Laura Dern

06/07/2018 – Laura Dern – American Film Institute’s 46th Life Achievement Award Gala Tribute To George Clooney – Arrivals – The Dolby Theatre – Hollywood, CA, USA – Keywords: Orientation: Portrait Face Count: 1 – False – Photo Credit: David Gabber /

Birth Name: Laura Elizabeth Dern

Place of Birth: Los Angeles, California, United States

Date of Birth: February 10, 1967

Ethnicity: German, Norwegian, English, Scottish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, more distant Dutch, Swiss-German, and French

Laura Dern is an American actress, director, and producer. Her parents are actors Bruce Dern (Bruce MacLeish Dern) and Diane Ladd (born Rose Diane Ladner). Laura has two children with her former husband, musician Ben Harper.

On her father’s side, Laura is of German, English, Scottish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, and Dutch descent. Through her mother, Laura has Norwegian, German, English, Swiss-German, and French ancestry.

Laura’s paternal grandfather was John Henry Dern (the son of George Henry Dern and Charlotte “Lottie” Brown). John was born in Utah. George was a politician, who was the 6th Governor of Utah, from 1925 to 1933, and the 52nd United States Secretary of War, from 1933 to 1936; George was the son of Johannes/John Dern and Elisabeth/Elizabeth Margarita Dern, German emigrants, who were both born with the same surname. Johannes was from Hessen. Laura’s great-grandmother Charlotte was the daughter of William Steele Brown and Ida Belle Martin.

Laura’s paternal grandmother was Jean MacLeish (the daughter of Bruce MacLeish and Elizabeth Jane Moore). Jean was born in Illinois. Laura’s great-grandfather Bruce was chairman of the Carson, Pirie, and Scott stores. He was the son of Andrew MacLeish, a Scottish emigrant, from Glasgow, who was a prominent businessperson, and who had founded Carson, Pirie, and Scott’s retail department store; and of Martha Hillard. Elizabeth was the daughter of Jesse G. Moore and Elizabeth. Laura’s great-grandfather Bruce MacLeish was the brother of Archibald MacLeish, a noted poet, who was Librarian of Congress, from 1939 to 1944, and the 1st Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs, from 1944 to 1945; and of WWI Naval aviator, Kenneth MacLeish.

Laura’s maternal grandfather was Preston Paul Ladner (the son of Jeremiah Joseph Ladner and Hattie Emma Tyner). Preston was born in Mississippi. Jeremiah was the son of Paris/Parish A. Ladner and Laura Prudence “Prudie” Smith. Hattie was the daughter of James Everett Tyner and Mary Jane Bullock.

Laura’s maternal grandmother was Mary Bernadette Anderson (the daughter of James A. Anderson and Rosa J. Schmitt). Mary Bernadette was born in Alabama. James was a Norwegian immigrant, and was the son of Andrew Anderson. Rosa’s parents, August Schmitt, born in Gabsheim, Rhineland-Palatinate, and Magdalena Honard, born in Munich, Bavaria, were German.

Sources: Genealogy of Laura Dern –

Genealogy of Laura’s paternal great-grandfather, George Henry Dern –

Laura’s paternal grandmother, Jean MacLeish, on the 1920 U.S. Census –
Jean MacLeish on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Genealogy of Laura Dern (focusing on her mother’s side) –

Genealogy of Laura’s maternal grandfather, Preston Paul Ladner –

Laura’s maternal great-grandparents, James A. Anderson and Rosa J. Schmitt, on the 1900 U.S. Census –


Curious about ethnicity

6 Responses

  1. andrew says:

    Laura Dern and William Macy are fifth cousins, once removed

    Laura’s maternal 5th great-grandparents, Jean Baptiste Ladner and Francois Carco, were also William Macy maternal 4th great-grandparents.

    Being also Brett Favre’s maternal 5th great-grandparents, this makes Laura and Brett sixth cousins

    Swiss -> Swiss-German

  2. andrew says:

    “München, Bayern” is “Munich, Bavaria” in English

  3. Whitson says:

    Her dad Bruce Dern is German-Scottish (Dern is a German surname).

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.