Anna Shabanova, the daughter of a wealthy landowner, was born in Russia in 1848. When she was a young woman she joined a radical political group and in 1865 was arrested and imprisoned for six months.
Shabanova wanted to become a doctor and unable to train in Russia moved to Helsinki. She returned in 1873 when a new women's medical course started in St. Petersburg. In 1878 she became one of the first women in Russia to qualify as a doctor.
Shabanova was one of the founders of the Russian Women's Mutual Philanthropic Society and during the 1905 Revolution campaigned for women's suffrage.
Anna Shabanova died in 1932.