A national conversation
For more than a decade, renowned Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr. has helped to expand America’s sense of itself, stimulating a national conversation about identity with humor, wisdom, and compassion. Professor Gates has explored the ancestry of dozens of influential people from diverse backgrounds, taking millions of viewers deep into the past to reveal the connections that bind us all.
Filmed on our site
NEHGS is proud to provide both research support and filming locations for this groundbreaking television show. Our expert family historians vet each script before filming. We also provide the anchor location for the show's introduction, which is filmed in our atrium at 99 Newbury Street.
Our role on the show
American Ancestors' research staff is thrilled to play a behind-the-scenes role for each episode of PBS's Finding Your Roots. While the show's staff genealogist completes all the original research work on each guest, American Ancestors researchers review scripted episode, and the final recording of the show. We only verify the work that the staff genealogist completes for the show. This work can take many hours – for example, Season 6 took our researchers 360 hours to review and vet.