1.28.2013

Monday, January 28, 1963: Integration at Clemson

From The Associated Press (link to full story below):

   Negro Harvey Gantt, neat and evidently calm, broke South Carolina's historic racial bars in public education today by enrolling in Clemson College as a transfer student from Iowa State University.
   Uniformed highway patrolmen imposed strict security, checking every car entering the campus, as the 20-year-old Charleston, S.C., native went through the usual entrance routine -- having his picture taken, paying dues, etc.
   ... It was precisely 1:45 a.m. when Gantt signed his registration card, officially becoming the first Negro student integration in the South Carolina public school system at any level. South Carolina was the last state to resist school integration at any level.


* "Negro Student Enrolled at Clemson" (The Sumpter Daily Item, January 28, 1963): @
* "Clemson Ends Segregation Peacefully" (The Tiger News, Clemson newspaper, Feb. 1, 1963): @
* Summary (from Clemson's Office of Institutional Research): @
* "Integration with Dignity" (Clemson University Digital Press): @
* "Harvey Gantt and the Desegregation of Clemson University" (Dr. H. Lewis Suggs, Clemson): @
* Excerpt from "The High Seminary" (Jerome V. Reel, 2011): @
* Gantt interview (from Oral Histories of the American South, University of North Carolina, 1986): @
* "Harvey Gantt through the years" (photo gallery, The State newspaper): @
* Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture: @ 
* Blog post on University of Georgia integration (January 11, 1961): @
* Blog post on University of Mississippi integration (October 1, 1962): @

1.26.2013

January 1963: Vietnam

News reports, with links:

United Press International, January 16: Americans, who are now deeply involved in South Viet Nam, are accustomed to thinking in terms of short, decisive wars. But the Vietnamese peasant, who has watched continuous troop movements and heard sporadic gunfire around his bamboo hut for the past 20 years, knows that ending the struggle between the pro-Western government of South Viet Nam and the pro-Communist Viet Cong guerrillas is a matter of years, not months.

 Associated Press, January 21: Communist guerrillas in South Vietnam underestimated the strength of their American enemy a year ago and are desperately trying to make up for the mistake, according to a secret Vietcong document that has just come to light. ... The report says a settlement along the lines of the Laotian formula or Algerian victory over the French would be satisfactory to Vietcong aims. In general the tone is cautiously optimistic, but the document warns Vietcong leaders to be psychologically prepared for a long, difficult struggle. (New York Times story on the same day: @)

* Life magazine, January 25: The fighting in South Vietnam, where each hour deepens the U.S. commitment, is many things. It is the whirl of helicopter blades in the steaming air; it is the stench of cloying jungle mud, teeming with parasitic infestation; it is monotony punctuated by songs of insects; it is the closeness of an invisible enemy who strikes out of green ambush with the suddenness of crackling death. In this formless war the U.S. and the Vietnam army are gaining -- though the cost grows higher. 

* Associated Press, January 25: Gen. Earle G. Wheeler said Saturday that "it will take long, vigorous effort to turn the tide once and for all" in the war against the Communist Vietcong. The United States army chief of staff told a news conference there was "reason for us to look forward to winning," but that "it is not yet time to form a victory parade." 

* "A Short Guide to News Coverage in Viet Nam" (Associated Press, January 25): @ 


1.24.2013

When did "The '60s" begin?

I bring it up after reading an article in The Guardian, "October 1962: the month that modern culture was born." For the purposes of this discussion, the question is more along the lines of "Is there a month that could be considered a starting point for the issues or legacies that we now associate with the 1960s?" Here are some possible candidates. You can find links to the posts via the archive at the bottom.

