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Vintage Ziegfeld Girl, Showgirl, Dancer, Actress: "Anna Held"


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Anna Held ... Vintage  Ziegfeld Girl, Dancer, Showgirl, Actress photo 1

Anna Held ... "Ziegfeld Girl," "the Woman with an Hourglass Figure."

Famous for her hourglass Figure, Tiny 18" waist and her 'common law' marriage to Florence Ziegfeld and his promotions of her as well as her headlining in over twelve of his shows. Born in Poland but the family moved to Paris and she marketed herself as a Parisian. After the family moved to London she made her stage debut at age 15. Soon after her mother died and she returned to Paris. While in Paris, Florence Ziegfeld convinced her to work for him in the US and promoted her heavily. Her American debut was in 1896 at the Herald Square Theater. She helped Ziegfeld with creating female fashion that allured women everywhere.

'Promotionally' she often took 'Milk Baths' for her skin, rode Bicycles, and even saved a Judge which were little more than promotional stunts for the press and so on. She was never really in the actual Follies but helped Ziggy with most of them as well as appeared in his other shows. Her acts were considered Naughty for the time, especially thru some of her songs. Ziegfeld even gave her a chorus line entitled 'The Anna Held Girls' and "The Sadie Girls". She also staged some of her own musicals such as 'Follow Me'.

She was very active in raising money for the WWI war effort. While touring with Follow Me, she collapsed on stage and returned to New York, where she was diagnosed with (pernicious anaemia) or multiple myeloma (a bone marrow cancer.) Anna Held died in Manhattan's Savoy Hotel on August 12, 1918. She is interred at: Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Hawthorne, Westchester County NY. The Anna Held Museum in San Jacinto, California was owned by her daughter.

  • Birth Name: Helene Anna Held
  • Birth Date: 3/19/1872 -8/12/1918
  • Birth Place: Warsaw Mazowieckie, Poland
  • Married: Maximo Carrera (Daughter Liane Held Carrera 1895-1988) | Florence Ziegfeld
  • Parents:Maurice Held & Yvonne (or Helene) Pierre
  • Clubs/Theaters: Bennington Opera House | Broadway Theater | Casino (NY) | Herald Square Theater |
    Lyric Theatre | Knickerbocker Theater | Palace Music Hall (Lon) |


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