Ella Fitzgerald

Fitzgerald in 1946, photo by William P. Gottlieb, from the William P. Gottlieb collection at the Library of Congress.

Birth Name: Ella Jane Fitzgerald

Date of Birth: April 25, 1917

Place of Birth: Newport News, Virginia, U.S.

Date of Death: June 15, 1996

Place of Death: Beverly Hills, California, U.S.

Ethnicity: African-American

Ella Fitzgerald was an American jazz singer. She is referred to as the First Lady of Song, Queen of Jazz, and Lady Ella.

Ella was the daughter of Temperance “Tempie” (Williams) and William Fitzgerald. She had a son, jazz and blues pianist and singer Ray Brown, Jr., with her former husband, jazz double bassist Ray Brown.

Ella is sometimes described as having Irish ancestry. The surname Fitzgerald is usually Irish, but it is not clear if this ancestry has been documented.

Ella’s paternal grandfather was named Daniel Fitzgerald (the son of Richard Fitzgerald and Clarissa). Daniel was born in Virginia.

Ella’s paternal grandmother was named Ella Cralle. Ella was born in Virginia.

Sources: Genealogies of Ella Fitzgerald (focusing on her father’s side) – https://www.wikitree.com

Ella Fitzgerald on the 1920 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org

2 Responses

  1. ames says:

    Among modern-day African-Americans, surnames were often taken by slave ancestors who took the name from a white owner, or former owner, if they were freed, or from a white person admired by the black ancestor, such as Lincoln. Fitzgerald may have been one of those names.

  2. fuzzybear44 says:

    Classy lady

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