February 14, 2018

They Threw A Bomb

Alexander II was a Tsar who formally abolished serfdom in 1861…thereby freeing Russia’s serfs from indentured servitude to their landowners…reformers hailed the move, but it gave birth to a severe economic crisis that nearly crippled the country, angered landowners who obviously weren’t happy with the serfs no longer committed to servitude, and prompted a number of revolutionary groups to begin agitating for a constitution…Alexander II also put a halt to some of the perks nobility enjoyed…reformed the judicial system…and abolished corporal punishment…he also sold Alaska to the United States in 1867…Alexander II made a lot of changes that you would have thought to be popular, but he still had enemies who wanted him dead…it was fourteen years after the sale of Alaska, in 1881 that a radical threw a bomb at Alexander II in Saint Petersburg…his legs were blown off and he was mortally wounded…despite care being given to him, he succumbed to his injuries…he had been assassinated…thus prompting his successor, son Alexander III, to implement a harsh crackdown on public resistance…the American writer Mark Twain met the Tsar…  he described a visit with Alexander II saying that he was "very tall and spare, and a determined-looking man, though a very pleasant-looking one nevertheless. It is easy to see that he is kind and affectionate. There is something very noble in his expression when his cap is off.”...it seemed he wanted to make Russia a better place and his reward was to be brutally killed.