Centuries: 19th century - 20th century - 21st century
Decades: 1920s  1930s  1940s  - 1950s -  1960s  1970s  1980s

Years: 1956 1957 1958 - 1959 - 1960 1961 1962
1959 by topic:
ArchaeologyArchitectureArtAviationAwardsComicsFilmLiterature (Poetry) – MeteorologyMusic (Country) – Rail transportRadioScienceSportsTelevision
By country
AustraliaCanadaPeople's Republic of ChinaEcuadorFranceGermanyGreeceIndiaIrelandIsraelItalyJapanLuxembourgMalayaMexicoNew ZealandNorwayPakistanPhilippinesSingaporeSouth AfricaSoviet UnionUKUSA
Sovereign statesState leadersReligious leadersLaw
Birth, marriage and death categories
Establishments and disestablishments categories
Works and introductions categories
1959 in other calendars
Gregorian calendar 1959

Ab urbe condita 2712
Armenian calendar 1408
Bahá'í calendar 115 – 116
Buddhist calendar 2503
Coptic calendar 1675 – 1676
Ethiopian calendar 1951 – 1952
Hebrew calendar 5719 5720
Hindu calendars
 - Vikram Samvat 2014 – 2015
 - Shaka Samvat 1881 – 1882
 - Kali Yuga 5060 – 5061
Holocene calendar 11959
Iranian calendar 1337 – 1338
Islamic calendar 1378 – 1379
Japanese calendar Shōwa


(昭和 34年)

 - Imperial Year Kōki 2619
Julian calendar 2004
Korean calendar 4292
Thai solar calendar 2502
Wikimedia Community Logo.png
Wikimedia Commons has media related to:

Year 1959 (MCMLIX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar.



  • January 1
    • Cultivars of plants named after this date must be named in a modern language, not in Latin.
    • Cuba: Fulgencio Batista flees Havana when the forces of Fidel Castro advance.
  • January 2
    • CBS Radio cuts four soap operas: Backstage Wife, Our Gal Sunday, The Road of Life, and This is Nora Drake.
    • Castro's troops approach Havana.
    • The Soviet Union successfully launches the Luna 1 spacecraft from Baikonur Cosmodrome.
  • January 3
  • January 4
    • In Cuba, rebel troops led by Che Guevara and Camilo Cienfuegos enter the city of Havana.
    • In Léopoldville, 42 people are killed during food fights between the police and participants of a meeting of the Abako Party.
  • January 6
    • Fidel Castro arrives in Havana.
    • The International Maritime Organization is inaugurated.
  • January 7 – The United States recognizes the new Cuban government of Fidel Castro.
  • January 8Charles De Gaulle is inaugurated as the first president of the French Fifth Republic.
  • January 12
    • Caves of Nerja are discovered in Spain.
    • Motown Records founded by Berry Gordy, Jr.

January 3 Alaska

  • January 13Cuban communists execute 71 supporters of Fulgencio Batista.
  • January 22Knox Mine Disaster: Water breaches the River Slope Mine in Port Griffith, Pennsylvania near Pittston, Pennsylvania; 12 miners are killed.
  • January 25Pope John XXIII announces that the Second Vatican Council will be convened in Rome.
  • January 29Walt Disney releases his 16th animated film, Sleeping Beauty in Beverly Hills. It is Disney's first animated film to be shown in 70mm and modern 6-track stereophonic sound.[1] Also on the program is Disney's new live-action short subject Grand Canyon, which uses the music of Ferde Grofe's Grand Canyon Suite. Grand Canyon wins an Oscar for Best Documentary Short.
  • January 30 – Danish passenger/cargo ship MS Hans Hedtoft, returning to Copenhagen after its maiden voyage to Greenland, strikes an iceberg and sinks off the Greenland coast with the loss of all 95 on board.[2]


February 3: Crash kills musicians and pilot.

