03.11.

1921: Tatar Origin of the Famous Charles Bronson

1921: Tatar Origin of the Famous Charles Bronson
Photo Credit To https://www.google.hr/search?q=charles+bronson&biw=982&bih=1071&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0CAYQ_AUoAWoVChMItJGTk5DqyAIVBXVyCh1sUQcx#q=charles+bronson&tbm=isch&tbs=sur:fc&imgrc=SDvbtuZbB05zmM%3A

Story Highlights

  • historical event: He is descended from the so-called Lipka Tatars, descendants of the White Horde, one of the successor states of Genghis Khan's Mongol Empire. They were followers of their old shamanistic religion and settled in Lithuania during the Middle Ages, probably because it was then the last non-Christian country in Europe.

American actor Charles Bronson, famous for playing the role of many tough heroes, was born on this day. It is not widely known that he was of Tatar descent, specifically from the so-called Lipka Tatars, who live in what is now Lithuania, Poland, and Belarus. These Tatars are descendants of the White Horde, one of the successor states of Genghis Khan’s Mongol Empire. They were followers of their old shamanistic religion, and settled in Lithuania during the Middle Ages, probably because it was then the last non-Christian country in Europe.

Charles Bronson was born under the name Charles Dennis Buchinsky in a mining region of Pennsylvania, but changed his surname to Bronson during the Red Scare. Namely, his agent thought that the surname Buchinsky sounded too Russian and could hurt his career. As a young man, he was poor and worked in a mine, for a salary of only one dollar per ton of coal mined. Since both his parents were of foreign heritage, Charles didn’t learn English until his teenage years, but spoke fluent Russian and Lithuanian.

During World War II, Bronson served as a machine gunner on board a B-29 Superfortress bomber. He was wounded and was awarded a Purple Heart.

It is well-known that most male actors in Hollywood become famous only at a more mature age. Charles Bronson is a typical example of this, since he started receiving his first important roles only in his late 40s.

Due to his exotic origins, he often played characters of Mexican, Native American, or mixed heritage.

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