About Mary

BIRG-MaryMary Ann Birg was born in Detroit in 1909 to Frank and Sophie Birg.

Mary was the only daughter and fourth of five children. Her siblings were John Anthony (1899-1973 b. Heufeld); Franz Martin (4/1904-11/1904 Heufeld); Michael Franz aka Jack (1907-1935 b. Heufeld); and Joseph (1914-1965 b. Detroit).

When Mary was nine, her brother John married Katherine Schumacher, a family that – like Mary’s – was also from the Banat. (Read more about Banat in About Sophie). Little did she know at the time how this union would lead to her future union with Laurence Moquin.

Mary’s father, Frank,  was battling TB.  The family spent time in Bad Ax with the Schumachers hoping the country air would benefit his condition. But in 1921, Frank passed away. The family returned to Detroit and in 1922, Mary’s mother, Sophie, remarried.

Mary, Michael and Joseph spent some time in Kalamazoo working on a farm relating in some way to her step-father, George. It was here that Mary met and had a friendship with a girl she called Silly. She shared stories of them working together.

Upon their return to Detroit, and Sophie’s and Joseph’s departure to Wyoming, Mary went to live her brother John and his wife Kate. She started work as tele-operator at J.L. Hudson’s.

Kate’s sister, Anna was soon to marry Laurence Moquin. Tragically, Anna died after giving birth to their son, Lawrence Moquin.

Mary went to live with Kate and Anna’s sister, Lizzie, also in Detroit. She and Laurence began dating and were married in August 1930. They raised young Lawrence and two daughters, Lucille and Janet.

Mary and Laurence became owners of the farm and planned to retire there. Sadly, Laurence’s life ended prematurely due to cancer. Mary owned the property up until her death in 2003.

From Mary, her children and grandchildren learned to cook, bake, sew, knit, garden, revere God and enjoy life. Her spirit blooms in all of us.

Laurence Moquin and Mary Birg (Aug 1930)
Silly – Kalamazoo
Laurence and Mary
Mary and Kate
Lucy, Mary, Janet


13 Comments on “About Mary

  1. Hello I am James Birg Kathrine Birg’s grandson Second son born of Frank (Al) and Phyllis Birg. Hope you are all doing well.

    • Hello! I am well. Thanks for visiting. I think I spoke with your dad years ago when I started the family history research. It was tough getting details because so much was lost in WWII. If you have information to add or photos, I’d love to see them. Not a lot Birg’s out there. 🙂

  2. My Uncle Joe did research and has many facts concerning THE BIRG FAMILY.

  3. Hello, I am Catherine (Pietraszewski) Ostrowski. I am the oldest daughter of Velma (Birg) Pietraszewski and Frank Pietraszewski, My maternal grandmother, Catherine was married to Michael (Jacob) Birg. I really don’t know a lot about my grandfather, Michael Birg, since he passed away when my mother was very young, I would love to learn more about the Birg family. I am enclosing my email address if you would like to send along some information. It is as follows:
    cathymostrowski@yahoo.com. Thank you, Cathy

    • I will. I have some photos of your mother. I have genealogy records and stories going back to late 1770’s but can’t get back farther than that. I’ll put something together this weekend and post (and email) it.

      • Thank you for the information, I am really excited to hear from you!!!

      • I sent you an email last August regarding information on the Birg family, my mother is Velma and my maternal grandmother was Catherine Stanczak Birg. Haven’t heard back from you and would LOVE any info you could provide. My email address is cathymostrowski@yahoo.com. Thank you
        Cathy Ostrowski

      • Here’s the data I have on BIRG and STANCZAK lines.

        I have some photos too, but not a lot. I’ll try to batch them together and send separately.

        On Tue, Jun 7, 2016 at 8:56 PM, Sophie's Garten wrote:


      • Here’s Frank Birg and Sophie Mayer

        On Tue, Jun 7, 2016 at 8:56 PM, Sophie's Garten wrote:


  4. this is my grandson, Tyler JAMES BIRG THE NEWEST MEMBER OF THE BIRG FAMILY Born to my son Andrew james and his wife wife L Lisa. I will need a web address to send pics…if you want them.

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