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Fun Facts and Trivia From the Year 1953

Gregory DeVictor is a trivia enthusiast who loves to write articles on American nostalgia.

This article teaches you fun facts, trivia, and history events from the year 1953.

This article teaches you fun facts, trivia, and history events from the year 1953.

What Happened in the Year 1953?

What are some fun facts, trivia, and historical events from the year 1953? What were the top news stories in the U.S. and around the world? What happened in the business and financial sectors, in science, technology, sports, the entertainment industry, and in everyday life? What about famous birthdays, marriages, and deaths that year?

  1. In 1953, Americans were buying homes in the suburbs, and they were also busy purchasing new cars, televisions, and refrigerators. The “buy now, pay later” mentality had become popular, more and more workers belonged to unions, and Americans were enjoying a post-war standard of living that no other country could match. Unemployment had dropped to 2.5%, inflation was a modest 0.82%, and a bottle of Coke still cost a nickel. Chicken a la King and apple pie were all the rage, baseball was a national pastime, and color televisions and transistor radios were must-haves. Playing the word game Scrabble, reading The Power of Positive Thinking, and watching I Love Lucy and Search for Tomorrow had also become immensely popular.
  2. On January 20, Dwight D. Eisenhower (R-Kansas/New York) was sworn in as the 34th U.S. president, and Richard M. Nixon (R-California) became the 36th vice-president.
  3. The U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW)—a cabinet-level agency from 1953 to 1979—was established. JFKLibrary.org tells us that HEW’s mission “was to administer federal and federal-state programs in public health, education, and social and economic security.”
  4. Virologist Dr. Jonas Salk announced that he had successfully tested a vaccine to prevent polio and that clinical trials would begin sometime in the next year.
  5. The U.S. Census Bureau reported that 239,000 American farmers had given up farming over the past two years.
  6. Between May 9 and 11, a deadly series of tornadoes struck 10 different states, "appearing daily from Minnesota in the north to Texas in the south. The strongest and deadliest tornado was a powerful F5 twister that struck Waco, Texas on May 11, causing 114 of the 144 deaths in the outbreak.”
  7. The first Corvette came off the production line in Flint, Michigan. History.com tells us that "It was hand-assembled and featured a Polo White exterior and red interior, two-speed Powerglide automatic transmission, a wraparound windshield, whitewall tires and detachable plastic curtains instead of side windows."
  8. Burger King opened its first restaurant in Jacksonville, Florida.
  9. Swanson made its first TV dinner, which consisted of a Thanksgiving meal of turkey, cornbread dressing, frozen peas, and sweet potatoes.
  10. TV Guide magazine began publishing.
  11. Hugh Hefner published the first edition of Playboy magazine, featuring Marilyn Monroe as the magazine's centerfold.
  12. The first Narcotics Anonymous (NA) meeting took place in California.
  13. The boyhood home of agricultural scientist and inventor George Washington Carver in Newton County, Missouri, became the first national monument dedicated to an African American.
  14. There were over 15,000 pizzerias in the United States.
  15. In 1953, 44.7% of American households had a television. (In 1950, only 9% of U.S. households had a TV.)
  16. After three years of a “bloody and frustrating war,” the United States, the People’s Republic of China, North Korea, and South Korea “agreed to an armistice, bringing the fighting of the Korean War to an end.”
  17. The United States returned 382 ships to Germany that it had captured during World War II.
  18. The New York Yankees won their fifth consecutive World Series, the Minneapolis Lakers were the NBA champs, and the Montreal Canadiens clinched the Stanley Cup.
  19. At the 5th Emmy Awards, I Love Lucy (CBS) won an Emmy for Best Comedy Series, and Robert Montgomery Presents (NBC) won an Emmy for Best Dramatic Series. Likewise, Your Show of Shows won an Emmy for Best Variety Show, and What’s My Line? won an Emmy for Best Audience Participation Series.
  20. At the 25th Academy Awards, which honored the best films of 1952, The Greatest Show on Earth won an Oscar for Best Picture, and John Ford (The Quiet Man) won an Oscar for Best Director. Likewise, Gary Cooper (High Noon) won an Oscar for Best Actor, and Shirley Booth (Come Back, Little Sheba) won an Oscar for Best Actress.
  21. Elvis Presley graduated from L. C. Humes High School in Memphis, Tennessee.
  22. Senator John F. Kennedy (D-Massachusetts) married Jacqueline Bouvier at St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church in Newport, Rhode Island.
  23. In 1953, Chaka Khan, Cyndi Lauper, Howard Schultz, Jeb Bush, Kathie Lee Gifford, Kim Basinger, Robin McGraw, and Tony Blair were all born.
  24. Consumer products and brands that were introduced in 1953 include Banquet Foods, Cheez Whiz, Eggo waffles, Finish detergent, Honey Smacks cereal, Matchbox toys, Peeps marshmallows, Tater Tots, and the washer-dryer combo.
  25. At the 26th Scripps National Spelling Bee, 13-year-old Elizabeth Hess from Arizona correctly spelled the word “soubrette.”

