Kurt Cobain

Without question, the most famous Cobain is Kurt Cobain, lead singer and guitarist for the band Nirvana.

Kurt belongs to the Co. Tyrone branch of the family. His family tree is Co. Tyrone 1 which was submitted by Shirley Henderson De Renzo. Shirley is the cousin of Kurt’s grandfather, Leland Cobain. Shirley is the "family historian" and has spent many years researching the Cobain surname. She has provided a number of articles for the website including The Cobains in Ireland, The Cobains in Canada and The Cobains in Washington State. On page 5 of The Cobains in Washington State, the first child listed (John James Arthur Cobain) is Leland’s father and, therefore, the great-grandfather of Kurt Cobain.

This branch of the family left Co. Tyrone, Northern Ireland in 1875 and settled in Osnabruck, Ontario, Canada. While 1 son remained in Canada, the rest of the family moved to Washington State in the late 1880's.  The Cobains/Cobanes are one of the pioneer families that came to the Kittitas Valley when Washington was still a Territory.  John James Cobain (the great-great-grandfather of Kurt) signed the Petition for Statehood in 1889.

Kurt Cobain's Family Tree

Thomas Cobane
Born: c. 1765, Possibly Skey Townland, Co. Tyrone, Ireland
Died: ?
Married: ?

Great-Great-Great-Great Grandfather
Samuel Cobane (brother William)
Born: c. 1792, Possibly Skey Townland, Co. Tyrone, Ireland
Died: 1866, Dunmisk, Co. Tyrone
Married: Ellen Lagan

Samuel Cobane (brothers William, John, James, Patrick, Deane)
Born: May 23, 1823, Dunmisk, Co. Tyrone, Ireland
Died: Oct. 24, 1900, Ellensburg, Washington, USA
Married: Letitia Cobane (cousin)

John James Cobain
Born: Dec. 28, 1863, Inishatieve, Co. Tyrone, Ireland
Died: Nov. 26, 1922, Portland, Oregon, USA
Married: Anna Minerva Van Alstine

John James Arthur Cobain
Born: March 18, 1889, Ellensburg, Washington, USA
Died: Sept. 8, 1938, Ellensburg, Washington, USA
Married: Grace Almeda Gibson

Leland Elmer Cobain
Born: Oct. 24, 1923, Kittitas County, Washington, USA
Married: Iris Maxine LaBrot

Donald Leland Cobain
Born: 1945
Married: Wendy Fradenburg

Kurt Donald Cobain
Born: Feb. 20, 1967, Aberdeen, Washington
Died: April 5, 1994
Married: Courtney Michelle Harrison (“Courtney Love”)


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Kurt Cobain