Anna Haining Bates, born Anna Haining Swan (August 6, 1846 – August 5, 1888), was a Canadian from Mill Brook, New Annan (near present-day Tatamagouche), Colchester County, Nova Scotia, famed for her great height, believed to be 2.43 m (7′ 11½”) at the peak of her stature.
Anna’s parents were of average height and were Scottish immigrants. Some have argued that Anna was 7′ 6″ but it is known from pictures and both families, i.e. Swan and Bates, that she was a few inches taller than her husband Martin Van Buren Bates who was 7′ 9″ or 7’11”; she did not wear heeled shoes in photos with Martin because he was not fond of the fact she was taller than him.
Anna conceived two children with Martin. One child was stillborn and the other lived less than a day. The first was a girl born on May 20, 1872; she was the same size her mother had been at her own birth. The Bates family moved to Seville, Ohio, in June 1874 on their return from the United Kingdom. While touring in the summer of 1878, Anna was pregnant for the second time. She went into labor on January 15, 1879. Anna continued in the first stages of labor for 36 hours. Their physician, Dr. Beach, realized that the birth was not going in a normal direction and tried using forceps, but the baby’s head was too large. He called another doctor who also tried using forceps. They put a strong bandage around the baby’s neck to assist with the delivery. The baby was born on January 19, and survived only 11 hours. He was the largest newborn ever recorded, at 23 pounds 12 ounces and nearly 30 inches tall and each of his feet were six inches (152 mm) long. For this she was awarded a Guinness World Record which lasted until 1955.