1964 in the United States
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Events from the year 1964 in the United States.
- 1 Incumbents
- 2 Events
- 3 Births
- 4 Deaths
- 5 See also
- 6 References
- 7 External links
- President: Lyndon B. Johnson (D–Texas)
- Vice President: vacant
- Chief Justice: Earl Warren (California)
- Speaker of the House of Representatives: John William McCormack (D–Massachusetts)
- Senate Majority Leader: Mike Mansfield (D–Montana)
- Congress: 88th
- January 3 – Senator Barry Goldwater of Arizona announces that he will seek the Republican nomination for President.
- January 7 – A British firm, the Leyland Motor Corp., announces the sale of 450 buses to the Cuban government, challenging the United States blockade of Cuba.
- January 8 – In his first State of the Union Address, U.S. President Lyndon Johnson declares a "War on Poverty".
- January 9 – Martyrs' Day: Armed clashes between United States troops and Panamanian civilians in the Panama Canal Zone precipitate a major international crisis, resulting in the deaths of 21 Panamanians and 4 U.S. soldiers.
- January 10 – Introducing...the Beatles is released by Chicago's Vee-Jay Records to get the jump on Capitol Records' release of Meet the Beatles!, scheduled for January 20. The 2 record companies fight in court over Vee-Jay's release of this album.
- January 11 – United States Surgeon General Luther Leonidas Terry reports that smoking may be hazardous to one's health (the first such statement from the U.S. government).
- January 12
- January 13 – In Manchester, New Hampshire, 14-year-old Pamela Mason is murdered. Edward Coolidge is tried and convicted of the crime, but the conviction is set aside by the landmark Fourth Amendment case Coolidge v. New Hampshire (1971).
- January 16
- January 17 – John Glenn announces that he will seek the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senator from Ohio.
- January 18 – Plans to build the New York City World Trade Center are announced.
- January 20 – Meet the Beatles!, the first Beatles album in the United States, is released.
- January 23
- Thirteen years after its proposal and nearly 2 years after its passage by the United States Senate, the 24th Amendment to the United States Constitution, prohibiting the use of poll taxes in national elections, is ratified.
- Arthur Miller's After the Fall opens Off-Broadway. A semi-autobiographical work, it arouses controversy over his portrayal of late ex-wife Marilyn Monroe.
- Designed by McKim, Mead & White, the Smithsonian Institution's Museum of History and Technology, predecessor of the National Museum of American History, opens to the public in Washington, D.C.
- January 27 – U.S. Senator Margaret Chase Smith, 66, announces her candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination.
- January 28 – A U.S. Air Force jet training plane that strays into East Germany is shot down by Soviet fighters near Erfurt; all 3 crew men are killed.
- January 29 – Ranger 6 is launched by NASA, on a mission to carry television cameras and crash-land on the Moon.
- February 1 – The Beatles vault to the #1 spot on the U.S. singles charts for the first time, with "I Want to Hold Your Hand", starting the British Invasion in America..
- February 3 – Protesting against alleged de facto school racial segregation, Black and Puerto Rican groups in New York City boycott public schools.
- February 4
- February 6 – Cuba cuts off the normal water supply to the United States Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, in reprisal for the U.S. seizure 4 days earlier of 4 Cuban fishing boats off the coast of Florida.
- February 7
- A Jackson, Mississippi jury, trying Byron De La Beckwith for the murder of Medgar Evers in June 1963, reports that it can not reach a verdict, resulting in a mistrial.
- The Beatles arrive from England at New York City's JFK International Airport, receiving a tumultuous reception from a throng of screaming fans, marking the first occurrence of "Beatlemania" in the United States.
- February 9 – The Beatles appear on The Ed Sullivan Show, marking their first live performance on American television. Seen by an estimated 73 million viewers, the appearance becomes the catalyst for the mid-1960s "British Invasion" of American popular music.
- February 17 – Wesberry v. Sanders (376 US 1 1964): The Supreme Court of the United States rules that congressional districts have to be approximately equal in population.
- February 25 – Muhammad Ali vs. Sonny Liston: Cassius Clay beats Sonny Liston in Miami Beach, Florida, and is crowned heavyweight boxing champion of the world. This evening he celebrates in a hotel room with his three closest friends, activist Malcolm X, singer Sam Cooke and American football fullback Jim Brown, and soon afterwards changes his name.
