Historical Events For Year 1961

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January 25, 1961

A presidential news conference is broadcast live for the first time and is delivered by President Kennedy.
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January 31, 1961

The Mercury-Redstone 2 rocket is launched in a test launching, carrying Ham the Chimp on board, to see if the rocket's design will be able to carry astronauts into space.
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February 4, 1961

The Colonial War in Portugal begins in Angola. Read More

February 12, 1961

The U.S.S.R launches Venera 1 towards Venus. Read More

February 15, 1961

The southern part of Europe experiences a total solar eclipse. Read More

March 1, 1961

President John F. Kennedy establishes the Peace Corps of the United States. Read More

March 8, 1961

A new world record is by Max Conrad for circumnavigating the earth in less than 9 days. Read More

March 18, 1961

The Algerian War of Independence initiates a ceasefire. Read More

March 29, 1961

The ratification of the Twenty-third Amendment to the United States Constitution gives the right to vote in presidential elections to residents of Washington D.C.
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March 30, 1961

New York holds the signing of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs. Read More

April 20, 1961

The defeat of the Bay of Pigs invasion is announced by Fidel Castro. Read More

May 5, 1961

The first American in space is Alan Shepard on board the Mercury-Redstone 3 Read More

May 14, 1961

A fire-bombing is made against a Freedom Riders bus during the civil rights movement and protestors are beaten by mobs in Anniston, Alabama.
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May 25, 1961

President John F. Kennedy expresses his goal to get a man on the Moon within the decade in front of a joint Congress.
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June 17, 1961

A merger of the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation and the Canadian Labor Congress established the New Democratic Party of Canada.
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June 23, 1961

The Antarctic Treaty becomes effective. Read More

July 31, 1961

Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts holds the first All-Star tie game when a rain storm puts a stop to the game in the 9th inning.
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August, 1961

The Alliance for Progress is founded by the United States of America. Read More

August 1, 1961

The opening of the theme park Six Flags over Texas occurs. Read More

August 6, 1961

Cosmonaut Gherman Titov from the Soviet Union becomes first person to stay in outer space for over a day and the second person to orbit the Earth.
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August 13, 1961

The Berlin Wall begins being built in an attempt to restrict movement between East and West Berlin and making a distinct separation between East and West Germany.
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September 30, 1961

The Organization for European Economic Co-operation is replaced by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
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October 1, 1961

Babe Ruth's 34 year-old record is beat by Roger Maris of the New York Yankees when he hits his 61st home run.
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October 18, 1961

The film version of West Side Story makes it's debut. Read More

December 11, 1961

The start of the American involvement in the Vietnam War takes place with the arrival of American helicopters in Saigon.
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