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On July 7, 1946, James Earl “Jimmy” Carter marries Eleanor Rosalynn Smith at the Plains Methodist Church in Plains, Georgia. When the couple met, she was 18 and working in a hair salon. He was 21 and a recent graduate of the Annapolis Naval Academy.
READ MORE: Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter's Love Story: From Small Town Sweethearts to the White House
During the first seven years of their marriage, Jimmy and Rosalynn, as she was called, lived in a variety of places, as he was given different assignments with the Navy. Though he had hoped to make the Navy his career, his plans changed when his father died in 1953. Jimmy took over the family peanut farm in Plains, Georgia, while Rosalynn ran the financial end of the business and raised the couple’s four children. She supported her husband’s first two failed political campaigns–for state senator in 1962 and for governor in 1966– and shared in his success in 1970 when he won the governor’s race. The couple moved to Atlanta and, as Georgia’s first lady, Rosalynn began a lifelong commitment to improving services for the mentally ill.
When Carter won the presidency in 1976, Rosalynn took advantage of her position to advocate for new legislation to protect the rights of the mentally ill, senior citizens and women. She even traveled as Carter’s representative to meetings in Central and South America and liaised with policy leaders on issues such as human rights, arms reduction and trade. She set up an office in the East Wing of the White House, from which she conducted White House business and her own personal projects. Both she and her husband projected a casual profile of accessibility during his term in the White House. Carter liked to wear cardigan sweaters instead of suits while at work and he and Rosalynn eschewed the traditional limousine ride from the Capitol to the White House in favor of walking at his inauguration. Although they presented a low-key, down-to-earth image, the couple kept up busy schedules and rarely took vacations. Still, they managed to arrange to regularly meet for meals with their young daughter Amy in the White House residential quarters.
By 1980, Carter had become embroiled in the Iranian hostage crisis and was struggling to lead the nation out of an ongoing energy crisis complicated by high inflation. As he chose not to spend too much time away from the White House to pursue a second presidential campaign, Rosalynn stepped in and appeared at many campaign rallies on his behalf. Although Carter failed to win a second term, losing to Ronald Reagan, he and Rosalynn stayed active in national and international affairs. In 1982, they founded the Carter Center in Atlanta to advocate for human rights and to alleviate “unnecessary human suffering” around the world. Since 1984, the Carters have given their time each year to build homes and raise awareness of homelessness with the international charitable organization Habitat for Humanity.
In 2002, Carter won the prestigious Nobel Prize for his efforts to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts, to advance democracy and human rights and to promote economic and social development. The couple currently lives in Plains, Georgia.
The Carter Center is a nongovernmental, not-for-profit organization founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter. He and his wife Rosalynn Carter partnered with Emory University just after his defeat in the 1980 U.S. Presidential elections. The center is located in a shared building adjacent to the Jimmy Carter Library and Museum on 37 acres (150,000 m 2 ) of parkland, on the site of the razed neighborhood of Copenhill, two miles (3 km) from downtown Atlanta, Georgia. The library and museum are owned and operated by the United States National Archives and Records Administration, while the Center is governed by a Board of Trustees, consisting of business leaders, educators, former government officials, and philanthropists.
- , co-founder , co-founder , CEO , Chair, Board of Trustees
- Jordan Ryan, Vice President, Peace Programs , Vice President, Health Programs
- Phil Wise, Vice President, Operations 
The Carter Center's goal is to advance human rights and alleviate human suffering,  including helping improve the quality of life for people in more than 80 countries.  The center has many projects including election monitoring, supporting locally led state-building and democratic institution-building in various countries, mediating conflicts between warring states, and intervening with heads of states on behalf of victims of human rights abuses. It also leads disease eradication efforts, spearheading the campaign to eradicate Guinea worm disease, as well as controlling and treating onchocerciasis, trachoma, lymphatic filariasis, and malaria through awareness campaigns.
In 2002, President Carter received the Nobel Peace Prize for his work "to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts, to advance democracy and human rights, and to promote economic and social development" through the Carter Center.  In 2007, he wrote an autobiography entitled Beyond the White House: Waging Peace, Fighting Disease, Building Hope, which chronicles the first 25 years of The Carter Center.
