According to an article back in 2002 in Pravda, President Vladimir Putin has a most mysterious past. (And you think you have a brickwall?)
"Russian President Vladimir Putin is a relative of all royal families of Europe. The research, which was done by journalists from the Russian city of Tver, became a sensation as it became known that he came from the Kalininsky area of the Tver region.
The President's family tree is not traced (further back than) Putin's grandfather, Spiridon Putin, who left the Tver region for St. Petersburg at the age of fifteen. "Spiridon was a serous, reserved man of immaculate honesty." He became a good cook and worked in fancy restaurants in St. Petersburg before the 1917 Revolution. When Lenin passed away, Spiridon Putin started working at one of Stalin's dachas. He managed to survive this horrid period of Russian history.
The researchers did not manage to trace the origin of the surname, Putin; nothing is found about the name. But Vladimir Putin looks very much like Prince Mikhail Tverskoy......... and it is mused, is Putin an offspring of the Tver prince?
There was more but you get the idea. Here in America when a man runs for office, everybody digs into his family, his history and his genealogy. Usually the good folks at the Family History Library in Salt Lake compile a book on his ancestry. Apparently not so in Russia.
Did you find this bit interesting? Let me know.
(Thanks to PRAVADA.Ru for this article.)