Thora Birch

by andrew on October 29, 2013

Thora Birch

Place of Birth: Los Angeles, California, United States

Date of Birth: March 11, 1982

Ethnicity: Polish (maternal grandmother), German Jewish, Italian, Scandinavian, French-Canadian, Irish

Thora Birch is an American actress. She is known for her role in the films American Beauty (1999) and Ghost World (2001). Thora is the daughter of former adult film actors Jack Birch and Carol Connors. The family’s original surname is said to be “Biersch”. Thora’s mother was born in New Jersey, under the surname “Campau”, which is usually French.

Thora has stated:

My ancestors were mostly from different parts of Europe, a bit of German Jewish, a little Italian and also some Nordic. Birch comes from Biersch, German. My name, Thora, is the goddess of thunder and lightning, Thor’s sister, in Norse mythology. If I’d been a boy I would have been Thor.

Thora also has Polish (from her maternal grandmother), French-Canadian, and Irish ancestry.

Thora’s maternal grandfather was Victor J. Campau (the son of Philip/Phillip/Philemon/Philomon/Philomo Joseph Campau and Mary Ellen Wilds). Philip was of French-Canadian descent, the son of Jovite/Jovitus David Faustinus Campeau and Marie-Philomena/Philomene Adeline Roger Joinville. Mary Ellen was the daughter of Edward Wilds and Roseanne Loy, who was born in Ayrshire, Scotland, to Irish parents.

Thora’s maternal grandmother was Violet “Vi” C. Basiaga (the daughter of Joseph “Joe” Basiaga and Anna/Annie/Ann M. Wiesko/Bielczko/Wencko). Violet was born in Michigan, to Polish parents. Joseph was the son of Joannes/John Basiago/Basiaga and Sofie/Sophie/Sophia/Sofia Christian/Krzyszton/Megacz. Anna was the daughter of Adam Wiesko and Cositunery Vinnytho.

Sources: Marriage record of Thora’s maternal grandparents, Victor J. Campau and Violet “Vi” C. Basiaga –

Thora’s maternal grandfather, Victor J. Campau, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Thora’s maternal grandmother, Violet “Vi” C. Basiaga, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Obituary of Thora’s maternal grandmother, Violet “Vi” C. (Basiaga) Campau –

Marriage record of Thora’s maternal great-grandparents, Joseph “Joe” Basiaga and Anna/Annie/Ann M. Wiesko/Bielczko/Wencko –

Thora’s maternal great-great-grandparents, Joannes/John Basiago/Basiaga and Sofie/Sophie/Sophia Christian/Krzyszton, on the 1920 U.S. Census –

Photo by kathclick/

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Pegzi September 21, 2017 at 11:36 pm

Adam Wiesko was Finnish.

follers September 22, 2017 at 9:30 am

What makes you say that? Wiesko can be a Polish surname too.

follers May 30, 2017 at 6:26 pm

Can anyone find more on her ancestry?

bablah May 31, 2017 at 7:11 am

Her grandmother’s obituary:

Her maternal grandparents marriage record:

Grandmother on a census:

Her father was from Struze, Krakow according to his draft records, which is probably Stróże, Małopolska Voivodeship (there are two, I think it’s the one in Nowy Sącz county).

Also his and Anne’s marriage record:

I found a death record for one Sophie Wiencko, she appears to be Joseph’s sister and she married Anne’s brother Benny:

Here are Joseph’s parents on a census:

Also found baptisms of few of their children in Poland:

bablah May 31, 2017 at 7:21 am
ashash November 11, 2015 at 9:40 pm

She’s a woman of color. I had no idea.

J.J. October 31, 2013 at 5:04 am

correction; her eyes are grey/green

notional October 29, 2013 at 8:06 am

whats the difference between German Jewish and Ashkanzi Jewish?

andrew December 14, 2013 at 6:24 pm

no difference

guurl December 14, 2013 at 7:15 pm

German Jews are Ashkanazi Jews. The only difference is the location of where they lived. If a Jew was from Poland he would be a Polish Jew.

Previous post:

Next post: