1950s Pop History – 1958


The AARP
Class of 2008

(Celebrity Birthdays)

PRICES for 1958
What A Year It Was! 1958 Turning 50?
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some books on being 50.

Note: Music History and Song Lists for 1958 are located HERE

By now, more than 45 million American households have television sets.
The John Birch Society, a radical anti-Communist organization, is created in the U.S.
Dr. Zhivago is published in the US. Banned in the USSR, Zhivago won author Boris Pasternak the Nobel Prize which he was forced to decline due to political forces at home.
The price of 1st class US postage is raised to 4¢ from 3¢ where it had been for 26 years. Hard to believe – only a penny in 26 years!
Charles de Gaulle becomes premier of France, a position he will hold until 1969.
The Jolly Green Giant appears on TV with less than stellar results! In his first incarnation he looks like a monster which scares kids. So they lightened him up and added “Ho, ho, ho” and the lilting “Good things from the garden” song.
Modern consumer credit is born. The American Express Company introduces a charge card meant to compete with the successful Diners Club card. The Bank of American introduces the BankAmericard, which will become the Visa card.
Crest toothpaste inaugurates the “Look, Ma! No cavities!” ad campaign.
Eighteen-year-old Frank Carney sees a story in the Saturday Evening Post about the “pizza fad” among teenagers and college students. With $600 borrowed from his mother, he opens the first Pizza Hut in Wichita, Kan.
On the Air! You’d find 3,156 AM radio, 537 FM radio and 492 TV Stations.
31.3% of all domestic passenger travel was by railroad; 27.7% by bus; and 38% by air.
30.6% of all advertising dollars are spent on newspapers – 13.3% on TV. Complete allocation of ad dollars.
It’s Here! The Hula Hoop! For more, see the FADS section.
Sweet n’ Low is introduced as an artificial Sweetener, using saccharin instead of sugar. Sweet’N Low received U.S. trademark patent no. 1,000,000.
UP & International News Service merge into United Press International
Vice President Richard Nixon is shoved, stoned, booed & spat upon by protesters in Peru as he makes a goodwill tour of South and Latin American.
And the winner is…Oscar stuff.
NASA is created and Explorer is launched. A big year for the US in the Space Race.
RIAA awards the very first Gold record – to Perry Como. Some gold album stats.
The first ever Grammy Awards! see the winners
In Sports…
Sterophonic recordings, which use two separately recorded channels of sound to recreate a sense of space, come into commercial use. Now this is progress!
Friskees introduces the first dry cat food
Pope Pius XII declares Saint Clare of Assisi patron saint of television. Her placement on the television set is said to guarantee good reception. Maybe I should send one to my cable operator.
 Pope Pius XII dies.  Angelo G Roncalli crowned Pope John XXIII.
Harry Winston, Inc. donates the 45.52 carat Hope Diamond to the Smithsonian Institution.
This is the peak year for drive-in movies with 4,063 outdoor screens nationwide.
In the worst recession since World War II, nearly 5.5 million people are out of work.
400 million frozen pot pies are sold in the U.S. There’s a statistic you won’t see just anywhere.
The first women are admitted to the British House of Lords. Oh, jolly good!
Bill and Mark Richards of Dana Point, CA, invented the first skateboard. They attached rollerskate wheels to a square board and sold them at their Val Surf Shop for $8 each.
The first domestic jet-airline passenger service is begun by National Airlines between New York City and Miami.
9,000 scientists of 43 nations petition UN for nuclear test ban.
Prime commercial paper (4 to 6 mos) was at 2.46%. In New York City a commercial loan ran 4.12%
Pulitzer prize awarded to James Agee for his book Death in the Family Buy the book!
Air Force Academy opens in Colorado Springs, CO. The all male facility won’t go co-ed unto 1976.
Mao Tse tung starts “Great leap forward” movement in China
Charles Starkweather and Caril Fugate go on their killing spree.
The nuclear submarine Nautilus traverses the North Pole under the polar icecap.
The National Association of Broadcasters bans subliminal ads. Read the important story.
Cocoa Krispies breakfast food is introduced by the Kellogg Company; it’s 45.9% sugar.
This year in the Civil Rights movement.
There is a 55.9% business failure rate.Chart for 1946-1964
The Chevrolet Impala is introduced!
Dr Ake Senning installs the first pacemaker.
There are 36,981 motor vehicle related deaths. While in the air, there were 8 accidents resulting in 125 fatalities.
There are 37,955 motor vehicle related deaths. While in the air, there were 6 accidents resulting in 88 fatalities.
Unemployment is 6.8%
U.S. GNP (Gross National Product) is $468.3 billion
Candace Rich :