John Stamos

by ethnic on April 2, 2008

Birth Name: John Phillip Stamos

Place of Birth: Cypress, Los Angeles, California, United States

Date of Birth: August 19, 1963

*50% Greek
*12.5% Ashkenazi Jewish
*12.5% German
*25% mix of English and Irish

John Stamos is an American actor and musician. He is famous for playing Jesse Katsopolis on the television comedy Full House.

John is the son of Loretta D. (Phillips), a bathing suit model, and William John Stamos, a restaurateur. His father was of Greek heritage, with roots in the island of Santorini. His mother was of one quarter Ashkenazi Jewish and one quarter German descent, with the rest a mix of English and Irish. The family’s original surname is “Stamotopoulos”. John’s character on the show Jake in Progress (2005) was named Jake Phillips, presumably after John’s maternal grandfather and great-grandfather.

John’s paternal grandfather was John B. Stamatopoulos/Stamos (the son of Vasilios Stamatopoulos and Georgitsa Tsiapralis). John was Greek.

John’s paternal grandmother was Adeline/Lena T. Psaras (the daughter of Thomas/Tom Frank Psaras and Mary Logisis/Lagousis). Adeline was born in Ohio, to Greek parents. Thomas was from Tripoli, Greece.

John’s maternal grandfather was Jake Phillips (the son of Jacob/Jake Phillips and Mary/Margaret Sacks/Sachs/Sach). John’s great-grandfather Jacob was a Jewish immigrant, who was likely born in Riga, Latvia, and was the son of Wolf Phillips and Gusta Greenberg. John’s great-grandmother Mary/Margaret was born in Canada, the daughter of German (Lutheran) parents, Frederich/Frederick Sachs, from Wolferode, and Frederike/Fredericke/Fredericka/Friedricka Caroline Dorothea “Rachel” Wilken/Wilkins, from Steinhagen. John’s great-great-grandmother Frederike was killed by her second husband, Harry Staples.

John’s maternal grandmother was Eloise Florence Ridgley (the daughter of Ralph Frank Ridgley and Rose Florence Monly/Money). Ralph was the son of Frank William Ridgley and Grace Ethel Stanchfield.

Sources: Genealogy of John Stamos –

Genealogy of John Stamos (focusing on his father’s side) –

John’s maternal grandfather, Jake Phillips, on the 1920 U.S. Census –
Jake Phillips on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Marriage record of John’s maternal great-grandparents, Jacob/Jake Phillips and Mary/Margaret Sacks/Sachs/Sach –

John’s maternal great-grandparents, Jacob/Jake Phillips and Mary/Margaret Sacks/Sachs/Sach, on the 1940 U.S. Census –

Genealogy of John’s maternal great-grandmother, Mary/Margaret Sacks/Sachs/Sach –

Genealogy of John’s maternal great-grandmother, Mary/Margaret Sacks/Sachs/Sach (through Mary/Margaret’s brother, Albert Heinrich August Sachs) –

John’s maternal great-grandmother, Mary/Margaret Sacks/Sachs/Sach, on the 1901 Canada Census –

Marriage record of John’s maternal great-great-grandparents, Frederich/Frederick Sachs and Frederike/Fredericke/Fredericka/Friedricka Caroline Dorothea “Rachel” Wilken/Wilkins –

Obituary of John’s maternal great-great-grandmother, Frederike/Fredericke/Fredericka/Friedricka Caroline Dorothea “Rachel” (Wilken/Wilkins) Sachs –

image via s_bukley /

{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

follers March 23, 2017 at 2:23 pm

I’m pretty sure that Stamos’ great-grandfather Jacob Phillips was Jewish. I just can’t find explicit proof, however. Any luck, anyone? Madman? Bablah?

bablah March 23, 2017 at 2:36 pm

He’s from Riga, Latvia. That’s about all I could find. There’s no use sifting through Ellis Island records as that is most certainly not his original name.

madman April 17, 2017 at 3:19 am

Jake was the son of Wolf Phillips and Gusta Greenberg. To me, the surname “Greenberg” speaks for itself as strong evidence that they were Jewish.

Mary’s real name was Margaret. She was born in Canada, to German parents, Frederick Sachs and Rachel Wilkins.

madman April 17, 2017 at 3:48 am

Rachel’s full name was Frederike/Fredericka Caroline Dorothea “Rachel” Wilken, and she was from Steinhagen, Germany.

