Penn Badgley

by ethnic on September 9, 2010

2010 MTV Video Music Awards - Arrivals

Birth Name: Penn Dayton Badgley

Place of Birth: Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.

Date of Birth: November 1, 1986

Ethnicity: English, Irish, with likely around 1/16 or 1/32 African-Jamaican, as well as German and Scottish, and remote Dutch, Welsh, and French Huguenot

Penn Badgley is an American actor and musician.

Penn is the son of Lynne Murphy and Duff Badgley. His father, a newspaper reporter and carpenter, was the Green Party candidate for governor of Washington in 2008.

Penn’s father has a lot of English ancestry. One of Penn’s paternal great-grandfathers was a Jamaican immigrant, and was almost certainly of at least part Afro-Jamaican descent. Penn’s father also has a small amount of German and Scottish ancestry, and remote Dutch, Welsh, and French Huguenot, roots. Penn’s mother’s maiden name appears to be Murphy, indicating Irish ancestry. Penn is of the Baha’i faith.

Penn is married to singer Domino Kirke. Domino is the sister of actress and artist Jemima Kirke and actress Lola Kirke.

Penn’s patrilineal ancestry can be traced back to George Badgley, who was born, c. 1616, in Bakewell, Derby, England.

Penn’s paternal grandfather was Eugene Doty Badgley (the son of William Gervaise Badgley and Florence LeRoy Mulford). Eugene was born in New Jersey. William was also born in New Jersey, to Eugene Doty Badgley and Anna J. Johnson. Florence was born in New Jersey as well, to William V. Mulford and Emma Susan Morehouse.

Penn’s paternal grandmother was Janet Adair Duff (the daughter of Howard Duff and Edna May Murphey). Janet was born in New York. Howard was born in Saint Ann, Jamaica, to John Duff and Emily James Facey. Emily’s parents were James Malcolm Facey and Emily. A James Malcolm Facey is listed as having been born into slavery, in 1815, in St. Catherine, Jamaica, the son of George Samuel Facey and Eleanor Halkett/Hackett. Thus, Penn’s great-grandfather, Howard Duff, was almost certainly of at least part Afro-Jamaican ancestry, though Howard listed himself as “white” in United States records. Penn’s great-grandmother, Edna May Murphey, was born in Pennsylvania, to Edward Biddle Murphey (the son of The Rev. Thomas Charles Murphey and Emily Renshaw Rhoads) and Mary Louisa Perry (the daughter of Charles P. Perry and Louisa Supplee).

Sources: Genealogy of Penn’s paternal grandfather, Eugene Doty Badgley (focusing on his own father’s side) –

Penn’s paternal grandfather, Eugene Doty Badgley, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Penn’s paternal grandmother, Janet Adair Duff, on the 1920 U.S. Census –

Penn’s paternal great-grandparents, Howard Duff and Edna May Murphey, on the 1910 U.S. Census –

Birth record of Penn’s paternal great-grandfather, Howard Duff –

Christening record of Penn’s paternal great-great-great-grandfather, James Malcolm Facey –

Genealogy of Penn’s paternal great-grandmother, Edna May Murphey –

Penn’s paternal great-grandmother, Edna May Murphey, on the 1900 U.S. Census –

Photo by PRPhotos

{ 87 comments… read them below or add one }

bablah May 9, 2017 at 11:06 am

Brother-in-law of Jemima and Lola Kirke.

andrew December 31, 2016 at 7:14 am

he has also remote French Huguenot ancestry. He descends twice, or more, from Andris “Supplee” Souplis, born in France in the 1600s.

andrew June 24, 2016 at 5:17 pm
phaedra May 11, 2016 at 9:03 pm

His Afro-Jamaican side must be a bit strong, cos he still looks a bit swarthy.

Initially, I thought he was Southern European with some Middle Eastern ancestry.

Hill June 16, 2017 at 2:07 pm
xoxo November 19, 2015 at 8:11 pm

I thought he was Jewish………..

andrew August 29, 2015 at 12:42 pm

there were also white slaves (usually Irish) in all the Caribbean Islands, so that James Malcolm Facey wasn’t necessarily a person of color.

follers August 29, 2015 at 1:04 pm

Irish slaves in Jamaica were indentured servants, not life-long slaves like Penn’s ancestor (who was freed). I don’t think the Irish were born into slavery, either.