Jimmy Carter and Wife Rosalynn Are Planning 75th Anniversary Party This Summer: 'Incredible Milestone'
When they reach 75 years of marriage together this summer, Jimmyਊnd Rosalynn Carter want to celebrate their "incredible milestone" in a big way, grandson Jason Carter says.
"What they&aposre really doing these days is planning their 75th anniversary party for July," Jason, who appears in a new documentary about his grandfather, tells PEOPLE of the longest-married presidential couple in U.S. history.
While the former president and first lady have been keeping a lower profile amid theOVID-19 pandemic, they resumed some public appearances earlier this year after being fully vaccinated.
Jason, 45, says the plan in July is for a private event that he says should be a "big party . with a lot of their friends from over the years."
The bash for Mrs. Carter, 93, and her first and only love, now 96, will be held in their hometown of Plains, Georgia — not at the Carters&apos modest ranch home but "at different sorts of locations," Jason says.
"The number of things that have to go right in your life to have a 75th anniversary," he says, "it&aposs a truly incredible milestone."
President Carter has been no less effusive.
"The best thing I ever did was marrying Rosalynn," he saiduring a 2015 interview at The Carter Center, their humanitarian organization. "That&aposs the pinnacle of my life."
Looking Back at Their Love Story
Rosalynn Smith and Jimmy Carter wed on July 7, 1946, at a Methodist church in Plains. Carter was 21 and Rosalynn was 19, and the ceremony was held following his graduation from the U.S. Naval Academy.
Theouple had known each other most of their lives: Jimmy&aposs sister Ruth Carter was Rosalynn&aposs best friend since childhood, Rosalynn recalled in Phil Donahue and Marlo Thomas&apos What Makes a Marriage Last, published last year.
"I first started noticing him when I was thirteen," she said in the book, "and, I mean, there&aposs just no relationship between a thirteen-year-old and a sixteen-year-old in that situation."
But by the time she was 18, Rosalynn was ready to pursue Jimmy when he returned to Georgia on a month-long break from the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland.
"Ruth and I plotted to get me together with him. She&aposd call and say &aposCome over! He&aposs here!&apos and I&aposd go flying over to her house, but he&aposd be gone again," she said in What Makes a Marriage Last.
"I always said I fell in love with a photograph of him on her [Ruth&aposs] bedroom wall," Rosalynn said.
She said that "I didn&apost know a single boy I thought I&aposd want to spend my life with" — until Jimmy came calling.
On the last night of one of his breaks from the Naval Academy, fate would have it that he found himself without a date while his then-girlfriend was at a family reunion at which he was not allowed.
"I was cruising around with my sister Ruth and her boyfriend, just looking for a date, and I picked up Rosalynn in front of the Methodist church," he said in What Makes a Marriage Last. He invited her to the movies.
"I just felt compatible with her," he said. "She was beautiful and innocent, and there was a resonance. We rode in the rumble seat of a Ford pickup—Ruth and her boyfriend in the front𠅊nd I kissed her on that first date. I remember that vividly."
The next morning, he told his mother that "Rosalynn was the one I wanted to marry."
The Carters went on to have four children — sons Jack, Chip and Jeff and, after a 14-year gap, daughter Amy, who spent part of her childhood in the White House.
The couple have since attributed their marriage&aposs longevity to a mix of shared hobbies, including bird-watching ("Rosa and I have seen about 1,300 different species of bird"), mutual support and their faith. Each night they still read the Bible together.
"I think the best explanation for that is to marry the best spouse," President Carter told PEOPLE in 2019 of his continued zeal, "someone who will take care of you and engage and do things to challenge you and keep you alive and interested in life."
Who is her husband Jimmy?
James Earl Carter Jr – known affectionately as Jimmy – was the 39th President of the United States, serving the country from 1977 to 1981.
He is a democrat and previously served as a Georgia State Senator from 1963 to 1967 and as the 76th Governor of Georgia from 1971 to 1975.
Jimmy Carter has remained active in public life during his post-presidency, and in 2002 he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his work in co-founding the Carter Center.
President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden will visit the 39th president and his wife, Rosalynn, while in Georgia, the White House announced on April 27, 2021.
The 96-year-old former president and the 93-year-old former first lady were unable to attend Biden’s inauguration because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Both couples are now fully vaccinated.
Biden was a young Delaware senator and Carter ally during the Georgian’s term in the White House, from 1977 to 1981.