This article teaches you fun facts, trivia, and historical events from the year 1953. Find out about popular TV shows, movies, music, books, foods, sports facts, famous birthdays, and other cool pop culture trends to get the right mix of questions and answers for your 1950s-themed trivia game.

In 1953, the first hand-assembled Corvette came off the assembly line in Flint, Michigan. A 1953 Corvette cost $3,490, or $33,758 in 2020 dollars.

In 1953, the first hand-assembled Corvette came off the assembly line in Flint, Michigan. A 1953 Corvette cost $3,490, or $33,758 in 2020 dollars.

Table of Contents

For easier reading and referencing, I have divided this article into the following categories:

  1. Grocery Prices in the Year 1953
  2. History Facts From the USA and World
  3. Sports Trivia
  4. Miscellaneous Fun Facts, Trivia, and Pop Culture Trends
  5. Entertainment News
  6. Nobel Prize Winners
  7. Best-Selling Fiction and Non-Fiction Books
  8. 1953 in American Television
  9. 1953 in American Radio
  10. Animated Films Released in 1953
  11. Most Popular Movies
  12. Ten Best Horror Films
  13. Biggest Pop Music Artists
  14. Top 30 Songs for the Year
  15. Food and Beverage Trivia
  16. Famous Birthdays
  17. Notable Weddings
  18. Famous People Who Died
  19. U.S. Automobile Production Figures for the Year
  20. American Companies and Brands Established During 1953
In 1953, you could buy six 6-ounce bottles of Coca-Cola for 29 cents.

In 1953, you could buy six 6-ounce bottles of Coca-Cola for 29 cents.

1. Grocery Prices in the Year 1953

These grocery facts have been made available courtesy of the Morris County Public Library in Whippany, NJ.

  1. Bananas: 10 cents a pound
  2. Cheese (American): 49 cents a pound
  3. Cherries (Bing): 49 cents a pound
  4. Chocolate (Hershey’s Kisses): 25 cents for a six-ounce package
  5. Cookies (Burry’s): Three 14-ounce boxes for $1.00
  6. Duncan Hines cake mixes (assorted varieties): 29 cents for a 19-ounce box
  7. Eggs: 70 cents a dozen
  8. Fish (flounder): 29 cents a pound
  9. Ham (boiled): 99 cents a pound
  10. Hot dog buns: 19 cents a dozen
  11. Hot dogs: 49 cents for a 16-ounce package
  12. Ice cream cones: 19 cents a box
  13. Juice (Libby’s, grape): 35 cents for a 28-ounce can
  14. Leg of Lamb: 65 cents a pound
  15. Lemonade (frozen): 29 cents for two six-ounce cans
  16. Lettuce (iceberg): Six cents a head
  17. Margarine (Parkay,): 29 cents for a four-ounce carton
  18. Marshmallows (Campfire): 22 cents for a 16-ounce package
  19. Mayonnaise (Hellman’s): 59 cents for a quart jar
  20. Milk (evaporated): Two tall cans for 25 cents
  21. Milk: 94 cents a gallon
  22. Non-dairy creamer (Pream): 49 cents for two four-ounce containers
  23. Olives: 25 cents for a tall can
  24. Oranges (Valencia): 55 cents for a five-pound bag
  25. Peaches (Freestone): 17 cents a pound
  26. Peanut butter: 29 cents for a 12-ounce jar
  27. Pickles (kosher spears): 25 cents for a quart jar
  28. Porterhouse steak: 89 cents a pound
  29. Potato chips (Herr’s): 49 cents for a 12-ounce bag
  30. Romaine lettuce: 10 cents a pound
  31. Rye bread: 29 cents a loaf
  32. SPAM: 45 cents for a 12-ounce can
  33. Soda (Coca-Cola): Six six-ounce bottles for 29 cents
  34. Tea (Lipton): 56 cents for a 48-count box
  35. Watermelon: Six cents a pound
  36. White bread: 16 cents for a 16-ounce loaf
In 1953, a 19-ounce box of Duncan Hines cake mix cost 29 cents.

In 1953, a 19-ounce box of Duncan Hines cake mix cost 29 cents.

