Former President Jimmy Carter and first lady Rosalynn Carter, the longest-married presidential couple in U.S. history, celebrated their 74th wedding anniversary on Tuesday.
Jimmy Carter, 95, met then-Rosalynn Smith, 92, though his younger sister, Ruth, who was childhood friends with Rosalynn. They began dating in 1945 while Jimmy Carter was home from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. After their first date, Jimmy Carter told his mother that Rosalynn was the woman he was going to marry.
The couple exchanged vows July 7, 1946, in their hometown of Plains, Georgia. Since then, they've lived in the Georgia Governor's Mansion and the White House. Together they've raised four children.
In 1982, the Carters founded the Carter Center, an organization aimed at resolving issues around human rights and democracy. Their work earned the couple a Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1999. Then-President Bill Clinton said the couple has “done more good things for more people in more places than any other couple on Earth.”
On his 75th birthday in 1999, Jimmy Carter said the most important decision he ever made in his life was “Marrying Rosalynn.”