Carter is now the longest-lived American president in history.
George HW Bush vomits on the Japanese prime minister
There is absolutely nothing cool about blowing chunks. No matter who you are and what you're doing, the moment you interrupt to barf everywhere, you're automatically a figure of fun. Don't believe us? Just ask George HW Bush. During the brief term that he was the nation's 41st president, Bush was dispatched on a highly important trade mission to Japan. There, he managed to take everybody's minds off money by hurling his guts all over the Japanese prime minister.
The year was 1992. Japan was still in its Bubble Economy period and seemed like the richest, greatest nation on Earth. Bush's goal in visiting Tokyo was to reach an agreement that would help shrink America's deficit. Hostile press said he was kowtowing to Prime Minister Kiichi Miyazawa. If Democrats thought groveling before the Japanese leader was bad enough, what came next was even worse. At a state dinner, Bush unexpectedly fainted, fell face-first into Miyazawa's crotch, and then vommed all over the poor guy's lap. If anyone in Japan still thought the US was cool, that moment probably shattered their illusions forever.
It turned out Bush had caught a nasty case of gastroenteritis, exacerbated by his decision to play a hard game of tennis immediately before the dinner. Not that anyone cared what his excuse was. Not only did Bush's embarrassing attempt at bile-based diplomacy become comedic fodder in the US, it made headlines across Japan, too. For a while in the 1990s, young Japanese even had a whole new slang word for chundering: Bushusuru, meaning "to do a Bush."
December 17: A Future President Finishes Submarine School in Groton
Decades before he became President of the United States, a young James “Jimmy” Earl Carter, Jr. had his sights set on a lifelong career in the U.S. Navy. As a teenager, Carter dreamed of attending the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. After graduating from high school in rural Plains, Georgia at the age of 17, he studied mathematics at two local colleges to qualify for admission to the Naval Academy. Carter was accepted in 1943 and pursued an accelerated course of study offered to midshipmen during World War II. As a result, he graduated in only three years.
Photo of Jimmy Carter as a midshipman at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. (Jimmy Carter Library)
After serving as a training and education officer for two years, Ensign Carter decided to change the course of his Navy career and attend Submarine School, which brought him to Naval Submarine Base New London, located in Groton, Connecticut. There, Carter underwent a rigorous, six-month training program, graduating on December 17, 1948. After several years of serving on diesel submarines in the Pacific, Carter returned to Groton in 1952 to be interviewed for the Navy’s brand-new nuclear submarine program. He was promptly promoted to Lieutenant and spent the next year preparing to become the engineering officer for the USS Seawolf nuclear submarine, being constructed at nearby Electric Boat in Groton. When Carter’s father died suddenly in mid-1953, however, the promising young officer decided to shelve his plans for a military career and headed back to rural Georgia to take over the family business of peanut farming.
Former President Jimmy Carter lives in a $167,000 house and shops at the Dollar General
Former President Jimmy Carter might have once called the white mansion at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue his home, but now, he lives in a much, much more modest abode.
Carter, the nation's 39th president and oldest-living former president in U.S. history at 96 years old, lives a fairly normal — and frugal — life, The Washington Post reported in 2018. In fact, Carter still lives in the ranch house he built himself in 1961.
The home, in rural Plains, Georgia (about a 2½-hour drive south of Atlanta) is a two-bedroom ranch assessed at just $167,000, which is "less than the value of the armored Secret Service vehicles parked outside," the Post reports. It's also less than the median home price in Georgia, which is $213,026, according to real estate site Zillow.
In addition to his affordable home, Carter's frugal tendencies include spending weekends dining with neighbors on paper plates with bargain-brand wine, the Post says. In addition, it says he and wife Rosalynn make their own yogurt. Carter has also been known to buy his clothes at his local Dollar General store, according to a 2011 Rolling Stone story (he showed up for the store's opening in Plains in 2004), and he often flies commercial.
In recent years, Carter has made much of his income from writing books, the Post repored he has published at least 33, including a children's book and reflections on his presidency. (Thriftbooks.com lists 46 books.) Carter also receives a $210,700 annual pension, as do all former presidents, plus the federal government gives all ex-presidents an allowance for things like travel and office space. In 2017, Carter got more than $230,000 in such allowances, according to the National Taxpayers Union Foundation, a conservative advocacy group.