  • February 1 – A referendum in Switzerland turns down female suffrage.
  • February 3
    • A chartered plane transporting musicians Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper and pilot Roger Peterson goes down in foggy conditions near Clear Lake, Iowa, killing all 4 occupants on board. The tragedy is later termed "The Day the Music Died", popularized in Don McLean's 1972 song "American Pie".
    • American Airlines Flight 320, a Lockheed L-188 Electra heading from Chicago to New York City, crashes into the East River, killing 65 of the 73 people on board.
  • February 6 – At Cape Canaveral, Florida, the first successful test firing of a Titan intercontinental ballistic missile is accomplished.
  • February 9Yugoslavia and Spain set trade relations (not diplomatic ones)
  • February 13TAT-2, AT&T's second Trans-Atlantic telephone cable, goes into operation.
  • February 16
  • February 17 – The United States launches the Vanguard II weather satellite.
  • February 18
    • Jesús Sosa Blanco, a colonel in the Cuban army of Fulgencio Batista, is executed in Cuba after being convicted of committing 108 murders for Batista.
    • Women in Nepal vote for the first time.
  • February 19 – The United Kingdom decides to grant Cyprus its independence.
  • February 20 – The Canadian Government cancels the CF-105 Arrow project.
  • February 22Lee Petty wins the first Daytona 500.


  • March 1
    • The USS Tuscaloosa, USS New Orleans, USS Tennessee and USS West Virginia are struck from the Naval Vessel Register.
    • Archbishop Makarios returns to Cyprus from exile.
  • March 2 – Recording sessions for the album Kind of Blue by Miles Davis take place at Columbia's 30th Street Studio in New York City.
  • March 8The Marx Brothers make their last television appearance, in The Incredible Jewel Robbery.
  • March 9 – The Barbie doll debuts.
  • March 10 – A Tibetan uprising against 10 years of Chinese rule erupts in Lhasa.
  • March 11
    • Een beetje by Teddy Scholten (music by Dick Schallies, text by Willy van Hemert) wins the Eurovision Song Contest for the Netherlands.
    • A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry opens on Broadway.
  • March 17Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, flees Tibet.
  • March 18 – American President Dwight D. Eisenhower signs a bill allowing for Hawaiian statehood.
  • March 19 – Two other islands join Addu in the United Suvadive Republic (abolished September 1963), in the Maldives Islands.
  • March 31


  • April 6 – The 31st Academy Awards ceremony is held.
  • April 8 – The Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) is established.
  • April 9NASA announces its selection of seven military pilots to become the first U.S. astronauts (later known as the Mercury Seven).
  • April 10Japanese Prince Akihito marries Shōda Michiko.
  • April 22 – Recording sessions for the influential jazz album Kind of Blue by Miles Davis take place at Columbia's 30th Street Studio in New York City.
  • April 25 – The St. Lawrence Seaway linking the Great Lakes and the Atlantic Ocean officially opens to shipping.
  • April 27National People's Congress elects Liu Shaoqi as Chairman of the People's Republic of China, as a successor of Mao Zedong.


  • May
    • The first Ten Tors event is held in Dartmoor.
    • Import tariffs are lifted in the United Kingdom.
  • May 21959 FA Cup Final: Nottingham Forest defeats Luton Town 2–1.
  • May 18 – The National Liberation Committee of Côte d'Ivoire is launched in Conakry, Guinea.
  • May 21Gypsy: A Musical Fable, starring Ethel Merman in her last new musical, opens on Broadway and runs for 702 performances
  • May 24 – British Empire Day is renamed Commonwealth Day.
  • May 28 – Two monkeys, Able and Miss Baker are the first living beings to successfully return to Earth from space aboard the flight Jupiter AM-18.


