Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Meghan Markle rare photos through the years: from 1981 to 2011

See the Duchess of Sussex as she grew up…

Meghan Markle
Matthew Moore
Online News Writer & Diversity and Inclusion Lead
10 April 2024
Share this:

Whenever you think of the Duchess of Sussex, you will likely imagine a poised and graceful woman, and this is something that Meghan Markle has carried ever since she was a child.

While photos of Prince Harry's wife when she was a child were initially hard to come by, Meghan released a treasure trove during her Netflix docu-series, Harry & Meghan. From images of the mum-of-two when she was just a baby to snaps of the royal during her school days, there are dozens of sweet childhood photos.

Scroll down to see the best images of Meghan as a young child through to her early acting days…

Baby photos

Doria Ragland holding a baby Meghan Markle© Netflix

Meghan & mum

Meghan Markle was born in 1981 and in this sweet photo the young girl curls up on her mum's chest as she has a small nap.

Thomas Markle holding a baby Meghan Markle© Netflix

Father-daughter moments

Although Thomas Markle and Meghan now have a strained relationship, the pair looked so close as Thomas cradled his young girl.

A baby Meghan Markle in a blue dress blowing bubbles© Netflix

Blowing bubbles

Meghan looks so sweet in this photo where the toddler blows bubbles while in a pretty blue dress.

A baby Meghan Markle and Doria Ragland playing with toy cats© Netflix

Playing with Doria

Meghan and Doria definitely have the best bond and the mum-of-one can be seen playing with her young girl and some soft toys.

A baby Meghan Markle reaching out to touch Doria Ragland's hair© Netflix

Sweet mum-daughter bond

In this adorable image, a baby Meghan is seen playing with mum Doria as she reaches out to touch her mum's hair.

A baby Meghan Markle with Thomas Markle with a dollhouse© Netflix

Playtime with dad

Thomas appears to be a hands-on dad in this photo with his young daughter, as the pair are seen playing together with a dollhouse.


A young Meghan Markle sat on her grandmother's knee© Netflix

Grandmother moment

After Doria and Thomas split when Meghan was six, the youngster mostly lived with her mother. Doria was supported through the divorce by her own mother, and in this cute photo, Meghan sits on the knee of her grandmother.

A young Meghan Markle at a birthday party holding a blue present© Netflix

The birthday girl

Meghan had a fairly normal childhood, and here she is enjoying her birthday with a group of friends. We wonder what's inside the blue box!

A young Meghan Markle posing with bags on a set of stairs© Netflix

Style star

What sass! Meghan had a command over fashion from an early age. We love this pose in the pink woolly jumper and jeans!

A young Meghan Markle and Doria Ragland hiking together© Netflix

Mother-daughter moments

Meghan and Doria's bond only strengthened as the young actress grew older. Living in California, the pair often enjoyed hiking together, like in this mother-daughter photo.

A young Meghan Markle being picked up by a group of friends with a Christmas tree in the background© Netflix

Christmas celebrations

Meghan had a Christmas to remember in this sweet photo, as she enjoyed the celebrations with a large group of friends.

A young Meghan Markle holding a diorama© Netflix

Experimenting with style

Meghan always loves a switch-up with her style, and the youngster rocked a unique hairstyle in this rare childhood photo.

A young Meghan Markle and Doria Rafland sleeping on a sofa© Netflix

Time for a sleep

Meghan and Doria must have had an exhausting day before this photo was grabbed, as the pair curled up on a sofa with a blanket thrown over them.

A young Meghan Markle playing with Play-doh© Netflix


It appears that Meghan had a natural affinity with Canada, the country where she'd make her big break, as she's seen playing with Play-doh in a shirt emblazoned with the Canadian flag.

A young Meghan Markle wearing glasses in a buggy© Netflix

Family holiday

Meghan would sometimes enjoy holidays with her family, and in this nifty photo, the youngster is seen in a pair of glasses while riding in a buggy.

