Watch Seth Meyers Dive into His Family’s History on ‘Finding Your Roots’

An exclusive, first look at the ‘Late Night’ host learning about his past

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Lloyd Bishop/NBC

On the February 19 episode of Finding Your Roots on PBS, Henry Louis Gates Jr. dives deep into the ancestry of three comedians: stand-ups Tig Notaro and Sarah Silverman and Late Night host Seth Meyers. We got a first look at the moment Meyers “retrieves” his family name and learns that his talk show nearly had a very different ring to it.

Later in the episode, Meyers learns that his great-grandfather Morris Meyers immigrated to America from Lithuania at age 15. He became a peddler, selling pots and pans in the countryside around Pittsburgh, earning enough money to open his own store and later purchase a home for his family. To assimilate, Morris changed his surname from Trakianski to Meyers.

Watching Meyers explore his family tree is a strong reminder that nobody got where they are on their own. Taking a little time to recognize the sacrifices of those who came before you can help you appreciate the opportunities you have now and motivate you to take advantage of your moment. Heck, you may even feel inspired to pay it forward and create new chances for the next generations to come.

“I believe that the more each of us understands about where we came from, about what our ancestors experienced and how those experiences have shaped us, whether we knew about them or not, the more richly we can live our lives,” says Gates.

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