According to Guinness World Records, a Connecticut woman born to former slaves in the decades following the U.S. Civil War has become the world's oldest known person, at 114.
Emma Faust Tillman, who was born near Greensboro, North Carolina, on November 22, 1892, became the world's oldest person on Wednesday, upon the death of Emiliano Mercado del Toro, of Puerto Rico. Guiness reported the news on its web site.
UPDATE JAN 31 2007 - The world's oldest person died Sunday at the age of 114. Emma Faust Tillman, the daughter of freed slaves, was the world's oldest person for just four days; that's said to be the shortest time on record. Now, the world's oldest person is believed to reside in Japan. She is also 114.