Tag Archives: Movies

Britney Spears’ Jamestown Ancestor and Katharine Hepburn

Following up on Britney Spears’ Jamestown ancestor Richard Pace, I just discovered that we would have been deprived of one of the most loved Hollywood icons if  Richard had not done what he did. 

According to the ancestral history already digitally mapped out in the Family Forest®, Richard Pace is one of the 11th great-grandfathers of Britney Spears. 

According to recorded history, Edward Spalding or Spaulding of Chelmsford, MA and his family survived the Indian massacre at Jamestown before moving to Massachusetts. 

Also according to the ancestral history already digitally mapped out in the Family Forest®, Edward Spaulding’s son Benjamin was one of Katharine Hepburn’s 6th great-grandfathers. 

If Richard Pace had not survived his planned assassination and gone on to warn the Jamestown Colony, if Edward Spaulding had not survived the Indian massacre to become the father of Benjamin Spaulding, if one of Katharine Hepburn’s ancestors had never been born, would Katharine have never been born? Or would she have been born as someone else? 

We will never know. But we do know that Oscar-winner Katharine Hepburn portrayed another one of Britney Spears’ ancestors, Eleanor of Aquitaine, in The Lion in Winter

 Katharine Hepburn

See a movie clip at TCM from “The Lion in Winter”. 

So one ancestor of Britney Spears was responsible for saving the life on a man who would later become an ancestor of the most Oscar-winning Hollywood actresses of all times, and she would portray one of Britney’s (and also Katharine’s) ancestors. 

If one Indian had not disobeyed his Chief, there would have been no Katharine Hepburn, and maybe no Britney Spears (her 10th great-grandfather George Pace was born well before the massacre, and may or may not have been at Jamestown at the time). History pivots on small events.

 

 

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Ted Danson in Damages

Kristine and I watched Damages and I turned to the Family Forest® to see if there were family ties connecting the two stars, Ted Danson and Glenn Close.

 

As often happens when I go exploring in the Family Forest®, I got sidetracked from the original mission. First I visited the Captain’s Log archives and rediscovered the interesting ancestral story relating to Cheers.

 

I also found that I had not yet done a story I had intended to do about Ted in his role as Lemuel Gulliver in the 1996 movie Gulliver’s Travels.  I wonder if Ted knows that according to recorded history, he is a distant cousin of “Gulliver’s Travels” author Jonathan Swift?

 

Then I went looking for ancestors Ted Danson and Glenn Close may share. One potential common ancestor who caught my eye, probably because of my two recent

Bourne Ultimatum posts was Ted’s ancestor Thomas Bourne who came to Plymouth, MA in 1636 and was “the eldest of the Marshfield settlers.”

 

Glenn Close did not appear as one of Thomas Bourne’s descendants, but a number of other famous historical figures and Hollywood celebrities did show up as cousins of Ted.

 

Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry, a hero in the War of 1812, is a 5th cousin four times removed. J.P. Morgan is a distant cousin, as are all of the Grosvenors of National Geographic fame.

 

Hollywood celebrity Bourne cousins of Ted Danson include Humphrey Bogart, Christopher Reeve, Richard Gere, and Hugh Heffner.

 

Could Thomas Bourne ever have imagined that four centuries into the future he would have descendants whose names would be recognized internationally?

 

 

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Family Ties to the Bourne Ultimatum, Part II

After exploring the descendants of Bourne Ultimatum star Matt Damon’s Stebbins ancestors, I browsed again through the Family Forest® for some of Matt’s other 1600’s ancestors. This time I explored the descendants of his Leonard ancestors.

 

One noticeable difference to Matt’s Stebbins cousins was obvious. Matt’s only Stebbins cousin in the entertainment business (if we’re not counting politicians) I found in the Family Forest® is Clint Eastwood.

 

But Matt’s Family Forest® Leonard cousins must be genetically predisposed toward the entertainment business. They even include the Hollywood icon who has won more Oscars than any other actor or actress, Katharine Hepburn.

 

They also include Katharine Houghton, Lucille Ball, the Baldwin Brothers (Alec, William, Daniel, and Stephen), Anthony Perkins, Raquel Welch, Tahnee Welch, Johnny Carson, Harry Chapin, Mary Chapin Carpenter, and Gregory Peck.

