Nathan Fillion

Nathan Fillion in quotes

Place of Birth: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Date of Birth: March 27, 1971

Ethnicity: French-Canadian, German, Swiss-German, Norwegian, Finnish, Finland-Swedish

Nathan Fillion is a Canadian actor. He is known for his lead roles as Captain Malcolm Reynolds on the series Firefly and Richard Castle on the series Castle.

Nathan was born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, the son of Cookie (Early) and Bob Fillion. He also became a U.S. citizen in 1997. His surname is French, and his ancestry includes French-Canadian, German, Swiss-German, Norwegian, Finnish, and possibly Finland-Swedish.

Nathan has said that he is descended from Jubal Early (Jubal Anderson Early), a Confederate Lieutenant General in the U.S. Civil War. Joss Whedon named a character Jubal Early on Nathan’s series Firefly specifically because of this.

However, Nathan and Lieu. Gen. Early are not related, at least through their Early lines. Nathan’s line leads back to German ancestors surnamed Ehrle or Oehrle, while the Lieu. Gen.’s line leads back to Donegal, Ireland.

Nathan’s maternal grandfather was Joseph Quinter “Joe” Early (the son of Joseph Benjamin “J.B.” Early and Mary “Polly” Yoder). Nathan’s grandfather Joseph was born in Oregon, U.S., and was of mostly or entirely German descent. Nathan’s great-grandfather Joseph was the son of David Early and Sarah M. Miller. Mary “Polly” was the daughter of The Rev. Levi John Yoder and Mary Misher.

Nathan’s maternal grandmother was Emilia/Emelie/Amelia Charlotta/Charlotte “Millie” Castberg (the daughter of Tycho/Tyco Didrik Castberg and Hagar Elvera Nemlander). Emilia was born in Edmonton, Alberta. Tycho was Norwegian, from Sandefjord. Hagar was from Espoo, Finland, the daughter of Carl/Karl Johan Nemlander and Maria Charlotta, and was possibly of Finland-Swedish descent.

Sources: Genealogies of Nathan’s maternal grandparents, Joseph Quinter “Joe” Early and Emilia/Emelie/Amelia Charlotta/Charlotte “Millie” (Castberg) Early –

Genealogy of Nathan’s “Yoder” family –

Nathan’s maternal grandmother, Emilia/Emelie/Amelia Charlotta/Charlotte “Millie” Castberg, on the 1916 Canada Census –

Obituary of Nathan’s maternal grandmother, Emilia/Emelie/Amelia Charlotta/Charlotte “Millie” (Castberg) Early –

Creative Commons License photo credit: RavenU


Curious about ethnicity

17 Responses

  1. bablah says:

    Can you add Swiss-German too? Yoders are mostly Swiss.

  2. vilgotaan says:

    Why Finland-Swedish and not just Finnish and Swedish?

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.