholas II of Russia
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Romanov Collection, General Collection, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University

1918: Tsar Nicholas II of Russia, his family, their doctor and three of their servants are killed during the Russian Civil War by order of the Bolshevik government. At the end of the "February Revolution" of 1917, Nicholas had abdicated and gone into internal exile in Siberia. Rumors that members of the royal family, especially Grand Duchess Anastasia, had survived persist today, despite some skeletal remains later confirmed as belonging to Nicholas' son, Alexei, and one of daughters, being uncovered near Ekaterinburg, Russia, in 2007.

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