At the time of her death at age 119 years and 97 days, she held the Guinness World Record for oldest living person.
In her early adulthood years, she worked as a seamstress and office manager and later became a homemaker.
She lived through the administrations of seven United States Presidents.
The daughter of Amelia and Walter Clark, Knauss (born Sarah DeRemer Clark) lived and died in Pennsylvania. She outlived her husband Abraham Lincoln Knauss by more than three decades; the couple's one child, Kathryn Knauss Sullivan, died in 2005 at the age of 101.
During their lifetimes, Knauss and French supercentenarian Jeanne Calment (who died in 1997 at age 122) held the distinction of being the two verified, oldest-living people in the world.