- February 26 – U.S. politician ex-astronaut John Glenn slips on a bathroom rug in his Columbus, Ohio apartment and hits his head on the bathtub, injuring his left inner ear, and prompting him (later that week) to withdraw from the race for the Democratic Party Senate nomination.
- February 29 – U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson announces that the United States has developed a jet airplane (the A-11), capable of sustained flight at more than 2,000 miles per hour (3,200 km/h) and of altitudes of more than 70,000 feet (21,000 m).
- March 4 – Teamsters President Jimmy Hoffa is convicted by a federal jury of tampering with a federal jury in 1962.
- March 8 – Malcolm X, suspended from the Nation of Islam, says in New York City that he is forming a black nationalist party.
- March 9
- March 10
- March 12 – Malcolm X leaves the Nation of Islam.
- March 13 – It is falsely reported that 38 of her neighbors in Queens, New York City fail to respond to the cries of Kitty Genovese, 28, as she is being stabbed to death.
- March 14 – A Dallas, Texas jury finds Jack Ruby guilty of killing John F. Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald.
- March 26 – Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. at news conference. U.S. Defense Secretary Robert McNamara delivers an address that reiterates American determination to give South Vietnam increased military and economic aid, in its war against the Communist insurgency.
- March 27 – The Good Friday earthquake, the most powerful earthquake in U.S. history at a magnitude of 9.2, strikes South Central Alaska, killing 125 people and inflicting massive damage to the city of Anchorage, Alaska.
- March 30 – Merv Griffin's game show Jeopardy! debuts on NBC; Art Fleming is its first host.
- March 31 – The military, backed by the US, overthrows Brazilian President João Goulart in a coup, starting 21 years of dictatorship in Brazil.
- April 2 – Mrs. Malcolm Peabody, 72, mother of Massachusetts Governor Endicott Peabody, is released on $450 bond after spending 2 days in a St. Augustine, Florida jail, for participating in an anti-segregation demonstration there.
- April 4 – Three high school friends in Hoboken, N.J., open the first BLIMPIE on Washington Street.
- April 8 – Four of 5 railroad operating unions strike against the Illinois Central Railroad without warning, bringing to a head a 5-year dispute over railroad work rules.
- April 12 – In Detroit, Michigan, Malcolm X delivers a speech entitled "The Ballot or the Bullet."
- April 13 – The 36th Academy Awards ceremony is held.
- April 14 – A Delta rocket's third-stage motor ignites prematurely in an assembly room at Cape Canaveral, killing 3.
- April 17
- April 20 – U.S. President Lyndon Johnson in New York, and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev in Moscow, simultaneously announce plans to cut back production of materials for making nuclear weapons.
- April 22 – The 1964 New York World's Fair opens to celebrate the 300th anniversary of New Amsterdam being taken over by British forces under the Duke of York (later King James II) and being renamed New York in 1664. The fair runs until Oct. 18, 1964 and reopens April 21, 1965, finally closing October 17, 1965. (Not sanctioned, due to being within 10 years of the Seattle World's Fair in 1962, some countries decline, but many countries have pavilions with exotic crafts, art & food.)
- May 2
- Senator Barry Goldwater receives more than 75% of the votes in the Texas Republican Presidential primary.
- Some 400–1,000 students march through Times Square, New York and another 700 in San Francisco, in the first major student demonstration against the Vietnam War. Smaller marches also occur in Boston, Seattle, and Madison, Wisconsin.
- Henry Hezekiah Dee and Charles Eddie Moore, hitchhiking in Meadville, Mississippi, are kidnapped, beaten, and murdered by members of the Ku Klux Klan. Their badly decomposed bodies are found by chance in July during the search for missing activists Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner.
- May 7 – Pacific Air Lines Flight 773 crashes near San Ramon, California, killing all 44 aboard; the FBI later reports that a cockpit recorder tape indicates that the pilot and co-pilot had been shot by a suicidal passenger.
- May 12 – First draft-card burning: Twelve young men in New York publicly burn their draft cards as an act of resistance to the Vietnam War.
- May 19 – The United States Department of State says that more than 40 hidden microphones have been found embedded in the walls of the U.S. Embassy in Moscow.
- May 26 – Nelson Rockefeller defeats Barry Goldwater in the Oregon Republican primary, slowing but not stalling Goldwater's drive toward the nomination.
- June 2 – Senator Barry Goldwater wins the California Republican Presidential primary, making him the overwhelming favorite for the nomination.
