History Podcasts

Anna Anderson 2

Anna Anderson 2

You should have managed to fill in quite a lot of your table from the previous page. Read through the information below which gives another set of facts about Anna Anderson and see if you can find more information for your table.

The Facts

Anna Anderson was really Franziska Schanzkowska, a Polish factory worker, born in 1896, who disappeared suddenly in 1920.

After she was pulled from the canal in Berlin she was put in a mental hospital. One of the other inmates told her that she looked like Nicholas II's daughter, Tatiana.

Eighteen months later Anna Anderson claimed that she was Anastasia.

At the time Anna made her claim the people of Germany were living a harsh life and were drawn to this tragic story of a princess who was thought to be dead but had now been found.

She gained support from people who thought that they could benefit from the discovery.

The Russian authorities at this time had not said what had actually happened to the royal family.

Anna Anderson was in the right place at the right time.

Anna Anderson's main supporter, Gleb Botkin, was the nephew of the doctor who had been killed with the royal family. He had a good knowledge of Russian palace life.

When Anderson was questioned by members of the Romanoff family, she would often change the subject or break down and cry.

Anna Anderson could not read Russian, English or French.

She could not remember details of her life, but did know the details of the family bank accounts. (it is highly unlikely that Anastasia would have had this information.)

Franziska Schanzkowska had been in and out of mental institutions all her life.

She had scars on her body that came from being involved in a grenade explosion.

While in the mental hospitals, she is known to have read many magazines about the Russian royal family, including one which told of the execution of the royal family and that Anastasia may have survived.

Anna Anderson made a good living out of being Anastasia, she toured Europe and attended fashion shows.

The real Anastasia's cousin and his wife did not believe that Anna Anderson was Anastasia.

Anastasia's aunt did not believe Anna was Anastasia, although she did say that she looked similar.

One of Anastasia's aunts met Anna several times but eventually decided that she was not Anastasia.

Anastasia's former tutor said that Anna Anderson was a 'first rate actress.'