1950s Sports – 1956


1950s sports



  • NFL Championship:
    New York Giants annihilated the Chicago Bears (47 – 7)
  • The Eastern Title came down to the final game of the regular season with the Bears hosting the Cardinals, the Cardinals had won a previous meeting,
    the Bears won (38 -21) but a fight involving players, fans and the police stopped game play in the 4th for over half an hour
  • Rule changes included, no grabbing of the face mask and no use of wireless communications between the players and coaches


1950s BaseballBASEBALL

  • World Series:
    (in 7 games) New York Yankees (4 games) defeat the Brooklyn Dodgers (3 games)
  • Don Larsen the Yankees pitcher threw the first perfect game in World Series history in game five, Larsen was of course the series MVP
  • Cy Young Memorial Award was established for the outstanding pitcher of the year
    it went to Don Newcombe of the Brooklyn Dodgers
  • All-Star Game: National League again triumphs over the American League (7 – 3)


1950s Basketball


  • NBA Championship:
  • (in 7 games) Boston Celtics (4 games) over the St. Louis Hawks (3 games)
  • This is Boston’s first National Title win, they would go on to win sixteen more
  • Proving it was the Celtics year the All Star Game was played in Boston with Bob Cousy of Boston winning the game MVP and the 1956 League MVP
  • Bob Cousy would be the total points leader while Bill Russell led with rebounds


1950s Tennis


  • Wimbleton: Men’s Singles:
    (Australian) Lew Hoad defeated (fellow Australian) Ken Rosewall (6-2, 4-6, 7-5, 6-4)
  • Wimbleton: Women’s Singles:
    (American) Shirley Fry defeated (British) Angela Buxton (6-3, 6-1)
  • US (Open) National Championship:  in a reverse of Wimbleton, (Australian) Ken Rosewell this time defeats (fellow Australian) Lew Hoad (4-6, 6-2, 6-3, 6-3)
  • Davis Cup:
    Having won the Americas Zone the U.S. for the second year in a row falls to defending champions Australia in the Challenge Round
    India won the Eastern Zone and Italy defeated Sweden to win the Europe Zone


1950s Golf


  • The Masters:   Jack Burke Jr shot a one over par (289) at Augusta GA
  • Ken Venturi an amateur led the tournament by eight strokes until the last round where he shot an 80
  • Burkes nine stroke swing in scores over Venturi is the biggest come-from-behind win in Masters history
  • U.S. Open :   Cary Middlecoff who shot a (281), played at Oak Hill Country Club, this is his second Open win
  • U.S. Women’s Open : (in a playoff)  Kathy Cornelius who shot a (302) at Northland Country Club
  • PGA Championship :   Jack Burke Jr (match play) at Blue Hill Country Club in Canton, Massachusetts
    Burke won two majors (Masters and the PGA)and was named Player of the Year


1950s Hockey


  • Stanley Cup: (in 5 games)  Montreal Canadiens (4 games) would avenge last years loss to the Detroit Red Wings (1 game)
  • This would make the third consecutive finals for the two teams and the 4th championship meeting in 5 years marking their respective dynasties
    Montreal however would win the next five Cups and be called the greatest team in the history of hockey
  • World Ice Hockey Championships:  regaining their title the Soviet Union (gold medal) goes undefeated to give the United States (silver medal) their only loss


1950S Boxing


  • World Heavyweight Championship: Rocky Marciano the undefeated world heavyweight champion took voluntary retirement in 1956 which made his title open
    after a series of elimination bouts, Floyd Patterson and Archie Moore fought the Championship match with Patterson knocking out Moore in the fifth round
  • Archie Moore who was the standing light heavyweight champ retained that title by winning fights against Yolande Pompey and James J. Parker both by K.O.
  • Ray Robinson fought Carl (Bobo) Olson to a fourth round knock out to keep his middleweight title
  • The World Welterweight Title was returned to Johnny Saxton when he defeated Carmen Basilio in a split decision

Auto Racing

1950s Nascar


  • Indianapolis 500:  Pat Flaherty average speed was 128.490 mph
    he also won the pole position with a record setting 145.596 mph
  • The bricks were replaced with asphalt and speeds increased dramatically
  • After winning the first three races Tim Flock suddenly quits his Chrysler racing team and is replaced by Buck Baker
  • Baker goes on to win fourteen more races and becomes the Grand National Champion
  • The Kiekhaefer /Chrysler team won 33 of the 56 scheduled races in 1956
    even though Chevy and Ford invested over 6 million dollars to develop winning race cars
  • Herb Thomas was the early points leader until he was involved in a controversial near fatal crash
    at Shelby, NC which put him out of racing for the rest of the year

Horse Racing

1950s Horse Racing


  • Kentucky Derby:  Needles, Jockey – David Erb
    Needles came from next to last place and made up 21 lengths to finish far out in front
  • Preakness Stakes:  Fabius was ridden to victory by Bill Hartack,  Needles placed second
  • Belmont Stakes:  Needles proved that his come from behind style was hard to beat
    he was ridden again by Davis Erb,  Fabius ran third