John Philip Sousa

Date of Birth: November 6, 1854

Place of Birth: Washington, D.C., U.S.

Date of Death: March 6, 1932

Place of Death: Reading, Pennsylvania, U.S.

*father – Portuguese, Andalusian Spanish
*mother – German

John Philip Sousa was an American composer and conductor, of the late Romantic era. He is known primarily for military marches, and composed “The Stars and Stripes Forever,” the National March of the U.S.; “Semper Fidelis,” the official march of the U.S. Marine Corps; “The Liberty Bell,” “The Thunderer,” and “The Washington Post.” He was nicknamed “The March King” or the “American March King.”

John was born in Washington, the son of Marie/Maria Elisabeth (Trinkhaus) and João António de Sousa, later John Anthony Sousa, a trombonist in the Marine Band. His father was born in Seville, Spain, to parents who were born there, and was evidently of Spanish and one quarter Portuguese descent. His mother was German, born in Hesse Darmstadt.

He was married to Jane van Middlesworth Bellis, until his death, with whom he had three children.

John’s paternal grandfather was named John Antonio Sousa.

John’s paternal grandmother was named Josephine de Blanco.

John’s maternal grandfather was Johann Peter Trinkaus (the son of Johann Wilhelm Trinkaus and Eva Elisabeth Lautenschläger). John’s grandfather Johann was born in Bavaria. John’s great-grandfather Johann was the son of Johann Wilhelm Trinkaus and Eva Elisabeth Reeg.

John’s maternal grandmother was Anna Catherine Schäfer (the daughter of Johann Philipp Schäfer and Susanna Catherina Groh). Anna was born in Bavaria.

Sources: Genealogies of John Philip Sousa –

1 Response

  1. Oaken05 says:

    So then he’s 1/8 Portuguese?

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