Rita Moreno

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Moreno in 2013, photo by PrPhotos

Birth Name: Rosa Dolores Alverío Marcano

Place of Birth: Humacao, Puerto Rico

Date of Birth: December 11, 1931

Ethnicity: Puerto Rican

Rita Moreno is an American actress, dancer, and singer. She won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for West Side Story (1961). Her roles also include the films So Young, So Bad; The Toast of New Orleans, Pagan Love Song, The Ring (1952), Singin’ in the Rain, Cattle Town, Fort Vengeance, Untamed, Jivaro, The Lieutenant Wore Skirts, The King and I, The Vagabond King, The Deerslayer, This Rebel Breed, Summer and Smoke, Cry of Battle, The Night of the Following Day, Popi, Marlowe (1969), Carnal Knowledge, The Ritz, Happy Birthday, Gemini; The Four Seasons, Age Isn’t Everything, I Like It Like That, Angus, Slums of Beverly Hills, Blue Moon, Piñero, Casa de los babys, Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks, the West Side Story remake (2021), 80 for Brady, and Fast X, and television’s The Electric Company, Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego? (in the title voice role), Oz, Happily Divorced, Nina’s World, and One Day at a Time (2017). She has also been credited as Rosita Moreno.

She was born in Humacao, Puerto Rico, the daughter of Rosa María Marcano, a seamstress, and Francisco José “Paco” Alverío. She was initially raised in nearby Juncos. Rita and her mother moved to New York City in the 1930s, and then lived in Valley Stream, Long Island. Moreno was the surname of her first stepfather, Edward. Rita was married to cardiologist Leonard Gordon, until his death, with whom she has a daughter.

Rita’s paternal grandfather was Nemesio Alverio Rivera (the son of Severo Alverio/Alverro and Fermina Rivera).

Rita’s paternal grandmother was Dolores Carrión Carrión de Alverio (the daughter of Jose Dolores Carrión y Rodriguez and Petra Carrión y Guzmán de Carrión). Jose was the son of Jose Maria Carrión Cabrera and Magdalena Rodriguez. Petra was the daughter of Cornelio Carrión Diaz and Dolores Guzman.

Rita’s maternal grandfather was Justino Marcano Rivera (the son of Isaac Marcano and Eulalia/Eulogia Rivera). Justino was born in Juncos, Puerto Rico.

Rita’s maternal grandmother was Trinidad López Morales (the daughter of Ramon Lopez Peña and Justa Morales Peña). Ramón was the son of Juan Ramón López de Victoria Serrano and Maria Trinidad Peña Diaz. Justa was the daughter of Dionisio Morales Maldonado and Maria Salomé Peña Diaz.

Sources: https://people.com

Immigration record of Rita’s mother – https://www.familysearch.org

41 Responses

  1. jonasbttencourt says:

    Well, obviusly, she’s heavily european (problably all spaniard), but i can see the indignous mix, but it’s not predominant in her phenotype at all. My bet would be something between 70-75% spaniard and 18-22% indignous, she can also have some distant black ancestry Puerto Rico has a substantial black influence.

    • jonasbttencourt says:

      * indigenous

    • andrew says:

      LOL how did you come up with such random %.

      All 4 Rita’s grandparents are listed as White, or Blanco if you prefer, on various U.S. Census records.

      This is her full family free: https://www.familysearch.org/tree/pedigree/landscape/LRXR-JRD

      Her maternal grandmother was not born in Spain but in PR as well as her parents, U.S. Census says.

      Her paternal grandfather is described as “white, tall, slim, green eyes, black hair” (all in Spanish) on his Draft Card. Not a mestizo/mulatto.

      Some of Rita’s ancestral lines are Colonial Spanish in PR since the 1600s.

      Also her bith surname, Alverio, is a bit of a mistery because barely exists in Spain. Maybe an “Alvarez” mispelling.

      • andrew says:

        Her maternal grandfather’s draft card also reports the same physical description (in Spanish) of her paternal one: “white, tall, slim, green eyes, black hair”. The two men:



        • Oaken05 says:

          This is silly. Your own posts point toward her not being 100% European ancestry, which is the opposite of what you’re trying to show.

