A Genealogy Researcher Looks at Donald Trump and His Mom

Trump is a name emblazoned everywhere in New York City and beyond. But who ever
focused on the Mom of “The Donald”? Now, RecordClick does. Let’s take a look before–You’re
Fired!

Every genealogist likely knows the Trump family name.  During this current political season, Donald Trump is creating quite the commotion and controversy around it.

This RecordClick genealogy researcher realizes that a good deal of information is known about the father’s side of the family of “The Donald”. His father, Fred Trump, was in real estate development in the Borough of Queens, New York and areas outside of the Borough of Manhattan. Even without being as flamboyant as his son, he made the family’s original fortune.

Donald’s mother, Mary Anne MacLeod Trump, a native of Scotland, kept a lower profile.

This genealogy researcher has found that Mary Anne MacLeod was born in 1912 in Stornoway, Scotland, which has a current population of approximately 6,000. Stornoway is located on the Isle of Lewis in the Hebrides, off the coast of the mainland. Its history includes a visit by the Vikings.

Mary first came to the United States in the early 1930s with her occupation listed as a domestic. Although she was married to Fred Trump for over 60 years, it appears she may have had a short previous relationship. After their marriage in 1936, Fred and Mary Trump settled into his home at 175-24 Devonshire Road in Queens. In 1940, the household consisted of:

  • Fred Trump Head     34           4 yrs. HS/Building Construction earning $5,000+/yr.
  • Mary A. Wife              27           8 yrs school
  • Mary A. Dau                3
  • Fred Son                       1

The house, owned by the family, was valued at $12,500. Houses of neighbors were valued at $18,000 and $16,000. The family didn’t feel the need to live in the most expensive house on the block. However, they did have an Irish maid. Mary is listed as being a naturalized citizen.

In 1930, the Trumps were living in the house at 175-24 Devonshire Road as well. It was valued at $23,000. By looking at what happened to the value of the house during the depression, a genealogy researcher is able to get an idea of the impact and effect of that national financial crisis.

In 1930, the members of the household were:

  • Fred C. Trump Head          25           Single                    Proprietor-builder
  • Elizabeth Mother                50           Widowed
  • John Brother                        21           Single

Between 1935 and 1940, Elizabeth moved to 104-25 195 St. and rented an apartment for $45 a month.

Mary Anne McLeod Timeline

  • 10 May 1912, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis, Scotland (obituary)
  • 1930 arrived in NY on the S.S. Transylvania. Listed as a domestic from Stornoway Port, Scotland. (Passenger Lists)
  • May 19, 1933, married in Manhattan, James Drysdale, 28, of Dunfermline, Scotland. The bride’s residence is listed as Stornoway, Scotland.
    • Groom’s parents: Robert Drysdale and Mary Wilson.
    • Bride’s parents: Donald Macleod and Mary Graham. (New York City Marriage Records)
  • 1934, arrived in NY on the S.S. Cameronia.
    • Listed as a domestic from Lewis, Scotland. (Passenger Lists)
  • 1936, married Fred Trump. (Obituary)
  • March 10, 1942, issued a naturalization certificate by the U.S. District Court at Brooklyn, NY.
  • Died August 7, 2000.
  • Buried in Queens.

Genealogy researchers need to keep an eye out for unusual pieces of information. While no legal marriage documentation was found for Mary MacLeod and Fred Trump, two New York City Marriages were found for Mary MacLeod:

  • May 19, 1933; Mary MacLeod, Manhattan, born Scotland, and James Drysdale, Manhattan.
  • December 28, 1935; Mary Regina MacLeod, Manhattan, born Toronto, and Allan Young, Manhattan.

A genealogy researcher will find that in the first instance, Mary MacLeod the birth information agrees with what is known about Mary MacLeod Trump.  In the second instance, it does not. More research is needed to determine what exactly happened.

For the genealogy researcher to be sure of the correct Mary MacLeod Trump in the naturalization record, the key piece of information is the address. The genealogist will note that it is the same as it was in the 1940 Census: 175-24 Devonshire Road.

And in regard to passenger lists, Mary and Fred Trump didn’t take many extravagant vacations to foreign places. In 1953, the family took a trip to the Bahamas and, in 1957, Mary went to Scotland, flying tourist class.

This ancestry researcher will note that Donald Trump may be a highly visible, flashy entrepreneur, but he didn’t get that quality from his mother.

It takes research to find out who our ancestors were. You’ll always want to have the most experienced genealogists from the U.S. to Europe. That’s who we have at RecordClick. Our genealogists for hire will help you find more about your family and ancestral history than you can imagine.

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