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Genealogy & History Primer: The World of our Ancestors in 1951

My first birthday celebration on my grandma's lap!

My first birthday celebration on my grandma’s lap!

As we prepare for our newest exclusive English translation of another wonderful Czech genealogy article from the pages of the Czech-American annual journal, Amerikán Národní Kalendář, today we bring you another of our history primers!  This time it is for the year 1951.

It was a monumental year…since it was the year this author was born!  However I have to admit I recall nothing of what was happening that year so here we go – back to 1951!

Harry Truman was President of the United States, the Korean War was raging during which President Truman relieved General Douglas MacArthur of his command of the 2.9 million U.S troops fighting there.

The United Nations headquarters in New York City opened, the first ever passenger jet airplane trip was made, and the first movie to ‘earn’ an X rating (Life After Tomorrow) premiered.

In West Germany, Ilse Koch, known as “The Witch of Buchenwald” was given a life sentence, the largest pipeline at the time opened and stretched from Brownsville, Texas to New York City, and the Viet Minh launched an offensive against the occupying French in the Vietnamese city of Hanoi.

In the Netherlands the first ever lie detector was used, the first nuclear explosion was televised from the Nevada test site in the United States (one of 126 held there), and the first ever Pan-American Games were held in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

The Rosenberg Soviet nuclear secrets spy trial began and ended in the United States, the first NBA All-Star Game was held, and J. Edgar Hoover turned down the offer to become the Commissioner of Baseball.

The musical “The King and I” opened in New York City, the Israeli Knesset dedicated April 13th as ‘Holocaust Remembrance Day’, and the British submarine Affray sank in the English Channel killing all 75 aboard.

Mickey Mantle played his first game for the New York Yankees, the Ernie Kovacs Show premiered on television, and Dacron men’s suits were first offered for sale.

Willie Mayes played in his first Major League baseball game, the International Cheese Treaty was signed, and Mozambique became a province of Portugal.

UNIVAC I, the first commercial computer was placed in service (for the U.S. Census Agency), Joe Louis was boxing, Ben Hogan and Patty Berg were golfing, and the first color TV broadcast was aired.

William Shockley invented the transistor, J. D. Salinger’s “The Catcher in the Rye” was published, and Walt Disney released “Alice in Wonderland”.

A typhoon killed almost 5,000 in Manchuria, a Viking rocket launched by the U.S. reached a then-record height of 210 km, and the TV soap opera “Search for Tomorrow” premiered.

Florence Chadwick became the first woman to swim the English Channel from England to France, Russia performed its first nuclear test, and to lighten things up, “I Love Lucy” premiered.

“Dragnet” premiered on TV, Joe DiMaggio retired from baseball, and late in the year an armistice was signed in Panmunjom, effectively halting the Korean War hostilities.

You can see it was quite a year beyond my birthday!

Now with this primer done, we can get ready to see what the editors and publisher of the wonderful Czech-American annual journal, Amerikán Národní Kalendář, offered Czech-Americans for their reading pleasure!

We will post our exclusive translation of the 1951 Table of Contents (Obsah) tomorrow, then begin a truly wonderful new article translation unlike any of our previous translations!

Stay right here with Onward To Our Past®

A Genealogical Historian, who is focused on family history and genealogy of the highest quality, but with a dose of fun. Avid about documentation and evidence. Loves helping folks of all levels in their genealogy pursuits, especially in the areas of Bohemia, Czech Republic, Italy, Cornwall, Kent, United Kingdom, U.S. Immigration and Cleveland, Ohio.

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