After World War II, America settled into the oddity of the 1950s, a post-war boom in which millions of babies were born and jobs were plentiful… but there was darkness seeping in just beyond the horizon. When the 1960s arrived, so too did massive social turbulence. A U.S. president was shot and killed. Civil rights leaders were murdered. Riots enveloped entire cities. By the time 1969 rolled around, many Americans could hardly wait for the strangeness of the 1960s to be over. What do you recall about the events of 1969?
The end of the ‘60s saw the counterculture still thriving against conservative factions. Large music festivals weren’t just for fun; they were a sign of a movement that often came to literal blows with authority. But there were peaceful moments, too. What do you remember about the flower children and their role in late Sixties politics?
And speaking of politics, from Vietnam to Chicago, there were power struggles galore. One tired president stepped aside, giving way to a man who would become more infamous than all of his predecessors.
Don’t burn that draft card just yet! Step into the time machine of this 1969 knowledge quiz now!
Richard Nixon was at the helm of the American government in 1969. Given the turmoil of the times, it was not always an enviable position.
In July 1969, three American astronauts completed the Apollo 11 mission by landing two men on the moon. More manned landings followed the initial triumph.
In 1969, Charles Manson and his followers murdered actress Sharon Tate in California. Tate was eight months pregnant when she was stabbed about 100 times.
In September, "The Brady Bunch," with its blended-family themes, debuted on ABC. It ran for five seasons and 117 iconic episodes.
In 1969, Dave Thomas started the first Wendy’s fast food store. There are now more than 6,500 Wendy’s around the globe.
It was poorly-organized and made messy with rain and subsequent mud ... and it’s the most famous music festival of all time. Woodstock was held on a farm in upstate New York.
In 1969, after millions of dollars of development, the Boeing 747 commercial jetliner made its first flights. It changed the airline industry forever, making it cheaper than ever to move large numbers of passengers through the air.
It turned out to be one of public television’s most iconic shows. "Sesame Street" started in 1969 ... and is still rolling along today thanks to the likes of Big Bird and friends.
Thanks to Wilt Chamberlain and other big stars, the Lakers were expected to walk all over the Celtics. The back-and-forth series went seven games, and Boston prevailed by two in the final contest.
Robert Kennedy was shot and killed by Sirhan Sirhan in 1968. Originally sentenced to death, his time was commuted to life in prison once California abolished capital punishment.
In 1969, Kennedy was involved in a car accident in which a female passenger was killed. He fled the scene and was given a short suspended sentence, but his political aspirations were permanently damaged.
Starring Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman, "Midnight Cowboy" won Best Picture that year. It had a budget of just $3 million but grossed more than $40 million at box offices.
For couples struggling to have children, in vitro fertilization opened up a whole world of possibilities. The first successful in vitro fertilization of a human egg happened in ‘69 thanks to English scientists.
In 1969, the so-called Zodiac Killer started his murderous rampage in California and mocked the public with letters to the media. No one has ever been arrested for the crimes.
It was clear that the U.S. couldn’t win the Vietnam War, so after years of domestic unrest, U.S. leaders began slowly withdrawing troops.
In ‘69, they were nearing the end of their incredible run. "Get Back," by the Beatles, was number one for five weeks. But it wouldn't be long before the group gave up touring for good.
Government officials already knew that cigarettes were terrible for humans. The FCC banned all cigarette commercials on both radio and TV, and that ban turned out to be a permanent one.
The ‘60s were indeed a loud time in American history. At his inauguration, Nixon said that Americans would have to tone down the shouting for once and actually do some listening.
The U.S. used DDT to kill pests all over the place. But DDT was banned in part because it had all sorts of awful side effects, including the thinning of bird eggshells.
On September 5, American troops murdered more than 100 Vietnamese civilians during the My Lai Massacre. The atrocity went almost entirely unpunished.
“Star Trek" found intermittent success in the ‘60s before being cancelled in 1969. But its legacy has only bloomed further in recent decades.
The president’s "Nixon Doctrine" was all about the Vietnam War. It essentially indicated that U.S. allies in Southeast Asia were going to have to handle things without American help.
Before the Super Bowl, Jets QB Joe Namath guaranteed that his team would upset the heavily-favored Colts. He was right — the Jets won, 16 to 7.
Ali refused to take part in the Vietnam War. He was convicted of dodging the draft, but that conviction was later overturned by the Supreme Court.
In New York City, police often harassed gay people until a bar disturbance resulted in the Stonewall riots. Suddenly, the gay rights movement caught fire and had lasting impacts on America and much of the Western world.
Vegas gave the Mets almost no chance to beat the Orioles in the Series. But that’s exactly what they did, triumphing four games to one.
In May, The Who unveiled a new album titled "Tommy." It featured some of the band biggest hits, like "Pinball Wizard" and "Tommy, Can You Hear Me?"
In June, Burger became the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. Soon after, he cast a vote in support of a landmark case called Roe v. Wade.
By leveraging his military connections, Gadhafi seized control of Libya in the fall of 1969. Thus began one of the quirkiest and scariest dictatorships in North African history.
In mid-August, Camille, one of the strongest hurricanes on record, smashed into the Mississippi coast. Nearly 250 people were killed.
In March 1969, former President Eisenhower died at age 78. He became a worldwide war hero for his planning of the D-Day invasions of Normandy in WWII.
In August, British troops went to Northern Ireland to calm a spate of unrest. Eventually, tens of thousands of troops were sent to the area, and bombings and shootings became part of life.
The Altamont Free Concert was meant to echo the success of Woodstock. Instead, criminals ran wild. Four people died, including one woman by stabbing.
In 1969, Texas went undefeated and won the college football national title. It was this season that Texas was ranked #1 and faced off with #2 Arkansas in what some saw as the unofficial title game.
Wretched violence broke out between protesters and police at the Democratic National Convention. Two of the Chicago 8 were outright acquitted; others were convicted of charges related to the ruckus. Multiple cops were also indicted in the violence.