On This Day

Historical Events in May 1962

  • May 1 1st French underground nuclear test in the Sahara at Ecker, Algeria

Historic Event

May 1 JFK authorizes Area Redevelopment Act (ARA)

  • May 2 OAS strikes in Algeria
  • May 2 US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Christmas Island
  • May 2 WMHT TV channel 17 in Schenectady-Alby-Tro, NY (PBS) 1st broadcast
  • May 2 European Cup Final, Amsterdam: Eusébio scores twice as defending champions Benfica beat Real Madrid, 5-3; Puskás, hits all 3 for Madrid
  • May 3 Express train crashed into wreckage of a commuter train & a freight, killing 163, injuring 400 in Tokyo, Japan
  • May 4 US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Christmas Island
  • May 5 88th Kentucky Derby: Bill Hartack aboard Decidedly wins in 2:00.4

#1 in the Charts

May 5 "West Side Story" soundtrack album goes #1 & stays #1 for 54 weeks which is more than 20 weeks longer than any other album

  • May 6 1st nuclear warhead fired from Polaris submarine (Ethan Allen)

Election of Interest

May 6 Antonio Segni elected President of Italy

  • May 6 Pathet Lao breaks cease fire and conquer Nam Tha Laos
  • May 6 US performs nuclear test at Pacific Ocean
  • May 7 Pulitzer prize awarded to Theodore H. White (Making of President 1960)
  • May 7 US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Christmas Island

Music Premiere

May 8 Stephen Sondheim's musical "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" starring Zero Mostel and Jack Gilford, and directed by George Abbott, opens at Alvin Theater, NYC; runs for 965 performances, and wins 6 Tony Awards

  • May 8 1st Atlas Centaur Launch
  • May 8 London trolley buses (electrically powered buses using overhead supply) go out of service

Historic Event

May 8 Oskar Schindler and his wife Emilie Schindler are honored for saving 1200 Jews during WWII, in a ceremony on the Avenue of the Righteous, Jerusalem

  • May 9 The Beatles sign their 1st contract with EMI Parlophone
  • May 9 Laser beam successfully bounced off Moon for 1st time
  • May 9 US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Christmas Island
  • May 11 Antonio Segni becomes President of Italy
  • May 11 US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Christmas Island
  • May 11 US sends troops to Thailand
  • May 12 Grevelingen dam closes in major project to protect the southwest of the Netherlands from flooding
  • May 12 US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Christmas Island

Sports History

May 13 LPGA Western Open Women's Golf, Montgomery CC: Mickey Wright wins on the 4th hole of a sudden-death playoff with Mary Lena Faulk

Historic Event

May 14 Ex-president of Yugoslavia Milovan Djilas sentenced to 5 years in jail

  • May 14 US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Christmas Island
  • May 14 Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan elected second President of India
  • May 15 US marines arrive in Laos
  • May 17 Marin County withdraws from BART district
  • May 19 "Bravo, Giovanni" opens at Broadhurst Theater NYC for 76 performances
  • May 19 "John Birch Society" by Chad Mitchell Trio hits #99
  • May 19 87th Preakness: John Rotz aboard Greek Money wins in 1:56.2
  • May 19 Indonesian paratroopers land in New Guinea

Sports History

May 19 Stan Musial breaks Honus Wagner's NL hit record with 3,431

  • May 19 US performs nuclear test at Christmas Island (atmospheric)
  • May 21 3 more Cleveland HR set AL record for most HR (26) over 8 games
  • May 22 Netherlands telephone network becomes completely automated
  • May 22 Major Robert A Rushworth, USAF, takes X-15 to 30,600m

Baseball Record

May 22 Roger Maris walks 5 times (record 4 intentionally) in a 9 inning game

  • May 22 Continental Airlines Flight 11 crashes after bombs explode on board

Baseball Record

May 23 Joe Pepitone 2nd Yankee to hit 2 HRs in 1 inning (Joe DiMaggio)

  • May 23 OAS leader general Raoul Salan sentenced to life
  • May 23 Scott Carpenter orbits Earth 3 times in US Aurora 7
  • May 23 15th Cannes Film Festival: "Keeper of Promises" directed by Anselmo Duarte wins the Palme d'Or
  • May 24 M Scott Carpenter aboard Aurora 7 launched into Earth orbit
  • May 25 Isley Brothers release "Twist & Shout"
  • May 25 US performs nuclear test at Christmas Island (atmospheric)
  • May 25 US unions AFL-CIO starts campaign for 35-hour work week
  • May 26 "All American" closes at Winter Garden Theater NYC after 80 performances
  • May 28 Suit alleging de facto school segregation filed in Rochester, NY
  • May 28 US stock market drops $20.8 B in 1 day
  • May 28 Wide World of Sports with Chris Schenkel premieres on CBS radio

TV Show Appearance

May 29 Barbra Streisand appears on "The Garry Moore Show"

  • May 29 4th Grammy Awards: Moon River, Peter Nero win
  • May 30 69 killed in bus crash (Ahmedabad India)

Music History

May 30 Benjamin Britten's "War Requiem" incorporating the poems of Wilfred Owen premieres, marking the consecration of the new Coventry Cathedral

  • May 30 Indianapolis 500: Rodger Ward and Len Sutton finish 1st-2nd for Leader Cards Racing; Parnelli Jones breaks 150 mph (240 km/h) barrier in qualifying
  • May 31 "Tell It To Groucho" last airs on CBS-TV
  • May 31 The West Indies Federation, made up of former British Caribbean territories, dissolves