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Link to the concluding chapters of An American Adventure Chapters 17 through 18
The 1960s are a decade of incredible growth for Henkels & McCoy. Among the more notable projects are the installation of a complete telecommunications system at Dulles International Airport in Washington, DC, installation of power lines in Wisconsin, and building microwave towers in Ohio... Henkels & McCoy is also involved in laying pipe in New Jersey and Maryland, performing line work in places as far apart as North Dakota and South Carolina, and digging manholes in Kentucky, and liming in Indiana... Overseas, Henkels & McCoy repairs the electrical system at Lajes Field in the Azores, and helps to expand the telephone system in Puerto Rico... Henkels & McCoy constructs a crossing over the Hudson River for ConEd. This wire crossing is the longest and heaviest crossing yet attempted in the East, demanding technical expertise and ingenuity to link Orange and Rockland utilities with Con Edison. The line must be installed without interrupting ocean-going traffic and without allowing the wires to touch the water...
West Tower of Hudson River Crossing. The tower to tower span is 4,275 feet across the Hudson. A three-man crew (circled) is dwarfed by the mammoth scale of this structure.
The mood of the country is optimistic as we enter the 1960s, despite increasing Cold War rhetoric and a growing international nuclear weapons club. Everything seems possible. America is about to choose from among the youngest candidates in American history for the highest political office. It's a time of vitality and vigor. But it's also a time of increasing tensions. The long struggle for civil rights takes new forms. A non-violent civil disobedience program based on Gandhi's example in India is espoused by a new generation of Southern clergymen, led by a young Atlanta born preacher. Civil rights tests of will occur across remaining areas where segregation is still practiced. The early part of this new decade will, in later years, be remembered fondly as a time of innocence. The middle and later years will see an America bitterly divided over government policy abroad and increasingly suspicious of its leaders at home.
US black college freshmen begin "sit-in" demonstrations in "whites only" sections at Greensboro, N.C., lunch counters to protest racial segregation. The city desegregates eating places in July.
France explodes its first nuclear device in the Sahara desert, in Algeria (a French colony), becoming the fourth country to acquire atomic capability.
Tiros 1 (First US weather satellite) launched.
The Soviets shoot down a US U-2 reconnaissance aircraft (right) and capture the pilot, Capt. Gary Powers, embarrassing the Eisenhower administration, who deny the existence of spy flights. Powers is sentenced to 10 years imprisonment (7 at hard labor) in a highly publicized show trial. Though Powers is later traded for a captured Soviet spy some 21 months later, the incident leads to heightened Cold War tensions and deepens the sense of mistrust between East and West.
Floyd Patterson defeats Ingemar Johansson in the fifth round of a rematch, to become the first fighter to regain the heavyweight boxing crown.
The US launches Echo I, the world's first communication satellite.
August 25-September 11
Rome, Italy is host to the Olympic games. The USSR will take 43 Golds to 34 by the US. The Soviets will also lead in Silver and Bronze medals. A brash young boxer from Louiville, Kentucky will easily win all four of his light-heavweight bouts, the final against three-time European champ Zbigniew Pietrzykowski, of Poland. He will embark on a pro career the following year. Eventually, Cassius Marcellus Clay (right) will win the World Heavyweight Title from Sonny Liston and go on to be one of the greatest boxers of all time. He will be known the world over as Muhammad Ali.
September 26, - October 7, 13, 21
The televised Nixon-Kennedy presidential election debates are a first. Depending on whether one heard the debates on radio or watched them on television, it was hard to say who had won. LOOKING relaxed and fit on TV, JFK seemingly outclassed the dour, dark chinned and pale Nixon, who was suffering a cold and refused makeup prior to the broadcast. On radio, however, Nixon SOUNDED more assured and authoritative, particularly in the realm of foreign policy, his specialty.
The Pirates defeat the Yankees 10-9 to win the World Series in seven games, in Pittsburgh.
November 8Democrat John F. Kennedy defeats Vice-President Richard Nixon to win the presidential election, becoming the youngest and first Roman Catholic president.
Eagles narrowly get the NFL championship for Christmas, from the Green Bay Packers 17-13.
|ALSO IN 1960:|
Thomas S. Monaghan, borrows $500 to buy a pizza parlor in Detroit, and renames it "Domino's."
Quasars, the most luminous known objects in the universe, are discovered.
Theodore Maiman, in the Hughes Laboratory in California, perfects the laser.
"Etch-a-sketch" drawing toy becomes popular.
A Japanese company introduces the first felt-tip pen.
Xerox announces the first production paper copier machine.
Aluminum cans first used for soft drinks in the US.
Escaped Nazi death camp commandant Adolph Eichmann
is tracked down and captured in Argentina by Israeli agents
and taken for trial for his part in the murder of European Jews
in World War II.
Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho premiers. Americans become
nervous in the shower this summer.
Original members Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, and Qatar of The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) meet in Baghdad... Howard Johnson has 607 independently owned restaurants, making it the largest private food distributor in the country... Chicago Cardinals NFL team relocates to Saint Louis, Missouri... Camelot, The Fantastics and Oliver open in New York... 2,000 computers are delivered in the US... The Academy Award for Best Picture goes to Billy Wilder’s The Apartment, starring much-put-upon office clerk Jack Lemmon and object of his affections, elevator operator Shirley MacLaine... USA wins hockey’s Olympic Gold in Rome... While at home,
1960s Dance Craze!
It's the age of Bandstand on TV, broadcast live from Philadelphia every weekday afternoon at four, featuring area high school kids dancing to tunes either played on disc or lip synched by performers...Former South Philadelphia chicken plucker, Ernest Evans, aka Chubby Checker (above left), introduces The Twist at the Peppermint Lounge in New York City. The hit was Number One in two different years, the first pop song to earn that distinction. Other Philadelphia artists of the late 1950s and early 1960s to win number one hits, and for some, national careers are Bobby Rydell (above right) singing Wild One, Volare, Wildwood Days, film: Bye-Bye Birdie), Fabian Forte (Tiger), Frankie Avalon (Venus), DeeDee Sharpe (above center) for her Mashed Potatoes, The Orlons (The Wah-Watusi, South Street), The Dovells (The Bristol Stomp).
What's On TV
The top three TV shows are still westerns (Gunsmoke, Wagon Train, Have Gun, Will Travel) but newcomers such as (arguably) the first "reality' show, Candid Camera, prime time sitcom cartoons, The Flintstones, and the new Prohibition-era crime show The Untouchables are all making inroads.
Pittsburgh beat the Yankees (4-3) to take the '60 World Series...Boston Celtics defeat St. Louis Hawks (4-3) for the NBA title...Montreal sweeps Toronto (4-0) for the Stanley Cup... in college sports, NCAA Basketball Championship is won by Ohio State over California (75-55), while Minnesota are NCAA Football Champions.
The Economy in 1960
US GDP (in 1998 dollars): $526.6 billion; Federal spending is $92.19 billion, the Federal debt stands at $290.5 billion...The unemployment rate is 5.5% and a first class stamps costs 4 cents.
Boris Pasternak, author, Doctor Zhivago
Emily Post, etiquette authority
Lawrence Tibbett, baritone
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