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Notable Dutch Americans

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  • Pete Hoekstra, 69th U.S. Ambassador to The Netherlands
    Pete Hoekstra  is a Dutch American politician who became the 69th United States Ambassador to the Netherlands on January 10, 2018. A member of the Republican Party, he previously served as the U.S. Rep...
  • Burt Reynolds (1936 - 2018)
    Burton Leon "Burt" Reynolds, Jr. ( February 11, 1936 - September 6, 2018) was an American stand-up comedian, actor, director, voice artist, and comedian. Some of his memorable roles include Bo 'Bandit'...
  • Lili Simmons
    Lili Simmons is an American actor and model, best known for her role as Rebecca Bowman on the Cinemax series Banshee (2013–2016). She is of English, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, and Dutch ancestry. So...
  • Lewis Pullman
    Lewis Pullman is an American actor, known for his roles in The Strangers: Prey at Night (2018), Battle of the Sexes (2017), and Lean on Pete (2017). The son of actor Bill Pullman and modern dancer an...
  • Jon Cryer
    Jon Cryer is an American actor, screenwriter, television director, and film producer. Born into a show business family, Cryer made his motion picture debut as a teenaged photographer in the 1984 romant...

Notable Americans of Dutch descent

The first Dutch settlers arrived in 1624 and founded a number of villages and a town called New Amsterdam on the East Coast, which would become the future world metropolis of New York. According to the 2006 United States Census, more than 5 million Americans claim total or partial Dutch heritage. Today the majority of the Dutch Americans live in California, New York, Michigan, Iowa, Washington, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Montana, Ohio and Pennsylvania

Scope of this project

This is a project about notable Dutch-Americans, including both original immigrants who obtained American citizenship and Americans of full or partial Dutch ancestry. Of course the list of people mentioned in this project is still incomplete, you can help expanding it by adding profiles. It would be great if we could connect the profiles to their Dutch ancestor trees.

Arts and literature

  • Willem de Kooning (1904–1997), abstract expressionist painter
  • Barthold Fles (1902–1989), literary agent, author, editor, translator and publisher
  • Charles Hoy Fort (1874–1932), author, wrote Book of the Damned, father of ufology, cryptozoology and critic/satirist of mainstream, dogmatic science.
  • Frederick Franck (1909–2006), painter, sculptor, and author of 30 books who was known for his interest in human spirituality.
  • Herman Melville (1819–1891), author and poet, wrote Moby Dick.
  • Milton J. Nieuwsma (born 1941), author, filmwriter-producer.
  • Gloria Vanderbilt (born 1924), artist and socialite[3]
  • Janwillem van de Wetering (1931–2008), Dutch-American author of police procedurals, Zen autobiographies and children's books
  • Walt Whitman (1819–1892), poet[4]
  • Edward W. Bok (1863–1930), author, publisher, editor of Ladies Home Journal
  • Raeburn van Buren, magazine and comic strip illustrator best known for his work on the syndicated Abbie an' Slats
  • Hendrik Willem van Loon (1882–1944), author, historian and journalist
  • Peter DeVries (1910-1993), author and editor wrote "Tunnel of Love" and others, editor and staffer for Poetry magazine and The New Yorker