2. History Facts From the USA and World

  1. Until January 20, Harry S. Truman (D-Missouri) was the president of the United States, and Alben W. Barkley (D-Kentucky) was the vice-president.
  2. On January 20, Dwight D. Eisenhower (R-Kansas/New York) was sworn in as the 34th U.S. president, and Richard M. Nixon (R-California) became the 36th vice-president.
  3. The 82nd Congress was in session, and there were 235 Democrats, 199 Republicans, and one Independent. History.House.gov tells us that “The Korean War shaped much of the activity of the 82nd Congress (1951–1953)," which included the passage of a GI bill for Korean War veterans.
  4. On January 3, Frances Bolton (R-Ohio) and her son, Oliver (R-Ohio), became the first mother and son to serve simultaneously in the U.S. Congress.
  5. On January 7, President Truman announced that the United States had developed a hydrogen bomb.
  6. On January 20, President Eisenhower made the first live coast-to-coast inaugural address.
  7. On January 21, John Foster Dulles became the Secretary of State.
  8. Between January 31-February 1, the North Sea flood killed 1,836 people in the southwestern Netherlands, 307 in the United Kingdom, “and several hundred at sea, including 133 on the ferry MV Princess Victoria in the Irish Sea.”
  9. On February 11, President Eisenhower refused a clemency appeal for Ethel and Julius Rosenberg, who were American citizens accused of spying on behalf of the Soviet Union.
  10. On February 20, the U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that organized baseball is a sport and not a business, thus affirming the 25-year-old Supreme Court ruling.
  11. On March 5, Joseph Stalin, who governed the Soviet Union from 1924 until 1953, passed away after suffering a stroke.
  12. On March 8, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that 239,000 American farmers had given up farming over the past two years.
  13. On March 26, virologist Dr. Jonas Salk announced that he had successfully tested a vaccine to prevent polio, and that clinical trials would begin sometime in the next year.
  14. On March 31, the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW)—a cabinet-level agency from 1953 to 1979—was established. JFKLibrary.org tells us that HEW’s mission “was to administer federal and federal-state programs in public health, education, and social and economic security.”
  15. On April 16, the British royal yacht Britannia was launched by Queen Elizabeth II.
  16. On April 17, Mickey Mantle hit a 565' HR in Washington, D.C.'s Griffith Stadium.
  17. On April 24, Winston Churchill was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.
  18. Between May 9-11, a deadly series of 33 tornadoes struck 10 different states, "appearing daily from Minnesota in the north to Texas in the south. The strongest and deadliest tornado was a powerful F5 twister that struck Waco, Texas on May 11, causing 114 of the 144 deaths in the outbreak.”
  19. On June 2, the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II took place at Westminster Abbey in London.
  20. On June 19, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were executed for spying on behalf of the USSR.
  21. On June 30, the first Corvette came off the production line in Flint, Michigan. History.com tells us that "It was hand-assembled and featured a Polo White exterior and red interior, two-speed Powerglide automatic transmission, a wraparound windshield, whitewall tires and detachable plastic curtains instead of side windows."
  22. On July 14, the boyhood home of scientist and inventor George Washington Carver in Newton County, Missouri became the first national monument dedicated to an African American.
  23. On July 27, After three years of a “bloody and frustrating war,” the United States, the People’s Republic of China, North Korea, and South Korea “agreed to an armistice, bringing the fighting of the Korean War to an end.” History.com tells us that “The Korean War began on June 25, 1950, when communist North Korea invaded South Korea. Almost immediately, the United States secured a resolution from the United Nations calling for the military defense of South Korea against the North Korean aggression.”
  24. On July 28, Burger King opened its first restaurant in Jacksonville, Florida.
  25. On August 13, President Eisenhower established a Government Contract Compliance Committee (EO11246). The order sought “to insure compliance with, and successful execution of, the equal employment opportunity program. The order directs that all qualified candidates seeking employment on government contracts or subcontracts will not be discriminated against due to their race, creed, color, or national origin.”
  26. On August 15, WWII General Omar Bradley left office as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and retired from active military service.
  27. On August 20, the United States returned 382 ships to Germany that it had captured during World War II.
  28. On August 17, the first Narcotics Anonymous (NA) meeting took place in California.
  29. On August 29, the USSR exploded its first hydrogen bomb.
  30. On September 1, the temperature reached 101°F in Cleveland, setting a record for September.
  31. On September 10, Swanson made its first TV dinner, which consisted of a Thanksgiving meal of turkey, cornbread dressing, frozen peas, and sweet potatoes.
  32. On September 12, the Brooklyn Dodgers clinched the NL pennant earlier than any other team by defeating the Milwaukee Braves, 5-2. Brooklyn finished the season with a record of 105-49.
  33. On September 17, Ernie Banks became the first African-American player with the Chicago Cubs.
  34. On September 26, rationing of sugar ended in the UK.
  35. On September 30, Earl Warren became the Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.
  36. On October 5, the New York Yankees beat the Brooklyn Dodgers 4-3 in Game 6 to win their fifth consecutive World Series.
  37. On October 18, Willie Thrower became the first African-American NFL quarterback.
  38. On December 1, Hugh Hefner published the first edition of Playboy magazine, featuring Marilyn Monroe as the magazine's centerfold. 54,175 copies were sold at 50 cents apiece.
  39. On December 8, President Eisenhower delivered the Atoms for Peace address to the UN General Assembly in New York.
  40. On December 14, the Brooklyn Dodgers signed pitcher Sandy Koufax.
In 1953, the Minneapolis Lakers were the NBA champs.

In 1953, the Minneapolis Lakers were the NBA champs.

3. Sports Trivia

Generally suitable for all age groups, sports questions are a welcome addition to any trivia quiz.

