The People History Home

1950 Major News Events in History

  1. Korean War begins when North Korea invaded South Korea in June
  2. United States - Great Brinks Robbery
  3. Diner's Club issues the first credit cards.
  4. President Truman signs the Organic Act of Guam.
  5. The Tollund Man, a mummified body from the 4th Century, is found.
  6. President Harry Truman sends United States military personnel to Vietnam to aid French forces
  7. Two Long Island commuter trains collide in the Richmond Hills section of Queens killing 79 people
  8. Albert Einstein warns that nuclear war could lead to mutual destruction
  9. James Dean gets his break when he appears in a Pepsi Commercial
  10. Diner's Club issues the first credit cards ( Made with Cardboard )

More Detailed Information on each Event and those not included can be found below

What Happened in 1950 Important News and Events, Key Technology and Popular Culture

1950 Year In History including South Africa the Group Areas Act creates Apartheid, NATO Created, China invades Tibet, McCarthy Begins his Persecution of Communists, US Leads World in Korean War following North Korea invasion of South Korea, James Dean big break comes with Pepsi Commercial.

1950 was the start of the fast changes that would be seen in the next 2 decades , the great depression was becoming a faint memory and families were moving out to the suburbs, kids watched howdy doody on 12 inch black and white TV sets and spent Saturday afternoons watching cartoons at Cinema matinees , times were gentler with little violence and the consumer revolution was about to start in a big way, and the man of the household became the sole breadwinner. The median family income was $3,300 a year and milk was still delivered to the doorstep.

Cost of Living 1950 - How Much things cost

Yearly Inflation Rate USA 1.09%

Yearly Inflation Rate UK 1.09%

Average Cost of new house $8,450.00

Average wages per year - $3,210.00

Average House Price UK - 1,940 -

Average Cost of a new car - $1,510.00

Loaf of Bread - $249.95

Ball Point Pen - 25 cents

Samsonite Case - $25.00


Clock Radio - $59.95

Baby Diapers ( Cotton ) - From $2.79

Children's Tricycle - From $14.00

Cost of a gallon of Gas 18 cents

Korean War begins when North Korea invaded South Korea in June

The Korean War begins when North Korea invaded South Korea in June . The country had previously been divided after the end of World War II with the North becoming Communist and the South remaining Capitalist. After the initial division each side had indicated that they wanted to unify the country under their preferred ideology but only small attacks had been made. Full on civil war began after the North launched a full invasion and eventually captured the South's capital of Seoul. Not long after the war began, it became an international conflict when the United States and United Nations sent troops to help the South and China began helping the North. The war ended in 1953 when the two countries settled on maintaining the original division

South Korea -- More Information for the Battle of Osan.

American troops and North Korean forces fight each other for the first time in the Korean War during the Battle of Osan.

In July American troops and North Korean forces fought against each other for the first time in the Battle of Osan. The Korean War had only just begun in June when North Korea launched a full scale invasion of the South. Only a few U.S. troops had arrived in Korea by the time the Battle of Osan began, and they were considered largely unprepared to face the North Koreans. During the battle, the North Koreans quickly moved in on the U.S. forces and the Americans decided to withdraw from the fighting. Unfortunately, the withdrawal was uncoordinated and in the confusion the U.S. Troops suffered many casualties. The aftermath of the battle revealed that a combination of outdated equipment and a lack of organization would likely make it difficult for the Americans to win against the more well-prepared and organized North Korean forces.

President Truman receives the NSC-68 Report about the Cold War.

In April , the NSC-68 report was completed and presented to U.S. President Harry Truman. The report contained recommendations on how to approach the Cold War with the Soviet Union and would influence U.S. Policy in regards to the Cold War for the next twenty years. Some of the main results of the report was the United States' aggressive military expansion and build up of nuclear weaponry, as well as enacting the policy of containment against Communist nations. The recommendations of NSC-68 became official U.S. policy in September after the outbreak of the Korean War. One of the long term effects of the report was the massive increase in military spending, with the budget nearly tripling soon after the policy change was enacted. The document was not officially declassified until 1975.

United States - Great Brinks Robbery

1. The Great Brinks Robbery takes place on January 17th.

2. The Brinks Armored Car Depot in Boston, Massachusetts was burglarized by a group of 11 men in a well-planned and coordinated robbery, masterminded by Anthony Pino.

3. The robbers used Halloween masks as disguises and completed the robbery in about 30 minutes and stole about $2.7 million.

4. The perpetrators were caught because one of the men involved in the crime, Joseph "Specs" O'Keefe, had been apprehended for another crime and threatened to cooperate with authorities.

5. The other members of the group tried to have O'Keefe assassinated but the attempt failed.

6. After the botched hit, O'Keefe decided to cooperate with the FBI and made a deal to testify against his accomplices.

7. Two of the burglars died before facing trial and the remaining eight burglars were sentenced to life in prison.

8. They were not caught until January of 1956, just before the statute of limitations for the robbery expired. Only some of the money was ever recovered.

