21 Facts About Annette Kellermann


Annette Marie Sarah Kellermann was an Australian professional swimmer, vaudeville star, film actress, and writer.

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Annette Kellermann helped popularize the sport of synchronised swimming, and authored a swimming manual.

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Annette Kellermann appeared in several movies, usually with aquatic themes, and as the star of the 1916 film A Daughter of the Gods was the first major actress to appear nude in a Hollywood production.

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Annette Kellermann was an advocate of health, fitness, and natural beauty throughout her life.

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Annette Kellermann was born in Marrickville, New South Wales, Australia, on 6 July 1887, to Australian-born violinist Frederick William Kellermann, and his French wife, Alice Ellen Charbonnet, a pianist and music teacher.

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At the age of six, a weakness in Annette Kellermann's legs necessitated the wearing of steel braces to strengthen them.

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In 1902, Annette Kellermann won the ladies' 100 yards and mile championships of New South Wales in the record times of 1 minute, 22 seconds and 33 minutes, 49 seconds respectively.

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On 24 August 1905, aged 19, Annette Kellermann was one of the first women to attempt to swim the English Channel.

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Annette Kellermann had made a previous effort the month before alongside Ted Heaton, but had to leave the water several miles out in the channel due to sea-sickness.

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Annette Kellermann later challenged and defeated von Isacescu in a Danube race.

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Annette Kellermann helped popularize the sport of synchronised swimming after her 1907 performance of the first water ballet in a glass tank at the New York Hippodrome.

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Annette Kellermann advocated for the right of women to wear a one-piece bathing suit, which was controversial at the time.

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In 1916, Annette Kellermann became the first major actress to perform in a nude scene when she appeared fully nude in A Daughter of the Gods.

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Annette Kellermann performed her own stunts including diving from 92 feet into the sea and 60 feet into a pool of crocodiles.

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Annette Kellermann designed her own mermaid swimming costumes and sometimes made them herself.

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Annette Kellermann wrote numerous mail order booklets on health, beauty, and fitness called The Body Beautiful.

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Annette Kellermann married her American-born manager, James Sullivan, on or around 26 November 1912 at Danbury, Connecticut.

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Life-long vegetarian, Annette Kellermann owned a health food store in Long Beach, California, later in life.

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Annette Kellermann remained active well into old age, continuing to swim and exercise until a short time before her death.

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Annette Kellermann outlived her husband and died in the hospital at Southport, Queensland, Australia, on 6 November 1975, aged 88.

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Annette Kellermann was portrayed by Esther Williams in the film Million Dollar Mermaid, and Kellermann's name is on a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, on Hollywood Boulevard.

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