  1. Kentucky Derby: Dark Star
  2. NBA Champions: Minneapolis Lakers
  3. NCAA Basketball: Indiana
  4. NCAA Football Champs: Maryland
  5. NFL Champions: Detroit Lions
  6. Orange Bowl: Alabama over Syracuse
  7. Rose Bowl: USC over Wisconsin
  8. Stanley Cup Champs: Montreal Canadiens
  9. Sugar Bowl: Georgia Tech over Ole Miss
  10. U.S. Open Golf: Dick Mayer
  11. U.S. Open Tennis (men/women): Tony Trabert/Maureen Connolly
  12. Wimbledon (men/women): Vic Seixas/Maureen Connolly
  13. World Series Champions: New York Yankees
In 1953, the Detroit Lions were the NFL champions.

In 1953, the Detroit Lions were the NFL champions.

  1. In 1953, the most popular baby names for boys were Robert, James, Michael, John, and David. Today, the most popular names are Liam, Noah, Oliver, Elijah, William, James, Benjamin, Lucas, Henry, and Alexander.
  2. In 1953, the most popular baby names for girls were Linda, Deborah, Patricia, Susan, and Barbara. Today, the most popular names are Olivia, Emma, Amelia, Ava, Sophia, Charlotte, Isabella, Mia, Luna, and Harper.
  3. The average life expectancy at birth in the U.S. was 73.9 years.
  4. The most popular holiday gifts included Scrabble and the wiffle ball.
  5. Fashion icons in 1953 were Doris Day, Ava Gardner, Rita Hayworth, Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Marilyn Monroe, Julie Newmar, Elizabeth Taylor, and Lana Turner.
  6. Neva Langley (Georgia) was crowned Miss America.
  7. Myrna Hansen (Illinois) became Miss USA.
  8. Time magazine’s “Person of the Year” was Konrad Adenauer, “a German statesman who served as the first Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany from 1949 to 1963.”
  9. TV Guide magazine began publishing.
  10. The U.S. Census Bureau reported that 239,000 American farmers had given up farming over the past two years.
  11. In 1953, 44.7% of American households had a television. (In 1950, only 9% of U.S. households had a TV.)
  12. Sugar rationing ended in Great Britain.
  13. Dow Chemical introduced Saran Wrap.
  14. The French Sardine Company became Star-Kist Foods.
  15. Kraft Cheez Whiz was introduced. Food-Reference.com tells us that “Originally created as an easy way to make Welsh rarebit, this stable cheese sauce comes in a jar with Worcestershire sauce, mustard flour, and orange coloring added." Food-Reference adds that homemakers have found more than 1,300 possible uses for Cheez Whiz since it was introduced.
  16. Bartender Joe Sheridan supposedly created Irish coffee at the Shannon Airport. (Irish coffee “is a cocktail consisting of hot coffee, Irish whiskey, and sugar, stirred, and topped with cream.”
  17. Kellogg’s Sugar Smacks were introduced. By the way, they contained 56% sugar.
  18. There were over 15,000 pizzerias in the United States.
  19. Eggo, a brand of frozen waffles, was introduced by the Kellogg Company.
  20. The combo washer-dryer was created.
  21. In 1953, the first Danny’s Donuts opened in Lakewood, California. Founded by Harold Butler and Richard Jezak, the name was eventually changed to Danny’s Coffee Shops, and then to Denny’s Restaurants in 1959.
  22. Milk was 94 cents a gallon, a 16-ounce loaf of bread was 16 cents, and bananas were 10 cents a pound.
  23. Average income per year: $4,000
  24. Average cost of a new house: $9,550
  25. Average monthly rent: $85.00
  26. Average cost of a new car: $1,650
  27. Average cost of a gallon of gas: 20 cents
  28. A first-class postage stamp cost three cents.
  29. Unemployment averaged 2.5%, and inflation was 0.82%. In2013Dollars.com tells us that “$100 in 1953 is equivalent in purchasing power to about $1,024.60 today, an increase of $924.60 over 68 years. The dollar had an average inflation rate of 3.48% per year between 1953 and today, producing a cumulative price increase of 924.60%. This means that today's prices are 10.25 times higher than average prices since 1953, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index. A dollar today only buys 9.76% of what it could buy back then.”
  30. The price of gold averaged $35.50 per troy ounce.
In 1953, Scrabble was a popular holiday gift and pastime.

In 1953, Scrabble was a popular holiday gift and pastime.

