Alaska Becomes 49th State

Alaska Becomes 49th State

In January 1959, President Eisenhower signed a special proclamation admitting the territory of Alaska into the Union as the 49th and largest state. Although indigenous peoples inhabited the region for centuries, Europeans first discovered Alaska in 1741. Russian...

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Kingston Trio – Tom Dooley 

Kingston Trio – Tom Dooley 

The Kingston Trio, an American folk and pop group from San Fancisco helped launch the folk music revival of the late 1950s. The original lineup of Dave Guard, Bob Shane, and Nick Reynolds rose to international popularity fueled by an...

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Boris Pasternak Forced to Decline Nobel Prize

Boris Pasternak Forced to Decline Nobel Prize

Growing up in Moscow, the son of an artist and concert pianist, Boris Pasternak anandoned a career as a composer to study philosophy in Germany. On returning to Moscow, he became an author and was awarded the 1958 Nobel Prize for literature. His novel Doctor Zhivago...

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Little Rock Voters Close Public Schools 

Little Rock Voters Close Public Schools 

In September 1958, Gov. Orval Faubus closed all Little Rock, Arkansas public high schools for one year rather than allow integration to continue, leaving 3,665 black and white students without access to public education. Source: Library of Congress.

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Independence Day

Independence Day

https://youtu.be/XRLRKNXVuTY Independence Day (Fourth of July) is a federal holiday commemorating the Declaration of Independence of the United States, which was ratified by the Second Continental Congress on July 4, 1776. Congress declared that the thirteen American...

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Second Taiwan Strait Crisis

Second Taiwan Strait Crisis

https://youtu.be/lS2DPx-4sbI 1958 Taiwan Strait Crisis, was a conflict between the People's Republic of China (PRC) and the Republic of China (ROC). The PRC shelled the islands of Kinmen(Quemoy) and the Matsu Islands along the east coast...

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USS Nautilus Submarine Travels Beneath North Pole

USS Nautilus Submarine Travels Beneath North Pole

https://youtu.be/vjK126hN4qc USS Nautilus (SSN-571) was the world's first operational nuclear-powered submarine and the first submarine to complete a submerged transit of the North Pole in August 1958. The nuclear submarine...

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Loving v. Virginia Landmark Court Case

Loving v. Virginia Landmark Court Case

Loving v. Virginia was a 1958 Supreme Court case that struck down state laws banning interracial marriage in the United States. With the help of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Richard and Mildred Loving, a white man and Black woman whose marriage was...

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US Marines Sent To Lebanon

US Marines Sent To Lebanon

https://youtu.be/0qFbBgDFzBM In July 1958 President Eisenhower ordered 5,000 US Marines to Lebanon, at the request of that country’s president, to face a perceived threat by Muslim rebels and help end a short-lived civil war. Eisenhower justified his decision to send...

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Cuban Rebels Capture US Sailors & Marines

Cuban Rebels Capture US Sailors & Marines

In June 1958, Cuban rebel forces captured 29 Sailors and Marines as they returned to Guantamano from leave in Cuba. The hostages were detained in the hills for 22 days, then released . Source: Naval Technology

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Execution of Hungarian Communist Leader 

Execution of Hungarian Communist Leader 

Imre Nagy served as Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Hungarian People's Republic from 1953 to 1955. In 1956 Nagy. a committed communist, became leader of the Hungarian Revolution against the Soviet-backed government....

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Nuclear Waste in Marshall Islands

Nuclear Waste in Marshall Islands

The Runit Dome (aka Cactus Dome) is a 377 foot X 18 inch dome of radioactive debris, entombed in concrete, that stems from nuclear tests conducted in the Enewetak Atoll of the Marshall Islands by the United States between 1946...

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De Gaulle Returns to Power

De Gaulle Returns to Power

In May 1958  during the turmoil of the Algerian War of Independence (1954–1962) Charles de Gaulle returned to power after a twelve-year absence. De Gaulle's newly formed cabinet was approved by the National Assembly by 329 votes against 224,...

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U.S. plan to explore space near the moon

U.S. plan to explore space near the moon

https://youtu.be/38pfWCaSZ9Y During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union began to build powerful new rockets—which they would eventually use to send humans into space and, ultimately, to the moon. In 1958 NASA launched Project Mercury with three...

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The Bridge on the River Kwai

The Bridge on the River Kwai

https://youtu.be/RlC7XBayj0s At the 30th Academy Awards in 1958, The Bridge on the River Kwai won seven awards, including best picture of 1957. Its director, David Lean, and star Alec Guinness also received Oscars.  The Bridge on the River Kwai was based on...

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Elvis Joins the US Army

Elvis Joins the US Army

Elvis Aron Presley entered the United States Army at Memphis, Tennessee in March 1958. During his active military career Presley served as a member of two different armor battalions. At the 2d Medium Tank Battalion, 37th Armor in Fort Hood, Texas he completed basic...

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Venezuelan Protesters Attack Nixon Cavalcade

Venezuelan Protesters Attack Nixon Cavalcade

In April-May1958, on a goodwill trip to Latin America, Vice President Richard Nixon engaged in angry debates with student groups in Peru and Uruguay. Then, in Caracas, Venezuela, a large crowd pelted his car, smashing the windows. Nixon escaped from the crowd and...

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Van Cliburn wins Moscow Competition

Van Cliburn wins Moscow Competition

In April 1958, at the height of the Cold War, the Texan pianist, Van Cliburn won the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow. Because the contest was intended to demonstrate Soviet cultural superiority, the judges asked permission of Soviet leader Nikita...

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USSR Declares Atomic Testing Halt 

USSR Declares Atomic Testing Halt 

https://youtu.be/QrNN5ZhsC1I   In March 1958 the Soviet Union declared it was halting tests of atomic and hydrogen bombs. It called on the other nuclear powers, the United States and Britain, to do the same. Moscow warned that it would resume testing if their example...

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Unarmed Nuclear Bomb Dropped on South Carolina

Unarmed Nuclear Bomb Dropped on South Carolina

https://youtu.be/u1s46O9FK-E In March 1958 a B-47 pilot accidentally grabbed the bomb bay door lever and released an unarmed nuclear bomb at 15,000 feet over the suburbs of Florence, South Carolina. The bomb's high explosives exploded on impact, wrecking a house and...

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Teenage Fashion

Teenage Fashion

https://youtu.be/zlJFOZMEIGI In the 1950s many teenage girls wore circle skirts with fitted blouses, wide belts, bobby socks and flat shoes emphasizing the hourglass shape... ETSY Casual girl's wear 1950s Pinterest Some teen boys were inspired by...

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US Launches Explorer 1

US Launches Explorer 1

https://youtu.be/NfMIrKkzRx8 In January 1958 the U.S. Army Ballistic Missile Agency successfully launched a satellite using a Jupiter C rocket developed by Dr. Wernher von Braun. The satellite carried a cosmic ray detector designed to measure the radiation environment...

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