americans American Public Figures Who Are National Treasures  

Originally by
158k votes 10k voters 11k views 1,177 items Follow Embed

List Rules List includes public figures regarded as being emblematic of America's cultural heritage or identity

American national treasures work in different fields, are of different generations, and all have different stories to tell. But all of their stories are that of America itself. Some are media moguls, others are entertainers that nobody can bring themselves to hate. A few are politicians that have enormous influence and cultural cachet, even if you completely disagree with everything they believe in. But what they have in common is that they exemplify the American spirit, can-do attitude, and our cultural heritage. They also do really great on talk shows. They're US national treasures and are loved by just about everyone.

These likable celebrities and public figures who are national treasures are the ones that, love them or hate them, can't get enough of them or totally sick of them, truly show what it means to be American. To take risks, to give back, to never give up, to be in control of their environment, and to know exactly what to say at the right time.

Here are some of the greatest national treasures the United States has to offer. If you can think of others who qualify as national treasures for the people of the USA, feel free to add them to the list!
Tom Hanks 
    is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list American Public Figures Who Are National Treasures
Photo: user uploaded image
1
+ - 4,242 989

Tom Hanks


Thomas Jeffrey "Tom" Hanks is an American film actor, director, voice-over artist, writer and film producer. Hanks worked in television and family-friendly comedies before achieving success as a dramatic actor portraying several notable roles, including Andrew Beckett in Philadelphia, the title role ...more

More About

Age: 60

Birthplace: Concord, California, United States of America

Also Ranked

#1 on The Best Actors Working Today

#1 on The Best American Actors Working Today

#1 on The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

#1 on The Best Living American Actors

see more on Tom Hanks
Aretha Franklin 
    is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list American Public Figures Who Are National Treasures
Photo: user uploaded image
2
+ - 1,525 5,113

Aretha Franklin


Aretha Louise Franklin is an American singer and musician. Franklin began her career singing gospel at her father, minister C. L. Franklin's church as a child. In 1960, at the age of 18, Franklin embarked on a secular career, recording for Columbia Records only achieving modest success. Following ...more

More About

Age: 73

Birthplace: Tennessee, USA, Memphis

Also Ranked

#41 on The Best Rock Vocalists

#12 on The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

#6 on The Best Singers of All Time

#2 on The Best Female Vocalists Ever

see more on Aretha Franklin
Billy Crystal 
    is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list American Public Figures Who Are National Treasures
Photo: Freebase/Fair use
3
+ - 117 3,803

Billy Crystal


William Edward "Billy" Crystal is an American actor, singer, writer, producer, director, comedian, and television host. He gained prominence in the 1970s for playing Jodie Dallas on the ABC sitcom Soap and became a Hollywood film star during the late 1980s and 1990s, appearing in the critical and ...more

More About

Age: 69

Birthplace: Upper East Side, New York City, New York, United States of America

Also Ranked

#41 on The Funniest People of All Time

#41 on The Funniest People of All Time

#27 on The Best SNL Cast Members of All Time

#27 on The Best SNL Cast Members of All Time

see more on Billy Crystal
Tina Turner 
    is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list American Public Figures Who Are National Treasures
Photo: user uploaded image
4
+ - 520 858

Tina Turner


Anna Mae Bullock, known by her stage name Tina Turner, is a singer, dancer, actress, and author, whose career has spanned more than half a century, earning her widespread recognition and numerous awards. Born and raised in the Southeastern United States, she is now a Swiss citizen. She began her ...more

More About

Age: 76

Birthplace: Tennessee, Nutbush, USA

Also Ranked

#43 on The Best Rock Vocalists

#29 on The Best Singers of All Time

#11 on The Best Female Vocalists Ever

#84 on The Best Blues Artists of All Time

see more on Tina Turner
Dean Martin 
    is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list American Public Figures Who Are National Treasures
Photo: Freebase/Public domain
5
+ - 409 525

Dean Martin


Dean Martin was an American singer, actor, comedian, and film producer. One of the most popular and enduring American entertainers of the mid-20th century, Martin was nicknamed the "King of Cool" for his seemingly effortless charisma and self-assuredness. He and Jerry Lewis were partners in the ...more

More About

Age: Died at 78 (1917-1995)

Birthplace: USA, Steubenville, Ohio

Also Ranked

#93 on The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

#25 on The Best Singers of All Time

#15 on The Coolest Actors Ever

#77 on The Funniest People of All Time

see more on Dean Martin
Robin Williams 
    is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list American Public Figures Who Are National Treasures
Photo: Everett Collection/Shutterstock
6
+ - 239 1,426

42 people just voted on Robin Williams


Robin McLaurin Williams was an American actor and comedian. Starting as a stand-up comedian in San Francisco and Los Angeles in the mid-1970s, he is credited with leading San Francisco's comedy renaissance. After rising to fame as Mork in the sitcom Mork & Mindy, Williams went on to establish a ...more

More About

Age: Died at 63 (1951-2014)

Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States of America

Also Ranked

#34 on The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

#31 on The Best Actors in Film History

#1 on The Funniest People of All Time

#6 on Famous Men You'd Want to Have a Beer With

see more on Robin Williams
Danny DeVito 
    is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list American Public Figures Who Are National Treasures
Photo: Philip Wilson/Flickr
7
+ - 100 1,028

23 people just voted on Danny DeVito


Daniel Michael "Danny" DeVito, Jr. is an American actor, producer and director. He first gained prominence for his portrayal of taxi dispatcher Louie De Palma on Taxi, for which he won a Golden Globe and an Emmy. He went on to become a major film star, known for his roles in films and for his ...more

More About

Age: 72

Birthplace: Neptune City, New Jersey, United States of America

Also Ranked

#37 on The Funniest People of All Time

#33 on The Best TV Actors of All Time

#12 on The Best Film Actors Who Got Famous on TV First

#7 on The Best Short Actors

see more on Danny DeVito
Henry Winkler 
    is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list American Public Figures Who Are National Treasures
Photo: Freebase/CC-BY-SA
8
+ - 196 1,254

29 people just voted on Henry Winkler


Henry Franklin Winkler, OBE is an American actor, director, comedian, producer and author. Winkler is best known for his role as Arthur Fonzarelli in the 1970s American sitcom Happy Days. "The Fonz," or "Fonzie," a leather-clad greaser and auto mechanic, started out as a minor character at the ...more

More About

Age: 70

Birthplace: New York City, Manhattan, USA, New York

Also Ranked

#13 on The Most Trustworthy Celebrities in the World

#32 on The Best TV Actors of All Time

#14 on The Best Short Actors

#36 on The Best Emmy Hosts Ever

see more on Henry Winkler