- June 9 – In Federal Court in Kansas City, Kansas, army deserter George John Gessner, 28, is convicted of passing United States secrets to the Soviet Union.
- June 10 – The U.S. Senate votes cloture of the Civil Rights Bill after a 75-day filibuster.
- June 12 – Pennsylvania Governor William Scranton announces his candidacy for the Republican Presidential nomination, as part of a 'stop-Goldwater' movement.
- June 19 – U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy, 32, is seriously injured in a private plane crash at Southampton, Massachusetts; the pilot is killed.
- June 21
- Civil Rights Movement: Murders of Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner – Three Congress of Racial Equality workers, Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney, are abducted and murdered near Philadelphia, Mississippi, by local members of the White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan with local law enforcement officials involved in the conspiracy.
- Jim Bunning pitches a perfect game for the Philadelphia Phillies.
- July 2 – President Lyndon Johnson signs the Civil Rights Act of 1964 into law, abolishing racial segregation in the United States.
- July 8 – U.S. military personnel announce that U.S. casualties in Vietnam have risen to 1,387, including 399 dead and 17 MIA.
- July 16 – At the Republican National Convention in San Francisco, U.S. presidential nominee Barry Goldwater declares that "extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice", and "moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue".
- July 27 – Vietnam War: The U.S. sends 5,000 more military advisers to South Vietnam, bringing the total number of United States forces in Vietnam to 21,000.
- August 1 – The final Looney Tune, Señorella and the Glass Huarache, is released before the Warner Bros. cartoon division is shut down by Jack Warner.
- August 2–4 – Vietnam War – Gulf of Tonkin incident: United States destroyers USS Maddox and USS C. Turner Joy are attacked in the Gulf of Tonkin. Air support from the carrier USS Ticonderoga sinks 1 gunboat, while the other 2 leave the battle.
- August 4 – Murders of Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner – The bodies of Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney, murdered in June, are found.
- August 5 – Vietnam War: Operation Pierce Arrow – Aircraft from carriers USS Ticonderoga and USS Constellation bomb North Vietnam in retaliation for strikes against U.S. destroyers in the Gulf of Tonkin.
- August 7 – Vietnam War: The United States Congress passes the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, giving U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson broad war powers to deal with North Vietnamese attacks on U.S. forces.
- August 16 – Vietnam War: In a coup, General Nguyễn Khánh replaces Dương Văn Minh as South Vietnam's chief of state and establishes a new constitution, drafted partly by the U.S. Embassy.
- August 17 – Margaret Harshaw, Metropolitan Opera Soprano, sings the role of Turandot in Puccini's opera Turandot at the New York World's Fair.
- August 22 – Fannie Lou Hamer, civil rights activist and Vice Chair of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, addresses the Credentials Committee of the Democratic National Convention, challenging the all-white Mississippi delegation.
- August 24–27 – The Democratic National Convention in Atlantic City nominates incumbent President Lyndon B. Johnson for a full term, and U.S. Senator Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota as his running mate.
- August 27 – Walt Disney's Mary Poppins has its world premiere in Los Angeles. It will go on to become Disney's biggest moneymaker, and winner of 5 Academy Awards, including a Best Actress award for Julie Andrews, who accepted the part after she was passed over by Jack L. Warner for the leading role of Eliza Doolittle in the film version of My Fair Lady. Mary Poppins is the first Disney film to be nominated for Best Picture.
- August 28 – Bob Dylan turns The Beatles on to cannabis for the first time.
- August 28–30 – Philadelphia 1964 race riot: Tensions between African American residents and police lead to 341 injuries and 774 arrests.
- September 4 – The last execution in the U.S. for a crime other than murder occurs in Alabama as James Coburn is put to death for robbery.
- September 7 – President Lyndon Johnson's re-election campaign airs the controversial and influential "Daisy" ad.
- September 16 – Shindig! premieres on ABC television, featuring the top musical acts of the decade.
- September 17 – Bewitched, starring Elizabeth Montgomery, premieres on ABC.
- September 27 – The Warren Commission Report, the first official investigation of the assassination of John F. Kennedy, is published.
- October 1 – Three thousand student activists at University of California, Berkeley surround and block a police car from taking a CORE volunteer arrested for not showing his ID, when he violated a ban on outdoor activist card tables. This protest eventually evolves into the Berkeley Free Speech Movement.
