Can You Name These Classic Items From The 60s?

By: Mark Laufgraben

Can You Name These Classic Items From The 60s?
Image: Emilija Manevska/Moment/Getty Images

About This Quiz

The only guarantee in life is change, and one look at the technology of the past century should be enough to show you that the times, they are a-changin.' We saw explosive technological growth in every aspect of our lives, from the home to the workplace to the way we played. We saw plenty of evolutionary dead ends, too, things that seemed like a good idea at the time, but ended up failing- sometimes in catastrophic or insidious fashions!

One thing is clear, though. The West became a society hooked on novelty. Shoes that walk on water! Tiny cars! X-Rays for your shoe measurements! The future was hurtling toward us faster than we could process. So we came up with new calculating machines to process it!  These gadgets, gizmos, and habits of a bygone age are the flotsam and jetsam of our past, used to amuse, then tossed aside when the next hot new thing came along. And we love them for it because in these devices and amusements, lurk memories forever frozen like a fly trapped in amber, of the special world in which we grew up. 

Can you recognize these crazy doohickeys, artifacts and relics of a time gone by? Get your mojo rising and click to begin our quiz!

spitoon Which relic do you see here?
Gravy Ladlee
Spitoon
Although chewing tobacco has almost completely vanished from the national landscape, there was a time when you would see spittoons in many public areas, ready to receive expectoration from a citizen's chaw.
Bedpan
Chewing Gum "Ashtray"

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phone booth Which object is shown here?
Police Box
Hurricane Shelter
Phone Booth
Phone booths are a relic from a time when people didn't just walk around with a cheap phone in their pockets. There was a time when they practically lined the streets, and were the easiest way to contact someone when gallivanting out and about.
Arcade Game

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8-track Which historical item do you see here?
Record
8-track
The forerunner to the compact cassette, the 8-track recorded information on magnetic tape. It was most popular in the United States, where it was installed in cars to play recorded music on the go. What a novel concept!
Mini CD
NES game

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betamax tape Which blast from the past is this?
Miniature Boom Box
Betamax Tape
The Betamax was a format for recording video on magnetic tape. It clashed with, and eventually lost to, the VHS, even though its adherents will grouse over its alleged supremacy to this very day! Now that both formats are all but forgotten, it lives on only in our memories.
Wave Station
Voice Recorder

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magnavox oddysey Which relic is pictured here?
Magnavox Odyssey
The first commercial home video game system, the Magnavox Odyssey offered play in monochrome, and with no sound! Its only peripheral, a primative light gun, was sold separately.
Atari 900
NES Entertainment System
Mr. Game and Watch

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slide rule Which old tech do you see here?
Fluroscope
Compass
Protractor
Slide Rule
The slide rule is an analog computer designed for multiple forms of calculation, all performed through physical manipulation of the "ruler." Also known as a slipstick, the slide rule's similarity to a ruler is actually superficial. It isn't meant to draw straight lines at all.

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Pocket Transistor Radio
The pocket transistor radio was an extraordinary invention, allowing people to bring music with them on the go for the first time, thanks to transistor technology. One of these was also the first product Sony sold in America.
Pocket PC
Pocket Mac
Pocket Tape Recorder

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beer warmer Which artifact is shown here?
Soup Tureen
Beer Warmer
Believe it or not, the popularity of "ice cold" beer is as much a triumph of marketing as anything else. There was a time when people preferred their beer warm, particularly in winter, and this was the gadget that made that happen.
Electric Thermos
Mesh Slinkee

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miele washing machine Which old tech is shown in this image?
Jacob's Ladder
Furnace
Miele Washing Machine
The Miele corporation created the electric washer. It was the first home washing machine. Miele completely revolutionized home economics, vastly freeing up time and resources for the homemaker (often a woman), and allowing a previously unparalleled level of freedom.
Pocket Humidifier

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portable sunlamp and carrier Which item do you see?
Electric Torch
Tanning Bed
Portable Sunlamp
Ah, the portable sunlamp. People thought blasting themselves with these for "sunlamp therapy" was good for them, when, in fact, they were irradiating themselves with ultraviolet light at close range, putting themselves at cancer risk. Not great.
Portable Generator

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Iron Lung
These awful contraptions were necessary for breathing for people who had lost muscle control or strength in their lungs. Thanks to vaccines, we have eradicated many of the diseases responsible for such horrible ailments.
Miniature Coffin
Heart Analyzer
MRI Machine

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Early Pacemaker Can you identify this object?
Transistor Cortex
Pipe Cleaner
Electric Plumber
Early Pacemaker
The first implantable pacemakers were able to set the pace for a beating heart, allowing many heart patients to survive when they would otherwise have died. They replaced bulky, external pacemakers, which were vulnerable to power surges.

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Bubble Car Which item is shown here?
Mini-boat
Sea Explorer
Portable Lawnmower
Bubble Car
The Bubble Car was a largely European phenomenon, particularly in Germany and, to some extent, the U.K. The Suez Crisis and other times of gas price shocks inspired the creation of these tiny vehicles.