Diner's Club issues the first credit cards.

More Information and Timeline for first credit cards.

1. The first independent credit card company is created by Frank McNamara in February .

2. The first cards were made with cardboard and the plastic versions did not appear until the 1960s.

3. The Diners Club credit card was the first multi-purpose charge card and within a year of beginning operations the company had over 40,000 members.

4. Soon after that businesses in other countries began to accept the Diners Club Card as a form of payment, making it the first international credit membership in 1953.

5. By the end of the decade, over one million people were members in 1959.

6. In 1981 Citicorp took over Diners Club and it continued to be a popular choice for businesses and travelers.

7. In 2008 it was taken over by Discover and in 2009 BMO Financial Group was given the right to issue Diners Club credit cards in North America.

Part of our Collection of Toys 1950 1950 Adding Machine
Adding Machine From The 1950s Price: $1.62
Youngsters love it for playing store. Accurate and dependable enough to take the headaches out of addition for older people, too. Older children can use it to solve homework addition problems. Even Mom finds it useful for her household accounts. Takes four column figures, adds up to 9,999.

Popular Culture 1950

James Dean gets his break when he appears in a Pepsi Commercial

First Peanuts Comic Strip appears in newspapers across the U.S. for the first time.

Popular Films


Samson and Delilah

Sunset Blvd

Father of The Bride

King Solomon's Mines

Annie Get Your Gun

Popular Music

Gary & Bing Crosby

Nat King Cole

Sammy Kaye

Andrews Sisters

Popular TV

The Lone Ranger

The Ed Sullivan Show

President Truman signs the Organic Act of Guam.

More Information for the Guam Act.

The Organic Act of Guam is signed into law by U.S. President Harry S. Truman during August . The act made the island an unincorporated territory of the United States and granted all Guam residents U.S. Citizenship. The act also gave a small amount of autonomy with the creation of legislative, judicial and executive branches of government and a bill of rights. Jurisdiction over the territory was also transferred to from the Untied States Navy to the United States Department of the Interior. The act marked the first time in over 300 years of colonialism that Guam would be given some form of self governance.

Belgium King Referendum.

More Information and Timeline for Belgium King Referendum.

The citizens of Belgium vote in a referendum to decide whether or not to allow the exiled King Leopold III to return to the throne. The vote took place on March 12th and the result was that 57.68% of the Belgian voters were in favor of his return. King Leopold III had first come into power in 1934 and had given Belgium's unconditional surrender to Nazi Germany when they invaded in 1940, an unpopular and controversial decision. In 1944, Leopold III and his family were deported to Germany and then to Austria, only to be liberated by the Allies in May of 1945. After the March referendum, the king returned on July 22nd . In the next year King Leopold III renounced the throne in an effort to resolve issues over his controversial return. His son, Prince Baudouin, took over the crown after he left.

Denmark - The Tollund Man, a mummified body from the 4th Century, is found.

More Information for the Tollund Man.

In May Viggo and Emil Hojgaard found the mummified body of a 4th century man in a peat bog on the Jutland Peninsula in Denmark. After its discovery, the body was excavated and examined as if he had been a recent murder victim as he had been so well preserved that the men who discovered him called the police to report a crime. Similar ancient bodies had been found before in that region so the police decided to consult with a local museum. They determined that the body was pre-historic and had belonged to a man between the age of 30 and 40 who had died by hanging while being sacrificed to the Gods and buried in the peat bog by his village over 2,400 years ago.

India's new constitution

More Information and Timeline for the India Constitution.

India's new constitution officially takes effect on January 26th when the new President Dr. Rajendrea Prasad took the oath of office. The original draft of the constitution was submitted during November of 1947 and was re-worked until it was finally approved by the Constituent Assembly in November of 1949. The new constitution declared that the country of India would be a sovereign socialist and democratic republic that would be organized as a federal union of territories and states, ruled under a parliamentary system. As the constitution of India took effect, the newly self-governing country became the most populous democracy in the world.

From Our 1950 Accessories Bags, Hats, Scarves and More Page

Head Hugging Helmet 1950 Head Hugging Helmet
Price: $3.94
Head-hugging helmet with richly stitched crown. Exquisite feather brushes angled smartly. Flattering rayon veiling. Fine wool felt. Choose from black, dark brown, medium gray, dark green or white with black trim.

Korea - Evacuation of Hungnam

More Information and Timeline for the Evacuation of Hungnam.