Carter's modest lifestyle is sharply different from those of other living former presidents.
In 2017, former President Barack Obama purchased an $8.1 million mansion in Washington, and is well known for his family's tradition of taking a summer vacation to the picturesque (and pricey) Martha's Vineyard.
And while Bill Clinton said he left the White House $16 million in debt, that was swiftly erased thanks to his lucrative paid speeches and book deals. It's been reported by NPR that his first year out of office, Clinton gave 57 speeches and raked in a whopping $13.7 million from his "speaking and writing business," according to a 2001 tax return.
Clinton's real estate portfolio includes a $1.7 million home in Chappaqua, New York, and a $2.85 million home in D.C.
In 2015, Politico reported that George W. Bush had given at least 200 paid speeches since 2009, typically making around $100,000 to $175,000 per appearance.
But fancy living is not Carter's style. Instead, the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize winner says, "It just never had been my ambition to be rich."
Billy Carter and Sybil Carter, with Ken Estes, Billy: Billy Carter's Reflections on His Struggle with Fame, Alcoholism, and Cancer (Newport, R.I.: Edgehill, ).
Hugh Alton Carter, with Frances Spatz Leighton, Cousin Beedie and Cousin Hot: My Life with the Carter Family of Plains, Georgia (Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1978).
Jason Carter, Power Lines: Two Years on South Africa's Borders (Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, 2002).
Jimmy Carter, An Hour before Daylight: Memories of a Rural Boyhood (New York: Simon and Schuster, 2001).
Lillian Carter and Gloria Carter Spann, Away from Home: Letters to My Family (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1977).
Rosalynn Carter, First Lady from Plains (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1984).
William "Buddy" Carter, Billy Carter: A Journey through the Shadows (Atlanta: Longstreet Press, 1999).
Alan Coren, The Peanut Papers in Which Miz Lillian Writes (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1978).
Richard Hyatt, The Carters of Plains (Huntsville, Ala.: Strode, 1977).
James Neyland, The Carter Family Scrapbook: An Intimate Close-up of America' s First Family (New York: Grosset and Dunlap, 1977).
How old is Rosalynn Carter?
Rosalynn Smith was born August 18, 1927, in Plains, Georgia.
She got hitched to fellow Plains local and future president Jimmy Carter when she was just 18 years old and has remained by his side ever since.
Carter became First Lady of Georgia when her husband won the governor’s role in 1970 and First Lady of the US when he was inaugurated as president in 1977 until he left office in 1981.
One of her most important roles during her husband’s presidency was as the Active Honorary Chair of the President's Commission on Mental Health.
Upon the death of Barbara Bush on April 17, 2018, 91-year-old Carter became the oldest living former First Lady.
She and Jimmy had four children: John William "Jack" (b. 1947), James Earl "Chip" III (b. 1950), Donnel Jeffrey "Jeff" (b. 1952), and Amy Lynn (b. 1967).
Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Mark 74 Years in Their Record-Breaking Marriage
Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter just beat their own record by another year.
The former president and first lady marked 74 years of marriage on Tuesday. Last October, they became the longest-married presidential couple, breaking the previous record set by former President George H. W. Bush and Barbara Bush, who were married 73 years and 111 days at the time of the former first lady’s death in 2018.
President Carter, now 95, and Mrs. Carter, 92, first met in the early 1940s when he was on break from the Naval Academy and he asked her on a date to the movies, which her sister Ruth also attended.
“I just felt compatible with her,” the former president recalled in Phil Donahue and Marlo Thomas’ book What Makes a Marriage Last, published in May. “She was beautiful and innocent, and there was a resonance. We rode in the rumble seat of a Ford pickup—Ruth and her boyfriend in the front𠅊nd I kissed her on that first date. I remember that vividly.”
The next morning, he told his mother that “Rosalynn was the one I wanted to marry.”
Climate Change Was on the Ballot With Jimmy Carter in 1980—Though No One Knew It at the Time
T his year&rsquos wildfires and hurricanes leave no doubt that climate change is a key issue in November&rsquos election, but 2020 is hardly the first time the environment has been on the ballot. In fact, the future of the planet was at stake in the presidential contest as early as 40 years ago&mdashbut no one knew it at the time.