* February 1960: Greensboro sit-in; "wind of change" coming to Africa. 
* May 1960: The Pill; first working laser; U-2 incident.
* November 1960: Kennedy elected president.
* January 1961: Eisenhower's "military industrial complex" speech; Kennedy inaugurated.
* April 1961: Yuri Gagarin, first man in space; Bay of Pigs; integrated circuit.
* May 1961: Kennedy moon speech; Freedom Rides. 
* August 1961: Berlin Wall; Peace Corps.
* December 1961: start of U.S. combat operations in Vietnam; first warning about thalidomide.
* March 1962: first silicone-gel breast implants; John Glenn; Cuba trade embargo.
* June 1962: School prayer ruled unconstitutional; "Silent Spring"; Port Huron Statement.
* July 1962: "Blowin' in the Wind"; Andy Warhol's soup cans; Telstar communications satellite.
* October 1962: Cuban Missile Crisis; Ole Miss integration; Beatles release "Love Me Do"; "Dr. No."  
* June 1963: Equal Pay Act; University of Alabama integration; Buddhist protests in South Vietnam ("burning monk" photo); Kennedy's "Ich bin ein Berliner" speech; U.S. and USSR agree to set up hot line.

1.23.2013

Wednesday, January 23, 1963: Kim Philby


Kim Philby, a newspaper correspondent who had previously worked for British intelligence, secretly leaves Beirut, Lebanon, making his way to the Soviet Union. It is later revealed that he had been spying for the Soviets since the 1930s and that he was among the "Cambridge Five" spy ring.

* Short biography (National Cold War Exhibition): @
* "Kim Philby: Father, husband, traitor, spy" (The Telegraph, January 2013): @
* "Kim Philby and the Age of Paranoia" (New York Times Magazine, 1994): @
* "The Moscow Life of Kim Philby" (Pravda): @
* "The Cambridge Spies" (BBC): @ and @ and @ (news stories, footage)
* Cambridge Spy Ring (spymuseum.com): @
* Bibliography of British spies: @
* "My Silent War" (Philby, 1968): @
* "Philby Talks" (1955 newsreel): @
* "Philby's Choice" (Russia Today, 2012): @
* BBC Newsnight report on Philby's death in 1988: @ 

1.21.2013

Tuesday, January 22, 1963: Elysee Treaty

From United Press International (link to full story below; de Gaulle is at right in picture):

   PARIS -- President Charles de Gaulle and West German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer signed yesterday a historic treaty of cooperation they hoped would end the centuries of Franco-German strife that drenched Europe with blood.
   At the end of the four-minute ceremony de Gaulle, 72, suddenly and impetuously opened his arms and embraced the 87-year-old chancellor. Then the two old men, choking back tears, kissed on both cheeks. It was a gesture that appeared spontaneous and unrehearsed.
   ... De Gaulle and Adenauer, each battling against time to achieve their dream of a close Franco-German alliance as the cornerstone for future Western European unity, signed the treaty in the tapestried Murat room of de Gaulle's Elysee Palace.
   By making it a formal treaty they ensured that their successors would be bound by it.
   It called for France and West Germany to work closely together as friends in the fields of politics, defense, foreign aid, culture, science, education and youth as they already do in economics through the Common Market.

(From a secondary story) But the treaty by implication excluded Britain from a role in the political future of Europe ... Britain was silent on the new alignment, which unites two nations which have been both rivals and allies of Britain in the past. But Britain continued negotiations at Brussels for her entry into the European Common Market despite the opposition of de Gaulle.

* Text (from German History in Documents and Images): @
* Overview (from Germany.info): @
* Overview (from Consulate General of France in Chicago): @
* Treaty website (in English): @
* "50 years of friendship" (from Europe Online): @
* "Friendship Pact Signed by de Gaulle, Adenauer" (January 23, 1963): @
* "Autonomy or Power? The Franco-German Relationship and Europe's Strategic Choices, 1955-1995" (Stephen A. Kocs, 1995): @ 

1.19.2013

Undated: Vidal Sassoon's bob haircut

British hairdresser Vidal Sassoon updates and popularizes the bob haircut, most notably in his work with fashion designer Mary Quant and with actress Nancy Kwan (for the movie "A Wild Affair"). 

