New Hampshire and the Lowest Social Security Number

New Hampshire has the honor of having had a resident that was issued the lowest social security number. The number, 001-01-0001 was given to Grace D. Owen of Concord New Hampshire in 1936.

Originally this number was going to be given to Social Security Board Chairman John G. Winant of New Hampshire as a token of esteem. Once he refused it, the number was instead issued to the first applicant from New Hampshire–this proved to be Grace D. Owen of Concord, New Hampshire, who applied for her number on November 24, 1936.

She was issued the first card typed in Concord, which, because of the area number scheme also happened to be the card with the lowest possible number. Grace D. Owen did not however, receive the first social security card issued, nor was she the first social security record established.

In March of 2018 Grace’s niece, Pam Owen Perdue, wrote to me and said that her aunt, Grace D. Owen had appeared on the television show, “I’ve Got a Secret,” on December 18, 1957. Her secret was, as you would presume, that she had received the lowest Social Security number.



-How Stuff Works: Social Security Number

Historical Background and Development of Social Security

Social Security Numbers, the First and the Lowest

NPR: Episode 830: XXX-XX-XXXX



Griffith H. Owen, b. abt 1842 in Wales [England]. He married Margaret J. Jones, possibly daughter of Morris & Catherine Jones. She was born abt 1849 in Maine. In 1880 they were  living in Gloucester, Essex Co MA. His occupation, a stone cutter.
1880 United States Federal Census > Massachusetts > Essex > Gloucester > District 180
Owen, Griffith W M 38 stone cutter  stomic chemmation  Wales Wales Wales [b abt 1842]
Owen, Margaret W F 31 wife keeping house tumor abdomen Maine Maine Maine
Owen, Thomas P. W M 9 son MA Wales ME
Owen, Griffith M. W M 7 son MA Wale ME
Owen, Hugh W. W M 4 son MA Wales ME
Jones, Katie W F 19 servant ME ME ME
Children of Griffith H. & Margaret (Jones) Owen:
1. Thomas P. Owen, b. 1870 in Gloucester MA
2. +Griffith Morris Owen, b. 29 Dec 1872 Gloucester MA
3. Hugh W. Owen(s), b. 1875 in Gloucester MA; he married Nov 23, 1898 in Quincy MA to Eliza Mabel Ellis. He was a fireman. She was born Sept 30, 1872 in Quincy MA, dau of Richard & Eliza (Arnold) Ellis [her father was a stonecutter who was born in Wales].

Seated: Ada (Curtis) Owen, Grace D. Owen and
in back Robert Owen. Courtesy of Pam Owen Perdue. Used with permission.

Griffith Morris Owen(s), born 29 Dec 1872 in Gloucester MA; married 25 Sep 1901 in Maine to Ada E. Curtis, of Frankfort ME. She was born March 1882 in Maine, daughter of Lyman & Eldora [Dorothy] C. Curtis of Frankfort Maine, and a direct descendant of John Curtis (1683-1780) and Sarah (Welch) Curtis of Portsmouth NH and York, Maine.
1900 United States Federal Census > Massachusetts > Norfolk > Quincy Ward 3 > District 1061
Owen, Griffith, Boarder W M Dec 1872 27 single MA Wales Maine Stonecutter
[boarding in home of Frank Carleton a stonecutter]
1910 United States Federal Census > Vermont > Caledonia > Hardwick > District 44\
Owen, Griffith M. Head M W 39 m1x 9 yrs MA  Wales-English U.S. Proprietor stone ivory
[married about 1901] [he b. abt 1871]
Owen, Ida S. Wife F W 25 m1x 9 yrs 3 ch 3 living ME ME ME
Owen, Grace D. dau F W 8 single ME MA ME
Owen, Margaret E., dau F W 5 single ME MA ME
Owen, Harry G. son M W 2 single Vermont MA ME
Curtis, Dorothy C., mother-in-law F W 58 widow 3 ch 2 livng ME ME VT  own income
1930 United States Federal Census > New Hampshire > Merrimack > Concord > District 15
Owen, Griffith M. Head M W 57 married at age 28 MA MA Maine Granite Supt of Quarry
Owen, Ada E. wife F W 48 married at age 19 Maine Maine Maine no occupation
Owen, Harry G. won M W 22 single VT MA ME Printing business
Owen, Hugh R. son M W 10 single NH MA Maine
Curtis, Dorothy, mother-in-law F W 84 widow ME ME VT retired
Daly, Joseph J. lodgr M W 45 single MA MA MA Printer, printing
Children of Griffith Morris & Ada Ethel (Curtis) Owen:
1. +Grace Dorothy Owen, born 16 April 1902 in Frankfort Maine
2. Margaret E. Owen, b. abt 1905 in Maine. She married 7 June 1926 in Concord NH to Walter James Clark, son of Leonard F. & Mary E. (O’Connell) Owens, In 1930 & 1940 living in Concord NH. Had at least one child, Walter R. Clark b. abt 1940 Concord NH.
3. Harry Griffith Owen, b. 8 January 1908 Hardwich or Northfield VT and d. 5 Jan 1989. He married 26 Aug 1933 at Concord NH to Lucy B. Donovan. The lived in Concord NH and had at least two children, Mary I, and Luzanne.
4. Hugh Robert Owen, b. 27 Oct 1919 in Concord NH, died 30 Jan 1986. He enlisted in U.S. Army 19 Nov 1942 at Manchester NH, at that time he was divorced with dependents.  He married  1st) May 23, 1938 to Harriett Esther Whitney, daughter of Lovell Edwin & Harriet (Lynaugh) Whitney. Hugh and Harriett had one child: Faith Virginia Owen who married Robert Harding Annis.  Hugh R. Owen married 2d) 10 Sep 1944 to Dorothy Elizabeth Woodes . Hugh R. and Dorothy E. (Woodes) Owen had three children: Bruce Robert Owen b 14 April 1945,  Gregory Mark Owen 1951, Minneapolis MN and Pamela Ada Owen (born 1954) who married Richard Perdue (Concord NH).

