Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum
Class, integrity, honesty, and equality are words often used to describe Jimmy Carter. From humble, small roots in Georgia to the White House, the Carter Presidential Library showcases the best and worst events of President Carter’s life. With a less than stellar presidential term, Jimmy Carter stands the test of time as both a man and a former president. With many accolades that follow his name and a Nobel Peace Prize in his back pocket, Jimmy Carter’s legacy will continue to live on long after he is gone from this Earth.
Backstory and Context
Carter was born in 1924 in Plains, Georgia where he would grow up and call home for his entire life. Carter was good-natured and raised in a strongly religious family that wholeheartedly believed in the Gospel of Jesus Christ and Christian values. In the 1940’s, Carter would attend and graduate from the Military Academy and marry his childhood friend, Rosalyn Carter. Through 1951, Jimmy Carter would work his way up the ranks in the Navy to Lieutenant and would be handpicked by a ranking officer to help develop the United States nuclear submarine program. Unfortunately, soon after, Carter’s father would pass away leaving the family peanut farm without a leading male figure. Jimmy would return home and build his resume for Washington.
Jimmy Carter returned to Plains, Georgia and was elected to the local school board followed by the Georgia legislature. After serving in the state legislature he ran for governor twice, the first time being unsuccessful, and then finally being elected his second attempt. Immediately following his election, the Watergate Scandal and Richard Nixon’s presidency imploded leaving a massive tear and rift in the American public’s life. Carter began a platform and soon announced his bid to run for President in the 1976 election. Carter’s chances were very good as he ran as an honest, truth-telling man rather than a politician. Carter was an outsider and separate from the muck that was currently Washington, DC. With a strong moral background, honest platform, and outsider vibe, Carter inched passed President Ford to win the presidency.
Unfortunately, Carter’s image of being an outsider was a liability as Congress would often refuse to work with the new President on account of him not being one of their own. Despite this, Carter still gave his best effort to the country becoming a nature-friendly President who asked the American people to wear an extra coat rather than turn on the heater. Jimmy Carter’s presidency was overshadowed by weak legislative leadership, oil shortages, and the hostage situation that manifested towards the end of his presidency. With the economy in critical condition and over fifty American held hostages overseas, Jimmy Carter lost his reelection bid in stunning fashion to Ronald Reagan. Despite this, Carter still made sure that he was the first to greet the hostages when they were released in early 1981.
Once he left the White House In the winter of 1981, President Carter continued to live his life as he declared he would on the campaign trail. He continues to this day to use his former presidential star power to his advantage to push equality and democracy across the globe. Carter continues to write books, build houses with Habitat for Humanity, and give speeches to support freedom, democracy, and fairness. In 2002, President Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his lifetime of servitude to the people of the world.
The Carter Presidential library is located on the outskirts of Atlanta, Georgia and serves as a monument to President Carter’s achievements and legacy. Home to many federal and privately owned documents, the Library serves as a perfect one-stop tour of President Carter’s life and the presidency. The museum also comes equipped with a lifesize replica of Carter's Oval Office. as well as an exhibit on the former president's Nobel Prize.
James Carter. WhiteHouse.gov. Accessed April 28, 2017. https://www.whitehouse.gov/1600/presidents/jimmycarter.
Home. Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum. Accessed April 26, 2017. https://www.jimmycarterlibrary.gov/.