Photo of Sassoon and Quant, 1964.
* BBC documentary (2011): @
* Sasson explains the Five-Point Cut: @
* "Remembering Vidal Sassoon" (from Vogue.com): @
* Photo gallery (from Vogue.com UK): @
* Photo gallery (from Telegraph newspaper): @
* "After Vidal Sassoon Britain never looked the same again" (Telegraph, 2012): @
* "Vidal Sassoon remembered by Mary Quant" (The Guardian, 2012): @
* Mary Quant website: @ 
* "Vidal" (Pan Macmillan, 2010): @
* "The Bob: the history of a hairstyle" (from V is for Vintage): @
* "Encyclopedia of Hair: A Cultural History" (Victoria Sherrow, 2006): @ 

1.18.2013

January 1963: Electric knife

General Electric Co. introduces the electric carving knife (also marketed as a "slicing knife") at the biannual exhibition of the National Housewares Manufacturers Association in Chicago.

From patent filing (July 1963):
   Over the past ten or fifteen years, there has been a tremendous increase in the use of household appliances to assist the housewife in her everyday chores. This is particularly true with respect to electrically powered hand-held appliances for the kitchen where increased time and effort for food preparation has resulted from the increase in average family size and in home entertainment. ... Accordingly, it is one object of this invention to produce an electrically operated slicing knife of low cost, lightweight construction having its components designed for convenience of mass production.

From Changing Times: The Kiplinger Service for Families (April 1963): "Latest kitchen tool is the electric-powered knife. Plug it in, press the control switch and its twin 9-inch blades vibrate at a speed of 2,000 times per minute. Big advantage of the knife: You can slice without sawing."

* "Carve Turkey 'Life a Professional': From Engine Blades to Knife Blades GE Leaves Nothing to Chance" (from GEreports.com): @
* "Gracious Entertaining with General Electric" (1963 video): @
* "Now ... Carve with Power" (Popular Science, December 1964): @
* "Electric Knives Multiply" (Milwaukee Journal, September 1966): @
* "Power Tool for the Dining Room: The Electric Carving Knife" (from "Stud: Architectures of Masculinity," edited by Joel Sanders, 1996): @
* International Housewares Association website: @ 

1.17.2013

Thursday, January 17, 1963: Art at one million

French artist Robert Filliou, in a 1963 poem called "Whispered Art History," writes that art originated one million years earlier, to the day:

It all started the 17th of January 1963, one million years ago.
a man took a dry sponge and dropped it into a bucket of water.
who that man was is not important.
he is dead, but art is alive.

* Listen to Filliou read "Whispered Art History" (begins about 6:30 mark): @
* Filliou biography (from www.ubu.com): @
* More about Filliou (from www.newmedia-art.org): @
* "A Filliou Sampler" (from www.ubu.com): @
* www.artsbirthday.net (website devoted to observing the "holiday"): @
* "Who was Robert Filliou?" (from artsbirthday.blogspot.com): @
* Filliou links: @ 


1.15.2013

Undated: Corvette Sting Ray

The fast, futuristic sports car -- from the Chevrolet division of General Motors -- is a road-hugging, attention-grabbing hit. First introduced in 1962 (for the 1963 model year), it was described this way in press releases:

Corvette has been redesigned and re-engineered for the first time in its 10 years on the market. Added to the convertible is a new "fast-back" sport couple. Optional power steering, power brakes and air conditioning are available for the first time. A completely new chassis, four-wheel independent suspension, self-adjusting brakes and improved steering are features of 1963's Corvette. Retractable headlights are standard on both models. Corvette models are known as "Sting Ray." This year's Corvette is two inches lower and four inches shorter than last year.
* Entry from web-cars.com: @
* Entry from www.ultimatecarpage.com: @
* www.corvetteforum.com: @
* From Car and Driver magazine (April 1963): @
* "Biography of a Sports Car" (GM video): @
* TV ads: @ and @
* "Luxury Prestige Personal Car is Sign of the Affluent American" (Associated Press, March 1963): @
* "The Complete Corvette: A Model-By-Model History of the American Sports Car" (Tom Falconer, 2003): @ 

1.14.2013

Monday, January 14, 1963: State of the Union speech

President Kennedy gives his third State of the Union speech to the U.S. Congress. The next day's headlines center on his tax proposal:

"... I shall propose a permanent reduction in tax rates which will lower liabilities by 13.5 billion dollars. Of this, 11 billion dollars results from reducing individual tax rates, which now range between 20 and 91 percent, to a more sensible range of 14 to 65 percent, with a split in the present first bracket. Two and one-half billion dollars results from reducing corporate tax rates, from 52 percent -- which gives the government today a majority interest in profits -- to the permanent pre-Korean level of 47 percent."

