Philip Ward Francis was born in Elizabeth, NJ in 1900. He was a Quaker who had a business in the silk industry. He married Edith Albertson in Manhattan on Feb. 24, 1923. She gave birth to Anne Francis in Ossining, NY on Sept. 16, 1930. After Philip lost his business he worked as a sales clerk in Macy’s department store. Anne got modeling jobs to help support the family. As time went on she got parts in radio, which led to theater.
The family moved to a new apartment building at 66-11 99 St. at that time in Forest Hills but part of Rego Park today. Francis was home-schooled due to her busy career.
In her autobiography she wrote her only friends were her father’s brother, Alfred, and his three daughters, her cousins, who lived at 84-40 63 Road in Rego Park. Francis was very active in theater and moved to California in 1949 to star in movies.
Her most famous movie role came opposite Leslie Nielsen in the 1956 sci-fi film “Forbidden Planet.”
Francis starred in the ABC show “Honey West,” in which she played a female private detective. Though the show was canceled after one season, Francis won a Golden Globe and was nominated for an Emmy for the role.
She passed away at age 80 on Jan. 2, 2011 in California.