DHS Class of 1961
|43rd Reunion Pictures|
Notable Events in 1961
John F. Kennedy is inaugurated as President on January 20. Lyndon B. Johnson is Vice President. A quote from President Kennedy's inaugural address will reverberate again and again throughout history: "Ask not what your country can do for you; Ask what you can do for your country."
On January 3, the U.S. breaks diplomatic relations with Cuba. Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba begins, ending in failure April 19th.
On March 1, President Kennedy announces the formation of the Peace Corps.
The Vietnam War officially begins as the first American helicopters arrive in Saigon along with 400 U.S. personnel.
On April 17 - 20, approximately 1,200 exiles invade Cuba at the Bay of Pigs in an attempt to overthrow Fidel Castro. The assault, planned by the U.S., ends in disaster.
In July, British troops are sent to Kuwait to counter an Iraq threat of invasion.
On August 13, East Germany erects the Berlin Wall between East and West Berlin to halt the flood of refugees.
In September, President Kennedy increases the minimum wage from $1.00 to $1.15. It is scheduled to be increased again in 1963 to $1.25.
OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries) is formally established.
On May 5, Alan B. Shepard becomes the first U.S. astronaut in space. Aboard Freedom 7, he goes up 116.5 miles and lands safely after his 15 minute 28 second trip over the Atlantic.
Yo-yo's become the national craze after yo-yo experts demonstrate their skills on television.
Ray Kroc borrows $2.7 million and buys out the McDonald brothers. He then sets up 200 more hamburger stands and begins to create what would become an empire. McDonald's would remain the world's largest and most popular fast food chain throughout the rest of the century.
Chubby Checker popularizes the Twist on The Ed Sullivan Show.
Ben Casey and Dr. Kildare usher in a new era of doctor shows. Dr. Ben Casey is played by Vince Edwards and Dr. James Kildare is played by Richard Chamberlain. Both shows will go on to run for five years.
The Dick Van Dyke Show becomes a hit situation comedy in the years that follow. Dick Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore play husband and wife, Rob and Laura Petrie. Rob is the head comedy writer for The Alan Brady Show. Carl Reiner as Alan Brady, Morey Amsterdam as Buddy Sorrell, and Rose Marie as Sally Rogers round out the cast.
Password, with host Allen Ludden, becomes a popular game show and will continue to air in different formats with different hosts until 1989.
The Top 20 Television Programs were:
The Red Skelton Show
The Andy Griffith Show
The Danny Thomas Show
My Three Sons
The Garry Moore Show
The Real McCoy's
Sing Along with Mitch
Dennis the Menace
The Ed Sullivan Show
Have Gun Will Travel
The Top 20 Singles were:
Moon River - Jerry Butler
Big Bad John - Jimmy Dean
Let's Twist Again - Chubby Checker
Surrender - Elvis Presley
Runaway - Del Shannon
I Fall to Pieces - Patsy Cline
Tossin' and Turnin' - Bobby Lewis
Hit the Road Jack - Ray Charles
I Want to be Wanted - Brenda Lee
Tonight, My Love, Tonight - Paul Anka
Cryin' - Roy Orbison
Wings of A Dove - Ferlin Husky
Top Movies were:
West Side Story is made into a movie and goes on to win an Oscar for Best Picture. Natalie Wood, Richard Beymer, and Rita Moreno are in the starring roles.
Also showing this year were:
Breakfast at Tiffany's - Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard
The Absent Minded Professor - Fred MacMurray
El Cid - Charlton Heston and Sophia Loren
The Hustler - Paul Newman, Piper Laurie, and George C. Scott
Judgment at Nuremberg - Marlene Dietrich and Maximilian Schell
The Misfits - Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe
101 Dalmatians - A Disney animation
Splendor in the Grass - Natalie Wood and Warren Beatty.
The Guns of Navarone - Gregory Peck, David Niven, and Anthony Quinn.
Retail Prices this year were:
First Class Stamp: 4 cents
New Home: $17,200
New Car: $2,500
Milk (qt.): 25 cents
Ground Beef (1 lb.): 50 cents
Gallon of Regular Gas: 31 cents
Let us hear from you!