Rod Steiger

by ethnic on July 20, 2010

Birth Name: Rodney Stephen Steiger

Date of Birth: April 14, 1925

Place of Birth: Westhampton, New York, U.S.

Date of Death: July 9, 2002

Place of Death: Los Angeles, California, U.S.

Ethnicity: German, Austrian/Moravian

Rod Steiger was an American actor. He won the Academy Award for Best Actor for In the Heat of the Night (1967).

He was the son of Augusta Amelia (Driver) and Frederick Jacob Steiger. He had German and Austrian/Moravian ancestry. He had a daughter, opera singer Anna Steiger, with his former wife, British actress Claire Bloom; and a son with his former wife, Paula Ellis.

Rod’s paternal grandfather was Frederick J. Steiger (the son of Jacob Steiger and Freida Gehrbach). Frederick was born in Germany.

Rod’s paternal grandmother was Anna/Annie A. Libschick/Libshik (the daughter of Frank Libschik/Libshik/Lipschik and Maria/Marie/Mary Whisodil/Wisodil/Wissdil/Vychodil/Visogel). Anna was born in Austria, to a mother who was from Olomouc, Moravia, now in the Czech Republic.

Rod’s maternal grandparents were Frank Driver (possibly Frank Herman Driver) and Amelia/Amy Fesler or Titchler. They were likely both also of German origin.

Rod was sometimes described as having a Jewish father. However, Rod’s father does not appear to have been of Jewish heritage. Rod was also sometimes said to have French and Scottish ancestry. It is not clear if that is accurate.

Sources: Rod Steiger on the 1940 U.S. Census –

Rod’s father on the 1900 U.S. Census –
Rod’s father on the 1920 U.S. Census –
Rod’s father on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Rod’s paternal grandparents, Frederick J. Steiger and Anna/Annie A. Libschick/Libshik, on the 1900 U.S. Census –

Immigration record of Rod’s paternal great-grandmother, Maria/Marie/Mary (Whisodil/Wisodil/Wissdil/Vychodil/Visogel) Libschik/Libshik/Lipschik –

Genealogy of Rod Steiger (focusing on his mother’s side) –

Photo by Pprhotos

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

madman October 2, 2017 at 12:03 pm

His grandmother Anna was Polish.

follers October 3, 2017 at 7:14 am

How do you know what?

Any thoughts, bablah?

bablah October 3, 2017 at 9:56 am

This only says they’re from Moravia
1930 census has Maria as a German speaker from Olomouc.

I’m not sure if this is Frank:
But his last place of residence is Vienna.

What I could gather is that Vychodil is a Czech last name from Olomouc.

I can’t really say if she was German, Polish or Czech, but I’m pretty sure she was from Olomouc, Moravia.

madman October 3, 2017 at 12:01 pm

The 1920 Census. She spoke Polish.

andrew May 12, 2016 at 5:35 pm

He played Mussolini

andrew May 12, 2016 at 5:39 pm

also Al Capone and Napoleon.

“of French, Scottish and German descent”, according to Wikipedia.

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