Wal-Mart was founded in Rogers, Arkansas.
Unmanned Ranger spacecraft reaches the moon.
The U.S. establishes a military assistance command in Saigon.
JFK bans all Cuba trade(except for certain foods and medicines).
10,000 U.S. troops were sent to Vietnam in the past year,
The Cuban missile crisis occurred.
Richard Nixon was defeated in his bid to be Governor of California and vowed to stay out of politics forever: “You won’t have Richard Nixon to kick around anymore.”
John Glenn became the first American in orbit.
The Telstar communications satellite is launched.
Marilyn Monroe, 36, dies from an alleged overdose of sleeping pills.
Protected by federal officers, Air Force veteran James Meredith begins classes at the University of Mississippi.
Scientists discover that the drug Thalidomide causes deformities in babies.
Over 1.5 million people left New York City for the suburbs in the past decade.
90% of households have at least one TV.
Dance addicts, particularly twist aficionados, are buying anything with fringe. Shake it, baby!
Black pants and black turtleneck sweaters are also popular.
The bouffant hair style continues.
The big fads are coloring books (particularly the JFK and Caroline editions), worry beads, and glue sniffing!!
Pop art becomes in (such as Andy Warhol’s soup can paintings and Ray Lichenstein’s comic strips).
“45” r.p.m. single records are now 98 cents. LP record albums cost $3.98 for monaural, $4.98 for stereo.
The first nuclear warhead was fired from a sub.
The first tab openers appeared on soft drink and beer aluminum cans.
Diet-Rite Cola was the first sugar-free soft drink sold nationwide.
The first long-distance xerography was done.
Fillet O’ Fish was added to the McDonald’s chain for the first time.
Dry soup mixes debuted.
Minnesota won the Rose Bowl, LSU, the Orange Bowl, Alabama the Sugar Bowl, and Texas, the Cotton Bowl.
The NCAA Basketball Championships was won by Cincinnati (2 years in a row now), The National Invitation, by Dayton, and the NCAA College Football one by Southern California.
The New York Yankees won the World Series (2 years in a row).
The 1962 Academy Award, or Oscar, went to Gregory Peck, Best Actor for “To Kill A Mockingbird” and to Anne Bancroft, Best Actress, for “The Miracle Worker.”
Miss North Carolina, Maria Fletcher, was crowned Miss America.
TIME magazine’s Man Of The Year was Pope John XXIII.
Popular teen movies included: “Don’t Knock The Twist”, “FollowThe Boys”, “Girls! Girls! Girls!”, and “Kid Galahad”. Overall popular movies were: ” Days Of Wine And Roses”, “Gypsy”, “Lawrence Of Arabia”, “The Music Man”, and “To Kill A Mockingbird.”
Westerns were still popular on TV. (The top three shows were “Wagon Train”, “Bonanza”, and “Gunsmoke”).
New shows included ” The Beverly Hillbillies”, “McHale’s Navy”, and ” The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson”(who took over from Jack Paar).
68% of NBC programming prime-time was now in color. CBS was still all black and white, and ABC had 3 and a half hours of color.
John Glenn’s flight was seen by 135 million.
Pay TV starts in Hartford, Connecticut.
And 80 million watched the TV special, “A Tour Of The White House With Mrs. John F. Kennedy.”
The best-selling fiction book was “Ship Of Fools” by Katherine Anne Porter; non-fiction was ” Calories Don’t Count” by Dr. Herman Taller.
Other popular books included: “Silent Spring” by Rachel Carson, ” One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest” by Ken Kesey, “Franny and Zooey” by J. D. Salinger, “Happiness Is A Warm Puppy”-Charles M. Schulz, “Sex and The Single Girl”- Helen Gurley Brown, and “The Naked Lunch”-William Burroughs
There are at least 16 hot rod magazines out, with a total monthly circulation of 3 million (VAROOOMM!).
Spider Man debuts in Amazing Fantasy Comics no. 15.
Marvel Comics debuts The Incredible Hulk.
TV’s Dr. Kildare also becomes a comic strip.
And Little Annie Fanny debuts in Playboy magazine.
Here are the no. 1 hits of 1962! (In chronological order):
Jan. 13-“The Twist”(was also no.1 on 09/19/60)-Chubby Checker 27-“Peppermint Twist”-Joey Dee and The Starliters Feb. 17-“Duke Of Earl”-Gene Chandler Mar. 10-“Hey! Baby”-Bruce Channel 31-“Don’t Break The Heart That Loves You”-Connie Francis April 7-“Johnny Angel”-Shelley Fabares 21-“Good Luck Charm”-Elvis Presley May 5-“Soldier Boy”-The Shirelles 26-“Stranger On The Shore”-Mr. Acker Bilk June 2-“I Can’t Stop Loving You”-Ray Charles July 2-“The Stripper”-David Rose 14-“Roses Are Red”-Bobby Vinton Aug. 11-“Breaking Up Is Hard To Do”-Neil Sedaka 25-“The Loco-Motion”-Little Eva Sept. 1″Shelia”-Tommy Roe 15-“Sherry”-The Four Seasons Oct. 20-“Monster Mash”-Bobby “Boris” Pickett and The Crypt Kickers Nov. 3-“He’s A Rebel”-The Crystals 17-“Big Girls Don’t Cry”-The Four Seasons Dec. 22-“Telstar”-The Tornadoes