 

Matt’s non-entertainment Family Forest® Leonard cousins are proportionally much less than his Stebbins cousins. They include Time-Life founder Henry Luce, First Lady Nancy Reagan, Marshall Field IV and V, and George Plimpton.

 

How many times might you have enjoyed a Hollywood motion picture, and not known that you actually share ancestors with the star? Certainly some.

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Filed under Family, FamilyForest, film, Genealogy, life, Uncategorized

Family Ties to the The Bourne Ultimatum

 

How many cousins of The Bourne Ultimatum star Matt Damon will watch him when the movie premiers tomorrow, and have no idea they share ancestors with him? Probably plenty!

 

I browsed through the Family Forest® for cousins who share early 1600’s Stebbins ancestors (only one of a number of his early American immigrant families I could have used) with Matt.

 

Many common and not so common surnames appeared, such as Adams and Brown and Johnson and Jones and Smith, to Gerbode and Gildersleeve and Kleberg and Sheehan and Wurts.

 

A number of Matt’s famous and/or prominent Stebbins cousins from the past and present also appeared. They include Emily Dickinson and Ralph Waldo Emerson, all of the descendants of the founder of the King Ranch in Texas, President Rutherford B. Hayes, Vice-President Dick Cheney, presidential candidates Howard Dean and Mitt Romney, two-time baseball All-Star Ray Boone and his All-Star descendants, billionaire Warren Buffett, all of the descendants of Hawaiian missionaries Rev. Amos Starr Cooke and Rev. Samuel Chenery Damon, the owners of Kahua Ranch, and Hollywood icon Clint Eastwood.

 

How many times might you have enjoyed a Hollywood motion picture, and not known that you actually share ancestors with the celebrity star? Certainly some.

 

  

 

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Lillian Gish to Glenn Close

Inspired by a well-done tribute to early Hollywood legend Lillian Gish on YouTube, I explored a fun web of Kevin Bacon style six-degrees-of-separation connections.  

A Family Forest® kinship report for Lillian Gish reveals mostly everyday people, including probably many who have been enjoying her movies for years without having any idea that they share ancestors with their famous cousin.

 

But among the list of Lillian’s relatives are a number of leaders most people will quickly recognize on the chart. 

 

One of Lillian’s relatives is Glenn Close, and she can be seen starting this week in Damages.

 

Another interesting facet is the relevance of the Common Ancestor column on the chart. Millions of people should be able to quickly recognize one or more of them as their own ancestor.

 

This means that they are not only a cousin of Lillian Gish, but that they are also a cousin of the person Lillian shares that ancestor with.

 

So if you spot one of your own ancestors on the chart you will be connected by family ties to at least two of your famous cousins.

 

I predict that when you discover that you are actually a cousin of Lillian Gish, or Glenn Close, or Richard Gere, or Clint Eastwood, etc., you will also discover that you are magnetically drawn to their movies and/or TV series.

 

 

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Filed under Family, Family Genes, FamilyForest, film, Genealogy, history, Hollywood Silent Films

A Legendary Castle

 An opportunity like this may only come along once in a lifetime.

 

A truly legendary castle, Bran Castle, famous in history as Dracula’s Castle, is being offered for sale.

 

The patterns illustrated in world’s largest maps of human migration show that this sale and the future promotion of the castle is a perfect opportunity for ancestral marketing; marketing targeted to those with family ties.

 

Because it was built slightly more recently than Briquebec Castle there are probably not quite as many living people who can call Dracula’s Castle an ancestral home, but a reasonable estimate is that there are at least tens and probably hundreds of millions of descendants of Bran Castle scattered around the planet.

 

 Maybe Dracula’s Castle is one of your ancestral homes …

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Paris Hilton’s Prison Genes?

Can genetics be a factor in the likelihood of doing jail time?

I ran an abbreviated (only ten generations) Family Forest® kinship report of Paris Hilton and noticed several people in the report who also found themselves in a similar situation to the one Paris is in today.

One of the more famous ones of today is actress and celebrity Sari “Zsa Zsa” Gabor , who also received much media attention in 1989 when she went to jail for her altercation with a Beverly Hills police officer.