          And you’ve been here long enough to know that racial listsings on Census’ and draft cards and other records say very little about a person’s full ancestry. There are a lot of “white” Puerto Ricans with various amounts of African an idigenous ancestry. In fact, MOST Puerto Ricans have mixed ancestry. And the fact that you find that she can trace her family back to the 1600’s on the island INCREASES the probability of ancestry other than Spanish.

          • andrew says:

            It’s not that silly. Obviously this does not rule out other distant bloodlines but it indicates her grandparents were not mestizos or mulattoes.

      • jonasbttencourt says:

        Ok then, you guys should change her ethnicity to “Spanish, possibly other”, i just assumed that she had some non-white ancestry since she’s puerto rican, and given the fact that she looks obviusly white, that non-white ancestry would be most likely on the 1/8th, at best 1/4 range. If it’s 100% accurate that all of her grandparents were indeed full spaniards then just change it cuz these “puerto rican” is kinda cringe, not just cuz it’s not an ethnicity, but also the fact that a full white person is being discribed as an “ethnic” inhabtant of an obviusly very ethnically diverse place. Nonetheless, she looks quite odd for a spaniard in my opinion, but it can be just a coincidence, specific combination of genes, etc… Not saying “oh she definitely without a doubt looks 1/4 black and 1/4 indigenous”, but only with genetic testing we can know for sure, documented heritage only tells half of the story in a lot of cases.

        • andrew says:

          Odd for a Spaniard…in fact she has pinkish skin so I agree.

        • italiano90 says:

          If we’re going to change ritas bio to Spanish then we should we change Dayanara Torres and Josh Segarra’s bio to Spanish too since their whole families look european. It doesn’t make them any less “Puerto Rican” since thats just the place their family were born. I do agree that Puerto Rican isn’t a real “ethnicity”.

      • midori29 says:

        @andrew many Puerto Rican people list themselves as white but they really aren’t 100 percent white. In Latin America mixed people listed themselves as white to get more privilege in society. Even the white looking Puerto Rican people are part African and Indian. Also there is a historical suggestion that the so called “taino” Indians of Puerto Rico were really East African Nubians mixed with Chinese. So Puerto Rico really is just a mullato island. Then Spain was historically admixed and ruled by African Moors even before colonization. Rita got lighter as she got older which sometimes happens with mixed people of color, any of thier ethnicities can come out.

        • andrew says:


          Unsure about that. If you list yourself as white but you don’t look as such, would the census taker accept it? Yes, a white looking person from PR can genetically have traces of SSA and Amerindian.
          But mind PR and Cuba had massive immigration from Canary Island, an archipelago west of Morocco (North Africa), so you get some looks from it.
          The Tainos are Amerindian people, not extint but still present in the genome of people from Caribbean islands. “East African Nubians mixed with Chinese”: did you get that from Afrocentric sites?! I’d say Dominican Rep. is a mulatto island, more than PR.

          • italiano90 says:

            @andrew I notice some Afro-Centrists love to deny the indigenous admixture of Puerto Rican and Cuban people when a lot of mixed PR and Cuban people have indigenous admixture and it very much shows in some of their phenotype.

          • Mr. Postman says:

            I worked as a Census taker It is our job to record whatever the person tells us. It’s not our job to debate their ethnicity with them. If a dark brown skinned person says they are white, that’s what we put. That is why Censuses of Puerto Rico are not totally reliable because people literally do that there.

          • fuzzybear44 says:

            In the past As for the census, in places like Mexico, California, and Louisiana, They would label you whatever background you wanted, all it took was money.They why they stop using the word Mestizo in Mexico, because anybody was calling themselves that

      • Thenabster says:

        Natives at the time marked themselves as white to black to avoid persecution

    • midori29 says:


      Google younger pics of Rita Moreno she looks different than she does now
      Link https://forward.com/culture/471457/the-secret-jewish-history-of-rita-moreno-who-just-might-be-a-descendant-of/

  2. blue says:

    I am from Madrid, Spain , and She can not pass in my country. She has native american features eyes , colours … she is a mixed with native or taino, not White hispanics.

    • pure-brain says:

      Spanish people aren’t white they’re Indian & indigenous,
      stop trying to be white

      • danishcookie7 says:

        @pure-brain You clearly have never been to Spain. Spaniards are White.

