Edward Norton Discovers Pocahontas is His 12th Great-Grandmother

Award-winning actor Edward Norton recently appeared on the latest episode of PBS’ Finding Your Roots, only to discover he is a direct descendent of Pocahontas. 

Norton is known best for his hit movies, including Fight Club, American History X, and most recently Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery.

But his latest appearance is on the TV documentary series Finding Your Roots. The show is returning for its ninth season, with the first episode diving deep into the ancestry of both Norton and actress, Julia Roberts.

But it’s Norton’s past that has stirred up some shocking findings, leaving some in disbelief.

One fan wrote: “Literally obsessed with @EdwardNorton how cool for him and his heritage.”

While another added: “Edward Norton as a descendant of Pocahontas is not even close to a sentence I’d hear anyone say.”

“NEPO BABY ALERT Edward Norton is related to Pocahontas,” a third commented. 

In the episode, which is set to air on Tuesday, Host and historian Henry Louis Gates, Jr. informed Norton that his twelfth great-grandmother was THE Pocahontas — known by the names Matoaka and Amonute, making him a direct descendent of hers.

He is related to the historical icon through her marriage to the tobacco planter, John Rolfe, back in 1614, 3 years before she reportedly died. 

After learning that his family had an integral part in the Jamestown colonial settlement in Virginia, he said: “It makes you realize what a small piece of the human story you are,” as per NBC Philadelphia. Adding: “This is about as far back as you can go, unless you’re a Viking.”

But along with the incredible findings, there were other parts of his family’s past that were a little harder to swallow.

Host and historian Henry Louis Gates, Jr. informed Norton that his family also used to own slaves, which understandibly got Norton feeling more than a little “uncomfortable.”

During the episode, Gates shared a photograph of a family with their 5 young daughters, whose oldest was just ten years old. He revealed to the actor that they were kept as slaves. 

Norton was clearly taken aback by the information, and after ruminating on it, told Gates that, “these things are uncomfortable, and you should be uncomfortable with them. Everybody should be uncomfortable with it.”

He added that: “It’s not a judgment on you and your own life but it’s a judgment on the history of this country.” 

“It needs to be acknowledged first and foremost, and then it needs to be contended with,” Norton continued. 

“When you go away from census counts and you personalise things, you’re talking about, possibly, a husband and wife with 5 girls, and these girls are slaves. Born into slavery.”

Tearing up, he explained that although that’s the case, “when you read ‘slave aged 8,’ you just want to die.”

What do you think of the revelation?

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