  • Dick Van Dyke
  • Don Van Vliet (Captain Beefheart)
  • Colonel Tom Parker
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Eddie Van Halen
  • Christina Aguilera (born 1980), Female singer, actress and model, part has some Dutch ancestry
  • Christina Applegate (born 1971), small amount of Dutch ancestry,[5] actress who gained fame as a teenage actress, playing the role of Kelly Bundy on the sitcom Married... with Children.
  • Reiko Aylesworth (born 1972), actress, best known for playing Michelle Dessler in the television series 24
  • Carmit Bachar (born 1974), member of the Pussycat Dolls, born to an Israeli father and Dutch-Indonesian mother
  • Elizabeth Banks (born 1974), distant Dutch ancestry Actress
  • Shannon Bex (born 1980), member of Danity Kane, is of Scottish and Dutch descent.
  • Humphrey Bogart (1899–1957), actor (His father was of part Dutch descent. The name “Bogart” comes from the Dutch surname Bogaert. It is derived from the word "bogaard", a short name for "boomgaard", which means "orchard".)
  • Moon Bloodgood (born 1975), actress (Father has small amount of Dutch ancestry)
  • Michelle Branch (born 1983), singer (Dutch through her maternal grandfather)
  • Marlon Brando (1924–2004), Hollywood film actor, father was of partial Dutch ancestry
  • Alison Brie (born 1982), television and film actor and comedian; of partial Dutch ancestry
  • Steve Buscemi (born 1957), actor, writer and director, mother had some Dutch ancestry
  • John Carradine (1906–1988), actor, distant Dutch ancestry; descended from Dutch diamond merchant, Kiliaen van Rensselaer who settled the province of Albany, NY in the seventeenth century
  • Keith Carradine (born 1949), actor and son of John Carradine, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Robert Carradine (born 1954), actor, distant Dutch ancestry
  • David Carradine (1931–2009), actor, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Ever Carradine (born 1974), actress and daughter of Robert Carradine, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Montgomery Clift (1920–1966), actor, of partial maternal Dutch ancestry
  • Wilhelmina Cooper (née Behmenburg) (1939–1980), model who began with Ford Models and, at the peak of her success, founded her own agency, Wilhelmina Models
  • Steven Culp (born 1956), actor, best known for his role as 'Rex Van de Kamp' in Desperate Housewives
  • Nicholas D'Agosto (born 1980), mother of part Dutch descent[8] actor best known for being the lead of Final Destination 5 and his recurring role in Heroes.
  • Dane DeHaan (born 1986), film actor, paternal great-grandfather was of Dutch descent
  • Robert De Niro (born 1943), two time Academy Award winning actor, mother of part Dutch descent
  • Johnny Depp (born 1963) actor, film producer, and musician. He has distant Ducth ancestry.
  • Emily Deschanel (born 1976), actress best known for her role as Dr. Temperance "Bones" Brennan in the comedy-crime drama series Bones, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Zooey Deschanel (born 1980), actress, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Joyce DeWitt (born 1949), actress
  • Thomas Dekker (born 1987), actor, his paternal great-grandfather was of Dutch descent
  • Laura Dern (born 1967), actress and film director of English, Scottish, French, Swiss, German, Norwegian and Dutch descent
  • Michael Douglas (born 1944), actor and producer who won four Golden Globes and two Academy Awards, distant Dutch ancestry on mother's side
  • Lee Van Cleef (1925–1989), film actor, best known for his parts as a villain in Spaghetti Western movies, of part Dutch descent
  • Charlize Theron (born 1975), South African actress of German, Dutch and French descent, now naturalized citizen of the United States
  • Clint Eastwood (born 1930), Academy Award winning film actor, director and producer, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Zac Efron (born 1987), actor known for his lead role in High School Musical, paternal grandfather of Polish Jewish descent; Zac also has distant Dutch ancestry
  • Anna Faris (born 1976)[12] actress best known for her comedic roles in the Scary Movie film series, small amount of Dutch ancestry
  • Frances Farmer (1913–1970), film actress, her mother was of Dutch ancestry
  • Nina Foch (1924–2008), film actress, father was from the Netherlands
  • Gregory Smith (born 1983), small amount of Dutch ancestry
  • Jimmy Smits (born 1955), Golden Globe and Emmy winning actor is half-Dutch, half Puerto Rican
  • Cobie Smulders (born 1982), actress and model of Dutch and English descent
  • James Spader (born 1960), actor, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Martin Spanjers (born 1987), actor best known for playing Rory Hennessy on the sitcom 8 Simple Rules
  • Bruce Springsteen (born 1949), singer-songwriter, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Mary Steenburgen (born 1953), Academy Award and Golden Globe winning actress, best known from her roles in Melvin and Howard and Back to the Future Part III, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Taylor Swift (born 1989), country singer,[30] distant Dutch ancestry
  • Lou Tellegen (1881–1934), film actor
  • Egbert Van Alstyne (1878–1951), songwriter and pianist
  • Louis van Amstel (born 1972), professional dancer, choreographer, and a dancesport coach
  • Casper Van Dien (born 1968), actor, of part Dutch descent
  • James Van Der Beek (born 1977), television and film actor, best known as Dawson from Dawson's Creek, of part Dutch descent
  • Anneliese van der Pol (born 1984), television actress, perhaps best known for her role as Chelsea Daniels in the Disney Channel original comedy series, That's So Raven[32]
  • Heather Vandeven (born 1981), model and Pet of the Year 2007
  • Dick Van Dyke (born 1925), famous television and film star and his brother, television actor Jerry Van Dyke (born 1931)
  • Barry Van Dyke (born 1951), actor and son of Dick Van Dyke
  • Alex Van Halen (born 1953), drummer and founding member of the hard rock band Van Halen[33]
  • Eddie Van Halen (born 1955), guitarist and founding member of the hard rock band Van Halen[33]
  • Billy Van Zandt (born 1957), playwright, actor
  • Philip Van Zandt (1904–1958), Broadway and Hollywood actor, played in Citizen Kane
  • Townes Van Zandt (1944–1997), country-folk music singer-songwriter, performer, and poet.
  • Donnie Van Zant (born 1952), founder and singer of .38 Special
  • Johnny Van Zant (born 1959), lead singer of Lynyrd Skynyrd since 1987
  • Ronnie Van Zant (1948–1977), lead singer of Lynyrd Skynyrd from 1970–1977
  • Paul Verhoeven (born 1938), film director
  • Captain Beefheart (1941–2010), the stage name of musician and artist Don Van Vliet
  • Donald Voorhees (1903–1989), composer and conductor
  • Dionne Warwick (born 1940), singer, actress and TV show host, who became a United Nations Global Ambassador for the Food and Agriculture Organization, and a United States Ambassador of Health, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Sigourney Weaver[34] (born 1949), actress best known for her role of Ellen Ripley in the four Alien films and Grace Augustine in Avatar, distant Dutch ancestry
  • Bruce Willis (born 1955),[35] father of partial Dutch descent
  • Jan de Bont (born 1943), film director, producer and cinematographer
  • Carel Struycken (born 1948), film actor
  • Colonel Tom Parker (1909–1997), manager of Elvis Presley


