Gerontology Wiki

Martha Graham (née Watson; c.27 December 1844? (claimed December 1840) - 25 June 1959) was an African-American ex-slave claim to age "117 or 118" investigated by gerontology consultant A. Ross Eckler, Jr. in 1976. In 1987, Guinness World Records promoted the claim to the main lists, based on a letter suggestion by a 12-year-old boy in 1986 (Robert Young). When Guinness dropped national records after circa 1991, the

Martha Graham
Birth: 27 December 1844
Death: 25 June 1959
North Carolina, USA
Age: 114 years, 182 days
Country: United StatesUSA

case was picked up by Louis Epstein, whose list began appearing on in 1995. In 1998, the Gerontology Research Group began hosting the Epstein list. Case support by the GRG was later dropped when standards were raised (cases without birthdates were dropped in 2002, ironically, by Robert Young, who, then 28, realized that acceptance of this case as "validated" didn't meet the new "20-year-rule" for proxy proof of birth suggested in 1998 by Jean-Marie Robine, validator of the Jeanne Calment case.

In 2015, amateur researchers on the 110 Club located potential census matches suggesting that Martha Graham may have been only "15" in 1870 which would have made her real age around 104 years old.