1990 Following the Iraq invasion of Kuwait on August 2nd Desert Shield Begins as the United States and UK send troops to Kuwait. The US enters a bad recession which will have repercussions over the next few years throughout the world. This is also the year "The Simpsons " is seen for the first time on FOX TV. Following the Berlin Wall falling East and West Germany reunite. In technology Tim Berners-Lee publishes the first web page on the WWW and it shown that there is a hole in the Ozone Layer above the North Pole, also the First in car GPS Satellite Navigation System goes on sale from Pioneer.

Cost of Living 1990

How Much things cost in 1990
Yearly Inflation Rate USA5.39% Year End Close Dow Jones Industrial Average 2633 Interest Rates Year End Federal Reserve 10.00% Average Cost of new house $123,000.00 Average Income per year $28,960.00 Average Monthly Rent $465.00 Cost of a gallon of Gas $1.34 Price for a new Isuzu Rodeo $12,4900.00 IBM PS1 Computer From $999.00 - $1,999.00
Below are some Prices for UK guides in Pounds Sterling
Average House Price 72,290 Gallon of Petrol 1.86 Yearly Inflation Rate UK 9.5% Interest Rates Year End Bank of England 13.88% FTSE 100 Average 2250
From Our 1990 toys Page
Price: $39.99

The Popular electronic Furby robotic toy From The 1990s

What Events Happened in 1990

Yemen -- North and South Unite

North and South Yemen, also known as the Yemen Arab Republic and the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen, are unified as the Republic of Yemen in May. North Yemen had been a part of the Ottoman Empire prior to its independence in 1918 after the Ottoman collapse. South Yemen had been a part of the British Empire until 1967 when it became an independent socialist republic. In 1990, the two nations decided to merge under the leadership of Ali Salem al Beidh (from South Yemen) and Ali Abdullah Saleh (from North Yemen). After the announcement, the new nation was to go through a 30 month transitional period.

Iran - Manji-Rudbar Earthquake

1. Iran is hit with a 7.4 magnitude earthquake on June 21st.
2. The earthquake hit near the Caspian Sea, northwest of Tehran and near the cities of Rudbar and Munjil.
3. The earthquake effected an area of about 20,000 square miles, destroying thousands of homes. An estimated 400,000 people were left homeless after the disaster.
4. The death toll was estimated between 35,000 and 50,000 people and up to 135,000 people were injured.


Switzerland -- World Wide Web

Tim Berners-Lee publishes his formal proposal for the World Wide Web during November. Berners-Lee’s proposal outlined a plan for a system that would use hypertext, web pages, browsers, and web servers to share documents across the internet. Berners-Lee had first proposed his idea to colleagues at CERN in Switzerland who then worked with him to develop the system for about two years before it became functional. His original goal was to make the sharing of documents easy and universal for scientists and education purposes around the globe but had acknowledged the potential for commercial involvement. The creation of the World Wide Web has since formed the standard for how we access and use the internet.

United States - Hubble Space Telescope

NASA’s STS-31 mission deploys the Hubble Space Telescope during April. The mission launched from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The sophisticated space telescope was carried on the Space Shuttle Discovery and deployed by the five person crew who also filmed the process using IMAX cameras. The Hubble telescope was the first space telescope put into orbit that could be repaired by astronauts when maintenance was needed. The mission lasted five days and successfully returned to Earth, landing at the Edwards Air Force Base in California.


  • Saddam Hussein orders Iraq invasion of Neighboring Kuwait
  • Operation Desert Shield Begins as the United States and UK send troops to Kuwait
  • Lech Walesa becomes president of Poland
  • The Saturn range of cars are launched by GM
United States
  • The most complete skeleton of a T-Rex is found in South Dakota ( Sue ).
More Information and Timeline for Sue the T. Rex.
One of the largest and most well-preserved Tyrannosaurus Rex fossilized skeletons is found by paleontologist Sue Hendrickson near Faith, South Dakota in August of 1990. The skeleton was named “Sue” after the person who discovered it. “Sue” was over 90 percent complete and measured about thirteen feet all and forty feet long. A team of six uncovered the skeleton over about seventeen days to remove “Sue” from the bluff where she was discovered. Chicago’s Field Museum eventually purchased the specimen for over 8 million dollars and spent tens of thousands of hours preserving and assembling one of the most important dinosaur discoveries to ever be seen.