In 1980, President Jimmy Carter was running for reelection against former California Governor Ronald Reagan. The environment was a campaign issue, in part because Reagan had been quoted saying that more than 80% of nitrogen oxide air pollution is &ldquocaused by trees and vegetation.&rdquo (Reagan, the Sierra Club responded, was &ldquojust plain wrong.&rdquo) Carter, meanwhile, had signed 14 major pieces of environmental legislation, including the first funding of alternative energy, the first federal toxic waste cleanup (the Super Fund), the first fuel economy standards and important new laws to fight air, water and other forms of pollution. He also protected California&rsquos redwood forest and 100 million acres in the Alaska Lands bill, which doubled the size of the National Park Service.
But there was one big environmental issue he didn&rsquot have time to confront&mdasha challenge that was unknown then outside the scientific community but would eventually become of critical importance around the world.
Carter had been a nuclear engineer in the Navy and&mdashwhile other politicians played golf&mdashhe spent his spare time reading scientific publications. In 1972, when he was governor of Georgia, he underlined path-breaking articles in the journal Nature about carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
When he became President, Carter was the first global leader to recognize the problem of climate change. In 1977, scratching his itch as a planner and steward of the earth, he commissioned the Global 2000 Report to the President, an ambitious effort to explore environmental challenges and the prospects of &ldquosustainable development&rdquo (a new phrase) over the next 20 years. As part of that process, the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) issued three reports contending with global warming, the last of which&mdashissued the week before Carter left office&mdashwas devoted entirely to the long-term threat of what a handful of scientists then called &ldquocarbon dioxide pollution.&rdquo
The report, written by Gus Speth, Carter&rsquos top aide on the environment, urged &ldquoimmediate action&rdquo and included calculations on CO2 emissions in the next decades that proved surprisingly accurate. The large-scale burning of oil, coal and other fossil fuels could lead to &ldquowidespread and pervasive changes in global climatic, economic, social, and agricultural patterns,&rdquo the CEQ report concluded with great prescience.
One recommendation&mdashcovered in the very last paragraph of a New York Times story that ran on page A13&mdashencouraged industrialized nations to reach agreement on the safe maximum level of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere. The CEQ report suggested trying to limit global average temperature to 2°C above preindustrial levels&mdashprecisely the standard agreed to by the nations of the world 35 years later in the Paris Climate Agreement that has now been abandoned by President Trump.
With these facts in hand, Reagan&rsquos landslide victory over Carter in the 1980 election takes on a tragic dimension: Carter had acted on every other CEQ report issued in the previous four years with aggressive legislation and executive orders. He almost certainly would have done so on this one, too, had he been reelected. Gains made under Carter&rsquos presidential leadership in the early 1980s might have bought the planet precious time. Instead, for the next 12 years, under Reagan and George H.W. Bush, the U.S. government would view global warming as largely unworthy of study, much less action. Then came 25 years of stop-and-start efforts under administrations of both parties, followed by a return to denial under Trump.
There are lessons here for the present. Carter was a political failure&mdashconfronted with a bad economy, the Iran hostage crisis, a divided Democratic Party and a talented challenger in Reagan&mdashbut he was a substantive and visionary success.
It took a while for public opinion to catch up to him. After being burned in effigy in Alaska, he received only 26% of the statewide vote in the 1980 presidential election. But by 2000, a billion-dollar tourism industry had blossomed there, and polls showed residents favored Carter&rsquos landmark achievement. When he visited that year, his speech was interrupted five times for standing ovations.
In 1979, Carter placed solar panels on the roof of the West Wing of the White House. After Reagan came to office, he cut funding for green energy and his chief of staff, Donald T. Regan, describing the panels as &ldquojust a joke,&rdquo took them down. It wasn&rsquot until 2010 that President Obama put up a new generation of solar units. Now, solar is the fastest-growing source of electricity in the United States.
Joe Biden was the first senator to endorse Carter for president in 1976, when Carter ran a campaign based on &ldquohealing&rdquo after the Watergate scandal and promised not to lie. Biden is running on similar themes and has introduced an ambitious program to combat climate change and create millions of green jobs. Trump, on the other hand, has described climate change as a &ldquohoax.&rdquo
Jimmy Carter&rsquos example suggests that looking over the horizon might light our path to a better future&mdashbut also that, without political victory, the chance to realize that future can easily slip away.