Grace Dorothy Owen, photograph
from circa 1940s. Courtesy of her niece, Pam Owen  Perdue. Used with permission.

Grace Dorothy Owen, daughter of Griffith M. & Ida S. (Curtis) Owen was born 16 April 1902 in Frankfort, Maine and died 10 Dec 1975, age 73 in New Hampshire (death published in Concord Monitor newspaper). She married 1st) 2 July 1925 in Concord NH to Alexander Rennie, so of Alexander & Barbara (MacIntosh) Rennie. He was b 22 Feb 1900 in Hatton, Aberdeen, Scotland. He had served in the 5th Battalion Gordon Highlanders, Highland Light Infantry during WWI, enlisting at the age of 17 (in 1917). [Of Bishoprigg, Lanarkshire.] In 1930 they were living as a married couple in Concord NH, he a leather worker for a leather company.  In fact he would eventually become president of Page Belting Company of Concord NH.  They divorced before 21 October 1932 when he married 2d) in Concord NH to Minnie B. Hiland, daughter of John M. & Susie M. (Law) Hiland [Aug 4, 1901-May 21, 1999].  They are buried in Contoocook Cemetery.  As for Grace, she married 2d) probably in 1943 in Canton MA to Kenneth Franklin Muzzey, son of William H. & Cora Jane (Adams) Muzzey. He was born 29 June 1910 and died 19 December 1987 in Concord NH. Kenneth was the first Belmont High School graduate on June 7, 1928.  In 1939 Kenneth was clerk of the Second Congregational Society of East Canterbury, NH.  In 1962 Kenneth was president of Mudgetts Inc. He and Grace lived at 106 N. State Street.  Kenneth’s father is buried in Maple Grove Cemetery in Canterbury NH, so that is one possibility of where Grace and Kenneth may also have been buried.
U.S. Census > 1920 United States Federal Census > New Hampshire > Grafton > Hanover > District 45
Owen, Grace D. Boarder F W 17 single Maine MA Maine stenographer  Gent furnishings
Directories & Member Lists > New Hampshire City Directories > Lebanon > 1922 > N
Owen, Grace, bkpr, b 5 Abbott Street
1930 US Census > NH > Merrimack > Concord > 246 North Main St.
Rennie, Alexander D. R $35 M W 30 married at age 25 Scot Scot Scot, imm 1904 naturalized leather worker, leather Co
Rennie, Grace D wife F W 28 married age 23 Maine MA Maine Bookkeeper, Granite Works
1940 U.S. Census > NH > Merrimack > Concord > 51 South Street
Ada E Owen
Grace D Owen 37 finished High school 4th year.
H Robert Owen 20
Margaret E Booth 23


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