15 Historic Moments Of The 70’s
Could any decade surpass the tumultuous 1960’s, prognosticators pondered on New Year’s Eve, December 31, 1969? Well, they found out soon enough that the 1970’s was an era that will go down in history as one of the most spectacular..
Here, we have fifteen of the top, unforgettable moments of those years. These memories are forever etched in our collective mind.
1. Elvis Presley in the White House
Elvis was a big supporter of President Richard M. Nixon. The King of Rock even received an honorary anti-drug deputy position from the White House on December 21, 1970. Well, a few years later, we all found out that the anti-drug crusader was actually a serious user himself.
2. “Houston We Have a Problem”
NASA sent Apollo 13 to the moon, intending for it to be the third American craft to reach that planet. Things went awry, with a gas tank exploding. Understandably frightened, the astronauts headed back home, landing in the South Pacific in April 1970.
3. Kent State Shooting
National Guardsmen shot and killed nine Kent State University students on May 4, 1970. John Filo, then a journalism student, caught an iconic image of a woman crying out “why” while leaning over the slain body of a young man named Jeffrey Miller. The incident made average Americans realize they and their children could be harmed by political violence.
4. The Beatles Split Up
On May 8, 1970, the Beatles released their final album, “Let it Be.” A month earlier Paul McCartney had informed fans that the group would no longer perform together.
5. Gay Liberation Day
Activists took to the streets on Gay Liberation Day, June 28, 1970. The event occurred exactly one year after the brutal police raid of the Stonewall Inn, a popular New York City establishment frequented by homosexual men.
6. Disney World Opens
Large crowds formed outside the new Disney World Orlando in October 1970. The Magic Kingdom remains popular to this day with over 25 million visitors each year.
7. Nixon Goes to China
Richard Nixon went to China in February 1972. This historic trip was the first ever for an American president to the Asian giant. Nixon normalized relations between the two nations. His diplomatic move made China and the United States partners, of sorts, in the Cold War against the Soviet Union.
8. Napalm Accident in Vietnam
The June 1972 napalming of a Vietnamese village left nine-year-old Kim Phuc`s skin burning. In agony, she ripped off her clothing and ran the street. The image made Americans realize the affect of war on innocent civilians.
9. Hanoi Jane
Jane Fonda has since apologized for her embrace of the North Vietnamese cause. At the time, she was attracted to Left-wing politics. Despite her recantation, the July 1972 meeting with the enemy aroused longstanding anger among many.
10. Bobby Fischer Wins
In the summer of 1972, chess prodigy Bobby Fischer beat Russian Boris Spassky to become the first non-Russian world champion since 1948. Every competition between the Soviet Union and United States was viewed as significant during this period of Cold War. Each nation wanted to best the other, regardless of the playing field.
11. Munich Masked Men
The Israeli Olympic team was attacked by masked terrorists from Palestine on September 5, 1972, at the Summer Games in Germany. They killed two athletes and held nine others hostage before killing them as well.
12. The Sears Tower Opens
The Sears Tower opened in 1973 in Chicago. The World Trade Center was the tallest building in New York, but the Sears Tower beat it. Chicago had always been known as the “second city.” Now, it had finally surpassed New York in at least one category.
13. A New Home Run King
In April 1974, Hank Aaron of the Atlanta Braves hit his 715th home run to break the previous record held by Babe Ruth. The Braves were a dismal team. The home run record was one of the few moments of joy for baseball fans in the South.
14. Nixon Resigns
Embattled President Richard M. Nixon left the White House in disgrace on April 9, 1974. The image of him waving a final farewell from Air Force One is iconic. He remains the only president to have resigned.
15. Down Goes Foreman
Muhammad Ali and George Foreman, both heavyweight boxers tangled in Zaire, October 30, 1974. Ali dropped Foremen to become world champion. The “Rumble in the Jungle” victory returned the title Ali lost because of his refusal to fight in Vietnam. Sports fans see this match as the turning point for Ali. He went from being hated by some to beloved by virtually all.