After the Chinese intervene in the Korean conflict on behalf of North Korea, United Nations and Republic of Korea troops are overrun and left with no land evacuation options during December . The UN and ROK forces decided to attempt a "reverse amphibious operation" to evacuate over 100,000 troops and hundreds of thousands of tons of supplies and vehicles. They did so by ferrying from the Port of Hungnam out to sea and back to Korean locations south of the 38th parallel. The plan faced complications as nearly 100,000 refugees showed up, asking for evacuation as well. The operation began on December 10th and it lasted until December 24th. They were miraculously successful in their efforts as the troops and most of the refugees were transported by ship to safety. The UN Troops also demolished the port and destroyed all of the left over supplies that could have been useful to the enemy as they left.

Calendar For The Year 1950

1950 Calendar

Earthquake and floods in Assam

Earthquake and floods in Assam, India - 574 deaths, 5,000,000 believed homeless

U.S.A. -- Sends Troops To Vietnam

President Harry Truman sends United States military personnel to Vietnam to aid French forces

U.S.A. -- Railroads

President Harry S. Truman places America's railroads under the control of the U.S. Army

U.S.A. -- Train Crash

Two Long Island commuter trains collide in the Richmond Hills section of Queens killing 79 people

UK -- General Election

The British Labour party wins the 1950 general election

UK -- Petrol Rationing Ends

Petrol Rationing Ends in Great Britain after 11 years

Uruquay -- World Cup

>Uruguay wins World Cup in Brazil

Monaco -- Grand Prix

Fangio wins the Monaco Grand Prix his first Grand Prix of a total of 24 Grand Prix victories

Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein warns that nuclear war could lead to mutual destruction

Papua New Guinea -- Volcanic cloud

Volcanic cloud kills 5000 in Mount Lamington, New Guinea

Warsaw Pact

Formation of the Warsaw Pact in answer to the wests NATO


12 nations agree to the creation of North Atlantic Treaty Organization NATO for the defense of the United States and Europe.

Tibet - China Invades

Chinese invasion of Tibet

U.S.A. -- Blizzard Conditions

The Eastern United States suffers 7 days of Blizzard Conditions and strong winds leaving more than 1 million homes without power.

U.S. -- Senator McCarthy

Persecution of Communists is initiated by Senator McCarthy

U.S. -- Defense Production Act

US Defense Production Act starts wage and price controls.

U.S. -- hydrogen bomb

President Truman approved U.S. construction of the hydrogen bomb

U.S. -- Brinks Robbery

Great Brinks Robbery on January 17 in Boston

South Africa -- Group Areas Act

In South Africa, the Group Areas Act is passed formally segregating races

UK -- Storms

Violent storms and a tornado devastate southern England

Born This Year in 1950

Loyd Grossman

Born: September 16th Marblehead, MA

Tom Petty

Born: October 20th Gainesville, FL

Stevie Wonder

Died October 2nd 2017, Santa Monica, CA

Jay Leno

Born: April 28th, New Rochelle, NY

Princess Anne

Born: August 15, England, United Kingdom

Stevie Wonder

Born: May 13th, Saginaw, MI

Dr. Phil

Born: September 1st, Vinita, Oklahoma

Robbie Coltrane

Born: March 30th, Rutherglen, United Kingdom

Bill Murray

Born: September 21st, Evanston, IL

Narendra Modi

Born: September 17th, Vadnagar, India

Steve Wozniak

Born: August 11, San Jose, CA

From Our 1950 Fashions 1950 Ladies Dresses and Mens Clothes Page

Sport Coat and Slacks 1950 Sport Coat and Slacks
Price: $19.95 - $27.50
Corduroy sport coat and part worsted gabardine slacks ($19.95 for two piece set). Colors for sport coat are maroon, gray or green and colors for slacks are gray, medium blue and brown. Wool houndstooth check sport coat and all wool worsted gabardine slacks ($27.50 for two piece set). Houndstooth check sport coat colors include gray-blue or tan and slacks come in blue or brown.


First TV remote control, Zenith Radio's Lazy Bones is marketed<

Diners Club Issues First Credit Cards

President Truman authorizes production of hydrogen bomb

8 million homes in the US now own Televisions

Inventions Invented by Inventors and Country ( or attributed to First Use )

Credit Card USA by Ralph Schneider

Transistor USA by William Shockley ( Bell Telephone )

Major World Political Leaders

Australia - Prime Minister - Sir Robert Menzies

Brazil - President - Gaspar Dutra

Canada - Prime Minister - Louis St. Laurent

China - Chairman of the People's Republic of China - Mao Zedong

France - President - Vincent Auriol

Germany - Chancellor - Konrad Adenauer

India - Prime Minister - Jawahar Lal Nehru

Italy - Prime Minister - Alcide De Gasperi

Japan - Prime Minister - Shigeru Yoshida

Mexico - President - Miguel Aleman Valdes

Russia / Soviet Union

Chairman of the Council of People's Commissars - Joseph Stalin

South Africa - Prime Minister - Daniel Francois Malan

United States - President - Harry S. Truman

United Kingdom - Prime Minister - Clement Attlee