When JFK & Jackie got married: The elegant Bouvier-Kennedy wedding (1953)

Note: This article may feature affiliate links to Amazon or other companies, and purchases made via these links may earn us a small commission at no additional cost to you. Find out more here.

JFK Jacqueline - Jack and Jackie wedding 1953
John F Kennedy & Jacqueline Bouvier wed in ceremony at Newport

Thousands crowd area outside church during senator’s marriage

John and Jackie Kennedy leaving the church as husband and wife

The Baltimore Sun (Baltimore, Maryland) September 13, 1953

Newport, Rhode Island — In one of Newport’s plushiest weddings in years, Jacqueline Lee Bouvier became the bride of Senator John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts today at St. Mary’s Catholic Church.

Leaders of society, politics, business and the arts crowded every inch of the old brown stone church. Outside a crowd estimated by police as between 3,000 and 4,000 jammed narrow Spring Street for blocks.

Many crowded the lawns of the church to catch a glimpse of the brunette society girl who was a Washington newspaper photographer, when she met her husband on an assignment.

Jacqueline Kennedy as a joyful bride

Archbishop officiates at Bouvier-Kennedy wedding

A group of small boys leaned over the open church window to see the ceremony.

Archbishop Richard J. Cushing officiated at the wedding and nuptial mass and read a special message of blessing from the Pope.

The bride had nine attendants, and her sister, Mrs. Michael T. Canfield. New York, was matron of honor.

Janet Jennings Auchincloss and James Lee Auchincloss, the bride’s half-sister and half-brother, served as flower girl and page. Robert F. Kennedy, of Hyannisport, Mass., was his brother’s best man.

MORE: See why Jackie Kennedy was a major fashion icon

Jackie and JFK wedding day

14 ushers take part

The fourteen ushers, socially prominent young men from all parts of the country. included a Democratic colleague of the 36- year-old bridegroom. Senator George Smathers. of Florida.

The slim, 24-year-old bride wore a gown of ivory silk taffeta with a portrait neckline, tight-fitting bodice and full skirt.

Her veil was of heirloom rose point lace, held in place with orange blossoms. Her bouquet was pink and white spray orchids and gardenias.

The bridal party stood in line more than three hours to greet 1,700 guests at Hammersmith Farm, home of the bride’s stepfather and mother, Mrs and Mrs Hugh D. Auchincloss.

A champagne luncheon and dancing followed the reception on the terraces of the 75-acre estate overlooking Narragansett Bay.

Kennedy wedding - cutting the cake

Minks and sables at Jack & Jackie’s wedding

In spite of the summery weather, practically all the women guests wore mink or sable stoles with orchids.

The new Mrs. Kennedy led the dancing under a marquee on an outdoor dance floor with her father-in-law. Joseph P. Kennedy. former Ambassador to the Court of St. James’s.

Among the guests was Mrs. Robert S. Regent Shriver, Jr., the former Eunice Mary Kennedy, whose wedding in May was one of the highlights of the New York social season.

The new Mr and Mrs John F Kennedy


The Bouvier-Kennedy wedding portrait


The Bouvier-Kennedy wedding invitation

Invitation to the wedding of Jacqueline Lee Bouvier and Senator John Fitzgerald Kennedy.

Mr and Mrs Hugh Dudley Auchincloss
Request the Honor of Your Presence
At the Marriage of Mrs Auchincloss’ Daughter
Jacqueline Lee Bouvier
to
The Honorable John Fitzgerald Kennedy
United States Senate
On Saturday, The Twelfth of September
At Eleven O’Clock
St. Mary’s Church
Spring Street
Newport, Rhode Island


Jackie throwing the bridal bouquet


The Kennedy family

Some of the Kennedy clan — including Robert (Bobby) Kennedy and Edward (Ted) Kennedy — with the newlyweds

MORE: The assassination of President Kennedy: News reports, photos & more from when JFK was killed in Dallas (1963)


Jackie’s bridal portrait


Newspaper headline: Senator Kennedy marries heiress

… as police hold back sightseers

Bouvier-Kennedy wedding newspaper headline (1953)


JFK wedding - September 1953 (2)

JFK wedding - September 1953 (1)

John Fitzgerald Kennedy wedding dinner 1953

 

JFK - Kennedy wedding reception 1953

Jack and Jackie - Mr and Mrs Kennedy at their outdoor wedding reception 1950s

If you liked this post, please share it! You can also get our free newsletter, follow us on Facebook & Pinterest, plus see exclusive retro-inspired products in our shop. Thanks for visiting!

More stories you might like

Check out our books!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Because the fun never ends:

Join the fun

Don’t miss out on the latest and greatest vintage stuff!

Sign up for our free weekly newsletter here.