9 May 1881Watertown, Connecticut, United States


25 April 1996Hamden, Connecticut, United States



Mary Bidwell

Mary Electa Noble Bidwell was a validated American supercentenarian. To this day she holds the record for being the oldest individual from the U.S. state of Connecticut, both in terms of birthplace and deathplace.

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Bidwell was born in Watertown, Connecticut, USA, on 9 May 1881, as the only child born to parents Charles Woodruff Bidwell (1846–1921) and Alice Beach Noble (1857–1919). She was a descendant of John Bidwell (1614–1687), one of the first settlers of Hartford, Connecticut.

In 1906, she married Charles Hubbell Bidwell (1882–1975), a distant relative. The couple had a son, Charles Bradford Bidwell (1909–1945), who died from carbon monoxide poisoning at the age of 36. She worked as a teacher in a one-room schoolhouse in Watertown.

When asked about the secret of her longevity, she said she did not have the answer, but that she never drank nor smoked. She lived on her own in North Haven, Connecticut until she was 110.

Bidwell passed away in Hamden, Connecticut, USA, on 25 April 1996, at the age of 114 years, 352 days. She was survived by two grandsons and four great-grandchildren.

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Age revalidation

Initially, Guinness World Records validated her birthdate as May 19, 1881. However, in August 2023, following a thorough review of documents discovered by Jimmy Lindberg, the Global Validation Commission arrived at a different conclusion. It was established that Bidwell was actually ten days older, having been born on May 9, 1881 – the date she had always claimed as her birthdate.

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* “Mary Electa Bidwell Bidwell” – FindAGrave

* “Mary Electa Bidwell (1881 – 1996)” – WikiTree

* “Oldest person in the U.S. still teaching life lessons” – CNN, 25 December 1995

* “A long, fulfilling life” – Hartford Courant, 25 January 1996