5. Entertainment News

  1. On January 10, the Bollingen Prize for poetry was awarded to American poet and writer Archibald MacLeish.
  2. On January 22, Arthur Miller’s play, The Crucible, premiered in New York City.
  3. On February 1, the anthology series, General Electric Theater, debuted on CBS.
  4. On February 1, the educational show, You Are There, premiered on CBS. It was hosted by the journalist Walter Cronkite.
  5. On February 5, Peter Pen, a Walt Disney animated film, opened at the Roxy Theater in NYC.
  6. On February 5, at the 5th Emmy Awards, I Love Lucy (CBS) won an Emmy for Best Comedy Series, and Robert Montgomery Presents (NBC) won an Emmy for Best Dramatic Series. Likewise, Your Show of Shows won an Emmy for Best Variety Show, and What’s My Line? won an Emmy for Best Audience Participation Series.
  7. On February 19, William Inge’s play, Picnic, opened at the Music Box Theater in New York City.
  8. On February 25, the musical, Wonderful Town, opened at the Winter Garden Theater in NYC for 559 performances.
  9. On March 19, Tennessee Williams’ play, Camino Real, opened in New York City.
  10. On March 25, at the 25th Academy Awards, which honored the best films of 1952, The Greatest Show on Earth won an Oscar for Best Picture, and John Ford (The Quiet Man) won an Oscar for Best Director. Likewise, Gary Cooper (High Noon) won an Oscar for Best Actor, and Shirley Booth (Come Back, Little Sheba) won an Oscar for Best Actress.
  11. On April 3, TV Guide magazine began publishing.
  12. On April 10, the year’s most popular horror movie—House of Wax—debuted in NYC.
  13. On April 18, the musical comedy, Pal Joey, closed at the Broadhurst Theater in New York City after 542 performances.
  14. On May 4, Ernest Hemingway won the Pulitzer Prize for Literature for his novel The Old Man & The Sea.
  15. On May 7, Cole Porter’s musical, Can-Can, opened at the Shubert Theater in NYC for 892 performances.
  16. On June 14, Elvis Presley graduated from L. C. Humes High School in Memphis, Tennessee.
  17. On August 3, Frank Blair became the news anchor of The Today Show.
  18. On August 5, From Here to Eternity, a film directed by Fred Zinnemann and starring Burt Lancaster, Montgomery Clift, and Frank Sinatra, was released.
  19. On August 27, Roman Holiday, a movie starring Audrey Hepburn, Gregory Peck, and Eddie Albert, premiered.
  20. On September 10, Swanson made its first TV dinner.
  21. On September 16, The Robe—”The First Motion Picture in CinemaScope—The Modern Miracle You See Without Glasses!”—debuted at the Roxy Theater in NYC.
  22. On September 29, Make Room for Daddy, a sitcom starring Danny Thomas, premiered on ABC.
  23. On September 29, The Milton Berle Show debuted on NBC.
  24. On November 25, the musical, Guys and Dolls, closed at the 46th Street Theater in New York City after 1,200 performances.
  25. On November 28, the musical, Wish You Were Here, closed at the Imperial Theater in NYC after 597 performances.
In 1953, TV Guide magazine began publishing.

In 1953, TV Guide magazine began publishing.

6. Nobel Prize Winners

Beth Rowen tells us that winning a Nobel Prize is a life-changing honor. Whether the laureate is an internationally known figure (such as Mother Teresa) or a scientist from obscurity (like Richard R. Ernst), the award brings worldwide recognition that highlights one's life work and provides the funds to continue the mission.

This Nobel Prize information from 1953 has been made available courtesy of NobelPrize.com.

  • Chemistry: Hermann Staudinger
  • Literature: Winston Churchill
  • Peace: George C. Marshall
  • Physics: Frits Zernike
  • Physiology or medicine: Hans Krebs and Fritz Albert Lipmann

7. Best-Selling Fiction and Non-Fiction Books

This book trivia from 1953 has been made available courtesy of PublishersWeekly.com.

Fiction:

1. The Robe by Lloyd C. Douglas

2. The Silver Chalice by Thomas B. Costain

3. Désirée by Annemarie Selinko

4. Battle Cry by Leon M. Uris

5. From Here to Eternity by James Jones

6. The High and the Mighty by Ernest K. Gann

7. Beyond This Place by A.J. Cronin

8. Time and Time Again by James Hilton

9. Lord Vanity by Samuel Shellabarger

10. The Unconquered by Ben Ames Williams

Non-Fiction:

1. The Holy Bible: Revised Standard Version

2. The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale

3. Sexual Behavior in the Human Female by Alfred C. Kinsey et al.

4. Angel Unaware by Dale Evans Rogers

5. Life Is Worth Living by Fulton J. Sheen

6. A Man Called Peter by Catherine Marshall

7. This I Believe, Edward R. Murrow edited by Edward P. Morgan

8. The Greatest Faith Ever Known by Fulton Oursler and G.A.O. Armstrong

9. How to Play Your Best Golf by Tommy Armour

10. A House Is Not a Home by Polly Adler

8. 1953 in American Television

Encyclopedia.com tells us that “Television was introduced to Americans in 1939 and began to gain a foothold after World War II (1939–45). In the 1950s, the sale of TV sets and the boom in programming made TV America's favorite source of entertainment. Consider the numbers: in 1946, 7,000 TV sets were sold; in 1948, 172,000 sets were sold; and in 1950, 5 million sets were sold. In 1950, just under 20 percent of American homes contained a TV set. Ten years later, nearly 90 percent of homes contained a TV—and some even had color TVs.”

