"Who Do You Think You Are?" is giving celebrities an opportunity to trace their origins. Presented in part by ancestry.com, this episode finds Academy Award, Emmy, and Golden Globe winning actress Helen Hunt tracing her ancestry to find out just who she really is.
The episode starts in Hollywood with Helen revealing how her grandmother was killed by a drunk driver. She is tracing her ancestry so her daughter knows where she came from. She meets with her father to trace his side of her heritage. Looking at old pictures, she sees pictures of the Jewish side of her family on her Dad's side. In Pasadena, California, she meets with a professor of Jewish history. Her great-grandmother lived in a magnificent hotel. Florence Rothenberg who had several servants and were very well off. Her grandfather died of typhoid in 1900 in New York; she traveled to the west coast after her husband died. There was a huge influx of Jews to the west coast from 1900 to 1915, but she changed her name to Roberts because of the anti-Semitism at that time in history.
She died at 86 years old, and after researching her history, she found that her money came from the gold rush of 1849 in California. In San Francisco, a historian found that her great-great grandfather was one of the suppliers of clothing to the gold miners. In the 1870 census of California, they had three servants. Their company was worth over a million dollars in 1874. Another person Helen met with was an author who also traced her ancestry and found out that her ancestors were in business around the same time and both of their ancestors helped bail out the Nevada bank that became Wells Fargo.
She looked further into her father's side of the Hunt family to trace further and came to Portland, Maine, to research George Hunt, her great-great grandfather made his fortune by trading lumber for sugar. The anti-alcohol movement started in Maine, and her great-great grandmother was a leader of the Christian Temperance Union; a prudish movement that failed. The 19<sup>th</sup> Century had a dark side, because of the abuse of women and children by inebriated men. She saw pictures of Augusta Barstow Hunt and her children and found newspaper clippings of her temperance union. The irony here is that her grandmother was killed by a drunk driver. Another professor gave Helen a biography of Augusta revealed that she was instrumental in giving women a voice in politics, starting with a movement to give women the right to vote. She was 77 when President Wilson passed the 19<sup>th</sup> Amendment, and she lived to see her dream and registered to vote and was the first woman in Maine to cast her ballot. She died at 90 years of age.
Helen's findings ensured her elation in answering the call when asked, "Who Do You Think You Are?"