‘Finding Your Roots’ Host Henry Louis Gates Talks New Season

Gates talks about the “mysteries hidden in our genome” on Detroit Today with Stephen Henderson.

The holiday season is in full swing, which means lots of family gatherings and conversations. Sometimes, those conversations end up uncovering things about our families’ histories that maybe we hadn’t heard before or thought about.

Finding Your Roots is a PBS series that digs deep into family histories and captures the emotions that well up when someone discovers those stories. Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. hosts that show. He’s also a professor and Director of the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University. He’s a literary scholar, journalist, and Emmy Award-winning filmmaker.

Dr. Gates joins Detroit Today with Stephen Henderson to talk about Finding Your Roots, its new season, and what he calls “the mysteries hidden in our genome.”

“One of the reasons I know I was put on Earth was to help people find their long-lost ancestries,” says Gates.

Gates and Henderson also talk about Henderson’s recent exploration into his own family’s history, going back to enslaved ancestors and whether their owners were also family members.

Click on the audio player above to hear the full conversation.


  • Detroit Today
    Dynamic and diverse voices. News, politics, community and the issues that define our region. Hosted by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Stephen Henderson, Detroit Today brings you fresh and perceptive views weekdays at 9 am and 7 pm.