Besse Cooper

Besse Cooper

American, centenarian, oldest woman in the world
Date of Birth: 26.08.1896
Country: USA

  1. Biography of Bessie Cooper - The Oldest Woman in the World
  2. Early Life and Education
  3. Marriage and Family
  4. Title of the Oldest Woman
  5. Later Years and Legacy

Biography of Bessie Cooper - The Oldest Woman in the World

Bessie Cooper, an American, was known as one of the oldest people in the world, living to be 116 years and 100 days old. She passed away in December 2012, holding the title of the oldest living woman at the time of her death. Cooper was also one of the eight officially registered supercentenarians, individuals who lived beyond 116 years old.

Besse Cooper

Early Life and Education

Bessie Berry Brown was born in 1896 in Sullivan County, Tennessee. She was the third child out of eight in the family of Richard Brown and his wife Angeline Berry. Since childhood, Bessie showed a keen interest in education and knowledge, constantly reading and pursuing her studies. In 1916, she graduated from East Tennessee State Normal School, now known as East Tennessee State University, and started working as a teacher.

Besse Cooper

Marriage and Family

In 1924, Bessie married Luther Cooper, and together they had four children: Angeline, Luther Jr., Sidney, and Nancy. After 39 years of marriage, Bessie became a widow in December 1963 when Luther passed away at the age of 68. She spent many years living on their family farm and only moved to a nursing home in 2001 when she was already 105 years old.

Besse Cooper

Title of the Oldest Woman

On January 19, 2009, Bessie Cooper was officially recognized as the oldest living resident of Georgia after the death of Beatrice Farve, who was 113 years old. On January 31, 2011, at the age of 114 years and 158 days, she became the oldest living person in the United States. Cooper held the title of the world's oldest person until May 18, 2011, when Maria Gomes Valentim from Brazil was discovered and officially recognized as older. However, when Valentim passed away on June 21, 2011, Bessie Cooper regained her title as the oldest living person on Earth. Notably, Cooper set a unique record as the third supercentenarian mistakenly believed to be the oldest person in the world and the first one to reclaim the title after outliving her competitor.

Later Years and Legacy

When Bessie Cooper passed away on December 4, 2012, she was 116 years and 100 days old, making her the oldest woman in the world. After her death, the title of the oldest living woman was passed on to Dina Manfredini, an Italian-American who was 115 years and 245 days old at the time. In honor of Bessie Cooper, a bridge in Georgia was named after her on August 24, 2012, called the Besse Brown Cooper Bridge.