Historical Events in December 1961

  • Dec 1 The independent Republic of West Papua is proclaimed in modern-day Western New Guinea.

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 2 Fidel Castro declares he's a Marxist & will lead Cuba to Communism

Cuban Revolutionary and President Fidel Castro
Cuban Revolutionary and President
Fidel Castro
  • Dec 2 Wind Bell, journal of SF Zen Center, begins publishing
  • Dec 2 26th Iron Bowl: Alabama beats Auburn 34-0 in Birmingham
  • Dec 3 Anton Geesink becomes 1st non-Japanese judo world champion
  • Dec 3 The Beatles meet future manager Brian Epstein
  • Dec 3 George Blanda of Houston Oilers kicks 55-yard field goal
  • Dec 3 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site

Sport defeatBoxing Title Fight

Dec 4 Floyd Patterson KOs Tom McNeeley in 4 for heavyweight boxing title

Boxer and Undisputed Heavyweight Champion Floyd Patterson
Boxer and Undisputed Heavyweight Champion
Floyd Patterson

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 4 Museum of Modern Art hangs Matisse's Le Bateau upside down for 47 days

Impressionist Painter Henri Matisse
Impressionist Painter
Henri Matisse
  • Dec 4 Smallest NY Knick, 49th St Madison Square Garden crowd-1,300 (snowstorm)
  • Dec 4 Tanganyika becomes 104th member of UN
  • Dec 4 WXGA TV channel 8 in Waycross, GA (PBS) begins broadcasting
  • Dec 4 The female contraceptive 'pill' becomes available on the National Health Service in Britain
  • Dec 4 1962 NFL Draft: Ernie Davis from University of Syracuse first pick by Washington Redskins
  • Dec 6 27th Heisman Trophy Award: Ernie Davis, Syracuse (HB) (1st African American to win)
  • Dec 8 Antwerp Belgium diocese forms
  • Dec 8 Larry Costello scores 32 consecutive pts without a miss (NBA rec)
  • Dec 8 South Africa v NZ, Durban debuts for Eddie Barlow & Peter Pollock

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 8 Wilt Chamberlain scores the 2nd highest total in the NBA - 78

NBA Legend Wilt Chamberlain
NBA Legend
Wilt Chamberlain
  • Dec 9 "From the Second City" closes at Royale Theater NYC after 87 performances
  • Dec 9 "Let It Ride" closes at Eugene O'Neill Theater NYC after 68 performances
  • Dec 9 SS-ObersturmbannfĂĽhrer (lieutenant colonel) Adolf Eichmann found guilty of war crimes in Israel
  • Dec 9 Tanganyika gains independence from Britain, takes name Tanzania
  • Dec 10 Houston Oiler Billy Cannon gains record 373 yards against Titans
  • Dec 10 US performs nuclear test at Carlsbad New Mexico (underground)
  • Dec 10 USSR & Albania break diplomatic relations

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 10 Robert Hofstadter and Rudolf Ludwig Mössbauer win the Nobel Prize in Physics for their pioneering studies of electron scattering in atomic nuclei and discoveries concerning the structure of the nucleon

  • Dec 11 "Please, Mr. Postman" by Marvelettes released
  • Dec 11 Adolf Eichmann is found guilty of war crimes in Israel

Music release#1 in the Charts

Dec 11 Elvis Presley's "Blue Hawaii" album goes #1 & stays #1 for 20 wks

Singer & Cultural Icon Elvis Presley
Singer & Cultural Icon
Elvis Presley

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 11 JFK provides US miltary helicopters & crews to South Vietnam

35th US President John F. Kennedy
35th US President
John F. Kennedy
  • Dec 12 Ham radio satellite Oscar 1 launched with military Discoverer 36

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 12 Martin Luther King Jr. & 700 demonstraters arrested in Albany Ga

Civil Rights Activist Martin Luther King Jr.
Civil Rights Activist
Martin Luther King Jr.
  • Dec 13 Beatles sign a formal agreement to be managed by Brian Epstein
  • Dec 13 Gideon Hausner in Jerusalem demands death penalty for Adolf Eichmann
  • Dec 13 Jimmy Dean's Big Bad John album is country music 1st million $ seller
  • Dec 14 Jimmy Dean's "Big Bad John" is 1st country song to get a gold record
  • Dec 15 Adolf Eichmann convicted of crimes against humanity in Israel
  • Dec 15 Equal access rule, political parties get TV broadcasting time
  • Dec 15 JFK visits Puerto Rico
  • Dec 15 L J Suenens appointed archbishop of Mechelen-Brussels
  • Dec 16 "Evening with Yves Montand" opens at John Golden NYC after 55 performances
  • Dec 17 Disgruntled employee set fire to a circus tent in Niteroi Brazil
  • Dec 17 India seizes Goa & 2 other Portuguese colonies
  • Dec 17 Niteroi Circus of Rio de Janeiro catches fire; 323 die
  • Dec 18 Britain's EMI Records originally rejects the Beatles
  • Dec 18 For 2nd consecutive year, AP names Wilma Rudolph female athlete of year
  • Dec 18 India annexes Portuguese colonies of Goa, Damao & Diu
  • Dec 18 KAIL TV channel 53 in Fresno, CA (IND) begins broadcasting
  • Dec 18 Wilt Chamberlain of NBA Philadelphia Warriors scores 78 points vs LA

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 19 Indonesian President Sukarno proclaims general mobilization

1st President of Indonesia Sukarno
1st President of Indonesia
Sukarno
  • Dec 21 Beatles record "Sweet Georgia Brown" & "Ready Teddy"
  • Dec 21 JFK & British PM MacMillan meet in Bermuda

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 21 Gangster Joe Gallo is sentenced to 7 to 14 years in state prison for extortion

Gangster Joe Gallo
Gangster
Joe Gallo
  • Dec 22 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Dec 23 KICU TV channel 43 in Visalia-Fresno, CA (IND) begins broadcasting
  • Dec 23 Train accident in Italy, 70 die
  • Dec 23 Fidel Castro announces Cuba will release 1,113 prisoners from failed 1961 Bay of Pigs Invasion for $62M worth of food & medical supplies
  • Dec 24 Houston Oilers beat San Diego Chargers 10-3 in AFL championship game
  • Dec 27 Belgium & Congo resume diplomatic relations
  • Dec 27 Styne/Comden/Green's musical "Subways are for Sleeping" premieres at St James Theater NYC for 205 performances

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 28 Tennessee Williams' "Night of the Iguana" premieres in NYC

Playwright Tennessee Williams
Playwright
Tennessee Williams
  • Dec 28 50th Davis Cup: Australia beats Italy in Melbourne (5-0)
  • Dec 30 Moscow: premier of Dmitri Sjostakovitch' 4th Symphony (out 1936)
  • Dec 31 "lrma La Douce" closes at Plymouth Theater NYC after 527 performances
  • Dec 31 Beach Boys play their debut gig under that name
  • Dec 31 Failed coup by Syrian group in Lebanon
  • Dec 31 Green Bay Packers shutout NY Giants 37-0 in NFL championship game
  • Dec 31 Marshall Plan expires after distributing more than $12 billion