What Happened in May 1954

Historical Events

  • May 1 80th Kentucky Derby: Raymond York aboard Determine wins in 2:03
  • May 1 Bishops publish Mandement (member socialist org forbidden)
  • May 1 HSA-UWC Forms (Unification Church) (Moonies)
  • May 1 WAPA TV channel 4 in San Juan, PR (NBC/SFN) begins broadcasting

Sports record brokenBaseball Record

May 2 Stan Musial hits 5 HRs in a doubleheader

MLB Legend Stan Musial
MLB Legend
Stan Musial
  • May 3 KTEN TV channel 10 in Ada-Ardmore, OK (ABC) begins broadcasting

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 3 Pulitzer prize awarded to Charles A Lindbergh & John Patrick

  • May 3 WHA TV channel 21 in Madison, WI (PBS) begins broadcasting
  • May 4 US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Bikini Island
  • May 5 Military coup in Paraguay led by general Alfredo Stroessner

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 6 Roger Bannister of the UK becomes the 1st person to run a 4 minute mile, recording 3:59:4 at Iffley Road, Oxford

Middle-Distance Runner Roger Bannister
Middle-Distance Runner
Roger Bannister
  • May 7 French surrender to Vietminh after 55-day siege at Dien Bien Phu
  • May 7 US, Great Britain & France reject Russian membership of NATO
  • May 8 1st shot-put over 60' (18.29 m)-Parry O'Brien, Los Angeles, CA
  • May 10 Bolshoi Ballet does not appear in Paris
  • May 13 "Pajama Game" opens at St James Theater NYC for 1063 performances
  • May 13 Labour Party wins British municipal elections
  • May 13 Robin Roberts gives up a HR then retires next 27 men in a row
  • May 13 US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Enwetak
  • May 13 Chinese Middle School students in Singapore take part in anti-National Service riots.
  • May 14 Belgium shortens military conscription from 20 to 18 months
  • May 15 KGLO (now KIMT) TV channel 3 in Mason City, IA (CBS) 1st broadcast
  • May 16 Babe Didrikson-Zaharias wins LPGA National Capital Golf Open

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 16 Ted Williams gets 8 hits in 1st game (DH) since breaking collarbone

Baseball Player Ted Williams
Baseball Player
Ted Williams
  • May 16 WGAN (now WGME) TV channel 13 in Portland, ME (CBS) 1st broadcast
  • May 17 US Supreme Court unanimously rules on Brown v Topeka Board of Education reversed 1896 "separate but equal" Plessy v Ferguson decision
  • May 19 Postmaster General Summerfield approves CIA mail-opening project

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 20 Chiang Kai-shek becomes president of Nationalist China

Chinese Military and Political Leader Chiang Kai-shek
Chinese Military and Political Leader
Chiang Kai-shek
  • May 21 Amendment to give 18-year-olds right to vote is defeated
  • May 22 79th Preakness: Johnny Adams aboard Hasty Road wins in 1:57.4
  • May 22 KREX TV channel 5 in Grand Junction, CO (CBS) begins broadcasting
  • May 22 Robert Zimmerman aka Bob Dylan is Bar Mitzvahed
  • May 24 1st rocket attains 150 mi (241 km) altitude, White Sands, NM
  • May 24 Dr Peter Murray Marshall becomes 1st black to head an AMA unit
  • May 24 German airline Lufthansa forms
  • May 24 IBM announces vacuum tube "electronic" brain that could perform 10 million operations an hour
  • May 29 Pope Pius XII issues holy declaration
  • May 29 First of the annual Bilderberg conferences.

Sport awardTennis Open

May 29 53rd Men's French Championships: Tony Trabert beats Art Larsen (6-4, 7-5, 6-1)

Tennis Player and Five-Time Major Champion Tony Trabert
Tennis Player and Five-Time Major Champion
Tony Trabert
  • May 29 53rd Women's French Championships: Maureen Connolly beats Ginette Bucaille (6-4, 6-1)
  • May 30 Dutch bishops forbid membership to non-catholic sporting clubs
  • May 30 Emile Zatopek runs world record 5K (13:57.2)
  • May 30 Hector Villa-Lobos' "Odisseia de Uma Raca" premieres
  • May 31 Indianapolis 500: Bill Vukovich wins in 3:49:17.261 (210.567 km/h)

