Rosie O’Donnell’s Genealogical Journey

Christine Stibbe wrote a good step-by-step walk through the Rosie O’Donnell episode of NBC’s “Who Do You think You Are?” Following is a teaser.

Friday night’s episode of Who Do You Think You Are? followed Rosie O’Donnell on her genealogical journey to discover her Irish roots. In the Rosie O'Donnell - Who Do You Think You Are? Video Episodebeginning of the episode, we learn that her mother passed away when she was a child which resulted in a lack of family knowledge and a disconnected relationship with her siblings. This inspired O’Donnell’s journey to learn more about the ancestors on her maternal side.

Rosie O’Donnell began her venture by meeting with her brother, Ed, who is the only sibling she remains in contact with. They discussed their childhood experience growing up in an Irish-Catholic home and looked through old family photographs, hoping to find some clues to their past. The two came across a photo of a woman that hung in their childhood playroom. They did not know the identity of this woman but thought it may be their grandfather, Daniel Murtha’s, step-mother.

Rosie O’Donnell realized the mysterious woman’s photograph was her first clue, so she set out to uncover her true identity. With her grandfather’s address and birth date on hand, O’Donnell browsed Census Records to find any information she could about him. In the process, she learned that her grandfather was born in Canada and that her great-grandfather was Daniel Murtha.

Read the full article at the January 21, 2011 edition of The Celebrity Cafe. I recommend that you turn your sound down, as it’s irritating, but the article itself is interesting.

Miss the episode? View it by clicking here.

Author: Leland Meitzler

Leland K. Meitzler founded Heritage Quest in 1985, and has worked as Managing Editor of both Heritage Quest Magazine and The Genealogical Helper. He currently operates Family Roots Publishing Company (www.FamilyRootsPublishing.com), writes daily at GenealogyBlog.com, writes the weekly Genealogy Newsline, conducts the annual Salt Lake Christmas Tour to the Family History Library, and speaks nationally, having given over 2000 lectures since 1983.

1 thought on “Rosie O’Donnell’s Genealogical Journey”

  1. I traced my 4th great grandfather to 1765 when he came to America from Ireland at the age of 9 years old. He came with his father and brother both names unknown. 1765 was much before the potato famine which your family had to overcome. In the 1700s the british wanted colonies to settle the western frontiers. Kind of a safeguard against the indian attacks. Have you ever heard of the great runaway or the wyoming massacre? Some day I hope that one of the Alexander descendents will find my 4th great grandfathers missing brother and father who came with him in 1765. He enlisted 3 times in the American revolution. His name was Joseph Alexander and he was married to frances Malone. His fathers house was burned down by the indians durring the revolution in Northumberland Pa.

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