Rasputin's daughter on a 1935 Wheaties box

"Europe's Sensational Wild Animal Trainer, Fearless Daughter of Russia's Mad Monk."

I learned about this existence of this wonderful artifact and wonderful kook from Bess Lovejoy's Atlas Obscura talk at DNA Lounge last week, which you should surely attend in the future.

She also later co-authored a cookbook, which includes recipes for jellied fish heads and her father's favorite, cod soup. She also worked as a cabaret dancer in Bucharest, Romania, and then found work as a circus performer for Ringling Brothers Circus. During the 1930s she toured Europe and America as a lion tamer, billing herself as "the daughter of the famous mad monk whose feats in Russia astonished the world." She was mauled by a bear in Peru, Indiana, but stayed with the circus until it reached Miami, Florida, where she quit and began work as a riveter in a defense shipyard during World War II.

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4 Responses:

  1. Chris Davies says:

    Her blank eyes and the epaulettes on her shoulders make it look disturbingly like the lion has just roofied her and is about to take he home for nefarious purposes.

    I'm now very worried about meeting lions in bars.

    • Pavel Lishin says:

      To me, it looks like he has his paw on her shoulder, trying to reassure her.

      "Don't worry, Maria. We'll rescue your father's penis some day."

    • nooj says:

      I'm sure they have a safeword.

  2. zompist says:

    Looks a lot like Ayn Rand, though obviously she took up more respectable work.

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