Friday, September 12, 2014



Newport, Rhode Island (JFK+50) Sixty-one years ago today, September 12, 1953, Senator John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Lee Bouvier exchanged wedding vows at St. Mary's Catholic Church here in Newport.

750 guests crowded into the church where Richard Cushing, the Archbishop of Boston, conducted the ceremony.

The bride was accompanied down the aisle by her step-father, Hugh D. Auchincloss.  Jackie wore an ivory silk gown made by African-American designer Ann LoweThe gown required fiftty yards of material and two months of work.

Jacqueline also wore a choker of pearls and a diamond bracelet that was a gift from the groom.  The bride's bouquet was of pink and white spray orchids and gardenias.

Jackie's sister, Lee Canfield, was the matron of honor while her half-sister, Nina Auchincloss, was maid of honor. Robert F. Kennedy, the groom's brother, was best man.

Ushers included brother Edward M. "Ted" Kennedy, brother-in-laws Sargent Shriver and Michael Canfield as well as close friends Lem BillingsRed FayTorbert McDonald, Senator George Smathers and Charles Bartlett.

After the wedding ceremony, 1300 guests gathered at Hammersmith Farm overlooking Naragansett Bay for a luncheon reception.

JFK and Jackie 
Hammersmith Farm
Photo by Toni Frissell
Library of Congress

The newly weds danced to the Meyer Davis Orchestra playing "I Married An Angel". 

Kennedy-Bouvier Wedding Invitation
JFK Library

According to Thomas Maier, in his book "The Kennedys:  America's Emerald Kings"....

"The Kennedy family rejoiced when Jack started seriously courting Jacqueline Bouvier.  The couple met at a dinner party but their romance escalated after they attended an inaugural party for...Eisenhower."

As has been posted previously on JFK+50, JFK proposed to Jackie at Billy Martin's Tavern in Georgetown.

Following is an excerpt from our post about the Proposal Booth at Billy Martin's from September 29, 2011...  

"Booth #3"

"JFK and Jackie frequently dined in Booth #3.  

On June 24, 1953, Jacqueline Bouvier accepted John Kennedy's proposal of marriage.  

Since that day, Booth #3 has been known as the proposal booth."

Billy Martin's Tavern
Photos by John White (2011)


"The Kennedys:  America's Emerald Kings," by Thomas Maier, Basic Books, New York, 2003.


                     JFK Library Photo
                    Library of Congress

Houston, Texas (JFK+50) President John F. Kennedy addressed 50,000 people at Rice University stadium fifty-two years ago today, September 12, 1962, here in Houston.

The President spoke on the topic of space exploration.

JFK said...

"We set sail on this new sea because there is new knowledge to be gained, and new rights to be won and they must be won and used for the progress of all people.

We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things.  Not because they are easy, but because they are hard."