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BIOGRAPHY

Mattie Ivy was born in  Crawford County, Georgia, United States, on 14 January 1903. She was the only child born to parents John (1848-1924) and Elberta Prater (1863-1939), who were both born into slavery. She would later recall that her earliest memory was from when she was around three years old, when she fell in her family’s log stable and cut her leg, leaving a scar that was still visible over 106 years later. Her parents worked as sharecroppers, and shared a farm with a few other families, who had two other daughters named Carabelle and Claudie. The three girls would often play together, enjoying pastimes such as riding gopher tortoises near the farm. Despite the fact that she needed to assist her parents in farming from an early age, she still managed to attend school through to the 9th grade.

On 22 February 1928, at the age of 25, she married a widower named Esop Wilcox. Shortly prior to her marriage, she had began working as a nurse, and continued in this profession for nearly half a century. Following the death of her first husband in 1971, she would marry Frederick Ivy in 1976. During her second marriage, she moved with her husband to New Jersey, and would remain in the state until 2001, before later deciding to move back to Ocilla, Georgia.

In 2011, at the age of 108, she received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Ocilla-Irwin Chamber of Commerce. A year later, in 2012, she was interviewed by Valdosta State University for an oral history project, where she recalled stories and experiences from throughout her life.

Mattie Ivy died in Ocilla, Georgia, United States, on 7 May 2013, at the age of 110 years, 113 days.

RECOGNITION

Her age was verified by Stefan Maglov and Jimmy Lindberg, and was validated by LongeviQuest on 24 April 2024.

ATTRIBUTION

Mattie Wilcox Ivy, Oral History Interview, 2012” – Valdosta State University, 22 March 2012

GALLERY

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