Courtesy of Nielsen TV Research, here are the most popular television shows from the 1953-54 season:

1. I Love Lucy (CBS)

2. Dragnet (NBC)

3. Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts (CBS)

4. You Bet Your Life (NBC)

5. The Milton Berle Show (NBC)

6. Arthur Godfrey and His Friends (CBS)

7. Ford Theatre (NBC)

8. The Jackie Gleason Show (CBS)

9. Fireside Theatre (NBC)

10. The Colgate Comedy Hour (NBC)

Here were the most popular soap operas for the 1953-54 season:

1. Search for Tomorrow

2. The Guiding Light

3. Love of Life

4. Hawkins Falls

5. Valiant Lady (debuted on October 12, 1953)

6. The Brighter Day (premiered on January 4, 1954)

7. The Secret Storm (debuted on February 1, 1954)

8. Woman with a Past (premiered on February 1, 1954)

9. Portia Faces Life

10. The Bennetts

In 1953, I Love Lucy was America's most popular television show.

In 1953, I Love Lucy was America's most popular television show.

9. 1953 in American Radio

Encyclopedia.com tells us that “Television changed the American entertainment landscape. In towns where TV was introduced, movie attendance and book sales dropped off dramatically. Radio, which had been America's favorite form of at-home amusement, declined in importance in the 1950s. Variety, comedy, and dramatic shows left the airwaves for TV. Radio increasingly focused on news, talk shows, and sports broadcasting.”

Here are some of the most popular radio programs from 1953:

  1. Don McNeill’s Breakfast Club
  2. Ma Perkins
  3. Midwestern Hayride
  4. Milkman’s Matinee
  5. Monitor
  6. Moon River
  7. Pop Chronicles
  8. Ranger Bill
  9. Suspense (radio drama)
  10. The Eternal Light
  11. The Romance of Helen Trent
  12. The Standard School Broadcast
  13. Unshackled!
  14. Young Doctor Malone
  15. Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar

10. Animated Films Released in 1953

  1. Barney's Hungry Cousin (MGM)
  2. Belle Boys (Woody Woodpecker series)
  3. Ben and Me (Walt Disney)
  4. Buccaneer Woodpecker (Woody Woodpecker series)
  5. Bully for Bugs (Warner Bros.)
  6. Catty Cornered (Warner Bros.)
  7. Don’s Fountain of Youth (Walt Disney)
  8. Jerry and Jumbo (Tom and Jerry series)
  9. Just Ducky (Tom and Jerry series)
  10. The Missing Mouse (Tom and Jerry series)
  11. Peter Pan (Walt Disney)
  12. Plop Goes the Weasel (Warner Bros.)
  13. Punch Trunk (Warner Bros.)
  14. Robot Rabbit (Warner Bros.)
  15. Rugged Bear (Walt Disney)
  16. The Simple Things (Mickey Mouse series)
  17. Snow Business (Warner Bros.)
  18. Southern Fried Rabbit (Warner Bros.)
  19. A Street Cat Named Sylvester (Warner Bros.)
  20. There Auto be a Law (Warner Bros.)
In 1953, Peter Pan was a top-grossing movie.

In 1953, Peter Pan was a top-grossing movie.

This movie trivia has been made available courtesy of The-Numbers.com.

  1. Peter Pan
  2. The Robe
  3. From Here to Eternity
  4. House of Wax
  5. Shane
  6. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
  7. Hondo
  8. How to Marry a Millionaire
  9. The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms
  10. Niagara

12. Ten Best Horror Films

This film trivia from 1953 has been made available courtesy of IMDB.com.

  1. House of Wax
  2. The War of the Worlds
  3. The Tell-Tale Heart
  4. The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms
  5. Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
  6. It Came From Outer Space
  7. Invaders from Mars
  8. Scared Stiff
  9. Donavon’s Brain
  10. Man in the Attic
In 1953, snowballs were a popular food trend. TheDailyMeal.com describes this dessert as “a scoop of vanilla ice cream rolled in shredded coconut and usually drizzled with chocolate sauce.”

In 1953, snowballs were a popular food trend. TheDailyMeal.com describes this dessert as “a scoop of vanilla ice cream rolled in shredded coconut and usually drizzled with chocolate sauce.”

13. Biggest Pop Music Artists

Popular music artists and groups from 1953 included the Ames Brothers, B.B. King, Dean Martin, the Dominoes, Eddie Fisher, Frank Sinatra, Frankie Laine, Joe Turner, Joni James, Kay Starr, Les Baxter, Nat King Cole, the Orioles, Patti Page, Percy Faith, Perry Como, Teresa Brewer, and Tony Bennett.

14. Top 30 Songs for the Year

This music trivia from 1953 has been made available courtesy of Music-Outfitters.com.

