Amy Schumer on Finding Roots

92YTribeca is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Schumer’s family is originally from Ukraine.

Amy Schumer, broke into tears while learning the details of how her relatives made the journey from Eastern Europe in the early part of the 20th century to the United States. The comedienne and actress read an immigration document which had the names of her parents and her great-grandmother on it. They left their home which is now in Ukraine in 1912. The discovery was filmed for the PBS show Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates Jr.

Gates, the host of the show, is a historian who graduated from Harvard. He also showed the famed comedian the grave belonging to her great-great grandfather who died within a year of arrival into the United States. His grave can be found in Staten Island and the grave stone can be read at United Hebrew Cemetery. Schumer admitted she is excited to find out more about the town where her family came from. The comedian believes this experience will change her.

Schumer also learned about her eight-great maternal grandfather. Gates told her how her relatives in the long past were captured by Native Americans along with his two siblings in Massachusetts. They were then taken by the Natives to Canada. The two brothers were given the option of returning a few years later. Their sister, however, was ransomed. None among the brothers took up that offer. The family unit decided to stay together. The two brothers remained with their captors. Before her parents married, Schumer's mother converted to Judaism.

Finding Your Roots is now running its fourth season. A number of previous episodes feature prominent Jews. The list includes actors like Dustin Hoffman, Scarlet Johansson, and Paul Rudd. Larry David and Carole King were also guests of the program. Gates has even interacted with Bernie Sanders, the 2016 presidential nominee.

Resources

Follow the Conversation on Twitter