Anderson Cooper

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Cooper in 2013, photo by

Birth Name: Anderson Hays Cooper

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

Date of Birth: June 3, 1967

Ethnicity: English, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, Welsh, Scottish, 1/16th Chilean [Spanish, Indigenous], distant Dutch, remote French Huguenot

Anderson Cooper is an American television journalist, author, and commentator. He has hosted the show Anderson Cooper 360° since 2003. He also hosted the show Anderson Live from 2011 to 2013.

Anderson is the son of Gloria Laura Morgan (Vanderbilt), an artist, author, actress, fashion designer, heiress, and socialite, and Waytt Emory Cooper, a writer and screenwriter. His father was born in Quitman, Clarke, Mississippi. His mother was a New Yorker. He had a brother, Carter Vanderbilt Cooper, and has two half-siblings from his mother’s previous marriage to British conductor Leopold Stokowski.

Anderson has English, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, Welsh, Scottish, 1/16th Chilean [Spanish, Indigenous], distant Dutch, and remote French Huguenot, ancestry. His maternal great-great-great-grandfather was business magnate Cornelius Vanderbilt, nicknamed “The Commodore,” who built his wealth in railroads and shipping. His half-aunt was socialite Cathleen Vanderbilt. He is a great-nephew of diplomat, society figure, and actor Harry Hays Morgan, Jr.; socialite Thelma Furness, Viscountess Furness; and Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, who was a prominent sculptor, art patron, and collector, and who founded the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Anderson has two children.

A DNA test taken by the show Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (2014) stated that Anderson’s genetic ancestry is:

*97.8% European
*1.3% Native American
*0.7% Sub-Saharan African

Anderson’s paternal great-great-great-great-grandfather, Solomon Cooper, was said to be of Native American [Choctaw and possibly other] ancestry. However, Anderson’s Native/Indigenous DNA result came from his mother. Anderson’s African DNA was southeastern Bantu in origin.

Anderson is a second cousin, once removed, of filmmaker James Vanderbilt, and a third cousin, once removed, of actor Timothy Olyphant. Anderson’s maternal great-grandparents, Cornelius Vanderbilt II and Alice Claypoole Gwynne, were also James’s paternal great-great-grandparents. Anderson’s maternal great-great-grandparents, William Henry Vanderbilt and Maria Louisa Kissam, were also Timothy’s paternal great-great-great-grandparents.

Anderson’s paternal grandfather was Emmett/Emmet/Emmitt Debrow/Debro Cooper (the son of William Preston Cooper and Roxieann/Roxanna/Roxana/Roxsine Safronia Flowers). Emmett was born in Hinton, Choctaw, Alabama. William was the son of Burrell/Burwell C. Cooper and Laura Sophronia/Safronia Bull. Roxieann was the daughter of Willis Flowers and Anna R. Berry.

Anderson’s paternal grandmother was Jennie Almones Anderson (the daughter of William M. Anderson and Sarah Annie Campbell). Jennie was born in Mississippi. Sarah was the daughter of Robert Fletcher Campbell and Rixie.

Anderson’s maternal grandfather was Reginald Claypoole Vanderbilt (the son of Cornelius Vanderbilt II and Alice Claypoole Gwynne). Reginald was born in New York. Cornelius was born on Staten Island, the son of William Henry “Billy” Vanderbilt and Maria Louisa/Louise Kissam. Alice was the daughter of Abraham Evans Gwynne and Rachel Moore “Cettie” Flagg. Cettie’s father, Henry Collins Flagg, Jr., was a lawyer, newspaper editor, and politician, who was Mayor of New Haven, Connecticut, from 1833 to 1839. Cettie’s siblings, Anderson’s great-great-great-uncles, were painters George Whiting Flagg and Jared Bradley Flagg.

Anderson’s maternal grandmother was Gloria Morgan Vanderbilt (born Maria Mercedes Morgan, the daughter of Harry H. Morgan, born Henry Hays Morgan, and of Laura Isabel Delphine Kilpatrick). Gloria was born at Grand Hotel National, Lucerne, Switzerland, to American parents. Harry was born in New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana, and was a U.S. diplomat, who was a consul general in Buenos Aires, Berlin, Amsterdam, Havana, Cuba, and Brussels. He was the son of Philip Hicky/Hickey Morgan and Beatrice Leslie Ford. Anderson’s great-grandmother Laura was born in Santiago, Chile. Her father, Hugh Judson Kilpatrick, was American, and was an officer in the Union Army during the American Civil War. Laura’s mother, Anderson’s great-great-grandmother Luisa/Louise Fernández de Valdivieso/Valdives/Valduriso Aráoz, was Chilean, and had Spanish and Indigenous/Native ancestry.

Sources: Genealogies of Anderson Cooper –

Family histories of Anderson Cooper –

14 Responses

  1. charicew says:

    pretty cool that he has African and Native American ancestors no matter how far back.

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