Another relative from today is radio talk show host G. Gordon Liddy, who had an illustrious FBI and public service career before going to prison for his role in Watergate.

From earlier times, Colonel Samuel Waples fought at the Battles of Brandywine and Germantown and spent time in prison in the American Revolution. He later received land from President Jefferson for his gallantry.

And there is another officer, a recognized hero, who shows up on the Family Forest® kinship report of Paris Hilton. General Henry “Light Horse Harry” Lee graduated from Princeton, served in the American Revolution under General George Washington, and was the Governor of Virginia from 1792 to 1795. He entered the Westmoreland County (VA) jail on April 24, 1809.

In the Family Forest®, it is possible to visually explore the incredible digital web of family ties connecting Paris Hilton to each of these inmates, plus hundreds of thousands of other people, including a number of the most well-known figures from recorded human history.

  

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“The Tudors” on Showtime

The Tudors

When Kristine and I recently saw an episode of “The Tudors” on Showtime, we turned to the Family Forest® as a program.

 

In this application we used the Family Forest® not so much as a program in the software sense; it is similar to a digital version of a program one buys at a baseball game or receives at a Broadway Show. We use it to learn more about the characters, who they were and how they fit into the actual unfolding of history, so we receive more enjoyment from the performance.

 

Most of the key characters from “The Tudors” are already very extensively lineage-linked in the Family Forest®. This means they are connected to generation-by-generation lines of descent leading into the future, and/or generation-by-generation lines of ancestral pathways leading for a number of centuries into the past. Some of them are connected through family ties to hundreds of thousands of individual relatives from their future and their past.

 

We focused on a downstream view (from the past moving toward the future) of the father of the famous Anne Boleyn, Sir Thomas Boleyn Earl of Wiltshire and Ormond see what resulted from his life over the following centuries. A few mouse-clicks in the Family Forest® produce surprising counterintuitive results.

 

Although he was a relatively minor player in the court of King Henry VIII (other than being his father-in-law), his descendants spread far and wide over the centuries. Some became heir to the British throne, some settled in places like Fairmont, WV and Elkader, IA and Paris, AR, and some appear on TV.

 

Prince William and Prince Harry are descended from Sir Thomas Boleyn via their mother, Princess Diana, and via their paternal grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II. Their new step-mother, the Duchess of Cornwall, and their aunt, Sarah Ferguson, are also both descended from Sir Thomas Boleyn.

 

A number of Pocahontas’ descendants are also descended from Sir Thomas Boleyn, as are the children of Charles Lindberg, Governor Howard Dean, and President Teddy Roosevelt.

 

The founder of the great oil enterprise that eventually became Exxon, John Davison Rockefeller, Sr. is descended from Sir Thomas Boleyn, and so are Hollywood performers such as Rachel Ward of “The Thorn Birds” and Cary Elwes.

 

Whenever you are watching an episode of “The Tudors” on Showtime, I hope you will remember this post about just one of the many characters, and consider the very likely possibility that one or more of your own ancestors are being portrayed on the show.

 

 

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Filed under education, Family, film, history, internet, life, teaching, television, Travel, Uncategorized

Hello world!

 

Welcome,

 What can I offer you for your time and attention? New and precisely documented insights into who you are and where you came from.  Information that until recently did not exist – at least not in a useful way. 

For the past twelve years I have been on a fascinating journey into the past. The purpose of my journey has been to blaze a digital trail for you and future unborn generations to follow. Along this journey, I am making and documenting many surprising discoveries.

I have discovered, and continue to make discoveries of things which no one in the history of the world has seen before.  That’s because nobody in the history of the world has had access to a resource like the Family Forest® Project has developed.  Some of these discoveries have positive – even life-changing potential, and I want to share them with you.

 

Even without knowing who you are individually, it is now possible to know a great deal about some of your early ancestry.  It is now mapped out waiting for you (or your children) to explore for yourselves within the Family Forest®.

 

The big picture of ancestral history has much to teach each of us, and some of this knowledge will enrich the rest of your life.

 

Before the end of the last century we launched a primitive blog. It was called “The Captain’s Log.” This unique, fact-filled blog will continue into the future as “Your Future, Your Past.”  You are invited and encouraged to come along on this journey of discovery.

 

Aloha,

Bruce

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