1960s

1960

January 01 – French Cameroon becomes the Republic of Cameroon with Ahmadun Ahidjo as its first president. 01 – Johnny Cash performs a New Year Concert for the prisoners at San Quentin penitentiary in California. One particularly impressed inmate is a young Merle Haggard, serving time for armed robbery. The event inspires Haggard to concentrate(…)

1961

January 01 – In Britain, the Farthing (¼ of a penny) is withdrawn from circulation and ceases to be legal tender. 02 – Oral contraceptives for women go on sale in Australia. 03 – US severs diplomatic relations with Cuba. 03 – The millionth Morris Minor rolls off the production line in the UK. 03(…)

1962

January 01 – Western Samoa becomes independent. 01 – The Beatles are turned down by Decca Records, whose A&R man Dick Rowe enters the history books when he advises them that “groups with guitars are out”. 03 – Fidel Castro is excommunicated by the Pope for his anti-clerical policies. 07 – 17 Yugoslav seamen are(…)

1963

January 01 – In Australia, the Bogle/Chandler case mystifies police who believe poison may have been used to kill the couple. 02 – UPI reports that 30 Americans have died in Vietnam combat to date. 10 – Premier of Cliff Richard‘s Summer Holiday movie in London. 14 – President de Gaulle dashes British EEC hopes(…)

1964

January 01 – In Britain, the first edition of Top of the Pops screens on the BBC. Host Jimmy Savile introduces The Rolling Stones, Dusty Springfield, The Hollies, The Swinging Blue Jeans and The Dave Clark Five. 03 – Barry Goldwater announces his candidacy for the US Presidency. 05 – The first ticket collecting machine(…)

1965

January 01 – Stanley Matthews is the first ever professional footballer to be knighted. 01 – The first hydrofoil service begins on Sydney Harbour in Australia. 02 – Indonesia withdraws from the United Nations. 04 – Poet and author T S Eliot dies. 04 – President Johnson, in his State of The Union message, outlines(…)

1966

January 01 – Pope Paul VI appeals for peace in Vietnam. 01 – In Central African Republic, Colonel Jean-Bedel Bokassa seizes power. 05 – Pentridge Prison escapees Ronald Ryan and Peter Walker are captured in Concord, Sydney. The two have been on the run for 17 days since shooting dead a warder and walking out(…)

1967

January 01 – In Britain, Alf Ramsey is knighted and Bobby Moore gets an OBE in the New Years Honours. 01 – All Night Rave at The Roundhouse in London, featuring The Who, The Move, The Pink Floyd. “Psychedelicamania — come and watch the pretty lights,” says the poster. 02 – Ronald Reagan is sworn(…)

1968

January 04 – Number of US troops in Vietnam reaches 486,000. 04 – The search for Australian Prime Minister Harold Holt‘s body at Portsea in Victoria is called off. 05 – Dr Benjamin Spock is indicted for his anti-draft activities. 10 – John Grey Gorton takes over as Australian Prime Minister. 12 – Soviet writers(…)

1969

January 01 – West Indies cricketer and politician Sir Learie Constantine becomes Britain’s first black life peer. 03 – Religious and political factions clash in Londonderry after a 72-mile march from Belfast. The opposition to the civil rights march by the left-wing People’s Democracy Group is led by the Reverend Ian Paisley, founder and leader(…)

60s Speak

THE BAWL GAME Baby-sitting. Self explanatory really. BOSS We know who the boss is…. Bruce Springsteen, of course. And as a verb, it means to order someone around – But in the early 60s “boss” was an adjective. It meant cool…. or maybe hot. COOL When something was really, really, cool, it was hot. If(…)