Facey was clearly black based on this. If he’s Penn’s ancestor then Penn has some African.

andrew May 10, 2017 at 11:49 am

This link does not work anymore, as his Christening record. Btw James Malcolm Facey was the son of George Samuel Facey and Eleanor Hackett/Halkett

legez August 29, 2015 at 7:56 am

he ain’t of us, i’ma keep it trill

Wolfman August 29, 2015 at 8:15 am

Are you a drunk idiot? Can’t you write in English? LOL

cwm85 August 29, 2015 at 10:34 am

What is one of us?

andrew August 29, 2015 at 12:44 pm
xoxo November 19, 2015 at 8:10 pm


California July 24, 2015 at 9:19 pm

He looks Spanish.

cwm85 July 17, 2015 at 10:53 am

He’s black… one drop rule… :-D

neiltennant July 17, 2015 at 11:05 am

what a *****

please don’t repeat the ridiculous thing

MARIAH CAREY, PETE WENTZ, CAROL CHANNING, MARTIN GORE of DEPECHE MODE all do have african american fathers or roots and every of them can pass for white

and if you don’t believe me please ask people who bought mariah careys albums circa 1991 all of them thought she were the black sounding white girl

M July 23, 2015 at 9:06 pm

Black people don’t want his busted ass, trust me. He’s ugly so the whites can claim him.

theropod April 1, 2015 at 6:49 am

Yummy little man. :)

Unexpected mix of ethnicities up there…

I thought he was either simply an:

1. Ashkenazi Jew
2. Italian
3. Irish

shobohunter April 3, 2015 at 1:01 pm

white dude

M May 30, 2015 at 6:38 pm

I don’t think he’s attractive at all. In fact he’s a bit weird looking.

Tux July 14, 2015 at 6:35 am

British people have the palest skin in Europe but at the same time they’re also the darkest people of norther europe especially when it comes to hair. There’s quite a few who coulld pass as French, Jewish, etc. You haven’t seen anything yet, they can get even darker than Penn especially the Welsh.

amckenzie October 20, 2014 at 4:08 pm

Oh my goodness! He looks just like Jason Silva (the host of “Brain Games”)! LOL

Check7t July 31, 2014 at 8:45 am

I bet there are a lot of White Americans who are 1/32th black, but that’s a small amount of Sub-Saharan African admixture so it means nothing tbh.

westcc January 18, 2015 at 10:01 pm

Actually, I doubt there’s that many. You have to consider that being a person of color or of mixed race was deemed socially disaventageous in America well into the 20th century. In the South, there was the “One Drop Rule”, which meant a person was technically deemed Black even though they were of primarily of European decent.
Furthermore, while there may be many White Americans who claim to have Native American ancestry, the reality is that fewer than 4% actually do.
Unlike in other parts of North and South America, racial divisions were very apparent and regarded in the cultural development of the US.

WTF May 31, 2014 at 6:33 am

this n*gga aint one of us. he looks like your everyday white dude. tf? even if he was part black, he’s like maybe one percent. shit even angelina jolie looks more black than him.

Check7t July 9, 2014 at 11:11 pm

He’s 1/32th black…

ashash July 19, 2014 at 6:31 am

He is 1/32nd black. That is 3%. That is a lot. Every drop counts.

follers July 19, 2014 at 10:31 am

I’m confused why people can’t believe he’s 1/16 or 1/32 black. Peter Ustinov was 1/16 Ethiopian African and he looked a lot less black than Penn.

ashash July 19, 2014 at 10:44 am

I don’t see the issue. Anyone could be 1/32nd black. Even Gwyneth Paltrow.

mia123w May 24, 2014 at 9:45 pm

Oh excuse me I thought if you have one drop of black your black?

ihatemostpeople May 6, 2014 at 11:52 pm

He is not black. LMFAO. I honestly thought he was Jewish….

Marseille April 24, 2014 at 5:54 am

I have to say he’s white even if he is truly 1/32th black.

Check7t February 23, 2014 at 4:49 am

His Jamaican ancestors could have been White Jamaicans. Yes, most Jamaicans are black, but back in the day Jamaica had a large white population and was white before it was black.

The white population decreased and a lot of the White Jamaicans emigrated to America. His Jamaican ancestor could be possibly one of European ancestry.

He looks fully white regardless.

follers February 23, 2014 at 5:47 am

One of his Jamaican ancestors was born into slavery, which is written up there.

Check7t February 23, 2014 at 12:41 pm

Are you aware of the Irish slaves in Jamaica?

It’s very possible his ancestor was an Irish slave. I would appreciate it if you could fix his ethnicity with Jamaican (of unknown ancestry) until it is more clear, thanks.

follers February 23, 2014 at 1:13 pm

I don’t think that there were whole families of white slaves born in Jamaica, c. the 1810s, to white slave mothers, as would be the case here.

