Amazing First Ladies of The USA
Martha was married to George Washington, the first president of the United States. Martha was born Dandridge and is considered the first First Lady of the United States though that title did not exist yet in her days. After George’s inauguration in 1789. Martha assumed responsibility to arrange social parties and events at the presidential home in New York. By doing so, she set the standards and precedents for First Ladies to come. Martha was ‘Lady Washington’. She served as First Lady from April 30, 1789, to March 4, 1797.
Abigail Adams was married to President John Adams, the second president of the United States. She was born Abigail Smith in 1744, on November 11th, in Weymouth, MA. She was the daughter of a minister and a very devoted reader, as she studied the works of, for example, John Milton and William Shakespeare. Abigail is known for her extensive correspondence and she is also the mother of John Quincy Adams who later became the sixth U.S. president. She was America’s second First Lady from 1797 to 1801.
For 10 years, Martha Jefferson (born Wayles) was married to Thomas Jefferson, the 3rd president of the United States. She bore six of Jefferson’s children, but in 1782, Martha died at the age of just 33. Martha never actually served as an American First Lady, but many historians give her the title posthumously.
Dolley Payne Madison
Dolley Payne Todd Madison was the wife of James Madison, the fourth President of the United States, and functioned in the role of First Lady from 1809 to 1817. She is one of the best-loved First Ladies. Her stylish social presence boosted president Madison’s popularity. Often, she is mistakenly referred to as Dorothea or Dorothy.
Elizabeth Kortright Monroe was serving as U.S. First Lady as the wife of James Monroe, the 5th President from 1817 to 1825. When residing in France, diplomat James Monroe’s wife was highly popular, but as First Lady, her sophistication and stylish appearance was frequently mistaken for distant.
Louis Adams was married to President John Quincy Adams and First Lady of the United States in the period 1825 – 1829. John Quincy Adams was the son of John Adams, the 2nd President. She met John Quincy Adams in 1795, who served as minister to several European countries before he won the presidential election in 1824. In 1828, Quincy lost the election but the couple decided to stay in Washington.
Rachel was married to Andrew Jackson, U.S. Army general and the 7th president of the United States from 1829 to 1837. Rachel was the daughter of Colonel John Donelson. She came from a prominent Virginia family, had enjoyed a fine education, and had, during her youth, met George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. Rachel died in 1828, on December 22nd, not even three months before Jackson’s inauguration.
Hannah Van Buren
Hannah Van Buren was Martin Van Buren’s wife, the eighth president of the United States. Hannah van Buren (born Hannah Hoes) died 18 years before van Buren was elected president of tuberculosis. The couple had four sons. She died in Albany, NY, on February 5, 1819. Not so much is known about her and even president van Buren did not mention her in his autobiography.
Anna Harrison (daughter of John Cleves Symmes) was the ninth First Lady of the United States. She was married to President William Henry Harrison, who passed away after just four weeks in office. Anna was born in 1775, on July 25th, and, although her father disapproved of the marriage, she secretly did marry William Henry Harrison in 1795. In 1841, Anna became America’s 9th First Lady when William was elected President of the United States. Anna Harrison died in the year 1864.
Letitia Tyler was married to John Tyler who became the tenth U.S. president. Letitia Tyler devoted her time mainly family matters and took hardly any interest in the political career of her husband. After she suffered a paralytic stroke in 1839, she couldn’t perform duties that were expected of a First Lady when her husband was elected in 1841. Letitia became the first First Lady to pass away in the White House.
Julia Tyler became America’s tenth First Lady as the wife of widowed president John Tyler, the tenth U.S. president. She was John Tyler’s second wife and served eight months as First Lady in the period June 26, 1844 – March 4, 1845. She was born in 1920 (on May fourth) in Gardiners Island, NY, and she is known for initiating the anthem ‘Hail to the Chief’. Julia was already hiring an agent to improve her press coverage, and she devoted much of her time to get the approval of Congress for the Texas annexation.
