1963 History, Trivia and Fun Facts
Quick Facts from 1963:
- World Changing Event: President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, on Nov. 22, 1963.
- Another World Changing Event: Thich Quang Duc’s self-immolation caused many Americans to question why we were in Vietnam.
- The Top Song was Sugar Shack by Jimmy Gilmore and the Fireballs
- The Movies to Watch include Cleopatra and Dr. No
- The Most Famous Person in America was probably Doris Day
- Notable books include: Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak and The Feminine Mystiqueby Betty Friedan
- Soviet cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova became the first woman to travel into space, giving them bonus points in The Space Race.
- Price of a postage stamp in 1963: 5 cents
Turtle kit (bowl, food, ornament & gravel): 44 cents
Turtle: 21-49 cents each
- The Funny Late Show Host: Steve Allen
The Funny Lady was: Moms Mabley
- The Crazy Conspiracy: Bob Dylan stole Blowin’ in the Wind from New Jersey high-school student, Lorre Wyatt.
- The Feminine Revolution : Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique inaugurated the modern women’s rights movement.
Top Ten Baby Names of 1963:
Lisa, Mary, Susan, Karen, Linda, Michael, John, David, James, Robert
The Hotties, Sex Symbols and Fashion Icons:
LizTsUrsula Andress, Brigitte Bardot, Carroll Baker, Honor Blackman, Claudia Cardinale, Doris Day, Angie Dickinson, Annette Funicello, Audrey Hepburn, Sophia Loren, Jayne Mansfield, Ann-Margret, Julie Newmar, Kim Novak, Leslie Parrish, Elke Sommer, Stella Stevens, Elizabeth Taylor, Veruschka
Sex Symbols and Hollywood Hunks:
Paul McCartney, John Lennon, Ringo Starr, George Harrison, Sean Connery, Elvis Presley, Gregory Peck
“From Dallas, Texas, the flash, apparently official… President Kennedy died at 1 p.m. Central Standard Time, 2:00 Eastern Standard Time, some 38 minutes ago.”
– Walter Cronkite
“Oh I wish I were an Oscar Meyer wiener. That is what I truly want to be.”
– Oscar Meyer Hot Dog Commercial
Time Magazine’s Man of the Year:
Martin Luther King, Jr
Jacquelyn Mayer (Sandusky, OH)
Marite Ozers (Illinois)
Airplane Celebrity Death: Patsy Cline
Presidential assassination: John F Kennedy & Magic Bullet Theory
The JFK assassination is the mother of all modern conspiracy theories.
Pop Culture History:
June 17 – The Supreme Court ruled that laws requiring reciting The Lord’s Prayer or Bible versus in public schools were unconstitutional.
Valentia Tershkova was the first woman in space, on the Vostok 6. She orbited Earth 48 times.
Kodak introduced the Instamatic camera.
‘Ma’ Bell Telephone introduced the push button telephone
Boxer Sonny Liston was the first to win a million dollars in a single bout when he beat Floyd Patterson, in Chicago on September 25th.
Elizabeth Taylor was the first actress to earn $1,000,000 for a single film – ‘Cleopatra.’
Vietnamese Buddhist monk Thich Quang Duc publicly immolated himself on a street in Saigon to protest the anti-Buddhist policies of President Ngo Dinh Diem.
Mississippi physician James D. Hardy performed the first successful lung transplant.
12 minutes to midnight, according to the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists.
1963: “After a decade of almost non-stop nuclear tests, the United States and Soviet Union sign the Partial Test Ban Treaty, which ends all atmospheric nuclear testing. While it does not outlaw underground testing, the treaty represents progress in at least slowing the arms race. It also signals awareness among the Soviets and United States that they need to work together to prevent nuclear annihilation.”
Troll Dolls were everywhere.
Betty Friedan’s ‘The Feminine Mystique’ helped establish the Feminist Movement.