  • Earthquake in Iran kills 50,000
  • Americas Favorite animated family "The Simpsons " is aired on Fox for the first time
  • The US Enters a Major Recession
  • The National League for Democracy NLD wins free elections by a landslide majority, but the military regime has refused to hand over power.
  • A Formal Ban on the Trade of Ivory is introduced
South Africa
  • Opposition Parties in South Africa are legalized Nelson Mandella released from prison and becomes leader of the African National Congress ( ANC ).
More Information for Nelson Mandela.
During February of 1990 Nelson Mandela was released from prison in South Africa after 27 years of imprisonment. Mandela had been one of the prominent leaders in the anti-apartheid movement. He joined the movement in 1944 and soon became the deputy national president of the oldest black political organization in South Africa, the African National Congress (ANC). In 1964, he was imprisoned for his involvement in a paramilitary branch of the ANC that had been retaliating against the government for an attack on peaceful protesters. After Mandela’s release, he became the head of the anti-apartheid movement and helped negotiate its end. In 1994 he became the first black president of South Africa after being elected in the first multiracial elections.

United States - NASA Launches Ulysses Probe
  • The joint ESA / NASA space probe "Ulysses" was launched.
More Information for Ulysses Probe
1. The Ulysses space craft was launched in 1990 and was a joint effort between the ESA and NASA.
2. The probe’s mission was studying the Sun and solar system’s magnetic field, also known as the heliosphere.
3. The European Space Agency’s (ESA) space probe “Ulysses” reached its southern most latitude in its orbit around the Sun during September of 1994.
4. The Ulysses mission was only expected to last for five years but it continued for about eighteen years and ended in 2009.

  • The demolition of the Berlin Wall officially begins during June.
More Information for the demolition of the Berlin Wall.
The official demolition of the Berlin Wall begins in June of 1990. The wall had been built in 1961 by the Communist-run East Germany to prevent defectors from traveling over the border to Capitalist-run West Germany. Control of the Berlin Wall ended in November of 1989 when it was announced that East German citizens would be allowed to cross the border with complete freedom. The removal of the wall began in June of 1990 and by October, the reunification of West and East Germany was completed. Demolition on the wall was finished in 1992.

  • Poll Tax introduced in UK causing mass demonstrations who claimed the tax moved the tax burden from the rich to the poor
  • Industrialized countries agree to stop dumping waste into the oceans of the world.
  • John M. Poindexter ( Former national security adviser ) is convicted on multiple felony counts
  • Margaret Thatcher announces her resignation as British PM after John Major is chosen to lead the country and conservative party.
Saudi Arabia
  • A stampede of religious pilgrims in a pedestrian tunnel in Mecca on July 2nd leaves 1,400 dead
  • A fire at an unlicensed social club called "Happy Land" in New York City kills 87
South Africa
  • Opposition Parties in South Africa are legalized Nelson Mandella released from prison and becomes leader of the African National Congress ( ANC )
  • The Leaning Tower of Pisa is closed to the public due to safety concerns of it falling over.
More Information and Timeline for the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
In January of 1990 the Leaning Tower of Pisa is closed to visitors for the first time due to fears over the safety and stability of the building. Engineers worked on restructuring and stabilizing the building by taking some of the weight out of the tower and straightening it by about eighteen inches. By December of 2001 it was reopened to the public and declared to be stable for at least another few hundred years. The Leaning Tower of Pisa had originally been constructed over a span of about 200 years between the 1170’s and the 1370’s and the tilt began to form almost immediately, caused by the building of a poor foundation on too soft of soil.