Sarah Polk (born Sarah Childress) was the wife of James Polk, the 11th President of the United States. She served as First Lady in the period 1845 – 1849. She was very politically orientated led her husband’s campaign to become elected president in 1845. Sarah Polk was born in 1830 (on September 4th) in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. In 1824, Sarah James Polk and two years later she relocated to Washington as her husband was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives. Sarah died in 1891 after she had lived for 40 years in Polk’s Place in Nashville, Tennessee.
Margaret ‘Peggy’ Taylor was born Margaret Smith on September 21st, 1788. She was the wife of President Zachary Taylor and functioned as First Lady in the period 1849 – 1850. She married Lieutenant Zachary Taylor, whom she had met in Kentucky, in 1810, and she rendered many of the White House duties to her daughter. Margaret Taylor was raised on a tobacco farm in Calvert County, Maryland. The couple had six children, five daughters, and one son.
Abigail Fillmore was married to Millard Fillmore, the 13th president of the United States. She functioned as First Lady from 1850 to 1853. Abigail was born Powers in 1798, on March 13th in Stillwater, NY. Abigail’s passion for books and reading are legendary, and she developed a great love of learning. At age 16, she was already teaching in New York, and here she met Millard Fillmore who was a student of her. The couple married in 1826 (on February 5th), but when in 1849 Millard became America’s vice president, she was already in bad health. When Millard became president, the family moved to Washington, but in 1853, Abigail died of pneumonia.
Jane Means Pierce (born Jane Means Appleton) was married to U.S. President Franklin Pierce. She served as First Lady in the period 1853 – 1857. She was born in Hampton, NH, and married Franklin Pierce in 1834 when Jane was 28 years old. Her family initially had objections because of Franklin Pierce’s political ambitions but the couple was very devoted to one another. Her father was president of Maine’s Bowdoin College and Jane also showed an interest in literature at an early age. During the presidency of her husband, Jane introduced the Christmas tree in the White House. She passed away on December 2nd, 1863 in Massachusetts at the age of 57.
Harriet Rebecca Lane served as First Lady from 1857 to 1861. She acted as hostess for her favorite uncle James Buchanan, the only U.S. President who stayed a bachelor throughout his life. James became her legal guardian after Harriet was orphaned at age 11, and few of the White House’s First Ladies achieved so much success in troubled times as this beautifully polished young lady. She was a very popular First Lady, and her hair and clothing style were frequently copied, particularly when she had lowered her inaugural gown’s neckline by 2.5 inches. The Harriet Lane Outpatient Clinics that she set up are still operating all across the world.
Mary Todd Lincoln
Mary Ann Todd Lincoln was married to Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States, and functioned as Fist Lady from 1861 to 1865. She came from a wealthy Kentucky family and was highly educated. Upon the outbreak of the Civil War, Mary’s family was supporting the South, but she continued to be an enthusiast Unionist. Mary remained a loyal supporter of Abraham’s political career and she provided advice, hosted various events, and supported him in his efforts to advance his career in public life. After Abraham’s assassination, Mary became deeply depressed. She died in 1882.
Eliza McCardle Johnson was the wife of Andrew Johnson, the 17th U.S. President. She served as First Lady in the period 1865 – 1869. She became First Lady when her husband Andrew Johnson took over the presidency after Abraham Lincoln’s assassination. Eliza found not much pleasure in Andrew’s position as U.S. President, and she settled in a second-floor room of the White House that was to be the center of her. She was a gracious, unpretentious, and competent hostess even at the times of the impeachment crisis. But Andrew acquitted. After Johnson’s term, she returned to her home in Tennessee where her husband was elected to the Senate in 1875. She died shortly after her husband in 1876.
Julia Boggs Dent Grant was married to Ulysses S. Grant, the 18th American president and Commander-in-Chief of the Union’s armies in the Civil War. She functioned as First Lady from 1869 to 1877. Julia Grant was born in 1826 near St. Louis, MO, and she married Ulysses in 1848. Julia took much joy in her role at the White House. She sometimes joined Ulysses at his trips to the Civil War front, and for Julia, as opposed to some of her predecessors, the time of Ulysses’ presidency was a happy period. She was a well-respected and popular hostess. After leaving the White House, the couple made extensive travels and Julia Grant was actually the first First Lady to write down her memoirs. After she passed away in 1902, Julia was buried at Grant’s Tomb beside her husband.
