Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Place of Birth: Keyser, West Virginia, U.S.

Date of Birth: September 16, 1950

Ethnicity: African-American [including Yoruba Nigerian], with some English and Irish

Henry Louis Gates, Jr. is an American literary critic, teacher, historian, filmmaker, and public intellectual. He is a scholar at Harvard University. He hosts/has hosted the television series African American Lives, African American Lives 2, Faces of America, and Finding Your Roots, where he finds the ancestry of notable people.

Henry is the son of Paulina/Pauline Augusta (Coleman) and Henry Louis Gates, Sr. Among his ancestors are the Yoruba people of Nigeria. He also has Irish ancestry through his direct matrilineal line.

Henry has two children with his former wife, Sharon Lynn Adams.

Henry’s paternal grandfather was Edward St. Lawrence Gates (the son of Edward L. Gates and Maudaline/Maude E. Scott). Henry’s grandfather Edward was born in Maryland. Henry’s great-grandfather Edward was the son of Jane Gates. Maudaline was the daughter of Thomas Campbell and Mary Byrd.

Henry’s paternal grandmother was Helen Gertrude Redman (the daughter of Charles W. Redman and Sarah Susan Bruce or Hamilton). Helen was born in West Virginia. Charles was the son of David Redman and Elizabeth Bruce. Sarah was the daughter of Joseph Bruce and Sarah Bruce.

Henry’s maternal grandfather was Paul Abraham Coleman (the son of Charles A./C. Coleman and Martha Pogue). Paul was born in West Virginia. Martha was the daughter of George Pogue and Martha.

Henry’s maternal grandmother was Marguerite/Margaret Elizabeth Howard (the daughter of Samuel James Howard and Lucy Ellen Clifford). Marguerite was born in West Virginia. Lucy was the daughter of Lou Isaac Clifford and Elizabeth Jane Redman.

In his 2016 book, Finding Your Roots, Season 2: The Official Companion to the PBS Series, and in an article at The Huffington Post, Henry wrote that his 23andme DNA test results state him to be:

*50.1% European
*48.6% Sub-Saharan African
——–*17% Cameroon/Congo
——–*13% Benin/Togo
——–*8% Ivory Coast/Ghana
——–*7% Nigeria
*0.9% Native American

In his book The Henry Louis Gates, Jr. Reader (2012), he wrote:

A number of exact matches turned up, leading straight back to that African Kingdom called Northern Europe, to the genes (among others) a female Ashkenazi Jew. Maybe it was time to start listening to ‘My Yiddish Mama.’

Sources: Genealogies of Henry Louis Gates, Jr. – http://www.geni.com
http://www.pbs.org
https://www.wikitree.com

Genealogies of Henry’s parents – https://www.findagrave.com

Obituary of Henry’s father – http://www.legacy.com

photo by Prphotos

ethnic

Curious about ethnicity

19 Responses

  1. bearboy says:

    I was reading one of Henry Louis Gates Jr.’s books online and he wrote the following. “A number of exact matches turned up, leading straight back to that African Kingdom called Northern Europe, to the genes (among others) a female Ashkenazi Jew. Maybe it was time to start listening to ‘My Yiddish Mama.” https://books.google.com/books?id=EKI3g79yYswC&pg=PA388&lpg=PA388&dq=Henry+Louis+Gates+Jr.+Ashkenazi&source=bl&ots=nKgATyDjEn&sig=UnOA9kkpFysY8n-R-bzLZBBDEi4&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjXv_20p-XLAhXCeSYKHdSVCDsQ6AEIQjAJ#v=onepage&q=Henry%20Louis%20Gates%20Jr.%20Ashkenazi&f=false page 15

  2. maestro says:

    I have a hard time believing he’s predominately European in terms of his DNA.

    Mulatto? Perhaps.

    • fuzzybear44 says:

      Quote-(Henry has said that a DNA test showed him to be of 56% European, 37% African, and 7% “Asian/Native American” descent.)

      I have on a number of occasions heard Gates refer to his DNA as being 50/50(black and White) both video and print. When did these new amounts come out?

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