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Margaret Skeete, Oldest American, Dies at 115

May 7, 1994

RADFORD, Va. (AP) _ Margaret Skeete, listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the oldest American, died Saturday at her home. She was 115.

Mrs. Skeete had been bedridden since a fall three weeks ago, and died in her sleep, said her daughter, Verne Taylor.

The Guinness Book of Records listed Mrs. Skeete for the first time in its 1993 edition, after verifying her age from an 1880 census that listed her as a two-year-old, Mrs. Taylor said. Mrs. Skeete also was listed in the 1994 edition.

Mrs. Skeete was born Oct. 27, 1878 in Rockport, Texas. When her husband died 41 years ago, she moved from Texas to Radford to live with Mrs. Taylor’s family.

In addition to her husband, she outlived her other two children.

Mrs. Skeete was unimpressed by her longevity. ″I guess that’s something, but it doesn’t buy me anything,″ she said at her 115th birthday party last October.

The oldest living person in the world is 119-year-old Jeanne Calment of France, according to Guinness.