Memory Lane: 1959

John GlennThe unemployment problems eased to 5.5%.

Television programs included “Rawhide”, “Bonanza” and “The Twilight Zone”, movies included “Some Like it Hot”, “Ben Hur” and “North by Northwest”.

Alaska is admitted to the union and becomes the 49th state and Hawaii is admitted to the the Union and became the 50th State.

The Boeing 707 Jet Airliner comes into service.

Little girls love the Barbie Dolls created by Ruth Handler and made by Mattel.

Fidel Castro comes to power in Cuba.

In The News

The Dalai Lama is forced to flee Tibet

Barbie Doll is launched

Alaska becomes the 49th State and Hawaii becomes the 50th state

St. Lawrence Seaway is completed

NASA introduces America’s first astronauts to the world including John H. Glenn Jr, and Alan Shepard Jr.

US Launches first Weather Station in Space


Population/Economy

Population:

  • Wake County (1960 census): 169,082
  • NC: 4,458,000
  • USA: 177,800,000

National Debt:

  • $284,705,907,078 (1959)
  • $18,152,809,942,589 (2015)

Value of a Dollar: $1 in 1959 is $8.12 in 2015

Cost Of Living 1959:

  • Yearly Inflation Rate USA: 1.01%
  • Average Cost of new house: $12,400
  • Average Yearly Wages: $5,010
  • Average Cost of new car: $2,200
  • Cost of a gallon of Gas: $0.25
  • Loaf of bread: $0.20
  • Kodak movie camera: $67.50
  • Ladies stocking: $1.00
  • Cheeseburger at McDonald’s: $0.15
  • Ticket to Disneyland: $1.25 – (Rides and attractions were a separate fee via individual tickets.)

Ounce of Gold Price:

  • The cost of an ounce of gold was $35.10
  • The inflation-adjusted price of an ounce of gold was $290.08


Going to the Movies

Cost of a movie ticket: $0.51

Inflation-adjusted price of a movie ticket: $4.21

The cost of a movie ticket in 2015: $7.92

Top 5 Movies:

  1. Ben-Hur
  2. Sleeping Beauty
  3. North by Northwest
  4. Some Like It Hot
  5. Pillow Talk


32nd Academy Awards

  • Best Picture: Ben-Hur
  • Best Director: William Wyler – Ben-Hur
  • Best Actor: Charlton Heston – Ben-Hur
  • Best Actress: Simone Signoret – Room at the Top
  • Best Supporting Actor: Hugh Griffith – Ben-Hur
  • Best Supporting Actress: Shelley Winters – The Diary of Anne Frank


Top 10 TV Shows

  1. Gunsmoke – CBS – 18,437,250
  2. Wagon Train – NBC 17,568,000
  3. Have Gun Will Travel – CBS – 15,875,250
  4. The Danny Thomas Show – CBS – 14,228,250
  5. The Red Skelton Show – CBS – 14,091,000
  6. Father Knows Best – CBS – 13,587,750
  7. 77 Sunset Strip – ABC – 13,587,750
  8. The Price is Right – NBC – 13,359,000
  9. Wanted: Dead or Alive – CBS -13,130,250
  10. Perry Mason – CBS – 12,947,250


Top 20 Pop Songs

  1. Johnny Horton – The Battle Of New Orleans
  2. Bobby Darin – Mack The Knife
  3. Lloyd Price – Personality
  4. Frankie Avalon – Venus
  5. Paul Anka – Lonely Boy
  6. Bobby Darin – Dream Lover
  7. Browns – The Three Bells
  8. Fleetwoods – Come Softly To Me
  9. Wilbert Harrison – Kansas City
  10. Fleetwoods – Mr. Blue
  11. Santo and Johnny – Sleep Walk
  12. Paul Anka – Put Your Head On My Shoulder
  13. Lloyd Price – Stagger Lee
  14. Ritchie Valens – Donna
  15. Dodie Stevens – Pink Shoelaces
  16. Platters – Smoke Gets In Your Eyes
  17. Coasters – Charlie Brown
  18. Martin Denny – Quiet Village
  19. Carl Dobkins Jr. – My Heart Is An Open Book
  20. Everly Brothers – (‘Til) I Kissed You


Top 10 Country Songs

  1. Billy Bayou – Jim Reeves
  2. Don’t Take Your Guns to Town – Johnny Cash
  3. When It’s Springtime in Alaska (It’s Forty Below) – Johnny Horton
  4. White Lightning – George Jones
  5. The Battle of New Orleans – Johnny Horton
  6. Waterloo – Stonewall Jackson
  7. The Three Bells – The Browns
  8. Country Girl – Faron Young
  9. The Same Old Me – Ray Price
  10. El Paso – Marty Robbins


This Year in Sports

ACC Football Champ: Clemson

ACC Basketball Champs: NC State (NCSU 80 – UNC 56)

World Series Winner: Los Angeles Dodgers over the Chicago White Sox

Heavyweight Boxing Champ: Ingemar Johansson

NFL Championship Game: Baltimore Colts (Baltimore 31 – NY Giants 16)

NASCAR Season Winner: Lee Petty

Masters Winner: Art Wall (won $15,000)

Wimbledon Winners:

  • Men’s Singles: United States Alex Olmedo defeated Australia Rod Laver, 6–4, 6–3, 6–4
  • Women’s Singles: Brazil Maria Bueno defeated United States Darlene Hard, 6–4, 6–3
  • Men’s Doubles: Australia Roy Emerson / Australia Neale Fraser defeated Australia Rod Laver / Australia Bob Mark, 8–6, 6–3, 14–16, 9–7
  • Women’s Doubles: United States Jeanne Arth / United States Darlene Hard defeated United States Beverly Baker Fleitz / United Kingdom Christine Truman, 2–6, 6–2, 6–3
  • Mixed Doubles: United States Darlene Hard / Australia Rod Laver defeated Brazil Maria Bueno / Australia Neale Fraser, 6–4, 6–3