Keri Russell

FX's "The Americans" Season One New York City Premiere - Arrivals

Russell in 2013, photo by Prphotos

Birth Name: Keri Lynn Russell

Place of Birth: Fountain Valley, Orange, California, United States

Date of Birth: March 23, 1976

Ethnicity: English, along with German, Swiss-German, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, Manx/Isle of Man, Dutch, Danish

Keri Russell is an American actress and dancer.

Much of her ancestry is English, with smaller (to varying degrees) amounts of German, Swiss-German, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, Manx (Isle of Man), Dutch, and Danish. Many of her ancestral lines trace back to New England of the 1600s, and to England before that.

Keri has a son with her partner, Welsh actor Matthew Rhys, and two children with her former husband, carpenter Shane Deary.

Keri once stated, “I had all my Jewish grandmothers calling.” The reference was evidently humorous (with “all” her “Jewish grandmothers” referring to worried friends). Keri has no Jewish ancestry, and her religious background is LDS (Mormon), with many Utah-born ancestors.

Keri’s paternal grandfather was named Harold Edward Russell.

Keri’s paternal grandmother was Jewell Laverne Thompson (the daughter of John Asa Thompson and Belle/Bell H. Edwards). Jewell was born in Oklahoma. John was the son of Newton Washington Thompson and Sophia Elona Hawkins. Belle was the daughter of James Daniel/E. Edwards and Josephine V. “Josie” Tallent/Tallant.

Keri’s maternal grandfather was Kermit Sylvester Stephens (the son of George Walter Stephens and Harriett/Harriet Ann/Anna Colvin). Kermit was born in Arizona. George was the son of William Adam Stephens and Temperance Susan Penrod. Harriett was the daughter of William Wesley Colvin and Elizabeth Jane Winsby, who was English.

Keri’s maternal grandmother was Emma Inez Fish (the daughter of Karl Joseph Fish and Mary Emma McNeil). Emma was born in Arizona. Karl was the son of John Lazelle Fish and Melvina Cheney. Mary Emma was the daughter of Daniel/Dan McNeil and Emma Angenette Hendrix/Hendries.

Keri’s matrilineal line can be traced back to Erasma or Theresia Guillam, who was born c. 1783.

Sources: Genealogy of Keri Russell –

Keri’s paternal grandmother, Jewell Laverne Thompson, on the 1930 U.S. Census –
Jewell Laverne Thompson on the 1940 U.S. Census –

Genealogy of Keri Russell (focusing on her mother’s side) –

Keri’s maternal grandfather, Kermit Sylvester Stephens, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Genealogy of Keri’s maternal great-grandmother, Harriett/Harriet Ann/Anna Colvin (focusing on her own father’s side) –

Keri’s maternal grandmother, Emma Inez Fish, on the 1920 U.S. Census –

Genealogies of Keri’s maternal great-great-grandfather, Daniel/Dan McNeil –

Genealogy of Keri’s maternal great-great-grandmother, Emma Angenette Hendrix/Hendries (focusing on her own mother’s side) –

Genealogy of Keri’s maternal great-great-great-great-grandmother, Mary Ann Myers –


Curious about ethnicity

2 Responses

  1. follers says:

    She reminds me of Natalie Portman.

  2. Jo says:

    where’s her picture? and all the comments?

    anyway, she is quite an attractive lady, and very natural-looking. I would have guessed part German.

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