Vinessa Shaw

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Shaw in 2010, photo by PrPhotos

Birth Name: Vinessa Elizabeth Shaw

Place of Birth: Los Angeles, California, United States

Date of Birth: July 19, 1976

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish (paternal grandfather), Italian (maternal grandfather), Irish, Swedish, English, 1/16th Spanish/Mexican, Dutch, French, distant German

Vinessa Shaw is an American actress and model. She is known for her roles in the films Hocus Pocus (1993), The Hills Have Eyes (2006), and Two Lovers (2008), among others.

Vinessa is the daughter of actress Susan Damante, and Larry Shaw. Her father is of half Ashkenazi Jewish descent and her mother is of half Italian ancestry. Vinessa’s other roots are Irish, English, Swedish, 1/16th Spanish/Mexican, Dutch, French, and distant German.

Vinessa follows the Nicheran Buddhist philosophy. She is married to Kristopher Gifford, with whom she has a son.

Vinessa’s paternal grandfather was Nathan Shaw (born Nathan Schwartz, the son of Abraham/Abrum Schwartz and Rebecca/Beca Germansky). Nathan was born in New York, to Russian Jewish parents.

Vinessa’s paternal grandmother was Kathryn Grey Trapheagen (the daughter of Daniel Eugene Traphagen and Dora Grey/Gray). Kathryn was born in California. Daniel was born in Kansas, the son of Nathaniel D. Traphagen, whose mother was Irish, and of Catherine/Katherine/Kate M. Donohoe. Dora was born in either Maine, Arizona, or Mexico, the daughter of James Grey/Gray, who was born in New York, and of Rachel Pierda, who was born in Mexico, to a Spanish father and a Mexican mother.

Vinessa’s maternal grandfather was Vincent Damante (the son of Giuseppe/Guiseppe/Joseph Domenic/Dominick Damante and Catherine/Katherine Pacillo). Vincent was born in California. Joseph was born in Verbicaro, Calabria, Italy. Catherine was born in Massachusetts, to Italian parents, Raffaele/Raphelle/Ralph Picillo and Palma/Alma/Elma Brugna/Brogna.

Vinessa’s maternal grandmother was Marjorie Dolores “Margie” Anderson (the daughter of Raymond Anderson and Rhea Maloney). Marjorie was born in California. Raymond had Swedish ancestry. Rhea had Irish ancestry.

Sources: Vinessa’s paternal grandmother, Kathryn Grey Trapheagen, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Vinessa’s paternal great-grandparents, Daniel Eugene Traphagen and Dora Grey/Gray, on the 1910 U.S. Census –

Vinessa’s paternal great-grandmother, Dora Grey/Gray, on the 1900 U.S. Census –

Vinessa’s maternal grandfather, Vincent Damante, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Obituary of Vinessa’s maternal grandmother, Marjorie Dolores “Margie” (Anderson) Damante –

6 Responses

  1. bablah says:

    Daniel Trapheagen was the son of Nathaniel Traphagen and Katherine/Kate Donohue.
    Nathaniel was the son of Nathaniel Traphagen and Marry Ann Minnock. Mary Ann was born in Ireland to Michael Minnock and Ann Corcoran. Nathaniel was born in New York to Abraham Trapphagen and Catherine Dubois. Abraham was Dutch with some German ancestry. Catherine was French and Dutch.

    New York-born father whose surname was “Grey” ->James Grey

  2. andrew says:

    interesting ancestry

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