Famous Birthdays

  • May 1 Michael Scott, reporter (Entertainment Tonight)
  • May 1 Ray Parker Jr, rock guitarist/vocalist (Ghostbusters), born in Detroit, Michigan
  • May 1 Taslim Arif, cricketer (Pakistani keeper/batsman, 210 v Aust 1980)
  • May 1 Joel Rosenberg, science fiction author
  • May 2 Bulelani T Ngcuka, South African attorney/leader (UDF)
  • May 2 Roberta Pedon, American glamour model (d. 1982)
  • May 3 Gary Young, American drummer (Pavement)
  • May 4 Julie Budd, singer (Child of Plenty), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • May 4 Pia Zadora, American actress
  • May 5 Angelo Kimball, rock guitarist (Face To Face), born in Boston, Massachusetts
  • May 5 John Greg Adams, PGA golfer (1982 Hall of Fame-2nd), born in Scottsdale, Arizona
  • May 5 Dave Spector, American television personality and commentator
  • May 6 Sergei Nikolayevich Tresvyatsky, Russia, cosmonaut
  • May 6 Dora Bakoyannis, Greek politician
  • May 7 Philippe Geluck, Belgian cartoonist
  • May 7 Amy Heckerling, American director
  • May 8 David Keith, actor (Back Roads, Firestarter), born in Knoxville, Tennessee
  • May 8 Pat Meyers, LPGA golfer
  • May 8 Stephen Furst, American actor (Animal House, St. Elsewhere) born in Norfolk, Virginia (d. 2017)
  • May 9 Balazs Taroczy, Hungary, tennis star
  • May 10 Jeff Apple, producer (In the Line of Fire), born in Miami, Florida
  • May 11 Edgar Riley Jr, rocker (Axe K)
  • May 11 Judith Weir, English composer, Master of the Queen's Music, born in Cambridge
  • May 11 John Gregory, English football manager
  • May 11 Lubomir Stoykov, Bulgarian journalist and broadcaster
  • May 13 Johnny Logan, Irish singer and songwriter
  • May 14 Jens Sparschuh, German writer
  • May 15 Bob Beauchemin, Winnipeg Canada, golfer (West Coast Open-1982, 83)
  • May 15 Robert P. Harrison, American thinker
  • May 16 Janet Maw, actress (Sparrow, King John, Mayor of Casterbridge)
  • May 16 [Dafydd] Rhys Williams, Saskatoon Canada, MD/astronaut (sk: STS 90)
  • May 17 John Iles, dolby supervisor (Elephant Man, Richard III)
  • May 17 Michael Roberts, jockey
  • May 18 Martyn Wiley, writer/broadcaster
  • May 18 Wreckless Eric, rocker (Waxworks, Be Stiff)
  • May 18 Reinhold Heil, German composer
  • May 19 Rick Cerone, catcher (Yankees/Red Sox/Mets/Expos), born in Newark, New Jersey
  • May 19 Phil Rudd, Australian rock drummer (AC/DC-Rock 'n Roll Damnation), born in Melbourne, Victoria
  • May 20 Galina Vasilyevna Amelkina, Russia, doctor/cosmonaut
  • May 20 James Henderson, country singer (Black Oak Arkansas)
  • May 20 Guy Hoffman, American musician (Violent Femmes)
  • May 20 David Paterson, American politician
  • May 20 Cindy Hensley McCain, wife of John McCain
  • May 20 Robert Van de Walle, Belgian judoka
  • May 21 Bill Abbott, sailor (Olympics-96), born in Sarnia, Ontario
  • May 21 Marina Langner, Dusseldorf Germany, Miss World runner-up (1975)
  • May 21 Marc Ribot, American musician
  • May 22 Jerry Dammers, keyboardist (Specials-Special)
  • May 22 Shuji Nakamura, Japanese-born American electronic engineer (invented the Blue LED), born in Ikata, Japan
  • May 25 Alison Stern, wife of radio personality Howard Stern (Private Parts)
  • May 26 Alan Hollinghurst, British novelist
  • May 26 Danny Rolling, American murderer (d. 2006)
  • May 27 Catherine Carr, US breaststroke swimmer (Olympics-2 gold-1972)
  • May 27 Pauline Hanson, Australian politician
  • May 27 Jackie Slater, American football player
  • May 28 George E Mahlberg, Astrophysicist, Mt Palomar/Mt Wilson CA (1974-78)
  • May 28 John Tory, Canadian politician
  • May 28 Youri Egorov, Soviet classical pianist (d. 1988)
  • May 31 Vicki Sue Robinson, American singer (d. 2000)
  • May 31 Thomas Mavros, Greek footballer

Famous Weddings


HeartWedding of Interest

May 1 Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos (36) weds Imelda Romualdez (24) in a Catholic church

First Lady and Politican Imelda Marcos
First Lady and Politican
Imelda Marcos
10th President of the Philippines Ferdinand Marcos
10th President of the Philippines
Ferdinand Marcos

HeartWedding of Interest

May 28 "The Bad and the Beautiful" actor Kirk Douglas (37) weds producer Ann Buydens (24) at Sahara Hotel in Las Vegas


Famous Deaths

  • May 1 Tom Tyler, actor (Lost Ranch, Coyote Trails), dies at 50
  • May 2 Pauline de Cock-Manifarges, singer, dies at 82
  • May 10 George Hirst, cricketer (36,323 1st-class runs, 2739 wickets), dies
  • May 14 Heinz Guderian, German General (b. 1888)
  • May 15 William March, American writer (b. 1893)
  • May 16 Clemens Krauss, Austrian conductor (Vienna State Opera), dies at 61
  • May 16 Werner Bischof, Swiss photographer, dies accidentally at 38
  • May 19 Aart A van Schelven, church historian (Willem of Orange), dies at 73
  • May 19 Charles Edward Ives, US composer (Unanswered Question), dies at 79
  • May 21 Janos Hammerschlag, composer, dies at 68
  • May 23 H R Bromley-Davenport, cricketer (batted in 4 Tests for England), dies

Person of interestPerson of Interest

May 25 Robert Capa, Hungarian war photographer and photojournalist, dies of injuries from a landmine explosion at 40

Photojournalist Robert Capa
Photojournalist
Robert Capa
  • May 26 Franz Pfemfert, writer, dies at 74
  • May 26 Lionel Conacher, Canadian athlete (b. 1900)
  • May 27 Herzmanovsky-Orlando, writer, dies
  • May 28 Achille Longo, composer, dies at 54
  • May 30 Ahmad Amin, Egyptian historian/author, dies at 67