(A version of the plan would be signed into law in February 1964 by President Johnson.)
* Transcript (from The American Presidency Project): @
* Video (from public.resource.org): @
* Audio (from JFK Library): @
* Copy of speech, other documents (from JFK Library): @ and @
* "When Tax Cuts Were a Tough Sell" (New York Times, January 2013): @
* "Special Message to the Congress on Tax Reduction and Reform" (January 24, 1963): @


The proposal followed a nationally televised speech on August 13, 1962, in which the president talked about the economy and signaled his intention to push for a tax cut. (Photo from JFK Library.)
* Transcript (from The American Presidency Project): @
* Audio (from JFK Library): @
* Newsreel: @
* Copy of speech, other documents (from JFK Library): @ 
* Kennedy speech to Economic Club of New York (December 14, 1962): @
* Tax rates, 1913-2011 (from Tax Foundation): @
* Tax Policy Center: @ 

Note: Kennedy often used the phrase "a rising tide lifts all boats" in referring to the far-reaching benefits of a strong economy (though he did not say it in either of these speeches).
* Entry from "Safire's Political Dictionary" (William Safire): @
* Other uses (from www.barrypopik.com): @ 

Monday, January 14, 1963: George Wallace's inaugural address


Alabama's new governor gives his inauguration speech, fiery in tone and defiant about the authority of the federal government. It includes this memorable line: "In the name of the greatest people that have ever trod this earth, I draw the line in the dust and toss the gauntlet before the feet of tyranny, and I say segregation now ... segregation tomorrow ... and segregation forever."

From The Associated Press: "The new governor faces a racial showdown almost certainly within months after taking office. Three Negroes have applied for admission to the all-white University of Alabama."

Photo from Corbis Images.
* Transcript (from Alabama Department of Archives and History Digital Collections): @
* Video (from Alabama Department of Archives and History; last 3 minutes are missing): @
* Short video excerpt (from ABC News): @
* Segment from Radio Diaries: @
* "Shouting Defiance, Wallace Sworn In" (Tuscaloosa News, January 14): @
* "New Alabama Governor Faces Racial Crisis" (Washington, Pa., Observer, January 14): @
* "A speech that lives in infamy" (Charles J. Dean, al.com, 2013): @
* "The Politics of Rage: George Wallace, the Origins of the New Conservatism, and the Transformation of American Politics" (Dan T. Carter, 1995): @ 

1.08.2013

Tuesday, January 8, 1963: 'Mona Lisa' in the U.S.


On loan from France, Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece goes on display at the National Gallery of Art in Washington. After a later showing at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, it was returned to France in March. 

Pictured are President Kennedy, French minister of cultural affairs Andre Malraux and his wife, first lady Jacqueline Kennedy and Vice President Lyndon Johnson.

* Summary from National Gallery of Art website: @
* Entry from Louvre Museum: @
* Photos, remarks from opening ceremony (from JFK Library) -- photos: @; remarks: @ audio: @
* Website for "Mona Lisa in Camelot" (Margaret Leslie Davis, 2008): @
* "How the Mona Lisa Almost Came to a Watery End" (The Art Newspaper, May 2009): @
* Video summary: @
* "Princess Smile" (newsreel, from Critical Past): @
"Mona Lisa Makes Her Smiling U.S. Debut" (newsreel, from British Pathe): @ 

1.06.2013

Sunday, January 6, 1963: 'Wild Kingdom'

The nature show, hosted by Marlin Perkins (left) and Jim Fowler, debuts on NBC. From The Associated Press:

