Dr. Phil Gets Real with MyHeritage

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Dr. Phil uses the power of television to tell compelling and emotional stories.
Just a few weeks ago, Dr. Phil took a MyHeritage DNA test to learn more about his ancestral roots and discover his ethnic makeup. Starting with a small family tree, MyHeritage’s matching technologies got to work. We were able to unearth some incredible historical records and stories about his ancestors. Friend of MyHeritage, Yvette Corporon, recently revealed his MyHeritage DNA results to him live on air.

Watch the MyHeritage DNA reveal:

Phillip McGraw was born in Vinita, Oklahoma, to Joseph J. McGraw, Jr. and Anne Geraldine “Jerry” (née Stevens). Phil grew up with two older sisters and one younger sister. The family moved to the oilfields of North Texas where his father was an equipment supplier. Later, the family found themselves moving often so that his father could pursue his lifelong goal of becoming a psychologist.

Ethnic origins
Dr. Phil discovered that he has overwhelmingly Irish, Scottish, and Welsh origins, amounting to 64.3% of his total ethnicity. His other ethnicities were English and Iberian.

DNA Matches
Dr. Phil was matched with 20,000 MyHeritage users from 64 different countries. Most are from the U.S., but some originate from Europe, and more interestingly, some hail from Central and South America, and even Asia.

Historical records
Dr. Phil’s Irish origins can be seen in the 1900 U.S. Census record for his great-grandfather, John McGraw. John was born in Ireland in 1847. His parents, Dr. Phil’s great-great-grandparents, were also born in Ireland. The family immigrated to the United States in 1878.

1900 United States Federal Census — John McGraw (Click to zoom)

In a record from the 1910 U.S. Census, Joseph Philips McGraw, Dr. Phil’s grandfather, is listed as a wagon driver in a feed store.

1910 United States Federal Census — Joe P McGraw

At the age of 33, Joseph was drafted to serve in World War I. His draft registration card, shown below, contains some fascinating details about his life, including his place of employment, and his nearest relative, his wife Susan. Furthermore, the card describes his physical appearance — he was of medium height and stout built, with grey eyes and brown hair.

Yvette handed Dr. Phil the framed WWI draft registration card as a keepsake of his family’s service to their country. Dr. Phil was emotional to receive this special piece of his heritage.

Joseph McGraw’s WWI draft registration card:

United States World War I Draft Registrations, 1917–1918 — Joe Phillip McGraw

We even found that Dr. Phil is 11th cousins three times removed with the recently deceased George H. W. Bush, 41st President of the United States.

Dr. Phil was amazed by his ethnicity breakdown and by the priceless discoveries he made about his family. Learning about his roots has left him inspired and connected to his ancestors in ways he never imagined.

Have you made any surprising family history discoveries of your own? Let us know in the comments below!

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  • Connie Gilliam


    December 11, 2018

    I have no idea who my father is or anyone on my mothers side beyond her mom & dad. Help would be a

  • Peggy Johnson


    January 15, 2019

    I’m adopted I’m 71 year old lady dont know who I am I applied for my birth records so I know my name.

  • Craig Sanders


    January 15, 2019

    My father’s mother disappeared when he was 5, never to be seen again. All we had of her was her maiden name and that we believed she was from Texas born in 1894. I traced the only Fern Lois Powell I could find in Texas, and found a possible match. Her father being one C.R. Powell. Through DNA I was re-united with a grand daughter of one of her sisters. Our common grandfather being Charles Ransom Powell. We also discovered through DNA that my father’s oldest 2 brothers have a different mother than Fern Lois. We still do not know what happened to Fern (we are still looking) but at least we know where she came form and her remaining family in Texas know where she ended up, initially, in California after leaving the Texas family. We have made other interesting discoveries through DNA but this was the most exciting.

  • Jenita Dalton


    January 15, 2019

    Christmas 2017 my children surprised me with MyHeritage as they knew I had been looking for my biological father, I had a name but nothing more. In the year that followed I started getting matches, long story short, I believe I have tracked down a half sister whom I have contacted and she agreed to do the sibling testing, we should have results soon!

    • Esther


      January 16, 2019

      Hi Jenita,

      What an amazing discovery! We’d love to hear more at stories@myheritage.com.

      Best,
      Esther / MyHeritage Team

  • Melissa


    January 16, 2019

    I had no idea I had a half brother from my father. He is 8 years younger than me and we grew up less than 3 miles apart. I also found out I was mostly Scandinavian. Having an Irish family name I was told my ancestors were from Ireland and Scotland, however, the DNA showed differently. I was amazed.

    • Esther


      January 16, 2019

      Hi Melissa,

      What an amazing discovery! We’d love to hear more at stories@myheritage.com.

