Bobby Darin

by madman on January 8, 2017

Publicity photo of Bobby Darin

Birth Name: Walden Robert Cassotto

Date of Birth: May 14, 1936

Place of Birth: East Harlem, New York, United States

Date of Death: December 20, 1973

Place of Death: Los Angeles, California, United States

Ethnicity:
*Italian (maternal grandfather)
*English, Danish (maternal grandmother)
*publicly unknown (biological father)

Bobby Darin was an American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. He was married to actress Sandra Dee.

Bobby’s mother was Vanina Juliette “Nina” Cassotto. She became pregnant with him at the age of eighteen during a summer. Bobby was raised believing that his maternal grandmother was his mother, and that his mother was his sister. Even after the true circumstances of his birth was revealed to him at age 32, she refused to tell Bobby who his biological father was.

Bobby’s maternal grandfather was Saverio Antonio “Sam” Cassotto (the son of Paulo Cassotto and Giovannina Sacchitelli). Saverio was an Italian immigrant.

Bobby’s maternal grandmother was Vivian Fern “Polly”/”Paula”/”Pauline” Walden (the daughter of Frank Salisbury Walden and Julia/Juliet E. Hanson). Frank was born in Rhode Island, the son of Job A. Walden and Narcissa Lavinia/Lavina Salisbury, and had English ancestry. Julia was born in Wisconsin, to Danish parents.

Sources: Genealogies of Bobby Darin (focusing on his mother’s side) – http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com
http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com
https://www.geni.com

Bobby’s mother on the 1920 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org
Bobby’s mother on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org

Marriage record of Bobby’s maternal grandparents, Saverio Antonio “Sam” Cassotto and Vivian Fern “Polly”/”Paula”/”Pauline” Walden – https://familysearch.org

Bobby’s maternal great-grandparents, Frank Salisbury Walden and Julia/Juliet E. Hanson, on the 1880 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org

Death record of Bobby’s maternal great-grandfather, Frank Salisbury Walden – https://familysearch.org

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

andrew January 15, 2017 at 7:48 am

one son with Sandra Dee

follers January 10, 2017 at 1:56 am

I think this book biography seems reliable enough as to Darin’s maternal grandmother’s background.
https://books.google.ca/books?id=Ah7-guqhCh8C&pg=PA2&dq=%22Polly+Walden+was+born+in+1894+in+Pascoat,+Rhode+Island%22&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjfkPKsprfRAhVF7yYKHWQYDKMQ6AEIFjAA

The 1920 U.S. Census probably just made an error, as they sometimes did. I can’t really explain “Borrelli”, but it is what it is.

madman January 10, 2017 at 2:22 am

Well, it isn’t written by Bobby himself or anyone related to him. And it says that Polly’s parents were of English descent, indicating that the author haven’t done any research at all on Bobby’s great-grandparents since a single look at any census would tell him that Julia’s parents were Danish.

Frank S. Walden and Julia Hanson may very well have been Bobby’s great-grandparents, but when researching his ancestry I got the impression that the idea of “Vivian Fern Walden (daughter of Frank S. Walden and Julia Hanson)” being Bobby’s paternal grandmother might be based on hearsay, since she is called Pauline or Paula on almost every census together with her daughter and the strange marriage record. It might not mean anything at all, but I hesitated to conclude anything in the profile.

I also suspect that the 1920 Census is an error, I just included it because of “Borrelli”.

follers January 10, 2017 at 4:50 am

Given Darin’s grandparents’ marriage record, the only other possibility is that there was another couple in Wisconsin, this one named Frank Walden and Juliet Borrelli. I don’t think there’s any evidence that they existed.

madman January 10, 2017 at 5:46 am

It could also be that Bobby’s great-grandfather Frank was married twice, although no evidence for this exists either. The reason I was doubtful was that it seemed like all genealogies and sites that mentions Bobby’s great-grandparents names had copied each other, since public records showed slightly different names. But I guess it is still reasonable to conclude that these are probably the right great-grandparents.

By the way, you forgot to add Danish to his ethnicity.

follers January 10, 2017 at 3:26 pm

Frank Walden was married to the Danishwoman on the 1880 U.S. Census. And when he died in 1934, he was still listed as married to a Julia Hanson.
https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:F8H8-H97

Since the man already didn’t know his biological father, do you really want to deprive him of the woman he considered to be his mother?

madman January 11, 2017 at 3:55 am

Good point

follers January 15, 2017 at 3:55 am

By the way, the Julia Hanson whose parents were Anthony Hanson and Fannie Gilbert was not the right one, despite what one of the trees says. That Julia Hanson married someone else.
https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XRKF-SJZ

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