   An old favorite has returned to network television with undiminished charm, it is a pleasure to report. That is Marlin Perkins, the eminent naturalist with his fascinating tales of nature.
   Perkins, now head of the St. Louis Zoo and a bit snowier atop after five years away, still has his way with beasts, birds and reptiles -- calm and gentle.
   In the first program of "Wild Kingdom," the new Sunday afternoon series on NBC, Perkins undertook to demolish some familiar myths. He showed that elephants do not fear mice, although the baby elephant in the demonstration promptly and violently hosed the white mouse off his head in a subsequent illustration of how pachyderms drink. He also conducted experiments demonstrating that vultures see food and don't "smell death"; that cobras follow movements and do not dance to music (they have no ears); and that animals can't foretell weather any better than humans.
   The most interesting portion of the program was Perkins' demolition of the "abominable snowman" myth. He showed pictures and charts suggesting that the mysterious tracks found in the Himalayas are made by a combination of foxprints in the snow and the melting action in the sun, rather than by a large supernatural beast.
   It is a happy, family type program.

Note:  The earlier show referred to in the story was "Zoo Parade," which Perkins hosted in the 1950s.
Note: Perkins was the zoologist on a 1960 Himalayas expedition led by Sir Edmund Hillary. Blog post: @

* "Wild Kingdom" website: @
* YouTube channel: @
* Entry from The Museum of Broadcast Communications: @
* "New Series 'Wild Kingdom' To Explode Animal Myths" (January 6): @ 
* "A Running Start for 'Wild Kingdom' " (United Press International, January 7): @ 

1.02.2013

Wednesday, January 2, 1963: The Battle of Ap Bac

From "Vietnam War Almanac" (James H. Willbanks, 2009): 

   At Ap Bac, a village in the Mekong Delta 50 miles southwest of Saigon, 2,500 troops of the ARVN (Army of the Republic of Vietnam) 7th Infantry Division equipped with armored personnel carriers and supported by fighter-bombers and U.S. helicopters suffer a humiliating defeat at the hands of 320 VC (Viet Cong) guerrillas from the 261st Main Force Battalion. Uncharacteristically, the Viet Cong stand and fight against a bungled ARVN attack during which three U.S. advisers are killed, eight are wounded and five American helicopters shot down (one of which is shown in the photo above). The ARVN suffers 80 killed and 100 wounded, and the VC escape with only light losses. The engagement, symbolic of the ARVN's many problems, clearly demonstrates that government troops can neither cope with the strategy nor match the fighting spirit of the Viet Cong. Despite candid assessments of the poor ARVN performance by Lieutenant Colonel John Paul Van and other U.S. advisers, Headquarters MACV (U.S. Military Assistance Command, Vietnam) declares the battle a victory for South Vietnamese forces because the VC quit the area after fighting. The poor performance of the South Vietnamese troops is an indicator that the United States will eventually be compelled to escalate the war by committing American ground troops to fight the Communists.

* "The Battle at Ap Bac Changed America's View of the Vietnam War" (from www.historynet.com): @
* The Battle of Ap Bac, Vietnam: They Did Everything But Learn From It" (David M. Toczek, 2001): @
* "A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam" (Neil Sheehan, 1988): @
* "Military Assistance Advisory Group -- Vietnam (1954-1963): The Battle of Ap Bac" (U.S. Army Maj. Kevin R. Kilbride, thesis, 2012): @
* "Bare Viet Refusal To Fight" (Milwaukee Sentinel, January 7, 1963): @
* "Changes Being Considered in Vietnam War Tactics" (Eugene Register-Guard, January 6, 1963): @ 

1.01.2013

Tuesday, January 1, 1963: 'Astro Boy'

The animated cartoon "Tetsuwan Atomu," about a young robot boy with super powers who fights for peace and justice, has its television premiere in Japan. Based on the comic book ("manga") by Tezuka Osamu, it would be broadcast in the United States starting in September as "Astro Boy." 
* Watch first English episode: @ and @
* Entry from www.animenewsnetwork.com: @
* Entry from tezukaosamu.net: @
* Entry from tezukainenglish.com: @

* Short profile of Tezuka Osamu (from www.animeacademy.com): @

* "The Astro Boy Essays: Osamu Tezuka, Mighty Atom, and the Manga/Anime Revolution: @ 
* "Astro Boy and Anime Come to the Americas" (Fred Ladd and Harvey Deneroff, 2009): @   

Blog archive

E-mail and Twitter

Send to: @
Follow:
@