Eleanor Rosalynn Carter, the First Lady of the United States from 1977 to 1981 and the wife of President Jimmy Carter, is a writer and activist in the United States. Carter has been at the forefront of many movements, including those for social justice and mental health, for many years.
Is She Here with Us Even Now?
Rosalynn Carter is still with us, don’t you worry! At her alma mater, Georgia Southwestern State University in Americus, Georgia, she is president of the board of directors for the Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving (RCI).
On August 18, 1927, in Plains, Georgia, the world welcomed a new member to the Smith family: Eleanor Rosalynn. Her parents were auto mechanic, bus driver, and farmer Wilburn Edgar Smith and teacher, seamstress, and postal worker Frances Allethea “Allie” Murray Smith.
William Jerrold “Jerry” Smith, an engineer, and Murray Lee Smith, a teacher, and minister, were her brothers (1932–2003). Lillian Allethea (Smith) Wall was born in 1936 and like Lillian Gordy Carter, works in real estate (the Smith and Carter families are friends). Rosalynn’s name was chosen to honor Rosa Wise Murray, the grandmother of her mother.
W.S. Wise, Smith’s great-uncle, was a Confederado, an American who settled in Brazil after relocating from the United States in the wake of the American Civil War.
First Lady of Georgia
After helping her husband become governor of Georgia in 1970, Rosalynn used her position as the state’s First Lady to focus on mental health issues. She was concentrating primarily on that. As such, she has joined the Governor’s Commission to Enhance Support for People with Mental and Emotional Disabilities.
The majority of the Commission’s suggested reforms were enacted into law. In August of 1971, Carter visited mental health facilities across the state of Georgia. As First Lady of Georgia, she is most proud of her work with children who have mental disabilities.
Carter volunteered for four years as the honorary chairperson of the Georgia Special Olympics and also worked as a volunteer at the Georgia Regional Hospital in Atlanta.
She was admired for her poise, intelligence, and beauty by her fellow Georgia legislators’ spouses, and she was held up as a role model. Each week, she would host as many as seventy-five guests at the Governor’s Mansion. When First Lady Carter found out that her husband, the governor, said he supported the Equal Rights Amendment when she did not, she confronted him privately.
Related: Debunking the Rumors: Is Misty Copeland Still Alive?
The Wedding of Rosalynn Carter
On July 7, 1946, in Plains, Rosalynn and Jimmy Carter tied the knot. Before getting married, Rosalynn had intended to attend Georgia State College for Women and major in interior design. John William “Jack” (born 1947), James Earl “Chip” III (born 1950), Donnel Jeffrey “Jeff” (born 1952), and Amy Lynn were the couple’s children (b. 1967).
Carter had surgery to remove a benign breast tumor in April 1977.
In August of 1977, Carter went to Bethesda Naval Hospital for a gynecological procedure that her press secretary, Mary Hoyt, called “routine private business.”
Related: The Life and Legacy of Patch Adams: Is His Spirit Still Alive?”
How Much Does Rosalynn Carter Have in The Bank?
Together with her husband Jimmy Carter, Rosalynn has a net worth of $10 million, as reported by Celebrity Net Worth.
The royalties from her published books are Carter’s main source of income. After marrying Jimmy, she and he will share in the President’s salary and pension, which will add significantly to their combined wealth. The sum also includes royalties from the roughly fifty books written by the former U.S. president.
The petite activist, who is married to a man named Jimmy, leads a quiet life in a modest home. They have a small ranch with two bedrooms in the suburbs of Plains, Georgia. According to CNBC, the cost of the home the couple is currently renting is around $167,000.
The Defense Council of America provides the car for the former first couple because Rosalynn is the former first lady of the United States. Further, the government provides them with protection.