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In May 1951, Bartlett and his wife, Martha, threw a small dinner party at their home expressly for the purpose of setting up Kennedy and a socialite named Jacqueline Bouvier, whom Bartlett had briefly dated. It wasn’t an instant success. Bartlett later told the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library: “This was an awkward time actually because, as I said, she was going to Europe and he was just getting involved in the [Senate] campaign,” which he would win that fall. But their friends persisted in matchmaking, and just over two years later, Kennedy and Bouvier were engaged. Bartlett was an usher at their wedding, and the Bartletts were godparents to John Jr.

In the early 1950s, the house was rented out to a man named Charles Bartlett, a reporter for the Chattanooga Times. Bartlett covered Capitol Hill, where he met a young and charming photographer from the Washington Times-Herald. Her name was Jacqueline Bouvier. Kennedy and Charles Bartlett met in Palm Beach, Fla., in 1946. Both had served in the Navy in World War II. Both were the sons of wealthy Catholic families who wintered in Florida. Different paths eventually brought them to Washington: Kennedy was elected to Congress; Bartlett became the bureau chief for the Chattanooga Times and would eventually win a Pulitzer Prize.

Bartlett would come home to his wife and rave about how wonderful and witty Bouvier was. He suggested setting up Bouvier and Kennedy to his wife. Kennedy was then known as the most eligible bachelor in Washington, D.C.

In the spring of 1951, Charles and his wife, Martha, decided — with the help of behind-the-scenes machinations by Kennedy family patriarch Joseph Kennedy — to throw a dinner party at the modest red-brick rowhouse on Q Street NW that they were renting. The gathering of about eight was held for the express purpose of introducing the eventual president, a notorious bachelor at the time, to his future bride.

Built in 1895, the Q Street house, which was expanded to include the property next door, sports three bedrooms, and a garage. Back then, Georgetown was not the swanky neighborhood that it is today.

The Bartlett's had their dinner party in May of 1951. Eight people attended the party. Kennedy came first. When Bouvier got there, she parked in front of the house. Everybody drank cocktails out back in the tiny courtyard. According to Bartlett, for dinner there was chicken casserole, French peas out of a can, and raspberry sherbet. After dinner they played a game called “The Question,” similar to today's rendition of 21 questions. By the end of the evening, Kennedy was very taken with the beautiful, charming witty woman. He asked Bouvier if he might escort her home. She said no. She had driven her own car.

Kennedy walked Bouvier to the front door and watched as she went down the stairs and crossed the street. Bartlett turned to say something to Kennedy, but he was too busy looking out the window with a wistful expression. He watched Bouvier open the car door, the dome light came on, and in the car was an outline of a young man. Apparently it was one of Bouvier's old boyfriends that had seen her car and decided to play a trick on her, so she jumped in her car and off they drove.

At the time Bouvier was engaged to a New York stockbroker but the relationship ended shortly after. By late May, Martha Bartlett got a call from Bouvier who had been invited to formal gathering at the Cincinnati Club. She wanted to know if Bartlett thought Kennedy would go with her to the gathering.

Bartlett told Bouvier to call Kennedy. “I know he would love to go with you,” she said.

The original house was just 12 feet wide in 1951, and was later conjoined with the house next door. While the kitchen and bathrooms have been modernized, the historical feel is still there. The original fireplace, plastered walls and old windows are still intact.

Andrews-Dyer, Helena. "The Georgetown house where JFK and Jackie first met is up for sale." Washington Post (Washington, DC) February 6th 2018. .

Hahn, Fritz. "JFK’s D.C.: A guide to the haunts and hangouts of one of Washington’s most beloved locals." Washington Post (Washington, DC) May 18th 2017. , Going Out Guide sec.

Leighton, Ryan. "The house where Camelot started." Boothbay Register (Boothbay Harbor) November 26th 2013. .