1. Where Is Your Heart: Percy Faith

2. Vaya Con Dios: Les Paul and Mary Ford

3. (How Much Is That) Doggie In the Window?: Patti Page

4. I'm Walking Behind You: Eddie Fisher

5. You You You: The Ames Brothers

6. Till I Waltz Again With You: Teresa Brewer

7. April In Portugal: Les Baxter

8. No Other Love: Perry Como

9. Don't Let the Stars Get In Your Eyes: Perry Como

10. I Believe: Frankie Laine

11. Oh: Pee Wee Hunt

12. Ebb Tide: Frank Chacksfield

13. Pretend: Nat King Cole

14. Ruby: Richard Hayman

15. St George And The Dragonet: Stan Freberg

16. P.S. I Love You: The Hilltoppers

17. Tell Me You're Mine: The Gaylords

18. Eh Cumpari: Julius La Rosa

19. Rags To Riches: Tony Bennett

20. Anna: Silvana Mangano

21. Say You're Mine Again: Perry Como

22. Dragnet: Ray Anthony

23. Tell Me A Story: Frankie Laine and Jimmy Boyd

24. Crying In The Chapel: June Valli

25. Why Don't You Believe Me: Joni James

26. Your Cheatin' Heart: Joni James

27. Limelight (Terry's Theme): Frank Chacksfield

28. With These Hands: Eddie Fisher

29. C'est si bon: Eartha Kitt

30. Have You Heard: Joni James

In 1953, Kraft Cheez Whiz was introduced. Food-Reference.com tells us that “Originally created as an easy way to make Welsh rarebit, this stable cheese sauce comes in a jar with Worcestershire sauce, mustard flour, and orange coloring added."

In 1953, Kraft Cheez Whiz was introduced. Food-Reference.com tells us that “Originally created as an easy way to make Welsh rarebit, this stable cheese sauce comes in a jar with Worcestershire sauce, mustard flour, and orange coloring added."

15. Food and Beverage Trivia

GoodHousekeeping.com tells us that “Like fashion, food falls in and out of style. Back when kids of the '50s and '60s were growing up, family dinners meant these dishes were front and center at every family get-together, holiday meal, or cocktail party your parents threw. Many of these recipes evolved from the appeal of new ‘convenience’ foods ranging from canned soups to boxed cake mixes.”

Courtesy of TheDailyMeal.com and GoodHousekeeping.com, here are some foods and beverages that were popular in 1952:

  1. Apple pie
  2. Baked beans
  3. Baked ham
  4. Beef Bourguignon
  5. Beef Stroganoff
  6. Champagne punch
  7. Chicken Tetrazzini: TheDailyMeal tells us that “Named after opera singer Luisa Tetrazzini, Tetrazzini is a dish made with poultry or seafood (usually chicken or turkey) and mushrooms in a creamy sauce flavored with wine or sherry, served over pasta.”
  8. Chicken a la king
  9. Chiffon cake
  10. Chili con carne
  11. Clam dip
  12. Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and Royal Crown (RC) Cola
  13. Deviled ham
  14. Egg salad
  15. Fruit cocktail cake
  16. Gelatin molds
  17. Green bean casseroles
  18. Ham and eggs
  19. Hamburgers and French fries
  20. Meatloaf
  21. Pineapple upside down cake
  22. Relish trays
  23. SPAM
  24. Shrimp cocktail
  25. Snowballs: TheDailyMeal.com describes this dessert as “a scoop of vanilla ice cream rolled in shredded coconut and usually drizzled with chocolate sauce.”
  26. Stuffed celery
  27. Swedish meatballs
  28. Tuna noodle casseroles
  29. Tunnel of Fudge cake
  30. Waffles
In 1953, chicken a la King was a popular food trend.

In 1953, chicken a la King was a popular food trend.

16. Famous Birthdays

Here are some of the famous people who were born in 1953:

  1. Amy Hill: Movie actress
  2. Betty Wright: R&B singer
  3. Chaka Khan: R&B singer
  4. Charlie Wilson: R&B singer
  5. Cyndi Lauper: Pop singer
  6. Frances Conroy: TV actress
  7. Howard Schultz: Entrepreneur
  8. Jeb Bush: Politician
  9. John Malkovich: Movie actor
  10. Kathie Lee Gifford: TV show host
  11. Keith Allen: Movie actor
  12. Kim Basinger: Movie actress
  13. Mindy Sterling: Movie actress
  14. Paul Allen: Entrepreneur
  15. Pierce Brosnan: Movie actor
  16. Robin McGraw: Self-help author
  17. Tim Allen: TV actor
  18. Tim Gunn: TV show host
  19. Tip Jackson: Guitarist
  20. Tony Blair: World leader

17. Notable Weddings

These marriage facts have been made available courtesy of OnThisDay.com.