Lucille ‘Lucy’ Hayes was married to President Rutherford B. Hayes, the 19th American President, and served as America’s First Lady from 1877 to 1881. The well-educated Lucy (born Ware Webb) was actually the first American First Lady to have earned a college degree (from Wesleyan Female College). Lucy decided to ban alcohol entirely from White House events which is why she was nicknamed ‘Lemonade Lucy’. She was a very popular First Lady, though, and her dedication to for example adequate funding for education and mental healthcare set a new standard for First Ladies’ political activities. Lucy Hayes was greatly respected for her good sense and simplicity, and good sense, avoiding the fancy lifestyle that her predecessor favored. Julia Grant died in 1989.
Lucretia Garfield was married to President James A. Garfield, the 20th American President. She was America’s First Lady only for nine months in 1881 until her husband was assassinated. James’ election to the U.S. Presidency was bringing an animated family into the White House, and though Lucretia was not so much interested in her social duties as First Lady, her genuine hospitality made her well-respected. In May of 1881, Lucretia fell ill with malaria so she went Long Branch, New Jersey, for recuperation where she heard on July 2nd that her husband was shot. Almost three months later he died widowing her with five children. In September the family went home to live on their Ohio farm where she lived 36 more years. She died in 1918, on March 14.
Ellen Arthur was married to the 21st American President, Chester A. Arthur, who served from 1881 to 1885. Ellen, the only child of William and Elizabeth Lewis Herndon, was known as ‘Nell’. Her father was a naval officer, and in 1842, she moved to Washington, D.C. where her father was assigned to help establish the Naval Observatory. Before Chester became vice president and before she could have become First Lady as James Garfield was assassinated, Ellen died on January 12th, 1880. She was born Lewis Herndon in Virginia and married Chester Arthur in 1859. Chester Arthur’s sister, Mary Arthur McElroy, was serving as replacement first lady and hostess in the White House during his presidency. Although Ellen Arthur never lived to serve as American First Lady, she continues to be honorably credited with that function.
Frances Cleveland was born Frances Clara Folsom in 1864 in Buffalo, NY, and she was the wife of U.S. President Grover Cleveland. She functioned as First Lady in the periods 1886 – 1889 and 1893 – 1897. Frances was the youngest First Lady and the first one to get married in the White House’s Blue Room. Frances had graduated from Wells College in Aurora, NY, in 1885 and subsequently, she and her mother were traveling through Europe for nine months. Frances was a beauty and she quickly became the nation’s sweetheart, and she wasked for promotional purposes by many companies which enraged her husband, fearful of her safety, and worried as she was continuously surrounded by admirers. The couple had six children, and after Grover Cleveland died (1908), Frances remarried in 1913. She served as the Needlework Guild president from 1925 to 1940, and she died in Baltimore, MD, in 1947, on October 29th.
Ida McKinley was married to William McKinley, the 25 the U.S. President, and served as First Lady from 1897 until her husband’s assassination in 1901. Ida was born Saxton in Canton, Ohio in 1847, and the young, pretty, and lively Ida married her great love, William ‘Bill’ McKinley. The deaths of her mother and her two daughters within a short time deeply affected her and she was not feeling well all through her years at the White House. When William got shot in 1901, Ida was holding his hand up to the moment he died. She went to William’s grave about every day, and after she died, six years after William on May 26th, 1907, she was buried next to him and her two daughters. The family home in Canton, Ohio, is a national historic site, the First Ladies’ National Library.
Edith Kermit Roosevelt was the second wife of President Theodore ‘Teddy’ Roosevelt after his first wife tragically died, and she served as First Lady in the period 1901 – 1909. She was born Edith Kermit Carow into a rich world of privilege. Edith was well-educated in languages, literature, writing, and the arts, and understood well what it took to be a young high society woman. Edith Roosevelt was a modern First Lady and upon moving into the White House (1901) she realized it wasn’t big enough for her family of six children.