      Best,
      Esther / MyHeritage Team

  • Melissa Terhune


    January 16, 2019

    My exciting discovery is that the man listed on my birth certificate is not my father. I don’t know who my father is.
    I’m glad I did the test, but, am trying to figure out exactly who my father is. Since I’m in my 50’s I imagine he is deceased.

  • Doreen Flynn


    January 16, 2019

    With a name like McGraw Dr phill shouldn’t be surprised he has Irish blood , the country is full of mc graws , I did my own DNA but nothing strange came up I’m Part Irish and English .

  • TB Riggs


    January 16, 2019

    Wow! Dr Phil sure has an interesting past. I also submitted my DNA to My Heritage not too long ago, and I was totally surprised by my results. I had no idea that I had 35% Scottish – Irish and Welsh in my background, although I have often wondered why my house was full of Queen Ann antiques, and why I am so attracted to writing Historical Romance Novels from the past, lol. Now I know. It’s in my Blood, lol.

    In addition to the above, I am also 45% Northern European,( Germany, Switzerland, Belgium,) etc, with an additional 25% percent Ashkenazim Jewish, Hungarian, and Austrian. All in all I am very pleased with who I am.

    My Grand-Daughter Jessica, age 18 years old, on the other hand, was in for a big surprise when her DNA results arrived. Believing that she was part Native American on her father’s side, she found out that her father’s Grandmother was not Native American after-all, or 100% Cherokee like he was told. There was no Native American DNA found in my Grand-daughters DNA that even suggests American Native. She was 92% European. It would appear, that my son-in-laws mother was given up for adoption as a baby and was raised by a Native American woman who was 100% Cherokee. Perhaps through some digging we can find out who this woman was.
    TB Riggs. tbriggsnovelist.com

  • Eleanor Miller


    January 16, 2019

    My DNA surprised me by concluding I am 65.9% English,24.4& Eastern European and 9.7% Scandinavian. I know where both Mother and Father’s families came from in Germany. Could it be that results of DNA are based on ancestors who migrated to Germany ?

    • Esther


      January 17, 2019

      Hi Eleanor,

      Our ethnicity estimates go back 5-6 generations, so that is definitely possible.

      Best,
      Esther / MyHeritage Team

  • Donna Jones


    January 17, 2019

    I also are related to George H.W Bush and other Presidents and even Royalty from England . I’m Irish Welch Scottish Scandinavian.

  • Donna Jones


    January 17, 2019

    I am also related to George H.W. Bush. I also had ancestors come over on the Mayflower. I also have ancestors that were Royalty from England. IM also Irish. Scottish. Welch. And Scandinavian. I share DNA to many actors. Scientist. Presidents. Poet’s. I’m an thrilled to know my ancestors. Some were Patriots in the Revolutionary War. My family were also in WW1 and WW2. Makes me feel proud to know my Heritage.

  • George Hoffer


    January 19, 2019

    There is no birth record for me to be found am 70 year old could you help me find one both of my parents have pass away no one on my dad side or my mpms side of the family know noting about it or where it could be found

  • Julia Ann Crum Benoit


    January 19, 2019

    How do I upload my dna from ancestry?

  • Sally Burgoyne


    January 23, 2019

    I am also related to the Bush family. I am sure you will get a lot of people writing in, who you are related to.
    I am 44% Irish, and 53% Great Britain, and 3% Swedish
    I am related to many famous people, which tells me how good hand writing was passed down..
    Some of my ancestors were coal miners and many were farmers.
    John Howland was one of my Ancestors who fell overboard on the Mayflower!
    Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and others are on our tree. Happy hunting. It is addictive!

  • Robin Hollinger


    April 1, 2019

    I would love to find out about my family

  • ronald gregoncza


    April 1, 2019

    checking my heritage

  • Robyn Smith


    April 1, 2019

    Never knew my grandparents. Please help.

  • Desrosiers


    April 1, 2019

    I don’t much my earth side of family

  • Dearosiers


    April 1, 2019

    I would
    D like to find out my father famialydd

  • Breeze Niles


    April 1, 2019

    I have always questioned who and where I came from… Never really got any definite proven answers from anyone…. I am a mother of 3 and would love to be able to tell my kids about their Heritage and ancestors…. Any help would be appreciated!

  • Judy domenech


    April 1, 2019

    Would like to find out my Heritage

  • Patrick aloi


    April 1, 2019

    Find out about my father’s family

  • Jean Lea Johnson


    April 1, 2019

    I would like to find out my heritage on my mothers side.

  • Darius Davis


    April 1, 2019

    I would love to know my heritage

  • Ramona hathhorn


    April 1, 2019

    Want to know

  • Mandy Waasdorp


    April 1, 2019

    I’ve never before looked up

  • Carolyn Huber Sommer Jolin


    April 1, 2019

    Would like any info on heritage.

