1960s Pop History – 1968

President: Lyndon B Johnson, Vice President: Hubert H. Humphrey
The population of the United States is 199,399,000
National Debt is 368.7 Billion (+28.3 billion, mostly due to the war)
Unemployment is 3.8% (unchanged)
Life Expectancy: 70.2 years
Family median income = $7,743 (up $600. from 1967)
Academy Award :  In the Heat of the Night (click to buy) (Best Picture)
Grammy Award :Up-Up and Away (click to buy) (Best Song); Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (click to buy) (Best Album)
Pulitzer Prize : The Confessions of Nat Turner (click to buy) (Fiction)
Inflation rate = 4.72%
Sen. Robert F. (Bobby) Kennedy is shot and critically wounded by Sirhan Sirhan in a Los Angeles hotel after a campaign speech, five other people were wounded
President Johnson announces he will not seek or accept the nomination of his party for the Presidency
Martin Luther King, Jr. is shot dead by James Earl Ray as he stepped out on the balcony of his Memphis motel room
Martin Luther King’s death sparks race riots in most major U.S. cities causing 50 million in damage with over 22,000 arrests and 46 deaths
North Korea seizes the USS Pueblo, claiming the ship violated its territorial waters while spying and held the crew captive for 11 months
The Tet Offensive sees N. Vietnamese troops attacking targets all over S. Vietnam signalling a worsening of the war for the U.S.
The Democratic National Convention nominates Hubert Humphrey while outside thousands of anti-war protesters are met with a violent response from Chicago police
The musical “Hair” (click for soundtrack) officially opens on Broadway
The Supreme Court rules that the police must inform suspects of their rights before questioning them called Miranda rights (Miranda v. Arizona)
Saddam Hussein comes into power in Iraq after a coup d’état
The Republican National Convention in Miami Beach nominates Richard Nixon, protests are held to a minimum because of the location
The Consumer Credit Protection Act is passed which included the “Truth in Lending” provisions
Several planes are hijacked from Florida and forced to land in Cuba prompting future baggage and passenger searches on all flights
Integrated Electronics Corporation (Intel) is founded by Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore
Mattel produces the first Hot Wheels toy cars
Boeing introduces it’s newest plane the 747
Former U.S. First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy marries Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis
Virginia Slims cigarettes are marketed to women, the “Slims” to remind them that smoking is not fattening
Marriott Corp. creates Roy Rogers Family Restaurants in cooperation with the cowboy singer
The Jacuzzi Whirlpool bath is introduced at California’s Orange County Fair
Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein and Anne Klein (no relation) all debut their fashions
The 911 emergency telephone number is instituted in around 600 cities
A first class stamp climbs to $0.06
Not nominated for anything nor very popular at the box office, 2001: A Space Odyssey, proved to be out of this world
Other memorable movies were: Bullitt, Rosemary’s Baby, The Green Berets, and The Planet of the Apes
The following TV shows debuted: Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In, Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, Dad’s Army, Adam-12, The Doris Day Show, Mod Squad, 60 Minutes and Hawaii Five-O    (click show title for more info)

See also Celebrity Birthdays 1968

Michael Rich :