After securing Congressional permission and funding, Edith had a new West Wing built which, for the first time, separated the presidential offices from the private quarters. She was overseeing the construction while her husband was running the country. Many of the First Lady traditions that Edith established are still remaining today.
Helen Louise ‘Nellie’ Taft was married to William Howard Taft and she was First Lady from 1909 to 1913. Helen Taft, born Helen Louise Herron in 1861, on June 2nd in Cincinnati, OH, was a schoolteacher and a political adviser, and she had politics running through her veins. Her father, John Williamson Herron, was active in the Republican Party and was a district attorney and judge, while her mother’s father and brother were U.S. congressmen.
Music was Helen’s passion but in 19th century Victorian America that was not a career option for a woman. Helen was nicknamed ‘Nellie’, and she studied at the University of Cincinnati. Before she married William Howard Taft in 1886, Helen was a schoolteacher. She was an independent thinker and became her husband’s most important political adviser who also set up his presidential campaign. At the White House, Helen Taft set quite a few new First Lady traditions and she was the first First Lady who had her memoirs published. Helen died in 1943, on May 22nd.
Ellen Louise Wilson was the first wife of President Woodrow Wilson. They married on June 24th, 1885 and had three daughters. She was born Ellen Axson, and like Woodrow, a real Southerner from a family that owned slaves. Her father was a clergyman and she grew up in Rome, GA. Ellen studied at New York’s Art Students League and later helped Woodrow head Princeton University (1902 – 10), as Governor of New Jersey (1910 – 12), and in his presidential campaign.
She continued with painting landscapes and portraits and at exhibits of her work she received fine reviews. She showed her work under the name ‘E.A. Wilson’ when her husband had become a national and famous person. During her husband’s presidency, Ellen advocated better housing conditions for the black population of D.C. and ever before had a First Lady been so closely involved with legislation. She served as First Lady for only 17 months (in 1913 and 1914), during which period she was ill much of the time. Ellen Wilson died in 1914, on August 6th.
Edith Wilson was the second wife of Woodrow Wilson, the 28th President of the United States, and she was America’s First Lady in the period 1915-1921. Wilson’s first wife Ellen, had died just one year earlier (1914) before they married, and Edith soon became involved in her husband’s presidential affairs though she had no prior interest in, or knowledge of, the business of politics. Because she was acting as First Lady at he time of World War I, Edith worked as a volunteer with the American Red Cross and encouraged American women to get involved as well.
After her husband suffered a debilitating stroke in October 1919, Edith Wilson became his self-appointed assistant, which resulted in a controversial and complicated legacy as first lady. As she wanted to keep president Wilson’s fragile physical and mental state hidden from the general public, Edith was becoming the only link between Wilson and his cabinet, so she decided ultimately came to his attention. In 1960, Edith provided much support for John F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign and she passed away on December 28, 1961, after a respiratory infection.
Florence Harding, born Florence Mabel Kling in 1860, was married to President Warren G. Harding, and she functioned as American First Lady in the period 1921-1923. Harding had become a leading citizen of Marion, Ohio, and after he was the state’s Governor, a U.S. Senator, Harding was elected President of the United States in 1921. Florence married Harding in 1891 and she assisted him in running the Marion Star, the regional newspaper, and also with his relations with the press all through his candidacy and during his presidency.
In 1914, when Harding was elected as Senator, the couple moved to D.C. and Florence continued to manage her husband’s public and press relations. During a 1923 visit to San Francisco, president Harding died in his bed of a heart attack, and Florence was refusing that his body got autopsied. She then went through his personal belongings for weeks, while she burned many of his documents, fueling speculation about her involvement in his death. Florence Harding died in 1924, just one year after her husband had passed away.