- October 10–24 – The United States participates in the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan and ranks first for the 10th time, bringing home 36 gold, 26 silver and 28 bronze medals for a total of 90 medals.
- October 14 – Martin Luther King Jr., a leader in the American civil rights movement, becomes the youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, which was awarded to him for leading non-violent resistance to end racial prejudice in the United States.
- October 15
- Craig Breedlove's jet-powered car Spirit of America goes out of control on Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah and makes skid marks 5.97 miles (9.61 km) long.
- The St. Louis Cardinals defeat the visiting New York Yankees 7–5 to win the World Series in 7 games (4–3), ending a long run of 29 World Series appearances in 44 seasons for the Bronx Bombers (also known as the Yankee Dynasty).
- October 18 – The New York World's Fair closes for the year (it reopens April 21, 1965).
- October 20 – Former President Herbert Hoover dies in New York City.
- October 21 – The film version of the hit Lerner and Loewe Broadway stage musical My Fair Lady premieres in New York City. The movie stars Belgian-born Audrey Hepburn in the role of Eliza Doolittle (with her singing voice dubbed by Marni Nixon) and English actor Rex Harrison repeating his stage performance as Professor Henry Higgins, and which will win him his only Academy Award for Best Actor. The film will win seven other Oscars, including Best Picture, but Hepburn will not be nominated. Critics interpret this as a rebuke to studio executive Jack L. Warner for choosing Ms. Hepburn over English singer Julie Andrews.
- October 22 – A 5.3 kiloton nuclear device is detonated at the Tatum Salt Dome, 21 miles (34 km) from Hattiesburg, Mississippi, as part of the Vela Uniform program. This test is the Salmon phase of the Atomic Energy Commission's Project Dribble.
- October 27 – In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, rebel leader Christopher Gbenye takes 60 Americans and 800 Belgians hostage.
- October 29 – A collection of irreplaceable gemstones, including the 565 carats (113.0 g) Star of India, is stolen from the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.
- October 31 – Campaigning at Madison Square Garden in New York City, President Lyndon Johnson pledges the creation of the Great Society.
- October – Dr. Robert Moog demonstrates his prototype synthesizers.
- November 1 – Mortar fire from North Vietnamese forces rains on the USAF base at Biên Hòa, South Vietnam, killing 4 U.S. servicemen, wounding 72, and destroying 5 B-57 jet bombers and other planes.
- November 3 – U.S. presidential election, 1964: Incumbent U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson defeats Republican challenger Barry Goldwater with over 60 percent of the popular vote.
- November 5 – Mariner program: Mariner 3, a U.S. space probe intended for Mars, is launched from Cape Kennedy but fails.
- November 13 – Bob Pettit (St. Louis Hawks) becomes the first NBA player to score 20,000 points.
- November 19 – The United States Department of Defense announces the closing of 95 military bases and facilities, including the Brooklyn Navy Yard, the Brooklyn Army Terminal, and Fort Jay, New York.
- November 28
- Mariner program: NASA launches the Mariner 4 space probe from Cape Kennedy toward Mars to take television pictures of that planet in July 1965.
- Vietnam War: United States National Security Council members, including Robert McNamara, Dean Rusk, and Maxwell Taylor, agree to recommend a plan for a 2-stage escalation of bombing in North Vietnam, to President Lyndon B. Johnson.
- December 1 – Vietnam War: U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson and his top-ranking advisers meet to discuss plans to bomb North Vietnam (after some debate, they agree on a 2-phase bombing plan).
- December 3 – Berkeley Free Speech Movement: Police arrest about 800 students at the University of California, Berkeley, following their takeover of and massive sit-in at the Sproul Hall administration building. The sit-in most directly protested the U.C. Regents' decision to punish student activists for what many thought had been justified civil disobedience earlier in the conflict.
- December 6 – The 1-hour stop-motion animated special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, based on the popular Christmas song, premieres on NBC. It becomes a beloved Christmas tradition, still being shown on television Almost 55 years later, despite moving to CBS in 1972 due to poor viewing figures in 1971.
- December 10 – Martin Luther King, Jr. is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, Norway.
- December 11
- December 14 – Heart of Atlanta Motel v. United States (379 US 241 1964): The U.S. Supreme Court rules that, in accordance with the Civil Rights Act of 1964, establishments providing public accommodations must refrain from racial discrimination.
- December 15 – The Washington Post publishes an article about James Hampton, who had built a glittering religious throne out of recycled materials.
