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, along with distant 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, 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. His nephew was John F. Kennedy, Jr., his niece is journalist Maria Shriver, his great-niece is author Katherine Schwarzenegger, and his great-nephews are Jack Schlossberg and actor and model Patrick Schwarzenegger. His daughter, Kerry, was previously married to politician Andrew Cuomo. His sister, Patricia Kennedy Lawford, a socialite, was married to British actor Peter Lawford. His grandson is politician Joe Kennedy III.

Many of Robert’s children are involved in politics and activism, including Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., a radio host and environmental activist. Robert, Jr. is married to actress Cheryl Hines.

Robert was of Irish descent. He also had distant 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 Massachusetts, and was a businessperson and politician. Robert’s great-grandparents Patrick and Bridget were both from Dunganstown, Ireland. Robert’s great-grandfather Patrick was the son of James/Patrick Kennedy and Maria/Mary Johanna. Bridget was the daughter of Philip or 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 Massachusetts. James was from Cork, Munster, Ireland, the son of Michael Hickey and Catherine Hasset/Hasselt/Remnage. Margaret was from Rossearbery, Ireland, the daughter of Patrick Field and Mary Sheehy.

Robert’s maternal grandfather was John Francis Fitzgerald (the son of Thomas Fitzgerald and Rosanna Cox). Robert’s grandfather John was born in Massachusetts, and was a politician, who served as Mayor of Boston (from 1906 to 1908, and again from 1910 to 1914), and as a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts (from 1895 to 1901, and in 1919). Thomas was born in Co. Limerick, Ireland, the son of Michael Fitzgerald and Ellen Wilmouth/Wilmot. Rosanna was born in Lough Cur, Limerick, Ireland, the daughter of Philip Cox and Mary McGovern.

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 Massachusetts. Michael was from Lough Cur in Ireland, the son of John Hannon and Ellen Noonan/Newman. Robert’s great-grandmother Mary Ann was from Bruff, Ireland, the daughter of Edmund/Edward Fitzgerald and Mary Linnehan/Lenihan.

Sources: Genealogies of Robert F. Kennedy –

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

Genealogy of Robert F. Kennedy (focusing on his father’s side) –

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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