Grace Coolidge, born Grace Anna Goodhue in Burlington, Vermont, on the 3rd of January 1879, was married to Calvin Coolidge, the 30th President of the United States. She functioned as First Lady in the period 1923-1929. Grace was the only child of Andrew and Lemira Goodhue and enrolled at the University of Vermont to earn her bachelor’s of Arts. Later she worked at the Clarke Institute for the Deaf in Massachusetts. She married Coolidge in 1905 and the couple had two sons, John and Calvin, Jr. Grace was keeping entirely out of politics, but after Calvin was elected as vice president in 1920, the family moved to Washington, D.C. Grace had earned much sympathy after the death of Calvin, Jr. who died of blood poisoning in 1924.
She did not withdraw from public life, but resumed her official duties already after a few months, and focused on refurbishing the family’s living quarters in the White House, and she was responsible for adding a third floor to it. Calvin refused renomination in 1928, so Grace and Calvin went back to Northampton where Calvin passed away in 1933. Grace kept on working for causes related to deafness, she traveled extensively and also wrote various articles for magazines. The house that she had built served for navy personnel at the time of World War II, and in 1957, Grace died of heart disease. She was buried in the family grave in Plymouth, Vermont.
Lou Hoover, born Lou Henry, was married to Herbert Hoover, the 31st President of the United States. She served as American First Lady in the period 1929-1933. Lou Henry met Herbert at Stanford University, and during WW I, while Herbert led the U.S. Food Administration, she was an active relief worker in Washington. After Herbert became president, Lou was the first First Lady who fully cataloged the White House’s content. Already at young age, she was interested in nature, and she was actually one of the first American women who earned a degree in geology at Stanford University. Herbert had a pretty successful mining career, so the Hoovers were traveling around the world before they got involved in politics.
Lou Hoover earned a great deal of the respect after boldly inviting the nation’s only black Congressman’s wife to a White House party, though she also got harsh criticism because of her luxurious entertainment at the White House that wasn’t considered appropriate during the Great Depression. After leaving the White House in 1933, Lou resumed her earlier Girl Scouts presidency and was of help in founding the Friends of Music at Stanford. In 1940, the Hoovers moved to New York where Lou played a prominent role as chair of the Western Women’s Committee which collected clothing for World War II refugees. Lou Henry Hoover died of a sudden heart attack in 1944 after she attended a concert in New York City.
Anna Eleanor Roosevelt was married to president Franklin D. Roosevelt, and she was the longest-serving First Lady, from 1933 to 1945. She was born in 1884 as a niece of President Theodore ‘Teddy’ Roosevelt. Her father, Elliott Roosevelt, was Theodore’s younger brother and her mother, Anna Hall, came from a very wealthy New York family. Eleanor received private tutoring until she was sent to a school for girls in England, Allenswood Academy, where she excelled. Her formal ended when she was 18 and returned to New York, to become involved in social work. Eleanor volunteered as a teacher for children of impoverished immigrants at the Rivington Street Settlement House in Manhattan and also worked for the National Consumers’ League to put an end to unsafe labor practices and working conditions.
She actually was involved in countless humanitarian causes all through her life. Eleanor married Franklin 1905, and the couple raised five children. By the early 1920’s, the Roosevelts were already strongly involved in Democratic politics, and during their time in the White House, Eleanor was one of America’s most active First Ladies ever, working hard for social, political, and racial justice. After Franklin died, Eleanor was a U.S. delegate to the United Nations where she continued to address all sorts of human rights issues. She stayed active in the Democratic Party until she died at the age of 78 in 1962.
Elizabeth Virginia ‘Bess’ Truman, born Wallace, was married to President Harry S. Truman and she served as First Lady in the period 1945-1953. Elizabeth had known Harry since childhood and they attended the same schools. She was born in Independence, Missouri, in 1885, and the couple moved from Missouri to the White House in Washington, D.C. as Franklin Roosevelt died in 1945. Elizabeth was a very private person, acting more like a traditional wife in the background, and she is known for her role as First Lady in support of her husband Harry. The couple had one child, Margaret, who was born on the 17th of February, 1924.
