Samuel L. Jackson

Jackson in 2010, image via Miro Vrlik Photography LLC /

Birth Name: Samuel Leroy Jackson

Place of Birth: Washington, D.C., U.S.

Date of Birth: December 21, 1948

Ethnicity: African-American, small amount of English

Samuel L. Jackson is an American actor and producer. One of the most prolific major actors of his time, his roles include the films School Daze, Coming to America, Do the Right Thing, Mo’ Better Blues, Jungle Fever, Juice, Menace II Society, True Romance, Fresh, Pulp Fiction, Die Hard with a Vengeance, A Time to Kill, Eve’s Bayou, Jackie Brown, the Star Wars universe, beginning with Episode I – The Phantom Menace; the latter-day Shaft films, Unbreakable, xXx, and its sequels; The Incredibles, and its sequel; Coach Carter, Snakes on a Plane, Django Unchained, Oldboy (2013), Kingsman: The Secret Service, Chi-Raq, The Hateful Eight, Kong: Skull Island, and Glass, as well as Nick Fury in the Marvel Universe, particularly the Iron Man and The Avengers films, as well as Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Secret Invasion. He has also appeared on stage, where he began his career.

He is the son of Elizabeth (Montgomery), a supplies buyer at a mental institution, and Roy Henry Jackson. His parents were both African-American. He was raised by his mother and maternal grandparents in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Samuel is married to actress and producer LaTanya Richardson, with whom he has a daughter, producer Zoe Jackson.

According to a DNA test, he partly descends from the Benga people of Gabon. He has become a Gabonese citizen.

Samuel’s paternal grandfather was Roy Victor Jackson (the son of Albert Jackson and Rosetta Davis). Roy was born in Missouri.

Samuel’s paternal grandmother was Imer/Imellts Lee Watts (the daughter of Henry Jesse Watts and Allie/Ollie Bowen). Imer was born in Alabama.

Samuel’s maternal grandfather was Edgar Montgomery (the son of Miles Montgomery and Lilly/Lillie Branham). Edgar was born in Georgia. Miles was the son of Gibb/Gilbert/Gib Montgomery and Jane Harper. Lilly was the daughter of Arthur Branham and Malissa Fielder.

Samuel’s maternal grandmother was named Pearl Brown (the daughter of John Brown and Mary). Pearl was born in Tennessee.

A DNA test taken by the show Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (2012) stated that Samuel’s genetic ancestry is:

*77% African
*21% European
*2% Native American

On the show, it was hypothesized that Samuel’s great-great-great-grandmother, Matilda Branham, who was black, had children with Joel Branham, Jr., a caucasian man, with English ancestry. One of these children could have been Samuel’s great-great-grandfather, Arthur Branham.

Sources: Notes on Samuel’s father’s family –

Genealogies of Samuel L. Jackson –

Samuel’s maternal grandfather, Edgar Montgomery, on the 1910 U.S. Census –

Samuel’s maternal grandmother, Pearl Brown, on the 1900 U.S. Census –

Information on Samuel’s Branham line –


Curious about ethnicity

6 Responses

  1. cwm85 says:

    LOL in the same book he guessed he was 55% European! LOL… with all due respect if Jackson said he was from Nigeria, Gabon, Cameroon people would absolutely believe that. He looks like he just came from West African! That’s with all dues respect to Africans. I’m black, English, Scottish, and naitve and even I’m not 55 percent European and I’m much lighter and have wavy/curly hair… I thought that was just funny when he thought he was 55 percent White… Louis Gates must have laughed…

  2. bearboy says:

    Samuel Jackson is 21 percent European/white, 77 percent African ancestry, and 2 percent Native American. This is what it says in the book “Finding your roots” by Henry Louis Gates Jr.

  3. Fuzzybear says:

    The hardest working man in show business(with the best lines):

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