Besides, it already says, “was almost certainly of at least part Afro-Jamaican descent”.

memphis July 18, 2014 at 9:08 am

Actually the Caribbean is the area where there were an abundant of Irish slavery but they assimilated really quickly with the African slaves. I would still go with Penn’s ancestry as partly Afro-Jamaican.

Michael January 22, 2014 at 1:23 am

I thought he was 1/32th black? No?

follers January 22, 2014 at 3:12 am

He probably is. I don’t understand the question, though. The text about this hasn’t changed at all.

Daisuke January 16, 2014 at 4:58 pm

this is one hot black man.

Shawn January 13, 2014 at 1:02 am

What happened to his black heritage?

follers January 13, 2014 at 1:05 am

I don’t understand the question. His Jamaican or Afro-Jamaican ancestry is still discussed in the text.

Shawn January 17, 2014 at 12:25 am

Well, he used to have confirmed black heritage.

Shawn January 10, 2014 at 9:27 am

So he’s not part black?

Gambit January 10, 2014 at 6:45 am

Hes jamaican man!
woot! woot!

JasonBaker November 18, 2013 at 2:52 pm

He must be wrong about the distant African heritage. African genes are so powerful that there´s no way he would look so White if he had relatively recent African heritage. Or he might be an unique case.

follers November 18, 2013 at 2:53 pm

He is likely about 1/16th or 1/32 African.

andrew November 18, 2013 at 3:10 pm

do u have a proof?

follers November 18, 2013 at 3:14 pm

Well, his great-great-great-grandfather, James Malcolm Facey, received a manumission (release by owner) from slavery in Jamaica, in 1817, along with a sibling and his mother. I don’t think he was a white slave.

JasonBaker January 19, 2014 at 1:57 am

Even if he does have that partial African ancestry, I still consider him white, just like Johnny Depp.

fuzzybear44 November 19, 2013 at 5:05 am


Nothing unique about him,it happens alot. Even a person who is 50% black,can look like him.

(African genes are so powerful )

this cracks me up every time i read it

JasonBaker December 1, 2013 at 1:39 pm

Hahahaha, I mean it! African genes are very powerful, they take over any other race´s genes. If Penn Badgley was 1/32 black he wouldn´t be so pale. And when on earth is a Mulatto gonna look like Penn Badgley? Please show me an example!

Multiethnicchick December 31, 2013 at 10:31 am

There is no such thing as an African gene

Me myself and I July 5, 2014 at 8:23 am

You do realise that being 1/32 black equals having 3% black ancestry with 97% white ancestry? How can 3% of salty water be dominant in 97% of sweet water? Did you have F’s in math because brother it isn’t your stronger side :3

Me myself and I July 5, 2014 at 8:26 am

PS: Like multiethnicchick said, there’s only the human gene (oh Lord we’re all human with different skin tones, who’d say O.O) so yep, the African ‘gene’ doesn’t take over any other ‘gene’. It’s simple art. Mix up black and white it’ll be grey. Add more white, it’ll be light grey. Add more black it’ll be dark grey. It’s because black is a stronger colour.

JasonBaker July 5, 2014 at 11:48 am

Of course I know that all races are human, I just meant that, when mixed, children often look more African than Europe. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong about it, I’m just saying it because I honestly think that’s what happens most of the times (Obama, Sherri Saum…).
And yes, I had some F’s in math, but I also had C’s and B’s in math and somehow I managed to pass the subject.

notional December 19, 2013 at 4:38 am

Mariah Carey is 1/2 black and looks white

Multiethnicchick December 31, 2013 at 10:31 am

Mariah Carey is likely 1/4 black, not 50%

memphis January 6, 2014 at 12:20 pm

Have you seen Mariah Carey’s dad? He was a dark skinned Afro Latino. Genes are funny,there is a famous Brazilian Samba singer named, Neguinho de Beija Flor, whose skin tone is BLACK but genetically found to be 68% Euro,27% African the rest Amerindian.

ihatemostpeople May 6, 2014 at 11:53 pm

Her dad isn’t dark at all.

memphis October 11, 2014 at 1:33 pm

Mariah Carey’s dad was of Venezuelan ancestry thru his grandmother however some Venezuelans have a great degree of African ancestry. She states this on Lopez Tonight years ago about her paternal genealogy. The pictures of him I’ve are of a dark guy with a decent grade of hair.

archer December 22, 2013 at 3:34 pm

I have a friend who is a quarter black, he looks caucasian and his hair and eyes are lighter than mine, and I am completely caucasian.

