02 June 2006

Billy Bob Thornton's Fanciful Italian Ancestry

Billy Bob Thornton, who claims to be one-quarter Italian from his mother's side, will probably be having a wild celebration tonight for the 60th anniversary of the Foundation of the Italian Republic.

In 1930, his mother's parents, Maud and Claud (C.D.) Faulkner, were living in Arkansas next to Maud's parents and grandfather. No sign of any Italians anywhere in the county and certainly not in this household. So where does Billy Bob's Italian ancestry come from?

Some sites identify Billy Bob's great-grandfather, James R. Duce as the Italian in his tree. Perhaps they've found a link between the Duce family of Arkansas and Benito Mussolini, the Italian dictator known as Il Duce.

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