August 16th, 1957 in Wenatchee, Washington, was a glorious day filled with the birth of my dear sister, Tammie. As a tribute to her I thought I would talk about the last 50 years (of which I was personally around for over 46) starting with the year she was born. Kind of a this is your life meets those were the days.
|In 1957 (the year you were born)|
First civil rights bill since Reconstruction to protect blacks' voting rights is approved by Congress
Hurricane "Audrey" destroys Cameron, Louisiana killing 390 people
National Guardsmen bar nine black students from entering previously all white Central High School in Little Rock
Russians launch Sputnik I, first earth orbiting satellite
The FBI arrests Jimmy Hoffa and charges him with bribery
Vanna White, Sid Vicious, and Melanie Griffith are born
Milwaukee Brewers win World Series
Detroit Lions win NFL championship
Montreal Canadiens win Stanley Cup
On the Road by Jack Kerouac is published
The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss is published
Uncle Gerald and Aunt Joyce were married
Richard Knerr and Arthur "Spud" Melin, founders of the Wham-O Company, are the architects of the biggest fad of all time - the hula hoop!
In 1957, an Australian visiting California told them, quite casually, that in his home country, children twirled bamboo hoops around their waists in gym class. Most of us would have thought, "how nice" but for Knerr and Melin an idea spawned.
They understood how popular such an item could be and proceeded to manufacture one made of plastic, Marlex specifically, a lightweight but durable plastic then recently invented by Phillips Petroleum.
The name "hula hoop" came from the Hawaiian dance its users seemed to imitate.
Talk about sales! Wham-O sold 25 million hula hoops in two months. Almost 100 million international orders followed. They were manufacturing 20,000 hoops a day at the peak of popularity.
Not all nations thought this was such a spiffy idea. Japan banned the hoops thinking they might promote improprieties. The Soviet Union said the hula hoop was an example of the "emptiness of American culture." Well, okay, maybe they had a point there :>)
The faze was short-lived. But our young entrepeneurs were already onto another hot idea they had. The Frisbee! (From the Pop History section)
Telephone Cramming Fads - Fifties Oddly enough, this fad began in South Africa, spread to England and then in 1959 went straight to - California!
The idea was to cram as many people as possible into a telephone booth. A competition sport, cramming soon spread across college campuses as each one tried to set a new record.
Sometimes called Telephone Box Squash, there were very few rules except that it was widely accepted that the booth must still contain a phone. Under British rules, you had to be able to be able to either place or receive a call, but that did not apply anywhere else. The door was left open and only half of a person must be inside the booth to be counted. And the booth had to upright.
The South African record of 25 people withstood all challengers. The English only made it to19 and hey, they had wider booths. A Canadian group made it to 40 but the booth was on its side and so that figure was discounted.
As for the spirit that built the West - the most efficient bunch we had was a group at St. Mary's College in Moraga, California.(Pictured above) In an effort to beat the South African record, they managed to cram 22 people in a booth. Well, you can't win them all.
Cramming expanded into other venues and VW Beetle cramming enjoyed a brief popularity. But like all good fads, this one ended rather quickly.(from fads of the fifties)
Here's a link to Burma Shave slogans of the fifties. So fun!!
Now let's jump to 1961 and 1962. Tammie had two little sisters born (we have 2 brothers and a sister that are older, makes 6).
Here's a link of hippy quotes.
Here's a page about the 1960's.
The Groovy 1960's
Inventions * In 1961, physicist Theodore Maiman perfected the laser, now widely used in surgery, holography, communications, and printing. * Douglas Englehart of Stanford University developed the computer mouse along with a five key "corded" keyboard in 1964. * The first hand-held calculator was invented in 1967 by Texas Instruments, at a cost of $2,500 a piece. * The first cash dispensing machine is installed by First Philadelphia Bank in 1968.
It seemed like such a simpler life back then.
Tammie graduated in 1975 from High School.
The #1 Songs for August 16:
1970: '(They Long to Be) Close to You' by The Carpenters.
1971: 'How Can You Mend A Broken Heart' by Bee Gees.
1972: 'Alone Again (Naturally)' by Gilbert O'Sullivan.
1973: 'The Morning After' by Maureen McGovern.
1974: 'Feel Like Makin' Love' by Roberta Flack.
1975: 'Jive Talkin'' by Bee Gees.
1976: 'Don't Go Breaking My Heart' by Elton John & Kikki Dee.
1977: 'I Just Want to be Your Everything' by Andy Gibb.
1978: 'Three Times a Lady' by The Commodores.
1979: 'Bad Girls' by Donna Summer.
1980: 'Magic' by Olivia Newton-John. 1981: 'Endless Love' by Diana Ross & Lionel Richie.
1982: 'Eye of the Tiger' by Survivor.
1983: 'Every Breath You Take' by The Police.
1984: 'Ghostbusters' by Ray Parker Jr..
1985: 'Shout' by Tears for Fears.
1986: 'Papa Don't Preach' by Madonna.
1987: 'I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For' by U2.
1988: 'Roll With It' by Steve Winwood.
1989: 'Right Here Waiting' by Richard Marx.
These were the most popular songs on August 16 of each year.
In 1974 and then in 1975 we had a niece and nephew born. What cuties Nadia and Erwin were.
Pop Rocks -- Some exciting candy
the electronic Simon -- We had one of those!
Sales of vinyl-topped cars hit a peak in the Super70s.
Mood Rings -- Fun!!
CB Radios -- Daddy was into that. Remember, he was Sore Thumb (the green panel he drove stuck out like a sore thumb)
Lawn Darts -- Yep, our family had fun with these. Nobody was hurt playing this game.
Clackers -- Tammie, I remember you were pretty good with these. I on the other hand am amazed I survived all the times I hit myself with them.
Smiley Face/Have a Nice Day!
Now on to the 80's. This is an exciting time for you, when you met your husband to be. A wonderful man named Marty. We had a new niece come into the family in 1984 (she also was a sweetie, sister Terri and Neil's). And it is also a sad time as we grieved the death of our sweet and dear father.
The last decades are links to places about those years. You may be tired by now (I am) so this way you can just click on it at your leisure.
In 1990 (I think anyway) you married Marty and moved to Nevada. A wonderful year for you! (And I married Mark in 1999 and moved to Ohio, a wonderful year for me!)
The 2000's brought 3 sweet nephews into our family (to you anyway, my sons). Another sad time for us was the passing of our precious mother (I will never stop missing Mom and Dad).
And you are just getting done with your masters (this week), what a great birthday present to yourself!!
I am so glad you are my sister!! I love you!! I hope you liked this walk down memory lane.