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Hassock What item is pictured?
Hassock
The difference between a Hassock and an Ottoman is that a Hassock tends to be a smallish affair, while an Ottoman is larger and frequently has storage space within. Hassocks were really just for resting your feet and looking pretty!
Tuffet
Balancer
Ottoman

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Washing Dolly Which item is shown?
Butter Churner
Hand Dryer
Washing Dolly
Used for cleaning in the times before washing machines, the Dolly was used to "stew" the clothes together and swirl them as you washed them in a basin. It was heavy, unforgiving work, and no one looked forward to washing day.
Ice Cream Yardarm

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Original Computer Mouse Name this object!
External Hard Drive
Miniature Keyboard
Light Gun
Original Computer Mouse
Clunky and almost unrecognizable, this is the original computer mouse. It was a wooden box with not one, not two, but three buttons. It even had tiny wheels to move it about.

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Electric Penny-Farthing
Original Jeep
Mini Coup
Microcar
Microcars are the smallest automobile classification, and some of them have only one rear wheel. They have been used in some fashion since the 1940s, but have largely fallen out of favor in the present day.

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Remote Control Lawnmower Do you know which object this is?
Big Wheel
Robotic Gardener
Early Drone
Remote Control Lawnmower
The remote control lawnmower still exists today, but these early models were extremely complex and, frankly, delicate, such that they could not be relied upon for long.

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Keypunch Which artifact is in this picture?
Card Sorter
Keypunch
The keypunch was a device for punching holes in paper so as to convey information. This led to a society that owed a great deal of its information processing capacity to this humble invention, allowing for leaps forward in productivity.
Accounting Machine
Personal Computer

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Dataphone Do you recognize this piece of tech?
Dataphone
Released in 1960, the dataphone can best be described as the first commercial modem. It allowed individuals and businesses to relay information at extraordinary speed across phone wires, paving the way for what would become the modern Internet.
Wireless Modem
Cable Modem
Solid State Hard Drive

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Electronic Multiplying Punch What is this thing?
Amiga Home Computer
Slide Rule
Electronic Multiplying Punch
The electronic multiplying punch read punch cards, and was able to read two factors up to eight decimal digits in length. It could add, subtract and (of course, given the name) multiply. It was used largely as an accounting aid.
Electronic Mainframe

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Mimeograph Which item is shown here?
Xerox
Photocopier
Mimeograph
Simple, yet elegant (albeit goopy!), the mimeograph was a machine that forced ink through stencils in order to make copies of whatever the stencil was made of. Of course, you needed to make the stencil first!
Stencil

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Shoe Fluoroscope Do you know which object this is?
CAT Scanner
MRI Machine
Shoe Fluoroscope
The shoe fluoroscope was a very unfortunate invention that used x-rays to examine a person's foot as they were being fitted for shoes. The x-rays were fired in a continuous beam. This was exceedingly dangerous, and risked giving cancer and other debilitating ailments to the subject.
Angiograph

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Teletype Can you recognize this item?
Teletype
The teletype was a combination of an electric typewriter and phone wires, whereby the typewriter could be used to send information and relay it to a remote user. This was, of course, a forerunner of sorts of our use of PCs to instant message people!
Telegraph
Cable Modem
Wireless Transistor

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Carbon Copier Which artifact is this here?
Stencilograph
Electoo
Xeorx
Carbon Copier
A carbon copier was a machine that used a piece of carbon paper to take an impression of a document, creating a copy of that document by pressing on the carbon. Primitive though it seems, it shows how important duplication was to a modern office.

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Ditto Machine Do you know which relic this is?
Printing Press
Mimeographic Locator
Ditto Machine
The ditto machine used a wax sheet and a piece of carbon paper together to create simple copies of documents. It was also known as a Spirit Duplicator. It actually did not use ink at all, instead using the wax to make the impression.
Typographique

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Rotary Phone Can you identify this object?
Rotary Phone
Ah, the rotary phone. When you put your fingers in the dial to turn the numbers, they would make a distinct whirring sound that forever embeds itself in the heads of the people who heard it.
Telelocator
Early GPS
Wireless Receiver

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Instant Film Camera Do you know which item is shown here?
Handheld Radio
Pocket Recorder
Instant Film Camera
Believe it or not, there was a time when you wanted a few pictures and the only way to get them was to either pay someone to take them, or buy an expensive camera yourself. These instant cameras solved that problem, offering cheap photography for people of all classes.
Handheld Copier

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Label Maker Which object is shown in this photo?
Compact Disc Player
Cassette Recorder
Label Maker
When you absolutely need to tell that bratty brother that this is yours, there's the label maker. More sophisticated versions of this exist today, of course, but they are not usually used in a domestic context.
Walkman

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Asbestos Can you identify this substance?
Asbestos
Asbestos was used to line the walls of homes as fireproof insulation. Unfortunately, it is highly carcinogenic and toxic, resulting in a staggering human cost instead of technological benefit.
Fiberglass
Rayon
Aluminum

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Vibrating Belt Which object is shown here?
Electric Dog Walker
Back-Rubber
Vibrating Belt
Purportedly some kind of exercise, the vibrating belt..... well, you can see how it's supposed to work! In reality, these proved quite unpleasant to use, and did not see much in the way of popular longevity.
Walking Machine

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Electric Frypan Which item is in this picture?
Electric Frypan
Although still with us today in much more efficient form, early electric frying pans were unwieldy and occasionally unsafe. They looked like a crude waffle iron.
Electric Crisper
Cornballer
Electric Taco Maker

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Knitting Machine Can you recognize this?
Portable Patch Sewer
Crochet Master
Home Sewing Machine
Knitting Machine
The problem with the original knit-o-matic was that it could only knit in very set patterns, in very few formats. Knitting is an art with a great deal of flexibility, so it is no surprise that these machines failed to see much traction in popular culture.

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