  • Franklin D. Roosevelt
  • Martin van Buren
  • Jacob Brinkerhoff (1810-1880), United States Representative from Ohio
  • Charles Croswell (1825–1886), Governor of Michigan
  • Ivo Daalder (born 1960), 20th United States Permanent Representative to NATO
  • Howard Dean (born 1948),[36] Governor of Vermont
  • Harry DeBoer (1905–1991), Trotskyist trade union leader
  • Dick DeVos (born 1955), Republican candidate for governor of Michigan.
  • Frank Ellsworth Doremus (1865-1947), United States Representative from Michigan
  • Rodney Frelinghuysen (born 1946), United States Representative from New Jersey
  • Todd Gloria (born 1978), San Diego City Council
  • John Hickenlooper (born 1952), Current Governor of Colorado
  • Pete Hoekstra (born 1953), member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Michigan
  • John Hoeven (born 1957), United States Senator from North Dakota
  • Harold G. Hoffman (1896–1954), 41st Governor of New Jersey
  • Bill Huizenga (born 1969), United States Representative from Michigan
  • Kenny Hulshof (born 1958), member of the United States Representative from Missouri
  • John Jay (1745–1829), Founding Father of the United States and the first Chief Justice of the United States
  • Martin Kalbfleisch (1804–1873), United States Representative from New York
  • Herman Knickerbocker (1779–1855), United States Representative from New York
  • John Lindsay (1920-2000), Mayor of New York City and United States Representative from New York
  • Elizabeth Monroe (1768–1830), wife of James Monroe; of paternal English and maternal Dutch ancestry
  • Marshall Mouw (born 1942), City of Glendora Mayor and Councilman
  • Dave Mulder (born 1939), State Senator from Iowa
  • A. J. Muste (1885–1967), socialist active in the pacifist movement, labor movement and the US civil rights movement
  • Dick Posthumus (born 1950), Lieutenant Governor of Michigan
  • John V. L. Pruyn (1811-1877), United States Representative from New York
  • Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882–1945), Democratic President of the U.S.
  • Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919), Republican President of the U.S.
  • Eleanor Roosevelt (1884–1962), wife of Franklin D. Roosevelt
  • Marge Roukema (born 1929), United States Representative from New Jersey
  • Albert Janse Ryckman (c. 1642–1737), Mayor of Albany, New York; Prominent Brewer; Captain in Albany Malitia
  • Philip Schuyler (1733–1804), general in the American Revolutionary War and a United States Senator from New York[37]
  • Alan K. Simpson (born 1931), United States Senator from Wyoming
  • Peter Stuyvesant (1612–1672), Director-General of the colony of New Amsterdam (later New York)
  • George Bell Timmerman, Jr. (1912–1994), Governor of South Carolina
  • Daniel W. Voorhees (1827-1897), United States Senator from Indiana
  • Simeon Van Akin (1842-1906), United States Representative from Michigan
  • Martin Van Buren (1782–1862), Democratic President of the U.S.
  • Pierre Van Cortlandt (1721–1814), 1st Lieutenant Governor of New York
  • Stephanus Van Cortlandt (1643–1700), first native born Mayor of New York City, grandfather of Pierre van Cortlandt
  • Jacobus Van Cortlandt (1658–1739), two-time Mayor of New York City (1710-1711 and 1719-1720)
  • Espy Van Horne (1795-1829), United States Representative from Pennsylvania
  • Arthur H. Vandenberg (1884–1951), Republican senator from Michigan
  • Chris Van Hollen (born 1959), United States Representative from Maryland
  • Isaac B. Van Houten (1776-1850), United States Representative from New York
  • Guy Vander Jagt (1931–2007), Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Michigan[38]
  • Cornelius P. Van Ness (1782–1852), Governor of Vermont
  • Frederick Van Nuys (1874-1944), United States Senator from Indiana
  • Stephen Van Rensselaer (1764–1839), 2nd Lieutenant Governor of New York and one of the richest Americans ever to have lived[39]
  • Robert B. Van Valkenburgh (1762-1834), United States Representative from New York
  • Murray Van Wagoner (1821-1888), United States Representative from New York
  • Cornelius Van Wyck Lawrence (1791–1861), the first popularly elected Mayor of New York City
  • Robert Anderson Van Wyck (1849–1918), the first mayor of New York City after the consolidation of the five boroughs into the City of New York in 1898
  • Tim Van Zandt (1762-1834), United States Representative from Missouri
  • Richard Vander Veen (1922-2006), United States Representative from Michigan
  • Daniel C. Verplanck (1762-1834), United States Representative from New York
  • Daniel W. Voorhees (1827-1897), United States Senator from Indiana
  • Peter Dumont Vroom (1791–1873), American Democratic Party politician
  • Victor Vroom (born 1932), business school professor at the Yale School of Management
  • Henry C. Warmoth (1842-1931), Governor of Louisiana
  • Jacob Aaron Westervelt (1800–1879), renowned and prolific shipbuilder and Mayor of New York (1853–1855)