The Children of Jimmy Carter

James Earle Carter, Jr., a native of Plains, Georgia, met and married Eleanor Rosalynn Smith, also from Plains. They married in the Plains Methodist Church on July 7, 1946, shortly after his graduation.

In this article, get to know the four children of Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter.

John William Carter

Portrait of John William Carter

John William Carter, or Jack, was born on July 3, 1947, at the Naval Medical Center in Portsmouth, Virginia, and raised in Plains while his parents worked on their peanut farm and his father pursued a career in politics. Before Jack joined the U.S. Navy in 1968, Jack attended Emory University, Georgia Southwestern, and Georgia Tech. He worked aboard a salvage ship during the Vietnam War. When his military career ended, Jack returned to Georgia Tech, earning a degree in nuclear physics, marrying Juliette Langford in 1971, having two children, and attending law school at the University of Georgia, earning his Juris Doctor in 1975.

He began his law career in Calhoun, Georgia, and worked on his father’s presidential campaign in 1976. He stayed in Calhoun until his father left the White House in 1981, working in law and business. After that, he worked for Citibank, Tabor Commodities, and the Chicago Board of Trade in Chicago. After divorcing, remarrying, and doing business in Bermuda, he relocated to Nevada and ran for the United States Senate as a Democrat in 2006. Jack Carter, a “pragmatist” who followed his father’s liberal approach to social policy, was described as “low-key, attractive, and clever.” This, combined with his lack of political experience, worked against him in the election, which he lost.

James Earle Carter II

Portrait of Chip CarterJames Earle Jr, or Chip Carter, was born on April 12, 1950, in Honolulu, Hawaii, and grew up in Plains, where he also worked on the family’s peanut plantation. His father brought his boys hunting and fishing, sharing his love of the outdoors, and breeding pointer dogs, which he subsequently regarded as an ideal existence. As a result, Chip said, “He knows the name of every tree, every plant.” “We’d speak about nature,” says the narrator. He knows a lot about celebrities.” Jimmy, on the other hand, was recalled by him as a “stern father” who required high grades and took away television rights when school performance fell short. As a result, chip quipped, “I went from fourth to eighth grade without watching television.”

He was more involved in politics from a young age than his older brother. In 1972, he was a resident at the gubernatorial palace in Atlanta, where he aggressively campaigned for George McGovern’s presidential campaign. While attending Georgia Tech, he also helped his father’s political career. He’d also be a member of the Plains City Council and the DNC.

Chip Carter married Caron Griffin, an intern in the state Capitol, a Georgia Tech student, on June 23, 1973. The pair lived with his parents at the White House for a period, but their “storybook romance” ended in 1977. In 1980, they divorced. But it wasn’t until long later that country music icon Willie Nelson revealed that he had used marijuana on the White House roof with Chip Carter. Chip then moved to Decatur, Georgia, where he remained involved in national Democratic Party affairs.

Donnel Jeffery Carter

Portrait of Donnel Carter

On August 18, 1952, Donnel Jeffery or Jeff Carter was born in New London, Connecticut, and grew up on the family peanut farm. He married in 1975 after moving to the Washington, D.C., region and earning an honors degree in geography from George Washington University. Later in his father’s presidential campaign, he was also engaged, although Jeff was contentious at times; for example, he was compelled to apologize to evangelist Billy Graham for attacking him on the campaign trail. He eventually created Computer Mapping Consultants, a firm that worked with the World Bank, and relocated to Atlanta with his wife and three children.

Amy Lynn Carter

Portrait of Amy Carter

On October 19, 1967, Amy Lynn was born in Plains, much younger than her elder brothers. On the other hand, Amy was frequently in the national limelight throughout her father’s political career. Mary Prince, her African American nanny, had been wrongly accused and convicted of murder but has since been freed and pardoned. As a result, Jimmy Carter was forced to take on the job of Price’s parole officer for her to care for Amy at the White House.

Amy Carter faced a significant difficulty with public scrutiny since the media refused to give her the solitude she needed to live as a regular teen, have sleepover parties, or utilize her tree home. Some journalists chastised her for reading a book during a state visit, as though doing so was impolite; one writer said that she was “so unattractive she was charming, sort of like an uncomfortable beagle puppy.” Even other youngsters, like two young “reporters” in 1976, who reported after interviewing her, “She was extremely kind.” She appeared brilliant and serene at the same time.

Some people believe she is naive or reserved since she is timid, quiet, and reserved, but this is not the case; Amy is brilliant. She’s just silent, introverted, and self-contained, which is why she didn’t say much.” Misty Malarky Ying Yang, her Siamese cat, helped to soften her appearance.

Jimmy Carter mentioned his daughter supporting nuclear weapons restrictions during the 1980 presidential campaign, indicating her future engagement in political action. She took part in several protests during the 1980s and 1990s, including one in 1986 at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. As a result, she and others were jailed for their behavior while opposing CIA recruiting. Amy attended public schools in Washington, D.C., and Atlanta before going to Brown University and obtaining bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the Memphis College of Art and Tulane University. She married in 1996 and relocated to Atlanta after working on a children’s book with her father, The Little Baby Snoogle-Fleejer.

 

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