Morgan Freeman

by ethnic on July 18, 2009

Morgan Freeman ethnicity

Place of Birth: Memphis, Tennessee, U.S.

Date of Birth: June 1, 1937

Ethnicity: African-American, more distant English

Morgan Freeman is an American actor, narrator, director, and producer. He won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for Million Dollar Baby (2004).

Morgan is the son of Mayme Edna (Revere) and Morgan Porterfield Freeman. His parents were both black.

Morgan’s maternal great-great-grandfather, Alfred Carr, was a caucasian man (with English ancestry) who had eight children with Morgan’s black great-great-grandmother, Celia Johnson. The two lived together, or close to each other, in Mississippi, though they could not legally marry at the time (the late 1800s). The couple was buried side by side.

Morgan’s paternal grandparents were Morgan Herbert/Hubert Freeman (the son of James Anderson Freeman) and Evie Anderson (the daughter of Albert Anderson and Lucinda Cain). Lucinda was the daughter of Milton Wright and Sylvia Cain.

Morgan’s maternal grandparents were Jacob Isiah Revere (the son of Daniel Revere and Riller) and Lenora Greenlee (the daughter of Samuel Greenlee and Elizabeth/Betty Carr). Elizabeth was the daughter of Alfred Carr and Celia Johnson.

A DNA test whose results were displayed on the show African American Lives 2 (2008) stated that Morgan’s genetic ancestry is:

*83% Sub-Saharan African
*17% European

In his 2009 book about the show, In Search of Our Roots: How 19 Extraordinary African Americans Reclaimed Their Past, Henry Louis Gates, Jr. wrote that 75% of Morgan’s African DNA matches the Congo-Angola region, and 25% matches the Upper Guinea region, including the Shong and Tuareg people. On his father’s side, his DNA has matches with Igbo (Nigerian) ancestry.

Sources: Genealogies of Morgan Freeman – http://familypedia.wikia.com

Morgan’s maternal grandfather, Jacob Isiah Revere, on the 1900 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org

Background story on Morgan’s caucasian great-great-grandfather, Alfred Carr, and black great-great-grandmother, Celia Johnson – http://www.nytimes.com

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Tupac Shakur

by ethnic on April 25, 2009

1996 MTV Video Music Awards

Birth Name: Lesane Parish Crooks

Date of Birth: June 16, 1971

Place of Birth: East Harlem, Manhattan, New York City, New York, U.S.

Date of Death: September 13, 1996

Place of Death: Las Vegas, Nevada

Ethnicity: African-American, as well as at least 1/16th European, possibly Tuareg

Tupac Shakur was an American rapper, songwriter, and actor. He was the son of African-American parents, William Garland and Afeni Shakur (born Alice Faye Williams). He was born Lesane Parish Crooks. He adopted his surname, “Shakur”, from his stepfather, black nationalist Mutulu Shakur (who was born Jeral Wayne Williams). His mother gave him the name “Tupac Amaru” after the Peruvian revolutionary Túpac Amaru II. His parents were Black Panther members. His mother was also a businessperson, philanthropist, political activist. His stepbrother is rapper Mopreme Shakur.

One of his great-grandmothers was the daughter of a white man whose surname was “Powers”, and of a black woman named Millie Ann.

His father is said to have Tuareg heritage, an African ethnic group. It is not clear if this ancestry has been verified/documented.

Tupac’s maternal grandparents were Walter Williams, Jr. (the son of The Rev. Walter Williams and Lena) and Rosa Belle (the daughter of Amy Lane Wooten). Amy Lane was the daughter of Roseanna.

Sources: Genealogies of Tupac Shakur (focusing on his mother’s side) – http://www.wargs.com

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