The Czar's abdication

A group of Port Chalmers early settlers and their descendants at the picnic on March 14, to mark...
A group of Port Chalmers early settlers and their descendants at the picnic on March 14, to mark the 75th anniversary of European settlement at Waikouaiti. — Otago Witness, 21.3.1917
Petrograd (March 18). Many rumours regarding the story of the Czar’s abdication are afloat, but only one thing is certain: that he did not abdicate absolutely and voluntarily in order to spare his country further trouble.

Even the Grand Duke Nicholas’s and General Alexieff’s telegrams did not produce any effect, and he consented to negotiate with the Provisional Government only when journeying to Petrograd. He then realised that, while he was allowed to move seemingly freely, he was really under guard, being unable to communicate with anybody except those in his closest entourage. He was chiefly anxious to secure sufficient guarantees that his life and the lives of his family would be spared, and General Russky, on behalf of the army under his command, reassured him that no harm would befall any member of his family. It is reported that the Czar, when not allowed to communicate with his wife, contemplated suicide, but eventually he was induced to take things calmly and submit to the inevitable. His last words as Czar were: "I have been betrayed by those I trusted most immediately."

When his abdication became known people went with ladders to the Imperial Public Library, the Winter Palace, and the Anittcskoff Palace, and other buildings, and removed the Imperial arms.

• Anyone who had happened to be in Bond Street shortly after 9 o’clock last evening would have thought that pandemonium had been let loose. A well-known Dunedin merchant, who is known in Y.M.C.A. circles, was observed to be running to and fro making desperate thrusts with his umbrella at a rat in the roadway; another gentleman, who is not unknown as the manager of a local bank, vented his fighting spirit by frantic blows with his walking-stick; a hardware manager, casting behind him the lack of agility bought by years, butted into the fray with his hat; another merchant, who holds a responsible position on the Harbour Board, vainly tried to "put in the boot"; and several others assisted by loudly applauding the efforts of their confreres to bring about the downfall of a wily foe. In and out of the hustling, hallooing crowd of elders ducked and dodged a number of telegraphy boys. The rat was killed. It is highly probable that certain members of the Dunedin Chamber of Commerce will feel to-day the stiffness of muscles which comes from unexpected and unaccustomed exertions.

A case in which parents had adopted the drastic remedy of abandoning a girl, aged 17 and of good family, to the police in order to save her from the hands of city libertines to whose wiles she had fallen prey, came before Mr E. C. Cutten, S. M., at Auckland (says the Star) on Wednesday. Thus it was that a good-looking, well-dressed girl, with all the fresh bloom of youth, came before the court on a charge of vagrancy, which she admitted. Chief Detective McMahon put before his Worship a written statement which the girl had made admitting that she had periodically left her home at the solicitation of various men, whose names were given. The chief detective suggested that a long term at the Mount Magdala Home, in Christchurch, was considered the girl’s best chance, and his Worship convicted and ordered her to come up for sentence when called on, conditionally on her going to the home mentioned and remaining there for four years. — ODT, 20.3.1917




the feminist movment was born.

All responsibility for 'vagrancy' was attributed to the girl, not to her family or the predatory men. The girl was sentenced to the Maudler Home, actually a youth prison. She had committed no crime.

This was common practice. The detention centres called Industrial Schools were notoriously violent.