1st appearances & 1963’s Most Popular Christmas gifts, toys and presents:
Mouse Trap, Allan Sherwood (Barbie and Ken’s friend), Easy Bake Oven, Big Loo.
‘Dam Things’ trolls were the original Troll Dolls, first created in the 1950s. They got much cuter, and were produced by several companies by the early 1960s.
Best Film Oscar Winner:
Lawrence of Arabia (presented in 1963)
Broadway Show – Barefoot in the Park (Play) Opened on October 23, 1963 and Closed: June 25, 1967
Popular and Notable Books From 1963:
Babies So Tall Board Book by Gyo Fujikawa
The Battle of the Villa Fiorita by Rumer Godden
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
Richard Scarry’s Best Word Book by Richard Scarry
Caravans by James A. Michener
Cat’s Cradle – Kurt Vonnegut
City of Night by John Rechy
Elizabeth Appleton by John O’Hara
The Feminine Mystique – Betty Friedan
The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin
The Glass-Blowers by Daphne du Maurier
Grandmother and the Priests by Taylor Caldwell
The Group by Mary McCarthy
Hop on Pop by Dr. Seuss
I Am a Bunny by Ole Risom and Richard Scarry
On Her Majesty’s Secret Service by Ian Fleming
Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters, and Seymour-An Introduction by J.D. Salinger
The Sand Pebbles by Richard McKenna
Seven Days in May by Fletcher Knebel
The Shoes of the Fisherman by Morris West
Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
1963 Most Popular TV shows:
1. Beverly Hillbillies (CBS)
2. Bonanza (NBC)
3. The Dick Van Dyke Show (CBS)
4. Petticoat Junction (CBS)
5. The Andy Griffith Show (CBS)
6. The Lucy Show (CBS)
7. Candid Camera (CBS)
8. The Ed Sullivan Show (CBS)
9. The Danny Thomas Show (CBS)
10. My Favorite Martian (CBS)
1963 Billboard Number One Songs
December 22, 1962 – January 11, 1963:
Telstar – The Tornadoes
January 12 – January 25:
Go Away Little Girl – Steve Lawrence
January 26 – February 8:
Walk Right In – The Rooftop Singers
February 9 – March 1:
Hey Paula – Paul & Paula
March 2 – March 22:
Walk Like A Man – The Four Seasons
March 23 – March 29:
Our Day Will Come – Ruby & The Romantics
March 30 – April 26:
He’s So Fine – The Chiffons
April 27 – May 17:
I Will Follow Him – Little Peggy March
May 18 – May 30:
If You Wanna Be Happy – Jimmy Soul
June 1 – June 14:
It’s My Party – Lesley Gore
June 15 – July 5:
Sukiyaki – Kyu Sakamoto
July 6 – July 19:
Easier Said Than Done – The Essex
July 20 – August 2:
Surf City – Jan & Dean
August 3 – August 9:
So Much In Love – The Tymes
August 10 – August 30:
Fingertips – Pt 2 – Little Stevie Wonder
August 31 – September 20:
My Boyfriend’s Back – The Angels
September 21 – October 11:
Blue Velvet – Bobby Vinton
October 12 – November 15:
Sugar Shack – Jimmy Gilmer & The Fireballs
November 16 – November 22:
Deep Purple – Nino Tempo & April Stevens
November 23 – December 6:
I’m Leaving It Up To You – Dale & Grace
December 7, 1963 – January 3, 1964:
Dominique – The Singing Nun
World Series Champions: Los Angeles Dodgers
NFL Champions: Chicago Bears
AFL Champions: San Diego Chargers
NBA Champions: Boston Celtics
Stanley Cup Champs: Toronto Maple Leafs
U.S. Open Golf Julius Boros
U.S. Tennis: (Men/Ladies) Rafael Osuna/Maria Bueno
Wimbledon (Men/Women): Chuck McKinley/Margaret Smoth
NCAA Football Champions: Texas
NCAA Basketball Champions: Loyola
Kentucky Derby: Chateaugay