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Jake Tapper's 'Roots'

Updated 10:09 AM ET, Tue October 14, 2014
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CNN's Jake Tapper recently traveled to his native Philadelphia to explore his roots. CNN
Tapper and his parents, Dr. Theodore Tapper and Anne Tapper, walk through Independence National Historic Park in Philadelphia, close to where Tapper grew up during the Bicentennial Era in 1976. CNN
Old Hay Bay Church, the first Methodist Church in Canada, was founded by Tapper's ancestors Solomon Huff and and his brother, Paul Huff. The Huffs fled the United States after the Revolutionary War because they remained loyal to the crown and fought for the British, according to Willa Skinner, the town historian in Fishkill, New York. Courtesy Jake Tapper
Tapper looks inside the church today at a picture of a loyalist soldier. CNN
After the Revolutionary War, loyalists fled to Canada across the Great Lakes in boats like this batteau, which is on display at the United Empire Loyalist Heritage Museum and Campground in Adolphustown, Ontario. CNN
Today in Canada, ancestors of loyalists can become members of the historical group the United Empire Loyalists' Association. Tapper talks here with Peter Johnson, a longtime member who is also one of Tapper's distant cousins. CNN
Tapper examines a Huff family Bible from the 1800s along with Christine Smith, a librarian at the United Empire Loyalist Heritage Museum. CNN
There are no portraits or illustrations of Solomon Huff, so here's our best guess as to what he may have looked like, having a little fun with Photoshop. CNN/Getty Images
Tapper examines a silver communion tankard dedicated to ancestor Englebert Huff at the First Reformed Church of Fishkill. The inscription on the tankard says Huff lived to the age of 128. Skinner said he probably did not live that long but he lived a fascinating life. CNN
D. Edwin Palmatier, Tapper's great-uncle, died on a bombing raid in German-occupied territory during World War II. Palmatier is descended from the Huffs. Courtesy Jake Tapper
Tapper's great-uncle fought in World War II with the Royal Canadian Air Force, flying Vickers Wellington bombers like these long before the United States entered the war. Three Lions/Getty Images
Ground crews load bombs onto a Vickers Wellington plane circa 1943. Hulton Archive/Getty Images