Are Thomas Ravenel and Shep Rose from ‘Southern Charm’ Actually Related?

Both Thomas Ravenel and Shep Rose from Southern Charm have strong family roots in Charleston, South Carolina. But are they actually related too?

The cast members come from respected families that date back to the city’s founding fathers. Rose comes from the Boykin family that founded the town of Boykin, South Carolina, Bravo’s The Daily Dish reports. Ravenel’s father, Arthur Ravenel, served in the U.S. House and South Carolina Senate. His family harkens back to the French Huguenots who arrived in the U.S. in 1686.

Whitney Sudler-Smith, Thomas Ravenel, Craig Conover, Cameran Eubanks, Jenna Lee King, William Shepherd “Shep” Rose III |Photo by Robert Ascroft/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

While chatting during a fishing excursion early in the series, the men reveal that they are actually cousins. Ravenel shares that his grandmother is Boykin, which is Rose’s paternal grandmother’s name.

That’s right, they are cousins

The fishing trip turns into a bonding opportunity for the men. “My grandmother is Boykin,” Ravanel says to Rose. “That’s our family,” Rose agrees. The men reiterate “our family” and grasp hands.

They re-share this information at the bar with Austen Kroll. Rose and Ravenel review which women they’ve hooked up with, and how they’ve been with some of the same women. “There’s a lot of cross-pollination going on in this town,” Ravenel exclaims.

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“We’re cousins by the way,” Ravenel adds, which takes Kroll aback. “The fact they are related makes their acceptance of cross-pollination extremely bizarre,” Kroll says. Indeed, Ravenel and Rose have likely hooked up with more than one of the same woman in town.

This dog is named after Rose’s family

The Boykin spaniel is also named after Rose’s family in addition to the town. According to legend, South Carolina villagers found a homeless dog and asked L. Whitaker Boykin to train the pup, according to Bravo’s The Daily Dish. Boykin trained the pup to assist hunters and eventually, the breed became the official dog of South Carolina.

Rose also shared that his family has a connection to the great F. Scott Fitzgerald. Last year he tweeted, “Yes. My great aunt was the first female athlete on the cover of @TIME magazine. Edith Cummings. And was friendly with F. Scott Fitzgerald. The basis of the character. So cool.”

He elaborated during an episode of Southern Charm. “The character in The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald named Jordan Baker, that’s my great aunt. It was written after her,” he said.

Ravenel has a landmark

One of the most recognizable bridges in Charleston is named after Ravenel’s father. Arthur Ravenel was responsible for the new bridge construction that connects Mount Pleasant and Charleston, Bravo’s The Daily Dish reports.

The bridge joined the John P. Grace Memorial Bridge and Silas N. Pearman Bridge and was part of Arthur Ravenel’s 1996 campaign. The bridge is now known as the Ravenel Bridge.

Thomas Ravenel | Thomas Ravenel via Instagram

Politics run in Ravenel’s family. He is the former State Treasurer. But was arrested on drug charges in 2007 and went to prison in 2008. After his release, he made a bid for the U.S. Senate in 2014, which he brutally lost. He is currently facing sexual assault and battery charges. Ravenel is no longer on Southern Charm.