I haven’t seen John’s episode, but I’ve read that he discovered that his paternal great-grandfather was murdered by his friend. John’s mother’s side actually has a similar incident; John’s great-great-grandmother, Frederike or Fredericka, was murdered by her second husband, Harry Staples, in Winnipeg, Manitoba, in 1906.

madman April 17, 2017 at 3:57 am

Genealogies of John’s great-grandmother, Margaret Sachs –

Frederick Sachs was born in Wolferode, Germany.

follers April 17, 2017 at 8:42 am

Thank you.

“Greenberg”, I guess, but in particular I think just about every European-born Wolf Phillips has been Jewish.

follers April 17, 2017 at 8:53 am
madman April 17, 2017 at 2:28 pm

There is a remarkable similarity between some Swedish and Jewish surnames, especially those ending in “man” and “berg”. I myself was recently asked (outside of Sweden), after stating my surname, if I was Jewish or of Jewish descent (which, to my knowledge, I’m not).

“Greenberg” however, although made up of two words that are common in Swedish surnames, is still more often Jewish than Swedish. I’ve never heard of anybody with that surname.

follers April 18, 2017 at 3:08 pm

On his episode, Stamos vaguely said that his mother was of English and Irish descent, so perhaps he’s not even aware of his Latvian Jewish and German ancestry. I guess he doesn’t know about all the Jewish families with the last name “Phillips”, especially in England.

That would have been a repeat of the Jessica Biel episode.

neiltennant July 27, 2017 at 10:14 am




neiltennant November 19, 2016 at 8:02 am

i have worked with so many greeks and most of them had brown eyes

looking at his colored eyes i was sure that he has more than greek

cwm85 September 17, 2015 at 1:52 pm

I see the greek in him. However I thought he was Italian.

neiltennant July 27, 2017 at 10:15 am

both the same

andrew November 10, 2014 at 5:16 am

he looks like Dean McDermott

Check7t September 4, 2014 at 9:33 pm

Addendum: that’s not John’s real nose, he had a Dinarid/Armenoid influenced nose, but got a rhinoplasty.

Check7t September 4, 2014 at 9:32 pm

I would like to see what his father looks like — however I couldn’t find any pictures of him.

Nikki May 17, 2014 at 5:49 pm

he is greek definitely. his surname is purely greek. he does look irish, maybe english, but i could have mistaken him as a greek/irish/italian

Check7t September 4, 2014 at 9:31 pm

He has blue eyes, which isn’t too common in Greece, probably would say 85% of Greeks have brown eyes, with the rest colored.

He can pass as fully Greek, however he looks a non-Greek influenced.

Check7t February 25, 2014 at 11:18 pm

Greek God!

levangelista36 July 27, 2012 at 6:01 pm

Uncle Jesse is hot.

Mena April 5, 2012 at 4:57 am

He looks very Greek.. maybe with a bit smaller lips but overall Greek..

neiltennant July 27, 2017 at 10:05 am

greek with those green eyes ?

no chance

Carolina December 12, 2011 at 3:19 am

He doesn’t look Irish at all. He looks Greek which are similar anyways.

Jasmine September 25, 2011 at 7:27 am

i thought he was like…italian

levangelista36 August 13, 2012 at 6:03 pm

Italians and Greeks are close in genetics, so he could be either, to be honest. I think he looks like exactly what he is, though. He’s beautiful and unique. :D

roman2886 January 28, 2014 at 4:23 pm

He looks very Greek he can pass for Italian Italians and Greeks look very similar.

Mary September 1, 2011 at 6:22 pm

He has an Irish smile and Irish eyes. His mother is actually all Irish, but her parents moved to England for work. Many Irish either moved to England or America for work.

Anonymous September 29, 2010 at 12:38 pm

he’s hot

Porsha August 14, 2010 at 2:38 pm

WOW! I thought he was Mexican. LMAO. Silly me.

lily June 9, 2010 at 5:56 pm

he looks persian/greek

Amber O'brien December 6, 2009 at 3:24 am

He doesn’t look Irish at all. He looks like he is full Greek.

Sammie May 13, 2010 at 9:43 am

ya he doesnt look irish.

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