Finding Your Roots
Presented and written by Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr., and based on the formats of "African American Lives" and "Faces of America," this series journeys deep into the ancestry of a group of remarkable individuals and provides new understanding of personal identity and American history.
Finding Your Roots Previous Broadcasts
Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick (Episode #104H)
KQED Plus: Thu, May 19, 2016 -- 10:00 PM
What do Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick have in common? They are both famous actors and both descend from prominent American families that have been in this country since its inception. But they share something else, too: both had ancestors who were early opponents of slavery. Bacon's Quaker ancestors repudiated slavery long before the rest of the country, in 1780. And Sedgwick's ancestor Theodore Sedgwick argued the freedom case of Elizabeth Freeman, also known as "Mumbet," in 1781 -- which helped bring an end to slavery in Massachusetts. We reveal this fact - and many others - to Sedgwick and Bacon in this episode, and learn quite a bit about slavery in the North in the process.
- KQED Plus: Fri, May 20, 2016 -- 4:00 AM
Cory Booker and John Lewis (Episode #102H)
KQED Plus: Thu, May 12, 2016 -- 10:00 PM
This program features two African-American politicians from different generations and opposite backgrounds. John Lewis grew up in a sharecropping family in rural Georgia, while Cory Booker was raised in an affluent, all-white New Jersey suburb. Although both men have devoted their lives to the betterment of African-American people, neither knows much about his own ancestors. In this episode, Booker is introduced to his white great-grandfather, a man he never knew, and Lewis is moved to tears over the extraordinary ambitions and accomplishments of his slave ancestors.
- KQED Plus: Fri, May 13, 2016 -- 4:00 AM
Harry Connick Jr. and Branford Marsalis (Episode #101H)
KQED Plus: Thu, May 5, 2016 -- 10:00 PM
Their European immigrant ancestors blazed unconventional trails in America, from capturing British ships for the American Revolution to crossing racial barriers in slave-era Louisiana. Generations later, as children growing up in New Orleans, Harry Connick Jr. and Branford Marsalis found a deep and abiding friendship through their common love of jazz and of the city itself. In this hour, trace the turbulent and contradictory history of the city of New Orleans through the family stories of these two fascinating men.
- KQED Plus: Fri, May 6, 2016 -- 4:00 AM