Wentworth Miller

Miller in 2008, Joe Seer / Shutterstock.com

Birth Name: Wentworth Earl Miller III

Place of Birth: Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, England, U.K.

Date of Birth: June 2, 1972

Ethnicity:
*25% African-American
*25% Jamaican [African, as well as small amount of Scottish]
*25% Rusyn
*12.5% Lebanese
*12.5% Curaçaoan [mix of Dutch, French, Swedish, Hispanic, remote Polish]

Wentworth Miller is an American actor, model, screenwriter, and producer. He starred in the television series Prison Break, playing Michael Scofield.

Wentworth was born in Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, England, to American parents, Roxann (Palm), a special education teacher, and Wentworth E. Miller II, a lawyer and teacher. His family moved to Park Slope, Brooklyn, New York, during his early years. He holds dual U.S. and U.K. citizenship.

Wentworth’s father is black, of Jamaican (African, and a small amount of Scottish) ancestry on one side and African-American ancestry on the other. Wentworth’s maternal grandfather’s father was from the Caribbean island of Curaçao, and was of Dutch, French, Swedish, Hispanic, and remote Polish, descent, and Wentworth’s maternal grandfather’s mother was of Lebanese ancestry. Wentworth’s maternal grandmother was the daughter of Rusyn parents.

Regarding his ancestry and his experience with racism, he has said:

My experience is that I find myself having to constantly define myself to others, day-in, day-out… My encounters with racism are sort of second-hand situations where I might be standing around with a group of white friends and someone makes a comment that they wouldn’t make, say, at my family reunion. It leaves a cut. Someone calls you “n______” and it’s like a knife to the gut. To be in that sort of situation it’s just a little nick, but you suffer enough nicks and you bleed to death just the same. So when that happens, you’re confronted with the quandary: do I stop the party, do I grind things to a halt?

Wentworth has mentioned that one of his paternal great-grandmothers was Jewish (which was also written in The New Yorker in 2003). However, Wentworth’s paternal grandfather’s mother was a Black Jamaican, while Wentworth’s paternal grandmother’s mother was an African-American from the Southern United States. Therefore, it is not clear if Wentworth really has any documented Jewish ancestry. Similarly, Wentworth has also been described as having English, German, Cherokee, and Russian roots. It is not clear if any of these lineages have been documented/verified.

Wentworth’s paternal grandfather was Wentworth Earl Miller (the son of Claudius/Claude Cephas Miller and Rhena Jane Newman). Wentworth’s grandfather was born in 1925 in New York, to parents who were emigrants from Jamaica. The family is listed as “Negro” (Black) on both the 1930 U.S. Census and the 1940 U.S. census. Claudius was the son of George Miller and Rebecca May. Rhena was the daughter of Richard Pearce/Pierce Newman and Georgiana McDonald Rose. Georgiana’s father, Wentworth’s great-great-great-grandfather, was Scottish.

Wentworth’s paternal grandmother was Pauline Pinkston (the daughter of Greene/Green Fort Pinkston and Penella/Pernella/Percilla Bertha Horne). Pauline was born, c. 1925, in Tennessee. Pauline and her parents are listed as “Negro” (Black) on the 1930 U.S. Census and the 1940 U.S. Census, and “Mulatto” on other censuses, as was common for most African-American families. Greene was a prominent doctor, and was born in Mississippi, the grandson of freed slaves; he was the son of Ritten Pinkston and Fannie Gresham. Wentworth’s great-grandmother Penella was born in Tennessee, the daughter of Jesse/Jessie Henry Horne and Alice Hill. Pauline Pinkston’s second husband was Chester Oden, Jr.

Wentworth’s maternal grandfather was Frederick William Palm (the son of Hendrik/Hendrick “Harry” Frederik Palm and Melekia/Malakia “Margaret” Sabah). Wentworth’s grandfather Frederick was born in New York. Hendrik was born, in 1894, in Willemstad, the capital city of the Caribbean island of Curaçao, the son of Frederick/Frederik Wilhelm Palm, a merchant, and of Maria Josefa Helena “Elene” Conquet, who was born in Santo Domingo. Hendrik’s family had lived on Curaçao for many generations. His ancestry was Dutch (like many people on this island), along with French, Swedish, Hispanic, and remote Polish, with a forebear who was born in Brazil, and who was likely ethnically Dutch. The Palm line originated in Sweden. Wentworth’s great-grandmother Melekia was born in New York. Her parents, Namaan/Naman/Nemen Sabah and Emiline/Emileen/Emily Saba, were emigrants from Beirut, Lebanon. Nemen was the son of Michael Sabah and Anesa Haddad. Emily was the daughter of Abraham Saba and Sada/Saadie Abositty/Abste. This makes Wentworth himself of one eighth Lebanese descent.