        • NOTREALLY says:

          dude he problably thinks “Spanish” refers to LatinAmericans LMFAO and I wouldn’t doubt he thinks Spain is in LatinAmerica too xD
          Also he said “indian 6 Indigenous” as if they were 2 separate things LOL this has to be a troll, I’m losing faith in humanity otherwise

    • José says:

      You are full of it. You are not a Spaniard..cut the baloney. There are tons and tons of Spanish people with her feature eyes and she most certainly is of Spanish descent. Carry on you troll. You are from Madrid Spain as Lucille Ball is from Honduras. Cut the mierda mentira. She is not mixed of Native which is Taino btw, you are mixed. You are probably a PR that is jealous or some wannabe Spaniard. Get a life@@

  3. Connerfromvine says:

    She looks like Dr. Laura lol

  4. California says:

    She used to look more ethnic back in the day. She looks mostly White in this picture.

    • cwm85 says:

      She is of Spanish descent… she is European.

      • California says:

        I doubt she’s purely Spanish. She has a similar phenotype to Dorothy Dandridge, although Dandridge looked more visibly “Black”. You just want everyone to be White, you must be one of those self hating mulattoes that wants to 100% White. How moronic and sad.

          • cwm85 says:

            She does NOT look part black ok… No way when you see pics of her you think, she is black.. or part black… She looks European or very most mestiza.

        • cwm85 says:

          California why so much anger and hate and people have a right to have their own opinion there are some obnoxious, racist people on here and you are one of them. I BET you and M, Midiori29 are the same. Same hate filled language and same M.O. of trying to deny someone isn’t fully European and making everyone half black. Yes I am part black and white and native american. I am proud of them all. My mother is black and I love her to death. I am a person of color and have no issue with my light brown skin. It seems you are the nutjob that has a problem. Buzz off.

          • midori29 says:

            @CMW don’t randomly mention my name where I have nothing to do with the post. Weird. I don’t make everyone black unless they really are black or part black. We are different posters but I do agree with the poster. Most Puerto Rican people no matter how white they appear do have African and Indian ancestry. Just go look at Puerto Rican dna Tests on YouTube. I really just saw this entire post I’ve never been in here before. That’s not me
            But it’s odd that I’m in your head to mention me randomly. You appear to have issues with being black don’t blame me.

        • Camilo says:

          Puerto Rico is not an island of mulattos. We were an autonomous region of Spain until the turn of the last century. Most of our population is of Spanish and Corsican descent, since the overwhelming majority of our people emigrated from Europe in the 19th century because of La Cedula Real de Gracias, granting citizenship and land to European Catholics. Rita Moreno is very much of Spanish descent, you don’t even have to take into account her phenotype but the fact that she’s from Humacao. The further you move away from the eastern coasts the fewer black and colored people there are.

          • midori29 says:

            @Camilo that’s untrue. Puerto Ricans are really mostly black and white. Then even before Spain colonized Puerto Rico they were admixed with African Moors from the 700 year Moor ruling of Spain. Most deny the fact that the Moors were black and Arab. Then Arab isn’t a race. So Arabs can be any race. Go on YouTube you can see Puerto Rican dna Tests they are just black and white no matter how white they look none were 100 percent European there was always a West African dna element.

          • andrew says:


            “Most” deny the fact that the Moors were black and Arab because they were actually North Africans. In fact there is solid North African Y-DNA in places like Galicia (where locals don’t look Irish as some people on the Internet suggests) where the Moors were relocated after Reconquista.

          • peekaboo mewmew-ricans says:

            @midori29 Arabs CAN’T BE any race they aren’t white not Europeans but Semitic with Afro and Asian admixture I’m European from Europe and literally NO ONE looks European.
            The lightest ones with thin features are still totally different from us only for you non-Euros can be white.

        • José says:

          How do you know? There are plenty of PR that are of pure Spanish heritage and are not mixed. Do your history, are you unaware that PR was the last colony of Spain. Plenty of Spaniard went there and had families for generations. Plenty are there today. People need to get educated.

          • midori29 says:

            @Jose the Spanish themselves aren’t pure they were ruled and admixed by African Moors for 700 yrs. There are very very few pure unmixed Puerto Ricans the entire island is admixed.

    • pure-brain says:

      she used to look more ethnic back then because they always darkened her face/skin with special effects makeup for movies back then.
      they mentioned it in a show once.

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