  • East and West Germany reunite including currency and economies
  • President George Bush and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev sign a historic agreement to end production of chemical weapons
  • Throughout the year demonstrations are held in cities in the UK in protest at the new poll tax
  • Philippines, an earthquake measuring 7.7 on the Richter Scale kills over 1600

  • Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to lessen Cold War tensions and reform his nation
  • Tim Berners-Lee publishes a more formal proposal for the World Wide Web and the first web page is written
  • Channel Tunnel workers from the United Kingdom and France meet 40 meters beneath the English Channel seabed, establishing the first ground connection between the United Kingdom and the mainland of Europe since the last ice age
  • Art thieves steal 12 works of art from the Isabella Gardner Museum in Boston
  • Prisoners Riot in Strangeways Prison in Manchester, England keeping control of the prison for 25 days
  • Namibia Gains Independence From South Africa
  • Boris N. Yeltsin becomes president of the Russian republic.
  • West Germany Wins 1990 World Cup in Italy
  • Customs officers seize the barrel ( 130 feet long )of a "Supergun" bound for Iraq
  • Great Britain is gripped by a heat wave and the highest recorded temperatures in British History are recorded of 37.1C, or 99F in Nailstone, Leicestershire


  • The Space Shuttle Discovery places the Hubble Space Telescope in orbit revolutionizing astronomy.
  • Tim Berners-Lee publishes a more formal proposal for the World Wide Web and the first web page is written
  • Microsoft Releases Windows 3.0
  • A 16 megabit chip is shown for the first time
  • The First Known Case of AIDS is traced back to 1959
  • The Space Probe Voyager launched in 1977 photographed the Solar System at a distance of 3.7 miles from the SUN
  • 18 years after its launch the US Space Probe Pioneer reaches a distance of 46.5 billion miles beyond all planetary orbits
  • Depletion of the Ozone Layer is discovered above the North Pole
  • The First in-car Satellite Navigation System is sold by Pioneer

Popular Culture 1990

  • The Sci/Fi Channel on Cable TV starts transmitting
  • Twin Peaks premieres on ABC
  • The Milli Vanilli duo's producer reveals that the Grammy winning pop duo were lip synching in the songs on the album which gained them the award

Popular Films

  • Home Alone
  • Ghost
  • Dances with Wolves
  • Pretty Woman
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
  • The Hunt for Red October
  • Total Recall
  • Die Hard 2
  • Dick Tracy
  • Edward Scissorhands,
  • The Godfather Part III

Check out our Television Programmes From The 90s whenever possible we have included a trailer to jog your memory. Series trailers and more information are found on the decade they started.

Popular Musicians

  • Tears For Fears
  • Kylie Minogue
  • Janet Jackson with " Black Cat "
  • Jon Bon Jovi with " Blaze of Glory "
  • Erasure
  • Maxi Priest
  • Rod Stewart
  • Depeche Mode
  • The Blues Brothers
  • Garth Brooks
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • Billy Joel
  • Phil Collins
  • Vanilla Ice with " Ice Ice Baby "
  • Whitney Houston
  • Aerosmith
  • Cher
  • Dannii Minogue
  • Mariah Carey
  • The B-52's

Now check out our newly updated 1990's music page 90's Music

Born This Year

Jonathan Lipnicki October 22nd

1990 Calendar

Major World Political Leaders 1990

Australia Prime Minister Bob Hawke Brazil President José Sarney Till 15 March
Brazil President Fernando Collor From 15 March
Canada Prime Minister Brian Mulroney

China Chairman of the People's Republic of China Yang Shangkun

France President François Mitterrand

Germany Chancellor Helmut Kohl
India Prime Minister Vishwanath Pratap Singh Till 10 November
India Prime Minister Chandra Shekhar From 10 November
Italy Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti

Japan Prime Minister Toshiki Kaifu Mexico President Carlos Salinas de Gortari Russia / Soviet Union
General Secretary of the CPSU Mikhail Gorbachev South Africa State President Frederik Willem de Klerk United States President George H. W. Bush United Kingdom Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher Till 28 November
United Kingdom Prime Minister John Major From 28 November