The Year was 1960.

President John F Kennedy (D) 1961-1963

The inflation rate had fallen to about 1.75%.
United States  President was the newly elected John F Kennedy.

The US population was about 175 million and our life expectancy  was about 68 years.

The murder rate was hovering around 7.5 murders per 100.

The Median Household Income was about $11,700 for the average laborer.

The Minimum Wage in 1960 was $1.00 per hour, the equivalent of $8.48 per hour in 2018.

A new house would cost you about $12,500 and if you rented a two bedroom the average monthly rent for that was around 99 dollars.

Groceries were beginning to rise slightly. Bacon was 55 cents a pound and eggs 45 for a dozen. A gallon of milk cost about $1.00 and a loaf of bread was approximately 20 cents.  You could get a fresh turkey for 50 cents a pound and potatoes were about half a dollar for a ten pound bag. If you wanted ground beef it was about 38 cents a pound and fresh strawberries could be had for about 31 cents a pound.

Sending a letter across the country would cost you  $.04 in postage.

A gallon of gas cost about 26 cents.

1960 Chevrolet Impala 2 door Hardtop, CC By Sicnag

The top selling car was the Chevy and it sold for 2,270 dollars or a bit more, depending on your options.

We were wearing a lot of house dresses and three quarter pants or what were called pedal pushers..

Top News for 1960

Following major food shortages in East Germany 160,000 refugees cross to West Germany, Nikita Khrushchev orders the construction of the Berlin Wall

Madam Sirimavo Bandaranaike, the world’s first female Prime Minister, 1960

The IRA is named and begins the fight against the British.

Afrikaaner police open fire with sub machine guns on demonstrators March 21st in the black township of Sharpeville, South Africa

France tests its first atomic bomb in Sahara and joins US, UK and USSR as Nuclear Power

The Worlds First Female Prime Minister Is Elected Mrs Sirimavo Bandaranaike Ceylon / Sri Lanka

Jacques Piccard and Don Walsh in the bathyscaph USS Trieste break a depth record when they descend to the bottom of Challenger Deep 35,820 feet (10,750 meters) below sea level in the Pacific Ocean

Products Introduced in 1960

  • Chatty Cathy dolls
  • Downy fabric softener
  • Etch-A-Sketch
  • Excedrin brand
  • Mr. Machine toy
  • Proctor Silex brand
  • Puffs facial tissue
  • Rock-A-Stack toy
  • Plastic 6-pack rings for soda cans
  • Trident gum

Girls loved the new “High-Tech” Chatty Cathy doll

Downy Fabric Softener, 1960


1960 Music, Television and Movies

The Top 5 Songs of 1960

Song rankings are based on information from The Billboard Hot 100 Chart Data

1. Theme From “A Summer Place” – Percy Faith (Columbia)

2. He’ll Have To Go – Jim Reeves (RCA Victor)

3. Cathy’s Clown – Everly Brothers (Warner Bros.)

4. Running Bear – Johnny Preston (Mercury)

5. Teen Angel – Mark Dinning (MGM)

The Top 5 TV Shows of 1960

1. Gunsmoke (CBS)

2. Wagon Train (NBC)

3. Have Gun, Will Travel (CBS)

4. The Andy Griffith Show (CBS)
Sponsor ads that ran in the early episodes of the Andy Griffith Show

5. The Real McCoys (ABC)

and who can forget Candid Camera with Alan Funt (CBS)
(Betty White sells movie tickets)


The Top 5 Movies of 1960

1. Spartacus (Universal)

2. Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (Paramount)

3. Exodus (United Artists)

4. Swiss Family Robinson (Disney)

5. The Alamo (United Artists)

and in 8th place was the original Ocean’s 11 with The Rat Pack’s Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr., Peter Lawford, Joey Bishop, as well as Angie Dickinson and Cesar Romero

Ocean’s 11 (Warner Brothers)

Find Out More About the 1960s

1960 | 1961 | 1962 | 1963 | 1964 | 1965 | 1966 | 1967 | 1968 | 1969