- December 18 – In the wake of deadly riots in January over control of the Panama Canal, the U.S. offers to negotiate a new canal treaty.
- December 27 – The Cleveland Browns defeat the Baltimore Colts in the NFL Championship Game.
- January 4 – Dot Jones, shot putter and actress
- January 7 – Nicolas Cage, actor, producer and director
- January 17 – Michelle Obama, lawyer, first African-American First Lady of the United States as wife of the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama
- January 29 – Andre Reed, American football player and sportscaster
- February 10 – Glenn Beck, television and radio host, conservative political commentator, author, television network producer, filmmaker and entrepreneur
- February 17 – Buster Olney, journalist
- February 18 – Matt Dillon, actor and film director
- February 19
- February 20
- March 3 – Rod Jones, American football tight end (died 2018)
- March 4
- March 6
- March 7
- April 4 – David Cross, actor, writer and stand-up comedian
- April 6 – David Woodard, businessman
- April 8 – Lisa Guerrero, Hispanic actress, model and sportscaster/reporter
- April 9 – Doug Ducey, 23rd Governor of Arizona
- April 20
- April 24 – Augusta Read Thomas, composer
- April 25 – Hank Azaria, voice actor
- April 28 – L'Wren Scott, fashion designer (suicide 2014)
- May 1 – Will Kimbrough, singer-songwriter, guitarist and producer
- May 12 – Geechy Guy, comedian
- June 7 – Judie Aronson, actress
- July 9 – Courtney Love, actress, artist, author, musician, singer-songwriter and Kurt Cobain's wife
- July 17 – Heather Langenkamp, actress
- July 24 – Barry Bonds, baseball player
- July 28 – Lori Loughlin, actress
- August 23 – Wendy Pepper, fashion designer (died 2017)
- September 4 – Anthony Weiner, U.S. Congressman
- September 6 – John E. Sununu, U.S. Senator from New Hampshire from 2003 to 2009
- September 14 – Faith Ford, actress
- October 14 – Joe Girardi, baseball player and manager
- October 23 – Robert Trujillo, Metallica bassist
- November 12
- November 14
- November 17 – Susan Rice, diplomat and National Security Advisor from 2013 to 2017
- November 28 – Michael Bennet, U.S. Senator from Colorado from 2009
- December 10 – Bobby Flay, chef and author
- December 12 – Haywood Jeffires, American football player and coach
- December 21 – Daniel Suarez, novelist
- December 30 – George Newbern, actor
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (March 2015)
- April 20 – Eddie Dyer, baseball player and manager (born 1899)
- May 7 – Lee Fenner, American footballer (born 1897)
- August 3 – Flannery O'Connor, American novelist and short story writer (born 1925)
- September 6 – Jane Hadley Barkley, wife of Alben W. Barkley, Second Lady of the United States (born 1911)
- September 28 – Harpo Marx, comedian (born 1888)
- October 10 – Eddie Cantor, entertainer (born 1892)
- October 20 – Herbert Hoover, 31st President of the United States from 1929 to 1933 (born 1874)
- December 11
- "Mission & History". National Museum of American History. Retrieved 2018-02-14.
- Flynn, George Q. (1993). The Draft, 1940–1973. Modern war studies. University Press of Kansas. p. 175. ISBN 0-7006-0586-X.
- Gottlieb, Sherry Gershon (1991). Hell no, we won't go!: resisting the draft during the Vietnam War. Viking. p. xix. ISBN 0-670-83935-3.
1964: May 12—Twelve students at a New York rally burn their draft cards...
- "On This Day", New York Times, retrieved 25 August 2016
- Brown, Peter; Steven Gaines (2002). The Love You Make: An Insider's Story of the Beatles. NAL Trade. ISBN 0-451-20735-1.
- "Top 10 Campaign Ads: Daisy Girl". Time. 2008-09-22. Retrieved 2012-03-08.
- Moog, R. A. (1965). "Voltage-Controlled Electronic Music Modules". Journal of the Audio Engineering Society. 13 (3): 200–206.
- "MILESTONES: July 28, birthdays for Lori Loughlin, Scott Pelley, Manu Ginobili". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. 28 July 2017.
- Media related to 1964 in the United States at Wikimedia Commons
- Booknotes interview with Jon Margolis on The Last Innocent Year: America in 1964, June 27, 1999.
- 1964, American Experience, WGBH, 2014