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.
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.
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?
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.
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.