Paul Kantner

Birth Name: Paul Lorin Kantner

Date of Birth: March 17, 1941

Place of Birth: San Francisco, California, United States

Date of Death: January 28, 2016

Place of Death: San Francisco, California, U.S.

Ethnicity: German, English, Irish, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, small amounts of Swiss-German, Scottish, and French

Paul Kantner was an American singer, songwriter, and musician. He was the rhythm guitarist and a singer of rock band Jefferson Airplane. Other members of the band included Jorma Kaukonen and Grace Slick.

Paul was the son of Cora Leigh/Lee (Pendergast) and Paul Schell Kantner. He had three children, including a son, musician Alexander; and a daughter, actress China Wing Kantner, the latter with his former partner and bandmate, singer and songwriter Grace Slick.

In Jeff Tamarkin’s book Got a Revolution!: The Turbulent Flight of Jefferson Airplane, 2005, Tamarkin wrote that Paul’s father was of German descent and that his mother “came from mixed German and French stock.” This is not entirely true. Paul’s father did have a significant amount of German ancestry, but he also had English, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, and distant Scottish, Swiss-German, and French, roots. Paul’s mother did not appear to have any recent German and/or French ancestry. She had English, Irish, and possibly Scottish, roots.

Paul’s paternal grandfather was Charles Rufus Kantner (the son of Charles Kantner and Mary Susan Schell). Paul’s grandfather Charles was born in West Virginia. Paul’s great-grandfather Charles was the son of John Franklin Kantner and Sarah Double, and had German, distant Swiss-German, and possibly some English, ancestry. His own mother may have been of English descent. Mary was the daughter of Abraham Christian Schell and Anna Maria Lehmer.

Paul’s paternal grandmother was Martha Isabell “Belle”/”Bell” Harned (the daughter of William Harned and Mary Ann Wheeler). Martha was born in West Virginia. William was the son of Edward Emanuel Harned and Sarah Isabella Wolfe, and had English, German, and distant French, ancestry. Mary Ann was of English, Scots-Irish/Northern Irish, and distant Scottish and Swiss-German, descent.

Paul’s maternal grandfather was named Walter Thomas Pendergast (the son of Michael Pendergast). Walter was born in California. Walter’s father was Irish. His mother was English.

Paul’s maternal grandmother was named Grace/Gracie B./P. Stoddard/Stoddart. Grace was born in Idaho. Grace’s father was born in Michigan. Her mother was born in England. The surname Stoddard/Stoddart is often Scottish.

Sources: Genealogy of Paul Kantner –

Genealogy of Paul Kantner (focusing on his father’s side) –

Paul’s maternal grandfather, Walter Thomas Pendergast, on the 1900 U.S. Census –

Paul’s maternal grandmother, Grace/Gracie B./P. Stoddard/Stoddart, on the 1900 U.S. Census –

1 Response

  1. andrew says:

    genealogy of Paul Kanter (focusing on his father’s side):

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