  • janice marie goins


    April 1, 2019

    im signing up for the free 14 days to see if im interested

  • Rhonda. Adams McElroy


    April 1, 2019

    Would love to know my family history. Do not know my father’s family at all, but would love also to know my mother’s family.

  • Carolyn maples


    April 1, 2019

    Saw this on Dr.Phil today . Thought how interesting maybe I should do it to. Always wondered my

  • Carolyn maples map


    April 1, 2019

    Have always wanted to know where both sides of my family came from.

  • Marjorie Moll Mangan


    April 1, 2019

    I am interested in learning about my heritage.

  • Elizabeth Prater


    April 1, 2019

    I just saw this today. Dr.Phil, your sister Deana was married to my cousin, C.J. Prater. So sorry for the loss ❤

  • Esther Yvonne Erickson


    April 1, 2019

    Just saw this today on Dr Phil and was curious.

  • Cheri Hickman


    April 1, 2019

    I’m looking for I think a brother was born in fla in 69/70

  • Victoria Susan Mann ODonnell


    April 1, 2019

    My Dad name was James Arlen Mann.

  • STUART HOLLOWAY


    April 1, 2019

    Mother was Reta Kingston, St Catherines, Ont, Canada.

  • Iverna Carol Talbot Johns


    April 1, 2019

    I don’t know alot about my father .but I do know his name . Would love to know more

  • Joan Neater Specht


    April 1, 2019

    I am looking for the Walter Olson/Jean Grant history. My mother’s maiden name was Olson. Her mother’s maiden name was Grant. Jean Grant died when my mother, Barbara Jane, was about three or four. Barbara had a sister Elizabeth (Betty) Olson, Zoet, Carr. I am wanting to target on the Grant side of the family.

  • Apri Gordon


    April 1, 2019

    I would truly love too know about my families Heritage it would truly be the most amazing things to know ..

  • Joyce Roemer


    April 1, 2019

    All relatives are from russia

  • Michelle Azulay


    April 2, 2019

    This is so great for people to be able to be able to find out about their ancestory. I am looking forward to doing this for myself

    Thank You for making your viewers aware of this service .

    Michelle Azulay

  • Dora Carr


    April 2, 2019

    I would just love to know who my family is my dad didn’t know his father

  • Mary Ellen Peacock


    April 2, 2019

    I was told my great grand father was royality in Poland & married a commoner & excuminicated from his family!! Would live to know the whole story & if I truly come from royality!!! I don’t know a lot about my dads side!

  • Carmen Mazon


    April 2, 2019

    I’m curious to know how my aunt on my fathers
    side died and more history on my uncle Francisco on my fathers side

  • Angela Rogers


    April 2, 2019

    This seems very amazing I would like to try mine.

  • Rhonda Cooper


    April 2, 2019

    I watch Dr. Phil quite often . It was great to see Robin and Dr. Phil get there Heritage done on TV.

  • Theresa leary


    April 2, 2019

    Like to know how to find who was my father or his side have a name of a cousin that we don’t even know. Could be on fathers s

  • Fred Carter


    April 2, 2019

    I was adopted by Fred Carter and Frances Ethyl Ann Parr in 1947

  • Fred Carter


    April 2, 2019

    I was adopted by Fred L Carter and Frances Ethyl Ann Parr in 1947.

  • Juanita Pelletier


    April 2, 2019

    Thank you Dr. Phil for giving me the opportunity to find out about my heritage.

  • Bonnie Phillips


    April 2, 2019

    Both sets of grandparents came over as immigrants. I would like to learn about my families.

  • Sarah williams


    April 3, 2019

    I want to follow the genealogy on my fathers side because I have a few more details. He was born in 1900 and graduated from Indiana University which was very unusual for country boy.

  • Linda Stamper


    April 3, 2019

    Hi, Long story short…I sent in my dad’s dna sample, he is 86 years old. I sent it into Family tree dna.. results came back …….he is not a Hickman he is a Shoemaker…….I was stunned….I told him a few weeks later…..So I sent in his dna to Ancestry .com. They picked matches on my grandma side….So I don’t know if he is a Hickman or Shoemaker… confused why am I

  • susan hyland


    April 4, 2019

    My father was Irish born in Hartford, Connecticut he died at 57 was a mailman, nice man, he loved me very much. My mother is Germand/Irish born in Hartford, Connecticut she is 87 yrs old right now. She could care less about me. And that is okay, because I have Jesus as my personal Savior and that is my mom and dad now.

  • Paul Ramirez


    April 6, 2019

    My grand mother migrated from Mexico and her husband first name was Maurice hers was Refugio Marie cruz

  • Sharon Wirth


    April 7, 2019

    I was interested in finding out about my family tree. My Mother maiden name Maybee and Father name Wirth.

  • Heather


    April 20, 2019

    George H. W. Bush, 41st President of the United States is my 11th cousin