Born Albert Arnold Gore, Jr., on March 31, 1948 in Washington, D.C., where his father, Albert Gore, Sr., was serving as a Democrat in the U.S. House from Tennessee. His father also served in the U.S. Senate (1953-71) and was considered a possible vice presidential nominee (1956 and 1960). Gore’s mother, Pauline LaFon Gore, was one of the first women to graduate from Vanderbilt Law School.
Gore’s childhood was divided between a hotel room the nation’s capitol during the school year and his family’s farm in Carthage, Tennessee, in the summer. Gore attended Harvard, where he roomed with future actor Tommy Lee Jones. He earned a degree with high honors in government in June 1969 after writing a senior thesis titled “The Impact of Television on the Conduct of the Presidency, 1947-1969.”