Jackie Kennedy Onassis: Biography, Facts, And Things You Didn't Know

By Grace Taylor
Former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy enjoys herself at a picnic circa the 1960s. (Getty Images)

It would be impossible for any parent to know that their daughter would grow up to be not only a scholar and journalist but also a century-defining fashion icon and First Lady of the United States, but it wasn't a surprise for wealthy Wall Street stock broker John Vernou Bouvier III and his socialite wife, Janet Lee, that their daughter, born July 28, 1929 as Jacqueline Lee Bouvier, became a woman of great renown.

Of course, she was born a beauty—her father called her "the most beautiful daughter a man ever had," which sounds very sweet until you realize she had a sister—but more importantly, she was brilliant and notably tenacious, even at a young age. She went to the finest schools Manhattan had to offer, and by the time she was in high school, she was fluent in French, Spanish, and Italian. While her grades were top notch, her teachers weren't huge fans, as she often acted out, bored by a curriculum she sailed through.

College also proved rocky. She dropped out of the famed "Seven Sister" Vassar College, opting instead for a stint in Paris before finally finishing her academic career at the co-ed and more modern George Washington University. She went on to apply her literary talents to big name publications like Vogue Magazine and the Washington Times Herald.

It was her career in journalism that eventually led her to a budding but ambitious politician running for a U.S. Senate seat in Massachusetts at the relatively young age of 35. Although the two were instantly smitten with each other, future Senator John F. Kennedy waited until he actually won the seat to propose to her. They married on September 12, 1953.