  1. On February 14, actress Agnes Moorehead married actor and film director Robert Gist.
  2. On April 6, MLB player Ernie Banks married Mollye Louise.
  3. On April 15, ice hockey player Gordie Howemarried sports agent Colleen Joffa.
  4. On May 23, John F. Kennedy's sister Eunice Kennedy married activist and attorney Sargent Shriver.
  5. On June 18, civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr. married fellow activist and singer Coretta Scott.
  6. On July 2, children's author Roald Dahl married stage actress Patricia Neal.
  7. On July 6, James Bond actor Roger Moore married Welsh singer Dorothy Squires.
  8. On July 13, Academy award-winning actor José Ferrer married singer and actress Rosemary Clooney.
  9. On September 8, actress Lana Turner married actor Lex Barker.
  10. On September 12, U.S. Senator John F. Kennedy married Jacqueline Bouvier.
  11. On September 24, singer Dick Haymes married Hollywood actress Rita Hayworth.
  12. On September 29, U.S. Senator Joseph McCarthy married researcher Jean Kerr.
  13. On October 6, MLB player Hank Aaron married Barbara Lucas.
  14. On October 26, tennis champion Tony Trabert married beauty queen Shauna Wood.
  15. On December 8, Canadian Prime Minister John Diefenbaker married Olive Palmer.

18. Famous People Who Died

This information has been made available courtesy of FamousBirthdays.com.

  1. Alan Curtis: Movie actor
  2. Arnold Bax: Composer
  3. Bill Tilden: Tennis player
  4. Clyde Milan: Baseball player
  5. Dooley Wilson: Movie actor
  6. Eugene O’Neill: Playwright
  7. Guccio Gucci: Fashion designer
  8. Hank Williams: Country singer
  9. James Finlayson: Movie actor
  10. Jesse Burkett: Baseball player
  11. Jim Thorpe: Football player
  12. Joseph Stalin: Politician
  13. Marjorie Rawlings: Young adult author
  14. Richard Pearse: Pilot
  15. Robert Taft: Politician
In 1953, the first Danny’s Donuts opened in Lakewood, California. Founded by Harold Butler and Richard Jezak, the name was eventually changed to Danny’s Coffee Shops, and then to Denny’s Restaurants in 1959.

In 1953, the first Danny’s Donuts opened in Lakewood, California. Founded by Harold Butler and Richard Jezak, the name was eventually changed to Danny’s Coffee Shops, and then to Denny’s Restaurants in 1959.

19. U.S. Automobile Production Figures for the Year

Here are the U.S. automobile production figures for 1953:

  1. Chevrolet: 1,346,475
  2. Ford: 1,247,542
  3. Plymouth: 650,451
  4. Buick: 488,755
  5. Pontiac: 418,619
  6. Oldsmobile: 334,462
  7. Dodge: 320,008
  8. Mercury: 305,863
  9. Chrysler: 170,006
  10. Studebaker: 151,576
  11. DeSoto: 132,104
  12. Nash: 121,793
  13. Cadillac: 109,651
  14. Packard: 90,252
  15. Hudson: 66,143
  16. Willys: 42,224
  17. Lincoln: 40,762
  18. Kaiser: 27,652
  19. Henry J: 16,672
  20. Metropolitan: 743

20. American Companies and Brands Established During 1953

  1. Bahakel Communications is a family-owned communications company located in Charlotte, North Carolina. Their broadcasting properties include fourteen radio and television stations in Alabama, Colorado, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
  2. City Lights Bookstore is an independent bookstore and publisher located in San Francisco.
  3. In 1953, the first Danny’s Donuts opened in Lakewood, California. Founded by Harold Butler and Richard Jezak, the name was eventually changed to Danny’s Coffee Shops, and then to Denny’s Restaurants in 1959.
  4. Echo Hill Ranch is a summer ranch camp of about 400 acres in the Texas Hill Country.
  5. Ferguson Enterprises, located in Newport News, Virginia, is the largest U.S. distributor of plumbing supplies.
  6. Until the 1970s, Litton Industries was a large American defense contractor.
  7. Moog Music, based in Asheville, North Carolina, is a company that manufactures electronic musical instruments.
  8. Panavision is a motion picture equipment company based in Woodland Hills, California.
  9. Sargento, an American food processor best known for its cheese, was founded in Plymouth, Wisconsin by Leonard Gentine and Joseph Sartori. Sargento is also one of the largest privately-owned companies in the United States.
  10. Zip’s Drive In is a restaurant chain located in the northwest United States.
In 1953, House of Wax was a popular horror film. A gang of college friends are en route to a school football game when they wind up with a flat tire in a ghost town. They are forced to seek help in the only place that's open: the local wax museum.

In 1953, House of Wax was a popular horror film. A gang of college friends are en route to a school football game when they wind up with a flat tire in a ghost town. They are forced to seek help in the only place that's open: the local wax museum.

References:

In 1953, Sargento, an American food processor best known for its cheese, was founded in Plymouth, Wisconsin by Leonard Gentine and Joseph Sartori. Sargento is also one of the largest privately-owned companies in the United States.

In 1953, Sargento, an American food processor best known for its cheese, was founded in Plymouth, Wisconsin by Leonard Gentine and Joseph Sartori. Sargento is also one of the largest privately-owned companies in the United States.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Gregory DeVictor

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