Christine Ireland at the age of 111
|Birth:||19 January 1908|
Cumberland, North Carolina, USA
|Age:||112 years, 249 days|
The oldest of eight children, Christine Ireland was born in Cumberland County, North Carolina, USA, on 19 January 1908. Her parents raised her and her siblings on a farm in Cumberland County, where they worked apple and peach orchards and raised hogs and chickens.
Her son, Harold, recalled a story from his grandmother, that his grandfather listed his race as white on land documents in order to protect his assets, because for a black man to own so much land during the 1860s was unheard of. Ireland attended high school at a Immanu Lutheran High School in Greensboro, and became a teacher in 1931. She married William Ireland in 1932 and they settled in Greensboro where they raised three boys and three girls. Her husband provided for the family through his job on the railroad and Ireland took the lead in running the household and educating her children. Two of her daughters, Yvonne and Marcela, went on to attend Bennett College and also became teachers. Her husband died in 1983.
Ireland learned how to cook when she was seven years old, and would stand on a wooden box in front of the stove to help prepare dinner. “She made sure all her children could read and write before we went to school”, said Harold. “She has always been a strong woman. She had rules and regulations and you were expected to follow them”.
Ireland celebrated her 111th birthday on 19 January 2019. On her anniversary, she received a State issued birthday commemoration, delivered by N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper, as well as a City of Greensboro resolution signed by Mayor Nancy Vaughan and District 1 Council member Sharon Hightower, acknowledging Ireland’s birthday.
Christine Ireland now resides at Alamance House, a nursing facility in Burlington. She has a younger sister who is 95 years old and resides in Fayetteville.