Harry Truman was elected to the Senate in 1934, and he became Vice President candidate in 1944. When President Franklin Roosevelt died in 1945, on April 12, Harry became the 33rd President of the United States, and Bess became First Lady. Bess Truman, being the private person she was, spent much of the time of her husband’s presidency in her home state Missouri, while she came to Washington merely for the social events season. After Harry’s presidency, the Trumans went back to Independence, Missouri to live in her grandfather’s house. Bess was a loving wife, a great mother, and a proud grandmother. Harry Truman died in 1972 (on December 26th), and Bess passed away in October 1982, at the age of 97.
Mamie Eisenhower (born Mary Geneva “Mamie” Doud) was married to the 34th President of the United States Dwight D. (Ike) Eisenhower and served as First Lady in the period 1953-1961. She was born in 1896 in Iowa as the second daughter of a successful business executive, and the young Mamie had a childhood of luxury, jewelry, and fine clothes. She married Dwight, a famed U.S. Army commander, in 1916 at the age of only 19, The military career of Ike kept them moving constantly and they were already married for 30 years when they bought their first house. All those years of entertaining high-placed military personnel and politicians had made Mamie a well-skilled and gracious White House hostess, and though she looked social on the outside, Mamie was closely guarding her privacy and refused to take public stances on a lot of issues.
While in the White House, the couple had to deal with some serious medical challenges, which led to Mamie closely monitoring and caring for the recovering Ike. She primarily was focusing on supporting Ike and dealing with her ceremonial duties as first lady, but in 1956 Mamie also led fundraising drives for the American Heart Association and was supporting the foundation of a military personnel retirement community. She also helped fight segregation by inviting African-American kids to White House events, and she was an honorary member of the National Council of Negro Women. Both she and her husband had to deal with serious health issues and Mamie was forced to spend long hours in bed because of a heart condition, and ‘Ménière’s disease’ affected her balance severely. Mamie died in 1979 at the age of 82.
Jackie Kennedy Onassis
Jacqueline ‘Jackie’ Kennedy Onassis (born Lee Bouvier in 1929) was married to John F. Kennedy, the 35th U.S. President. She was serving as American First Lady during Kennedy’s presidency from 1961 until he got assassinated in 1963. She had met the future president in 1952 and married him a year after. Jackie spent some time in Paris, France, and later graduated from George Washington University in D.C. in French literature. In November 1960, John Kennedy defeated Richard Nixon in the presidential elections, and three weeks later, Jacqueline gave birth to her son John Fitzgerald Kennedy Jr., the second child of the couple.
Jacqueline was well-known for her style, and when the Kennedy family moved to the presidential White House, she very actively restored the mansion its former elegance. After the president was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, on the 22nd of November, 1963, she moved to New York and married Aristotle Onassis in 1968. Jackie died of lymphatic cancer in her Manhattan apartment in 1994. Read more about first lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis here: mycareertools.com/first-lady-jacqueline-kennedy-onassis
Lady Bird Johnson
Claudia Alta ‘Lady Bird’ Johnson (born Taylor) was the wife of Lyndon B. Johnson, the 36th U.S. President. She functioned as American First Lady from 1963 to 1969. She was born on the 12th of December, 1912, in Karnack, Texas. Claudia enjoyed a well-rounded educating and understood how to manage things orderly. She earned her degree in history from the University of Texas in 1930 and in 1934 a journalism degree. in 1934. Many universities and colleges later awarded Mrs. Johnson honorary degrees. Claudia married Lyndon in 1934, and the couple had two daughters. During her years at the White House, Lady Bird promoted Head Start programs for underprivileged children.
In 1971, Lady Bird joined the University of Texas System’s Board of Regents. Mrs. Johnson was truly an environmentalist as well as a leading American Conservation Association member. In 1977, President Gerald Ford awarded her the U.S. Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award available, and she received Congressional Gold Medal in 1988. Lady Bird Johnson died in 2007. You can read much more about first lady Lady Bird Johnson here: mycareertools.com/first-lady-lady-bird-johnson
Thelma Catherine ‘Pat’ Nixon (born Thelma Catherine Ryan in Ely, Nevada) was married to Richard Nixon, the 37th President of the United States. She served as First Lady in the period 1969-1974. As first lady, Pat traveled a lot and was very committed to volunteerism. She received the name ‘Pat’ from her father, an Irishman, to celebrate her birthday on the eve of St. Patrick’s Day. She met Richard while they were both playing in ‘The Dark Tower’ in Whittier. Pat supported Richard’s political career actively and is famed for collecting valuable and rare furnishings and other interesting Americana. She also made the White House a more accessible mansion.
