Ann Miller was born with the name Johnnie Lucille Ann Collier on April 12, 1923, in Chireno, Texas into a comfortably-off middle-class family. She was the first and only child of criminal lawyer John Alfred Collier and Clara Birdwell.
Ann's father was a well-known criminal lawyer who had defended famous gangsters Bonnie and Clyde and Baby Face Nelson. John gave her the birth name Johnnie as he had wanted a boy but she was called Annie as she was growing up.
Her parents split up when Ann was nine and she and her mother moved to California. Even at that young age, Ann had to support her mother, who was hearing-impaired and unable to hold a job.