Fort Lauderdale, Florida, becomes a premier spring break destination for college students after the release of the movie "Where the Boys Are." Its stars include Dolores Hart, Yvette Mimieux, George Hamilton and Jim Hutton. The theme song, performed by Connie Francis (also making her screen debut) is a worldwide hit.
In what is now considered a milestone moment for the band, the Beatles play at Litherland Town Hall in north Liverpool, England. The group (except for Stuart Sutcliffe) had recently returned from Hamburg, Germany. Chas Newby played bass on this night. Why a milestone moment? They were a much better band after their Hamburg stint, and accounts from that night indicate a rapidly growing excitement about their sound and performances.
Operation Pedro Pan was a program under which children were sent from Cuba to the United States, where they would receive education and care. It was operated by the Catholic Welfare Bureau of Miami and financed in part by the U.S. government. More than 14,000 children made the journey between December 1960 and October 1962, when the Cuban Missile Crisis brought an end to commercial flights between the two countries.
A United Airlines DC-8 and a TWA Super Constellation collide over New York City. 127 of the 128 people on the flights are killed; 6 people on the ground die. United passenger Steven Baltz, 11, survives but dies the next day.
The movie "Exodus" premieres, with Dalton Trumbo listed as screenwriter. Director Otto Preminger's decision to hire and credit Trumbo helped end the era of the Hollywood Blacklist, when film professionals were denied work because of their suspected ties to Communism. Trumbo was among the "Hollywood Ten," who refused to testify before the House Un-American Activities Committee; he served 10 months in federal prison as a result. (Photo is of Trumbo, left, and screenwriter John Howard Lawson heading to prison.)
* "Hollywood Blacklist" (from "Encyclopedia of the American Left"): @
* "The Inquisition in Hollywood: Politics in the Film Community 1930-1960" (book): @
* "Congressional Committees and Unfriendly Witnesses": @
The first Teflon-coated non-stick cookware, called "T-Fal" in the United States, goes on sale at Macy's department store in New York. It quickly sells out. (The ad at left is from France; it says "never sticks.")
The Brookings Institution in Washington releases a report (prepared for NASA) titled "Proposed Studies on the Implications of Peaceful Space Activities for Human Affairs."
The report includes a section titled "The Implications of a Discovery of Extraterrestrial Life." It states, "The knowledge that life existed in other parts of the universe might lead a greater unity of men on earth, based on the oneness of man or on the age-old assumption that any stranger is threatening." Yet it also cautions that "Anthropological files contain many examples of societies, sure of their place in the universe, which have disintegrated when they have had to associate with previously unfamiliar societies espousing different ideas and different life ways..."
"Madalyn Murray (later O'Hair) filed suit in the Superior Court of Baltimore, Maryland, asking the Court to rule that required Bible reading and recitation of the Lord's Prayer in the city's public schools are unconstitutional." (From the book "The Atheist: Madalyn Murray O'Hair.") In 1963, the U.S. Supreme Court would rule in her favor; her case had been consolidated with Abington School District v. Schempp on appeal to the high court.
* Short biography (from PBS's "God in America" series): @
* More from "The Atheist: Madalyn Murray O'Hair": @
The U.S. government allows publication of photos of the types of atomic bombs that were dropped on Japan in 1945. The photo at far left is similar to "Little Boy," the nickname given the bomb dropped on Hiroshima; "Fat Man" was the Nagasaki bomb. Why the 15-year delay? "The executive branch of government ... have held that use of the photos might have an adverse effect on international relations, especially in Japan, where the bombs were used," reported the Associated Press.
Nearly 9 million acres in northeastern Alaska are set aside as protected areas "for the purpose of preserving wildlife, wilderness and recreational values." In 1980 the designated area was doubled in size and renamed the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
The U.S. Supreme Court rules that racial segregation in bus terminals and related facilities associated with interstate travel (waiting rooms, restaurants, etc.) is illegal under the Interstate Commerce Act. The 7-2 ruling sets the stage for the "Freedom Rides" through the South the next year. (Future Supreme Court judge Thurgood Marshall argues the case for the plaintiffs; Justice Hugo Black, a former member of the Ku Klux Klan, writes the majority opinion.)
The musical opens on Broadway, with Richard Burton as King Arthur, Julie Andrews as Queen Guenevere and Robert Goulet as Sir Lancelot. This telling of the Arthurian legend was adapted from T.H. White's book "The Once and Future King." The original cast album was a huge success as well; its most memorable song was "If Ever I Would Leave You," sung by Goulet.
The comedy duet by Peter Sellers and Sophia Loren peaks at No. 4 on the British popular music charts. It was recorded for the movie "The Millionairess," but was not used. The song was produced by George Martin, who in two years' time would begin producing The Beatles' records.