After Richard Nixon was forced to resign from office in 1974, Pat avoided public appearances as much as possible, and she had to fight lung infections and cancer in her last years. Pat Nixon died on the 22nd of June 22, 1993, in Park Ridge, New Jersey. You can read more about first lady Pat Nixon here: mycareertools.com/first-lady-pat-nixon
Elizabeth Anne ‘Betty’ Ford (born Anne Bloomer) was the wife of Gerald Ford, the 38th U.S. President, and she served as America’s First Lady from 1974 to 1977. Betty was born in Chicago. Illinois, on the 8th of April, 1918. She First Lady when President Nixon had to resign from office due to the Watergate scandal, and her husband, Gerald Ford, was appointed as acting President. Betty Ford became known for raising breast cancer awareness after her own 1974 mastectomy and was actively supporting the Equal Rights Amendment. Betty Ford was active in the Women’s Movement and was pro-choice. She was America’s most candid first lady ever with an open mind.
After the couple left the White House in 1977, she established the Betty Ford Addiction Center. Betty Ford received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1991, the Congressional Gold Medal in 1999, and also earned the Woodrow Wilson Award to honor her work for the public cause. he Fords had 4 children, and she died a natural death in 2001, on the 8th of July. For more information about Betty Ford, please go to: mycareertools.com/first-lady-betty-ford
Eleanor Rosalynn Carter (born Smith) was the wife of Jimmy Carter, the 39th U.S. President. She was serving as America’s First Lady from 1977 to 1981. Rosalynn was born in Plains, GA, on the 18th of august, 1927. She and Jimmy got married when she was 18 years young, in 1946, and she was continually at her husband’s side also when he campaigned for the Democratic presidency nomination and ultimately won the presidential elections of 1976. Rosalynn had one daughter and three sons. When campaigning for her husband, Rosalynn was the first wife of a presidential nominee who promised to prioritize the welfare of America’s mentally handicapped.
First Lady Rosalynn Carter ran the White House in her own way, refusing that hard licor was served and that dinners were moderate, and she chose to wear simple clothing. After leaving the White House when Ronald Reagan became president in 1981, Rosalynn wrote, among other books, her autobiography (First Lady from Plains, 1984), and she has earned many honors for her work, for example the Medal of Freedom, and she also came (in 2001) in the America National Women’s Hall of Fame. To read more about Rosalynn Carter, please visit: mycareertools.com/first-lady-rosalynn-carter
Nancy Davis Reagan (born Anne Frances Robbins) was the wife of Ronald Reagan, the 40th U.S. President. She was functioning as the nation’s First Lady from 1981 to 1989. Nancy was born in New York City on July 6th of 1921 and grew up in Bethesda, Maryland with her uncle while her mother was working on her professional career as an actor. She earned her B.A degree in Drama at Smith College, Massachusetts, and played in on Broadway in 1946 with Mary Martin ‘Lute Song’, and got her first Hollywood MGM contract in 1949. Here she met her future husband Ronald Reagan who headed the U.S. Screen Actors Guild. In 1966, after Ronald was elected governor of California, Nancy started to support Vietnam veterans and headed the Foster Grandparents organization.
After Ronald was elected president, Nancy worked on refurbishing their White House upstairs private quarters, and she also began her ‘Just Say No’ anti-drug campaign. In 1981, Ronald got shot but he recovered, and in 1987, Nancy had a mastectomy after breast cancer was detected. She influenced Ronald’s schedule and political agenda strongly, and when the couple had retired to Bel Air, California, after the presidency, Nancy wrote her biography ‘My Turn’, and founded the ‘Nancy Reagan Foundation’ to support drug-prevention programs. In 1991, she opened, at the side of her husband, the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California. If you would like to read more about Nancy Reagan, go to: mycareertools.com/first-lady-nancy-reagan
Barbara Bush (born Pierce) is married to George H. W. Bush, the 41st U.S. President. She was serving as America’s First Lady from 1989 to 1993, and is the mother of president George W. Bush. Barbara founded the Barbara Bush Family Literacy Foundation and together with Abigail Adams, she is the only woman that is both wife and mother of an American president. Barbara was born in NYC on June 8th of 1945, and attended Ashley Hall, a boarding school in South Carolina, and she met George in 1941.
