Robert F. Kennedy

Robert F. Kennedy in 1964, by Warren K. Leffler

Birth Name: Robert Francis Kennedy

Date of Birth: November 20, 1925

Place of Birth: Brookline, Massachusetts, U.S.

Date of Birth: June 6, 1968

Place of Birth: Los Angeles, California, U.S.

Ethnicity: Irish, as well as remote Scottish

Robert F. Kennedy was an American attorney and politician. He was also known as RFK. A member of the Democratic Party, he served as the 64th U.S. Attorney General, from January 20, 1961 to September 3, 1964, and a U.S. Senator from New York, from January 3, 1965 to June 6, 1968, when he was assassinated.

He was a candidate for the Democratic Party’s nomination for President of the United States in 1968, until his death.

Robert was the son of Rose Elizabeth (Fitzgerald), a philanthropist and socialite, and Joseph Patrick Kennedy, a businessperson, investor, and politician. Among his siblings were John F. Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States, from January 20, 1961 to November 22, 1963, Ted Kennedy, who was also a politician, and activist and humanitarian Jean Kennedy Smith, who was Ambassador to Ireland, from June 24, 1993 to September 17, 1998. With his wife, human rights campaigner Ethel (Skakel), he had eleven children, many of whom are involved in politics and activism. His son, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., is an environmental lawyer, author, and radio host. Another son was lawyer, businessperson, and political activist Michael LeMoyne Kennedy; Michael was married to Victoria, the daughter of professional football player and commentator Frank Gifford, until Michael’s death, and the couple had three children. His daughter Kerry Kennedy is a human rights activist and writer, who was previously married to politician Andrew Cuomo, with whom she has three children. His grandson is politician Joe Kennedy III.

Robert’s sister, Patricia Kennedy Lawford, a socialite, was married to British actor Peter Lawford. His nephew was journalist John F. Kennedy, Jr., his niece is journalist Maria Shriver, his great-niece is author Katherine Schwarzenegger, and his great-nephews are designer and author Jack Schlossberg and actor and model Patrick Schwarzenegger.

Robert was of Irish descent. He also had remote Scottish ancestry (his patrilineal Kennedy line traces back to Scotland, and Robert had Scottish-born ancestors in the 1600s).

Robert’s paternal grandfather was P. J. Kennedy (Patrick Joseph Kennedy, the son of Patrick Kennedy and Bridget Murphy). Robert’s grandfather P. J. was born in Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts, and was a businessperson and politician. Robert’s great-grandparents Patrick and Bridget were from Dunganstown, County Wexford, Ireland. Robert’s great-grandfather Patrick was the son of Patrick Kennedy and Mary/Maria Johanna. Bridget was the daughter of Richard Murphy and Mary Barron.

Robert’s paternal grandmother was Mary Augusta Hickey (the daughter of James Hickey and Margaret Martha Field). Mary was born in Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts, to Irish parents. James was from Newmarket-on-Fergus, County Clare, the son of Michael Hickey and Catherine Hasset. Margaret was from Rosscarbery, County Cork, the daughter of Patrick Field and Mary Sheehy.

Robert’s maternal grandfather was John Francis “Honey Fitz” Fitzgerald (the son of Thomas Fitzgerald and Rosanna Cox). Robert’s grandfather John was born in Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts, and was a Democratic politician, who served as Mayor of Boston, from January 1, 1906 to January 6, 1908, and again, from February 7, 1910 to February 2, 1914; and as a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts, from March 4, 1895 to March 3, 1901, and again, from March 4, 1919 to October 23, 1919. Thomas was born in Co. Limerick, Ireland, the son of Michael Fitzgerald and Ellen Wilmouth/Wilmot. Rosanna was born in Limerick, Ireland, the daughter of Philip Cox and Mary.

Robert’s maternal grandmother was Mary Josephine “Josie” Hannon (the daughter of Michael Hannon and Mary Ann Fitzgerald). Robert’s grandmother Mary Josephine was born in Acton, Middlesex, Massachusetts, to Irish parents. Michael was born in Lough Gur, the son of John Hannon and Ellen Noonan/Newman. Robert’s great-grandmother Mary Ann was from Bruff, Limerick, the daughter of Edmund/Edward Fitzgerald and Mary Linnehan.

Sources: Genealogies of Robert F. Kennedy –

Genealogy of Robert F. Kennedy (through Robert’s brother, John F. Kennedy) –

Robert’s mother on the 1900 U.S. Census –
Robert’s mother on the 1910 U.S. Census –

Notes on Robert’s maternal ancestry –

2 Responses

  1. andrew says:

    he left 11 children

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