Whenever we see famous people, we never really think about their heritage and where they come from. It’s so irrelevant that we give no real attention to it. As it turns out however, a lot of people that have shaped politics, art and pop culture over the last few decades have been adopted. Let’s take a look at some of these famous people below.
Mandela was adopted by the regent of the Thembu, a royal family in South Africa, when his father died. His father was a part of the Ixhiba-clan, which was an offshoot of the previously mentioned royal family. Thanks to his ties to royalty, he was able to reach a higher education in the one college where black people were allowed to study.
It’s no secret that Marilyn Monroe has always had a very bad relationship with her mother. Her mother pretty much abandoned her at a young age and when she finally broke down there was no other option but to have Marilyn placed with another family. Her mother would never end up being anything more than a red-haired woman to her.
After losing both his parents to heart attacks, Ice T was raised by his family in south Los Angeles. This explains why this New Jersey born rapper ended up being one of the most influential faces of the west coast hip hop scene.
Jamie Foxx was adopted at a very early age by the adoptive parents of his mother. His birth parents have not been a part of his upbringing and he has had little contact with them. Jamie still considers his grandmother to be one of the biggest influences on his life and one of the biggest reasons for his success.
This is a bit of a weird story. Jack Nicholson’s mom gave birth to him when she was only 18, but since she had the idea to get a career for herself (imagine that, a woman trying to get herself a career in the 30’s!) they had to hide the fact that she had had a child without being married. They convinced Jack that his mother was in fact his sister and his grandmother was his mother, and he only found out the truth when he was 37 after a reporter from Time magazine told him.
Much like Jack Nicholson, Eric Clapton grew up thinking his mother was his sister and his grandparents were his parents. They never quite legally adopted him though, so on paper his sister was still his mother. It’s also there that Clapton got his name, since that’s the last name of his mother’s stepfather at the time.
Steve’s mom was pretty young when she had him and had arranged to get him adopted by a catholic and rich family. The family had changed their mind at the very last moment and Steve’s mom would only allow the Jobs family to adopt him if they pledged to pay for his college education. Money well spent, I’d say.
The daughter of Elliot Roosevelt Sr. and Anna Hall, Eleanor lost both her parents at a very young age. When she was 10 years old she went to live with her grandmother and five years later she was sent to a boarding school in London. When she got back to the US, she married Franklin D. Roosevelt, who was her 5th cousin once removed.