The couple has four sons (George Walker, John Ellis ‘Jeb’, Neil Mallon, and Marvin Pierce), and one daughter (Dorothy ‘Doro’). In 1967, the family mover to D.C. after George had become a member of Congress one year earlier. Barbara was a traditional first lady who wanted to stayed away from the political arena as much as possible. After Bill Clinton won the presidential elections in 1992, Barbara and her husband went back to Texas in January 1993. Read more about Barbara Bush here: mycareertools.com/first-lady-barbara-bush
Hillary Diane Clinton (born Rodham) is the wife of former and 42nd U.S. President. She was serving as America’s First Lady from 1993 to 2001. At the moment, Hillary Clinton is the nominee for the 2016 presidential election of the Democratic Party. Hillary was the first First Lady to win a public office seat as she was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2001. She also was America’s secretary of state from 2009 to 2013. She was born in 1947 in Chicago and turned a Democrat after she heard a Martin Luther King Jr. speech in 1968.
After graduation from Wellesley College, Hillary attended Yale Law School to graduate in 1973 with honors. This is where she met Bill, and they got married in 1975. Hillary lost the presidential nomination for the Democratic Party to Barrack Obama in 2008, but now in 2016, she is the first woman to become the presidential nominee of a major party. Read more about First Lady Hillary Clinton at: mycareertools.com/first-lady-hillary-clinton
Laura Lane Bush (born Welch) is married to George W. Bush, the 43rd U.S. President, and she was serving as America’s First Lady from 2001 to 2009. She was born on Nov. 4, 1946, in Midland, TX, and she has earned her masters in library science from the University of Texas (Austin). Laura met George W, the son of George Bush, the former CIA director, in 1977 and Laura and George W were married in that same year. Laura wanted to keep a low first lady profile bur that was not possible, and after 9/11 she supported George in his efforts to comfort the country.
Laura is well-known for her support of education and Head Start programs across the nation, addressing the World Economic Forum emphasizing the importance of education, and founding the Laura W. Bush Institute for Women’s Health at Texas Tech. After George’s presidency, Laura Bush and her husband returned to Texas, and founded the George W. Bush Presidential Library in Dallas. In 2010, Laura published her memoirs (‘Spoken from the Heart’) and she is continuing to promote education and women’s health issues. You can read more about Laura Bush at: mycareertools.com/first-lady-laura-bush
Michelle Obama (born LaVaughn Robinson) is the wife of Barack Obama, the 44th resident of the U.S. and she has been serving as America’s First Lady from 2009. Michelle was born on Jan. 17th, 1964 in Chicago in 1964, and as we all probably know, is the nation’s first First Lady of color. She attended Whitney M Young Magnet High School (a school for highly gifted kids) and earned a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Princeton in 1985 and her Harvard Law degree in 1988. Michelle drew the nation’s attention for the first time when she joined Barack as he gave a speech at the Democratic National Convention in 2014.
She worked for a private Law firm and later for the City of Chicago until she, in 2007, wanted to spend more time her family and wanted to support her husband as he was campaigning for the presidential nomination of the Democratic Party in 2008. Barack won the elections and in January 2009 they moved into the White House. Michelle is famed for her no-nonsense style of campaigning style as well as for her fashion style. The Obamas have two beautiful daughters, the youngest is Sasha (born in 2001) and Malia (born in 1998).
For more information on Michelle Obama, check out: mycareertools.com/first-lady-michelle-obama
The current First Lady of the United States is Melania Trump. She marries President Donald Trump in 2005, and before she was a fashion model. To be continued soon…