Summer Glau

Glau in 2008, photo by Joe Seer /

Birth Name: Summer Lyn Glau

Place of Birth: San Antonio, Bexar, Texas, U.S.

Date of Birth: July 24, 1981

Ethnicity: German/Alsatian German, Swiss-German, Scottish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, Irish, Welsh, English

Summer Glau is an American actress. She is known for playing Cameron on the series Terminator: the Sarah Connor Chronicles. Summer’s father is of German/Alsatian German, English, and 1/8th Swiss-German descent. Summer’s mother is of English, Scottish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, Irish, and Welsh descent.

There are claims on the internet that Summer has Cherokee Native American ancestry, specifically from a great-grandparent. These claims do not appear to be accurate. While it is possible that Summer may have remote Cherokee ancestry, all of Summer’s great-grandparents are identified as “white” on United States censuses, and most or all of their recent ancestry has been documented as ”not” being Cherokee Native American.

Summer is married to actor Val Morrison, with whom she has a daughter.

Summer’s co-star Grace Park has said:

She was really cool. We were joking that her name was Summer G. Lau and she was actually of Asian heritage – that’s what Daniel [Dae Kim] kept saying. I didn’t know that her ancestry actually is Irish and German. But yeah, she just brought it. There were so many takes where the camera wasn’t even on her, and she just gave it every single time.

Summer’s patrilineal line can be traced back to her great-great-great-grandparents, Detlef Wilhelm Christian Glau (b. c. 1825, in Flensburg, Schleswig, Germany) and Anna Friederike Basche (b. c. 1821, also in Flensburg, Schleswig, Germany).

Summer’s paternal grandfather was Raymond Rudolph/Rudolph Glau (the son of Julius Rudolf Glau, Jr. and Edith H. Jackson). Raymond was born in Texas. Julius was born in Iowa, the son of Julius Rudolf Glau, who was born in Gettorf, Schleswig-Hostein, Germany, and of Ana/Annie Maria Hurni, who was Swiss. Edith was born in Texas, the daughter of Crowfield Jackson and Susie Lavina West.

Summer’s paternal grandmother was Virginia Mae Mangold (the daughter of Walter Herman Mangold and Lorraine/Laraine Emalia Carle). Virginia was born in Texas, of German descent, including Alsatian German. Walter was the son of Valentine Mangold and Josephine Tschirhart. Lorraine was the daughter of Martin Ambrose Carle and Ida Haby.

Summer’s maternal grandfather was Albert Joe McFarlane (the son of Floyd Joseph McFarlane and Evalyn Rose Grace Morgan). Albert was born in Oregon. Floyd was the son of Joseph A. McFarlane and Cora A. Sheldon. Evalyn was the daughter of Fred Sylvester Morgan and Lora Bell Carpenter.

Summer’s maternal grandmother was Mary Freda Cooper (the daughter of Thomas A. Cooper and Vera Wooten). Mary Freda was born in Arkansas. Vera was the daughter of Monroe Wooten and Creola Milburn.

Summer’s matrilineal line can be traced to Minerva McCain, who was born, c. 1848, in Tennessee.


Genealogy of Summer Glau –

Summer’s paternal grandfather, Raymond Rudolph/Rudolph Glau, on the 1940 U.S. Census –

Genealogies of Summer’s paternal great-grandparents, Julius Rudolf Glau, Jr. and Edith H. Jackson –

Summer’s paternal great-grandparents, Julius Rudolf Glau, Jr. and Edith H. Jackson , on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Summer’s paternal grandmother, Virginia Mae Mangold, on the 1940 U.S. Census –

Genealogies of Summer’s paternal great-grandparents, Walter Herman Mangold and Lorraine/Laraine Emalia Carle –

Summer’s maternal grandfather, Albert Joe McFarlane, on the 1940 U.S. Census –

Summer’s maternal grandmother, Mary Freda Cooper, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Interview where Summer mentions some of her ancestry –


Curious about ethnicity

129 Responses

  1. Jennifer 2012 says:

    She looks like she has asian blood in her and maybe she really doesn’t even know. Look at Diana Shores only found out late in life he has african genes in her blood. Many whites also have black genes and don’t know about it. Think of Thomas Jefferson’s children are consider white than black cuz they are only 1/8 black. Many of them took on the white identity and all the following generations.

    • Acadiana says:

      Why would they identify as Asian or black if they are only 1/8th or less anyway? That makes no sense. An ancestor of mine from eight generations ago could be from Jupiter. I honestly would not give a damn.

      • Nathalie says:

        Well, I think it’s interesting to look back on one’s own ancestry and see where our ancestors came from and who they used to be. It is different, I think, for someone’s genetic makeup to be one thing but to identify as the race he or she grew up most prominently influenced by. I think it depends on the person.

  2. me says:

    she looks more Asian than anything else

  3. Maria says:

    She looks a bit Asian in this photo actually.But she is German and Scot-Irish so i guess it just angel of photo or her make up.Where is the name Glau from originally?

  4. Donato, duh ninjin turdle says:

    She’s a movie actor who plays “the mystery girl” because she has a different look that makes her more mysterious and interesting an element of the movie. She keeps playing that same type character too and she’s in make up on screen and likely tries to keep that look going during moments off screen too(like premiers.)

  5. Ammz says:

    What exactly IS Scots-Irish? Is it just a mix of Scottish and Irish, or is it something completely different I’m missing? This girl doesn’t look one bit Scottish, Irish or German to me (I would have guessed she was Italian), and Scots-Irish seems to me like a term only used in America… in Australia we just say Scottish and Irish and don’t combine them into one word.

    • Smash says:

      Scots-Irish are Scottish and Northern English people who settled in Northern Ireland during 100 year before they migrate to North America. In UK, they use the term Ulster Scots for those people.

      So if she’s Scots-Irish, she must have more Scottish roots than Irish roots.

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