22 December 1879Como, Panola County, Mississippi, United States


24 December 1990Lewistown, Missouri, United States



Robert Freeman

Robert Freeman Jr. was an American supercentenarian whose age has been validated by LongeviQuest.

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Freeman was born in Como, Panola County, Mississippi, USA, on 22 December 1879 (claimed 1880), to parents Robert Freeman Sr. and Lavena Angeline. His father died of consumption when he was young. His mother remarried George Stewart. He had nine siblings and half-siblings from his mother’s second marriage. He was a member of the Mariah Baptist Church in Como and a founding member of the Masonic Lodge there.

In 1945, he moved to Hayti, Missouri. Among his hobbies was fishing on the Mississippi River, and he also worked seasonally on local farms.

The nursing home where he resided reported that he had been married four times (in 1906, 1912, 1938, and 1964). However, as of his 100th birthday, he had lost all contact with his relatives, including his three children. His children were: Lillie Mae Jefferson of Memphis, Tennessee, Iola Freeman of Chicago, and John Henry Freeman of Chicago.

In 1976, he moved into Prairie View Rest Home in Lewistown. As a centenarian, with the assistance of the nursing home, he was able to reconnect with his sister from Mississippi for the first time in 40 years. At the age of 100, he was not taking any medication and remained active at the nursing home. He was able to walk without a cane. He was a follower of the Christian Science Faith. He attributed his longevity to “love of life, man and God.”

Freeman passed away in Lewistown, Missouri, USA, at 3:20 AM on 24 December 1990, at the age of 111 years, 2 days.

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His age was initially verified by the Kestenbaum study and later validated by the Gerontology Research Group on 6 June 2003, using his claimed date of birth of 22 December 1880. However, in February 2024, LongeviQuest received documentation from an independent researcher supporting the claim that Freeman was actually a full year older than claimed. The evidence indicated that his biological father had passed away by June 1880, the time when the 1880 census record was enumerated, and Freeman was recorded as being 6 months old at that time. Therefore, it is not possible for him to have been born in December 1880. It is likely that the study used his 1900 census match to validate his age, as it supports his birth in December 1880.

Upon his revalidation by LongeviQuest, it was concluded that he might have been the world’s oldest living man at the time of his passing. Previously, it was believed that following the passing of 110-year-old titleholder Henri Pérignon on 18 June 1990, he was succeeded by James Wiggins (validated as born on 15 October 1879). However, Wiggins’ age has been disputed due to the fact that his parents got married after his supposed date of birth, and he was not recorded in the 1880 census record. With Freeman being revealed as a year older, he would have been the next in line for the title upon Pérignon’s passing.

Upon his passing, Frederick Frazier would have succeeded him as the world’s oldest living man if Freeman indeed held the title. Frazier was previously believed to be Wiggins’ successor.

At the time of his passing, he was the oldest (known) living person in the U.S. state of Missouri. Before his revalidation, it was believed that Maude Ross (born 13 January 1880) held the title at the time of his passing.

Freeman held the title of the oldest man ever known to have lived in Missouri until 2 August 2009, when his final age was surpassed by Garland Adair.

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* “Freeman celebrates 100th birthday” – The La Belle Star, 24 December 1980

* “Robert Freeman of Prairie View Rest Home” – The La Belle Star, 19 January 1983

* “Celebrates 103rd birthday” – The La Belle Star, 28 December 1983

* “Celebrates 106th Birthday” – The La Belle Star, 15 January 1986

* “Lewistown Man Turns 106” – The La Belle Star, 31 December 1986

* “Robert Freeman Celebrates 107th Birthday” – The La Belle Star, 30 December 1987

* “Robert Freeman Celebrates 110th Birthday” – The La Belle Star, 26 December 1990

* “Robert Freeman” – The La Belle Star, 2 January 1991