I'm working to flesh out the biographies and sources for my extensive family tree, originally imported from Ancestry.com. My primary focus is determining the degree to which sources exist for "mythological" Ancestry.com and FindAGrave ancestors and providing DNA verification for more recent ancestral connections.
Lately, the Relationship Finder has me on a kick of getting all of my friends and their trees entered into WikiTree (with their consent and involvement, of course!) so I can find out if we're related, especially since I'm back in North Carolina (where my family has lived (and interbred, yikes) in the Fayetteville region for about 400 years). My closest friend discovery so far is a 6th cousin once removed! :)
Additionally, I have an interest in California history, especially the migration to and colonial settlement of Shasta County, the displacement of the indigenous peoples of the region, and the building of Shasta Dam. I am also working on a personal project of populating the "Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford" category.
I am a trained medieval paleographer and can assist in deciphering historical handwriting and primary source documents. I’m also in the process of a PhD in medieval literature with a current focus on the south Welsh marcher families and may provide research information on relevant Wikitree profiles from time-to-time.
Childhood Jillian was born in Redding, CA to Steven Kern and Cinnamon Kern at Mercy Medical Center. The Kerns resided in nearby Shasta Lake, CA near the railroad tracks on the family property previously owned by Jerry Kern and Janice Kern and Janice's Fogal parents before them, where Steve and siblings were raised. As children, she and her younger brother Dean Kern travelled during summers with their parents and Kern grandparents (who were also their next-door neighbors), often vacationing in the Nevada/Oregon/Wyoming desert region and rockhounding. They were close playmates with their Luzier cousins who attended all family holiday events and moved to the same street as Janice/Jerry and Steve/Cinnamon in the early 2000s, as well as their Hammons cousins, raised one street over by maternal grandmother "Gramalf" Alfie McCoskey and "Murpa," Marion McCoskey, their beloved step-grandfather.
Jillian attended Toyon Elementary School, Shasta Lake Middle School, Central Valley High School, and Shasta College, before moving to Davis, CA and attending the University of California, Davis while studying English and Medieval and Early Modern Studies. She graduated in 2014 with honors in MEMS and highest honors in English. She attended Oxford University 2016-17 to receive her Master's degree in medieval literature. She has been enrolled as a PhD student in the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill department of English and Comparative Literature since 2019, where she enjoys her research into medieval literature but values above all else her opportunity to teach college students, a lifelong dream.
Jillian is currently engaged to her fiancé Mark Poeschel; the two met as co-workers and eventual friends while Jillian was employed with John Muir Charter School in an adult education partnership with the Redding chapter of the California Conservation Corps (CCC), and Mark was working for the Redding CCC in fleet maintenance and management. The two formally entered into a (long-distance) relationship in winter 2016 and Mark proposed in March 2019 during a muddy hike in Keswick, California.
Previous employment in education and public health fields (drug and alcohol awareness). Hobbies and sometime employment as a portrait and wedding photographer, writer/ghostwriter, activist, and numismatist. Jillian has ADHD, finally formally diagnosed in 2021, and accordingly cycles through a large number of hobbies, mostly creative or inquisitive in nature. In her free time, she observes, photographs, and catalogues nature via iNaturalist, with more than 2,200 distinct species seen to-date and practices calligraphy, nature photography, and watercolors. Her longtime interest in history and heritage leads to WikiTree during time off, and the rest of the time she channels that into her PhD research in medieval literature at work/school. She currently resides in Chapel Hill, NC, USA, and occasionally drives down to Fayetteville to stare at the alarming number of people in the graveyard of United Methodist Church in Eastover who are also on her family tree.
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Jillian is 20 degrees from Martin King, 19 degrees from Henry of England, 34 degrees from Charlemagne Carolingian, 24 degrees from Frederik X of Denmark, 20 degrees from King Kamehameha, 21 degrees from Billie Jean King, 24 degrees from Catherine King, 21 degrees from Mary Ward, 22 degrees from Philip King, 22 degrees from Moira Kennedy, 22 degrees from Pōtatau Te Wherowhero and 25 degrees from Willem-Alexander van Oranje-Nassau on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.