Jackie Kennedy Brought Glamour and The Arts to America

Violet Chube, News Editor

Growing up, I had never learned about Jackie Kennedy until last year in my English class when we had to write an essay about a historical woman and connect them to characters we had read throughout the year. I had no idea about who I wanted to write my paper on until one afternoon while I was on Google. I was looking up influential women in American history, and I stumbled upon Jackie Kennedy and I’m glad that I did.

Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis is known for being the First Lady of the United States. She was married to President John F. Kennedy. Jackie was different from all the previous First Ladies. She radiated an energy that was never seen before, and she broke the typical stereotypes of a young wife in the 1960s. One of the things she did was restore the White House. I know it does not seem like a big deal, but for her time, it was. She modernized it, giving the White House a refreshing and young look. She put emphasis on the fact that she wanted the White House to feel like home for her and her family. She decorated it with art that she picked out. After she restored the White House, she gave a tour of the new restorations to the whole nation on national television. This started her influence on women’s fashion for American women.

Jackie wore trendy suits and dresses for every event that she was seen at. Everyone loved her for her young spirit shown through her fashion. She was known to be a trendsetter for American women in the 1960’s.

Jackie also protested the demolition of American landmarks. A quote explains, “While she was the first lady, she helped to stop the destruction of historic buildings along the square, including the Renwick Building, now part of the Smithsonian Institution. In New York City, she led a campaign to save and renovate Grand Central Station.”

In addition, Jackie was known to be a welcoming spirit. During her husband’s presidency, she traveled throughout the world giving speeches. She made it a point to know the languages of where she would speak. She also made it a point to learn about different cultures around the world.

Unfortunately, Jackie suffered through a lot of grief publicly. Her husband was assassinated right next to her while they were on a presidential tour through the streets of Dallas, Texas. After this, Jackie made sure that her two children could grieve in private, not in the public media. Throughout this hard time, she put her children first and made sure they were okay. She did the best she could to have her children grow up having a normal life.

Jackie is one of my many female role models. She made it socially acceptable for women in the 1960s to wear chic clothing. Jackie broke the typical women stereotype with her fashion. In addition, she also was a voice for the people when they did not have one. She stood up for rights like the destruction of buildings and used her voice for the greater good.

She also inspired me in her personal life. When her husband was assassinated, the first thing she did was put her children above everything. She made her children her top priority during the lowest point of her life. She inspires me to be a strong independent woman. She also inspires me to be an activist for rights for which I am passionate about.