Marie Louise Syverson was born June 28, 1880 in rural North Dakota. She was the daughter of Thore and Karina Syverson, Norwegian immigrants who were married in Decorah, Iowa, on July 21, 1879. Thore Syverson was born in Valdres, Norway, on April 20, 1854; Karina Syverson was born June 27, 1853, also in Norway.
On October 20, 1880, the family moved to a homestead claim in Moore Township, Ransom County. A son, Albert, was born in 1885, while a second daughter, Millie, arrived on September 4, 1888.
Thore Syverson was a driving force behind the 1885 founding of Fillmore Lutheran Church in Enderlin, North Dakota. Many settlers came from Fillmore County, Minnesota. In 1908, Thore retired from farming and moved the family to Enderlin. Thore died in 1941, and Karina died eight years later, in 1949.
In 1907, Marie Syverson married Oscar Torbenson, son of Norwegian immigrants who settled in Moore Township. The ceremony took place at Fillmore Lutheran Church. They farmed in Moore Township and raised two daughters, Cora and Mildred, and three sons: Osmond, Richard and Donovan. Marie Torbenson died in 1966, preceded by her husband, Oscar, in 1965.