A young Meghan Markle with curls in a black Hollywood t-shirt© Netflix

Curly-haired Meghan

Just look at those curls! A young Meghan is seen here posing for a photo in a sleek Hollywood shirt, but we just can't take our eyes off of her curly locks.

A young Meghan Markle with Doria Ragland© Netflix

Like mother, like daughter

Meghan and Doria look so alike in this gorgeous photo of the pair together. Meghan has gone for a pom-pom style with her hair, while Doria also enjoys a more casual 'do.

A young Meghan Markle and Doria Ragland at a dinner© Netflix

Dinner party

While Meghan and Doria enjoyed a low-key time in the photo above, the duo proved they totally know how to glam up, with the pair seen here enjoying a fancy dinner out.

Meghan Markle writing a letter© Netflix

Birth of an activist

Meghan has long been a feminist and her foray into activism started when she was a teenager. After watching a dishwashing liquid commercial that only featured women, that sparked sexist chants from her classmates, the 11-year-old Meghan wrote to the company.

At school

A young Meghan Markle with two friends© Netflix

Meghan's gang

Meghan quickly made friends when she entered school, and here she is as a young girl with a group of friends as they play together.

A black-and-white school photo with Meghan Markle (middle row, far-left)© Netflix

School photo

Meghan is seen in this school photo on the far-left in the centre row. Meghan attended the Hollywood Schoolhouse, which is a private school.

A young Meghan Markle's school photo - she sits in a white shirt© Netflix

Smile for the camera

Meghan is so smiley in this solo school photo. The young girl loved experimenting with her hairstyle and she has opted for a bun when it comes to this particular snap.

Meghan Markle school photo - she wears a blue shirt with black frizzy hair© Netflix

Future Princess

Meghan looks so much like a princess in this school photo as she lets her gorgeous black locks flows down the back of her shoulders and she looks so refined.

Meghan Markle yearbook photo, she stands in the middle in a white shirt and skirt© Netflix

Meg's yearbook

The young Meghan excelled in her academic studies and in this yearbook photo, she is proudly the president of her school's debate group.

Meghan Markle and a friend in white graduation robes© Netflix

While in the UK we're used to black graduation gowns, when it came to Meghan's graduation, this was entirely different, with the future royal bedecked in white for her big day.

Teenage years

A teenage Meghan Markle with dad Thomas Markle© Netflix

Growing up with Thomas

During her childhood and teenage years, Meghan still spent time with her father, and in this photo, the duo are seen together.

Thomas Markle with a teenage Meghan Markle© Netflix

Time with Thomas

Meghan is seen here in another photo with her now-estranged father as they pose for a beautiful outside photo.

A black-and-white photo of a young Meghan Markle in a denim jacket and jeans© Netflix

A young model

Meghan is a natural in front of the camera and she has the confidence of a model in this photo as she poses outside in a pair of jeans.

A young Meghan Markle in a school production© Netflix

First taste of acting

Meghan starred in several school productions when she was growing up, and she's seen here in a starring role during a stage production. Meghan also starred as Red Riding Hood in a school production.

University and acting career start

Meghan Markle in a messy kitchen© Netflix

Meghan's college days

Meghan studied at Northwestern University and just like any uni student, here is the teenager posing in a messy kitchen!

Meghan Markle in a black mini dress© Amy Tierney

Start of a career

Meghan's acting career didn't initially take off, with the star securing bit parts in shows like CSI: Miami, Without a Trace and Knight Rider, but all that was about to change…

Promotional photo of Meghan Markle on Suits© USA Network

Landing Suits

Meghan's breakthrough role came in 2011 when the future-Duchess of Sussex started playing ambitious paralegal Rachel Zane in Suits. Meghan was in the show for seven seasons and clocked up 108 episodes on the hit legal show.

RELATED: Doria Ragland's adorable moment pushing Prince Archie in toy car is so special - watch

DISCOVER: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's rule-breaking baby scan of Prince Archie was a royal first

More Royalty

See more