AutumnM. January 1, 2014 at 1:30 pm

Obviously you haven’t seen the rainbow that is mixed-with-black multiracial people; my cousin(our mothers are sisters) who is half African American(mom) and half white of English and Irish ancestry(dad) looks white. If I had her permission I would post a picture to show you. And the funny thing is, her younger sister looks Polynesian and her youngest sister looks Arab. :/

Jc January 12, 2014 at 12:15 am

Look up Cameron Boyce!

J.J. November 16, 2013 at 5:59 am

correction; his eyes are hazel (light brown) and his hair is virtually black (noiret)

Aaron Mcdonnell Zellenburg November 14, 2013 at 9:13 pm

1/8th black?! I don’t see it in him at all. Just looks like a pure white with curly hair to me. My friend who’s 100% Spanish looks exactly like him.

follers November 14, 2013 at 9:21 pm

His Jamaican-born great-grandfather listed himself as “White” in the United States, so it’s unlikely that he was fully black. More likely, he was mixed-race, and could pass for white in the U.S.

LadyNikkitten November 29, 2013 at 6:35 pm

and why would you see black in someone who has it distantly??? Stupid… you can be HALF and still look completely white.

Jc January 12, 2014 at 12:18 am

Yeah! Like Cameron Boyce! But he is half black and so pale

J.J. October 7, 2013 at 5:15 am

correction; his eyes are forest green (green+brown) and his hair is dark brown (brunette)

Rudedude July 2, 2013 at 4:45 pm

So many white folks afraid of a little bit of African blood. Either they try and hide it or deny it vehemently, like it’s some sort of disease. But not one problem acknowledging non-whites with Euro blood.

andrew June 8, 2013 at 7:00 am

looks super English

andrew July 3, 2013 at 5:47 pm

plenty of English ppl have this look..IMO he can pass for an Englishman.

Gracie March 21, 2012 at 1:33 pm

Judging by his current wild afro, I’d say he’s not 100% Anglo american. Definitely has some African, Indian or Pacific Islander in him.

Me myself and I June 7, 2013 at 2:53 pm

you do realise that whites have curly hair too? so shut your ignorant mouth!

fuzzybear44 June 8, 2013 at 12:04 am


(He’s not white. Well, he’s a little bit African from his Jamaican immigrant great-grandpa.)

(I probably should write that up and submit it here.)

Yes,that might help to stop some of the insults.However on this site,I seriously doubt it.


How goes your Channing Tatum research?

fuzzybear44 June 8, 2013 at 1:35 am


(What do you mean by insults?)

Oh little phrases like:
(so shut your ignorant mouth!)

Although that’s actually kinda mild compared to,some of the more colorful phrases I’ve seen on the site,it’s still an insult

fuzzybear44 June 8, 2013 at 1:38 am


(But his own grandpa (Penn’s great-great-great-grandpa) was a slave in Jamaica. So I assume Penn has at least a smidgen of African ancestry.)

That counts as far as I’m concern

Me myself and I June 8, 2013 at 10:49 am

You wrote Anglo-Jamaican so that’s English Jamaican? I don’t see what’s non white there, plus even if you meant African, the one drop rule is just a racist quote that is not true! And if Rihanna’s black then Penn’s white.

rickyflo June 8, 2013 at 12:52 pm

Okay, look at this in a judgemental way, not prejudicial at all because a race is about judgemental and not prejudicing everything that person has. Judgemental he is caucasian, prejudicial he is not caucasian. The reason is that culture, heritage, and race combined a type of influence. God made us naturally if such believed by others. one drop rule historically does not fucking count at all whether prejudice or not. All that stuff is as saying Davinci was not Italian and was a bastard child, but one problem he was italian and not a bastard for his father’s stupid deeds. Just right there no matter he is caucasian for the one drop rule, and cant purify a race.

Nick September 12, 2010 at 3:01 pm

I dont think you can keep guessing ethnicities on just their surname alone, especially since alot have been ‘anglicised’ and it can only be part of their ancestry…

rickyflo June 8, 2013 at 12:54 pm

True, on that part, but their ethnicity is involved in how they were raised, not a name all the way.

follers November 12, 2013 at 12:32 am

Well, in this case, the surname “Badgley” goes back at least 350 years or so.

ethnic November 12, 2013 at 2:36 am

Hi Follers have you checked you email today?

follers November 12, 2013 at 2:51 am

I did but I didn’t know I had to reply?? You didn’t really ask me a question?

ethnic November 12, 2013 at 4:36 am

Ok, I just wanted to give you a heads up as the interface may be a little different. but let me know if you have any queries as I dont know if this will work yet.

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