PART TWO (2). Joy Adamson (10th January 1910 - 3rd January 1980) (born Friederike Victoria Gessner) was a naturalist and author best known for her book, Born Free, which described her experiences in raising a lion cub named Elsa. Born Free was printed in several languages and made into an Academy Award-winning movie of the same name. Adamson was also a superb artist. She was the wife of British wildlife conservationist George Adamson.