Wentworth’s maternal grandmother was Mildred Emiliya/Emilya “Millie” Hawaka (the daughter of Nicholas/Nicolas Hawaka and Florence Busczniewicz). Mildred was born in Pennsylvania. Nicholas was born in Austria, likely of Rusyn descent. Florence was Rusyn.

Sources: Genealogy of Wentworth Miller – https://www.geni.com

Wedding announcement of Wentworth’s parents (with a picture of Wentworth’s mother) – http://news.google.com

Wentworth’s paternal grandfather, Wentworth Earl Miller, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org

Genealogy of Wentworth’s paternal grandmother, Pauline Pinkston – http://familytreemaker.genealogy.com

Wentworth’s paternal grandmother, Pauline Pinkston, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org

Wentworth’s paternal great-grandparents, Greene/Green Fort Pinkston and Penella/Pernella/Percilla Bertha Horne, on the 1920 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Article, including picture, about Wentworth’s paternal great-grandfather, Greene/Green Fort Pinkston – http://www.commercialappeal.com
Picture of Greene Fort Pinkston – https://static.wixstatic.com

Wentworth’s paternal great-grandfather, Greene/Green Fort Pinkston, on the 1880 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Wentworth’s paternal great-great-grandparents, Ritten Pinkston and Fannie Gresham, on the 1910 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Wentworth’s paternal great-grandmother, Penella/Pernella/Percilla Bertha Horne, on the 1910 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Death record of Wentworth’s paternal great-great-grandfather, Jesse/Jessie Henry Horne – https://www.familysearch.org

Genealogies of Wentworth’s mother – http://www.myheritage.com
http://gw.geneanet.org

Death records of Wentworth’s maternal grandparents, Frederick William Palm and Mildred Emiliya/Emilya “Millie” (Hawaka) Palm – https://www.findagrave.com

Obituary of Wentworth’s maternal grandfather, Frederick William Palm (with picture) – http://news.google.com

Genealogy of Wentworth’s maternal great-grandfather, Hendrik/Hendrick “Harry” Frederik Palm (in the island of Curaçao) – http://www.henkbeers.nl

Information about Wentworth’s Palm ancestors – http://dominicaanserepubliek.nlambassade.org
http://www.oocities.org

Death record of Wentworth’s maternal great-great-grandfather, Namaan/Naman/Nemen Sabah – https://www.familysearch.org

Death record of Wentworth’s maternal great-great-grandmother, Emiline/Emileen/Emily (Saba) Sabah – https://www.familysearch.org

Death record of Wentworth’s maternal great-great-great-grandfather, Abraham Saba – https://www.familysearch.org

Death record of Wentworth’s maternal great-great-great-grandmother, Sada/Saadie (Abositty/Abste) Saba – https://www.familysearch.org

Wentworth’s maternal grandmother, Mildred Emiliya/Emilya “Millie” Hawaka, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org

Obituary of Wentworth’s maternal grandmother, Mildred Emiliya/Emilya “Millie” (Hawaka) Palm (with picture) – http://www.legacy.com

ethnic

Curious about ethnicity

297 Responses

  1. Johnsonades says:

    Wenthworth Miller’s greatgrandmother Margaret Sabah (born 1900 in New York) was the daughter of Nemen Sabah and Emily Sabah (nee Saba).

    Nemen Sabah (1873-1930) was born in Beirut, Lebanon as said in his obituary of 1930 here https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/513092082:61843 (requires subscription). He was the son of Michael Sabah and Anesa Haddad https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2WVT-J7D

    Emily Saba (1875-1934) was the daughter of Abraham Saba and Sada Abositty https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2WPP-V2D. She was born in Beirut as well like her brother Tanuis Saba as can be seen in his death certificate here https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2WTH-78T

    Another brother of Emily, George Saba, was also born in Beirut as can be seen in his naturalization act here https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QGGG-8998 George Saba social security application where it says his parents are Abraham Saba and Sada Abositty/Abste https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/13115273:60901 (requires subscription)

    Emily, Tanuis and George’s parents Abraham and Sada Saba immigration act of 1900 where it says they are from Beirut and they are going to their son Tanuis in New York (mispelled as Cannons in the index page)
    https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JX85-TPV https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JX85-TPL

    Abraham Saba (1824-1906) was the son of Joseph Saba and Helen Sahab https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2WFK-RVW

    Sada/Saadie Saba (1835-1920) was the daughter of Nicola Abie Site and Marie Kayet
    https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2WVJ-4B5

    This makes Wenthworth Miller of Lebanese descent not Lebanese/Syrian descent

  2. Anto says:

    first time I see “Hispanic” listed in someone’s ethnicity in this site, please get that sorted, what does that even mean?

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