Alyson Hannigan

by ethnic on April 29, 2009

Birth Name: Alyson Lee Hannigan

Place of Birth: Washington, D.C., U.S.

Date of Birth: March 24, 1974

*Irish (father)
*Ashkenazi Jewish (mother)

Alyson Hannigan is an American actress. She is known for her role in the American Pie films and the shows Buffy the Vampire Slayer and How I Met Your Mother.

She has Irish ancestry on her father’s side. Her mother is Jewish (her family was from Poland and Russia). Alyson is married to actor Alexis Denisof, with whom she has two children.

Alyson’s maternal grandfather was Jacob R. “Jack” Posner (the son of Samuel Posner and Goldie Grossfeld). Jacob was born in Maryland, to Jewish emigrants from Eastern Europe, either Russia or Poland, depending on the census.

Alyson’s maternal grandmother is Dorothy Mendel (the daughter of Hyman Noah “Herman” Mendel and Esther Pessie Freedman). Dorothy was born in Atlanta, to Russian Jewish parents.

Sources: Alyson’s maternal grandfather, Jacob R. “Jack” Posner, on the 1920 U.S. Census –
Jacob R. “Jack” Posner on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Obituary of Alyson’s maternal grandfather, Jacob R. “Jack” Posner –

Alyson’s maternal grandmother, Dorothy Mendel, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

image via Helga Esteb /

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

azure2016 February 17, 2016 at 10:19 am

She is totally just Irish and Euro Jewish…Anglo/Jewish as some people call it.

neiltennant August 1, 2018 at 2:52 pm

Ashkenazi Jews are European.

Jews are in Europe for thousand+ years.

Phillip Hemphill October 8, 2011 at 12:59 pm

This is cool, my father is Irish and my mother is of German-Jewish descent.

levangelista36 August 2, 2012 at 10:37 pm

Amber Benson is also Jewish. She played Tara, Willow’s girlfriend. Seth Green played Oz, and he is Jewish, too.

Trese May 26, 2011 at 8:08 pm

People that have Irish ancestry shouldn’t be afraid to declare themselves Irish or Irish American because that is part of their heritage, and it doesn’t make them any less proud of being American but you have to remember that Irish history is riddled with alot of sorrow in it, and alot of anger.

They didn’t necesarily immigrate to America because it was thier dream, they felt they had no other choice because of the famine. You had only 2 choices, which were ‘stay, starve and die’ or ‘leave and live’. Of course when they came to America, they didn’t expect the negative ‘welcome’ on its shores-or the hardships they would have to endure-they were lucky if they were able to get a job. They were told they would recieve land and freedom in America (which was an English influenced idea). The Irish were basically evicted from thier homes by thier English landlords, and if there were good potato crops, they were sent to the English Royalty or the landlord of that particular property in Ireland. Ireland today is still trying to free itself from England after close about 900 years of rule.

Study up on its history and you’ll understand why alot of Irish Americans still refer to themselves as Irish or Irish American. America is a country of Immigrants and you can be american but also embrace your heritage.

ethnic August 21, 2012 at 6:44 am

Your trolling/crap comments are not welcome on this site. You are banned.

Sweetpea August 21, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Thanks ethnic for deleting her/comments.
I was going to comment about her but i did not have time to register yesterday.Glad to see today that you have banned her.
No one was even commenting back to her and she was still throwing insults about/and this everyone is jew/jews are better than everyone else crap.
Sorry but she is a nut job.

rafa June 25, 2010 at 4:42 pm

most people got some irish ancestry

me too also english and spanish

theWife(ofMaaRhyeahhfanboi) June 13, 2010 at 12:49 pm

Oh. Being Irish in America in the 1840s….

My husband has gratiously reminded me that I’m personally old enough to remember all the “Irish need not apply” signs.

theWife(ofMaaRhyeahhfanboi) June 13, 2010 at 12:44 pm

Yeah. Lotsa us Irishers out there. The Potato Famine and Upper Class ( landowners loved they could seize the farms) and English greed (no one English lost a meal) left one million dead and five million of us scattered all over the place. (Many of us writing the longest and confusedest paraparenthetical sentences).

a.k.a. Alyson Denisof. She’s married to fellow Buffy / Angel actor Alexis Denisof and have a child together.

Thanks to her the husband (Never capitalized) has the weirdest look whenever we pass the music store…

Paul. January 20, 2010 at 4:34 am

Maybe it’s due to the fact that over a million Irish emmigrated to the US during the famine?

Charlene January 16, 2010 at 7:09 am

Is it just me… or is everyone fuckin Irish…??? Get hold of yourself….. Ur just American… ! HAAAWWOOOW

Alice November 5, 2011 at 12:27 am

I think the name Hannigan is a clue to the Irish bit. I’ve read that Irish ancestry in the US is greatly exaggerated by a lot of people. There is a lot more English ancestry than declared.

Alice January 15, 2012 at 10:51 pm

I’m Irish myself. It would be great if people would comment as I have read that Irish ancestry is greatly exaggerated in the States. The reason being that there was a lot more English that went to the US. Also if you look at population there are about 55 million people in England (not incl Scotland, Wales and NI) and only 6 million approx in Ireland (incl NI). I think a reason could be that people have mixed ancestry and will state the Irish but not English (possibly). I’m not trying to upset anyone just interested.

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