1952 News and Interesting Tidbits Of History


Great Britain Announces Atomic Bomb
Britain announces it has developed its own atomic bomb.








Olympic Games 1952
The Summer Olympic Games of the XV Olympiad are held in Helsinki, Finland
The Soviet Union competes for the first time in the Olympics

Emil Zatopek of Czechoslovakia wins the 10,000 metre race.


Emil Zatopek went on to win three gold medals at the 1952 Summer Olympics in Helsinki. 5,000 metres, 10,000 metres and the marathon making him possibly one of the greatest runners of the 20th century.








South Africa Arrests Nelson Mandella 1952
Police struck at the heart of the resistance to segregation by throwing top leaders of the movement for crossing forbidden race barriers including Nelson Mandella into Prison







Puerto Rico Self Governing Commonwealth Of US
After a number of years during which there were revolts including the Jayuya Uprising against the United States. Puerto Rico became a self-governing commonwealth of the United States.

The head of state is still George Bush and the Federal Legislative Branch is the United States Congress. The country is currently run by the New Progressive Party of Puerto Rico who hold control of the Puerto Rican House of Representatives and Senate who are campaigning for the right of Statehood for Puerto Rico.








Military Coup d'etat Egypt 1952
A military coup d'etat in Egypt headed by Colonel Gamal Abdal Nasser's Society of Free Officers seizes control of the government. Following the revolution King Farouk I of Egypt abdicates. The revolutionaries redistributed land, tried politicians for corruption, and in 1953 abolished the monarchy. In 1954, Nasser emerged from behind the scenes, removed Naguib from power, and proclaimed himself prime minister of Egypt.







King George V1 Dies
King George V1 dies making Elizabeth II the Sovereign of Great Britain, The Future Queen of England heard the news while on a trip to Kenya . .









Queen Elizabeth gives her first Christmas Queens Speech
The young Queen Elizabeth gives her first Christmas broadcast on BBC radio from the study at Sandringham House







Lynmouth, Devon Flooding
The holiday village of Lynmouth in North Devon has been devastated by flooding caused by the local rivers East and West Lyn overflowing due to the torrential rain in the previous 24 hours. Rows of local cottages including the occupants were smashed as the river which had burst it's banks came flooding down the local high street. The village has lost all power, phones and gas. There are believed to be 30 people missing presumed dead.







Communist Teachers Banned From Public Schools
As part of the paranoia concerning communism and the cold war the U.S. Supreme Court upholds a New York state law that prohibits communists from teaching in public schools.








Deadly London Smog
A deadly smog created by the smoke, soot and sulfur dioxide from the factories, cars and coal fires in local homes begins to hover over London, England, which continues for four days, leading to the deaths of at least 4,000 people.









Live Atomic bomb Test Shown On TV
For the first time in history, viewers witnessed live the detonation of an atomic bomb at the U.S. testing site in Yucca Flat, Nevada on Television, The Atomic bomb tested was larger than those dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in the second world war.








First Indian Elections
The Congress Party of India, led by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, wins an outright victory in the country's first general election










First Don’t Walk Sign
The first “Don’t Walk” sign was installed in New York City . The installation of this sign was inspired by the growing number of deaths resulting from pedestrian accidents. The use of these pedestrian traffic signs are still used today in order to make streets safer.








Population Growth
The worlds population in 1952 currently stands at 47 people per square mile of land but it was predicted that this may well double by the end of the century due to population growth ( Current figures 2007 are 115 people per square mile )









Diary of Anne Frank
The diary of Anne Frank, a Jewish victim of the Holocaust is to be published in English titled "The Diary of a Young Girl".

Her diary, later entitled "The Diary of Anne Frank", becomes one of the most popular books in the world and is included in most schools as recommended reading. ( I read this very moving journal after my daughter read it in high school just a few years ago and was amazed at how well it was written under terrible circumstances )

The diary provides a disturbing account of a teenager living in hiding with seven others in fear of their lives in occupied Holland, Anne Frank died of typhus just before her 16th birthday in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in 1945.








First Commercial Jet Airliner
The worlds first commercial Jet Airliner a The De Havilland Comet took off from London , this will cut up to a third of the time from traditional aircraft flight times.









"Today" Program Begins on NBC
NBC’s "Today" program debuts on NBC hosted by Dave Garroway. The show was the first of it's kind and the format was copied not only in the US but worldwide .










B36 Bomber Crash
A B36 Bomber failed to take off from Fairchild Air Force Base near Spokane This was the worlds largest bomber with 10 engines and 15 out of the 17 crew were killed during take off .









TV Detector Vans Introduced
In the UK the BBC is funded via TV Licences issued by the British Government keeping the BBC free of commercial advertising, in 1952 following a report that showed large numbers of people were not paying for the licence the government bought in TV Detector Vans to track down users of unlicensed television sets in the UK.








The Mousetrap Opens In London
The Whodunit The Mousetrap written by Agatha Christie opens in London at the Ambassadors Theatre in London's West End. It will go on to be the longest running play in history with 20,000 performances in London's West End, It is still running today having moved to a St Martins Theatre in 1974 .









US Public Debt Record Levels
Concerns are growing over the mounting public debt which is predicted to reach 268 billion dollars by the end of the financial year.
2007 The current US Public Debt stands at 9 trillion dollars and is increasing by $1.46 billion per day









Seizure of Steel Mills
Following President Truman's seizure of Steel Mills last month , the case on the legality is now before the supreme court. Does the president have powers to seize private industries in national emergencies. ( this was due to a strike in the Steel Mills )








Tea Ration ends 1952
Tea rationing ends after 12 years in Great Britain a nation of tea drinkers . Sweets, Meat , Eggs, Butter and sugar are still on ration.








Mr. Potato Head
Hasbro introduces the popular children's toy Mr. Potato Head a plastic model of a potato which can be decorated with attachable plastic parts, such as a mustache, hat and nose, to make a face.
Mr. Potato Head was also the first children's toy to be sold through national television advertising.
Mr. Potato Head is still sold today over 50 years later below is the link to his page on Hasbro.
http://www.hasbro.com/playskool/mrpotatohead/











Steel Plants Placed Under Federal Control
With a threatened steel workers strike President Truman used his Presidential Power to place the steel plants under his control which led to a battle before the Supreme Court In June of that year when The Supreme Court ruled that the president had overstepped his authority.









First Mechanical Heart
The worlds first successful use of a mechanical heart on July 3rd during a heart operation was announced in the United States, it kept a mans blood going through his body for a total of 50 minutes and he is still alive and well on October 17th.








Worlds First Hydrogen Bomb
The United States detonates the world's first thermonuclear weapon, the hydrogen bomb, on Eniwetok atoll in the Pacific.










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