  • June 3Singapore becomes a self-governing crown colony of Britain with Lee Kuan Yew as Prime Minister.
  • June 5 – A new government of the State of Singapore is sworn in by Sir William Goode. Two former ministers are re-elected to the Legislative Assembly.
  • June 8 – The USS Barbero and United States Postal Service attempt the delivery of mail via Missile Mail.
  • June 9 – The USS George Washington is launched as the first submarine to carry ballistic missiles.
  • June 14
    • Disneyland Monorail System, the first daily operating monorail system in the Western Hemisphere, opens to the public in Anaheim, California.
    • A 3-front revolutionary invasion by air and sea takes place in the Dominican Republic, consisting of exiles aided by Fidel Castro and the Venezuelan government, whose objective is to overthrow dictator Rafael Leonidas Trujillo. Within a few days most are captured and executed. Only four are released by the government. Trujillo is killed less than two years later by men partly inspired by the deaths of the 1959 revolutionaries.
  • June 18 – The film The Nun's Story, based on the best-selling novel, is released. Audrey Hepburn stars as the title character; she later says that this is her favorite film role. The film is a box-office hit, and is nominated for several Oscars.
  • June 23
    • Sean Lemass becomes the third Taoiseach of Ireland.
    • Convicted Manhattan Project spy Klaus Fuchs is released after only nine years in a British prison and allowed to emigrate to Dresden, East Germany where he resumes a scientific career.
  • June 26
    • Elizabeth II (Queen of Canada) and U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower open the Saint Lawrence Seaway.
    • Darby O'Gill and the Little People, a film based on H.T. Kavanagh's short stories, is released in the U.S. by the Walt Disney Company after a world premiere in Ireland.
  • June 30 – Twenty-one students were killed and more than a hundred were injured when an American North American F-100 Super SabreF-100 jet crashed into Miamori Elementary School on the island of Okinawa. The pilot had ejected after the plane malfunctioned and struck the school.[3]


  • July 2Prince Albert of Belgium marries Italian Donna Paola Ruffo di Calabria.
  • July 4 – With the admission of Alaska as the 49th U.S. state earlier in the year, the 49-star flag of the United States debuts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
  • July 7 – At 14:28 UT Venus occults the star Regulus. The rare event (which will next occur on October 1, 2044) is used to determine the diameter of Venus and the structure of Venus' atmosphere.
  • July 14 Groups of Kurdish and communist militias rebelled in Kirkuk, Iraq against the central government. [4]
  • July 15 – A strike occurs against the United States' steel industry.
  • July 17 – The first skull of Australopithecus is discovered by Louis Leakey and his wife Mary Leakey in the Olduvai Gorge of Tanzania.
  • July 22Kumamoto University medical research group studying Minamata disease concludes that it is caused by mercury.
  • July 24 – At the opening of the American National Exhibition in Moscow, United States Vice President Richard Nixon and USSR Premier Nikita Khrushchev engage ine the "Kitchen Debate".
  • July 25 – The SR-N1 hovercraft crosses the English Channel from Calais to Dover in just over 2 hours, on the 50th anniversary of Louis Blériot's first crossing by heavier-than-air craft.


  • August 4Martial law is declared in Laos.
  • August 7
    • Explorer program: The United States launches Explorer 6 from the Atlantic Missile Range in Cape Canaveral, Florida.
    • United States The Roseburg Oregon Blast kills 14 and causes $12 million worth of damage.
  • August 8 – A flood in Taiwan kills 2,000.
  • August 14Explorer 6 sends the first picture of Earth from orbit.
  • August 15Cyprus gains independence.
  • August 17
    • The Hebgen Lake Earthquake in southwest Montana kills 28.
    • Columbia Records releases Miles Davis' groundbreaking album, Kind of Blue.
  • August 19 – The Central Treaty Organization (CENTO) is established.
  • August 21Hawaii is admitted as the 50th U.S. state.
  • August 24Cyprus joins the United Nations.
  • August 26 – The original Mini designed by Sir Alec Issigonis is launched.


  • September 14Luna 2 becomes the first man-made object to crash on the Moon.
  • September 17 – The first Navy Navigation Satellite System Transit 1A is launched but fails to reach orbit.
  • September 23 – The M/S Princess of Tasmania (Australia's first passenger RO/RO diesel ferry) makes its maiden voyage across the Bass Strait.
  • September 25Ceylon's prime minister S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike is assassinated.
  • September 26
    • Typhoon Vera hits central Honshū, Japan, killing an estimated 5,098, injuring another 38,921, and leaving 1,533,000 homeless. Most of the victims and damage are centered in the Nagoya area.
    • The first official large unit action of the Vietnam War took place when two companies of the ARVN 23d Division were ambushed by a well-organized Vietcong force of several hundred identified as the "2d Liberation Battalion".
  • September 30Soviet Union leader Nikita Khrushchev meets Mao Zedong in Beijing.
File:Luna 2 Soviet moon probe.jpg

September 13: Luna 2.


  • October 2Rod Serling's classic anthology series The Twilight Zone premieres on CBS.
  • October 7 – The U.S.S.R. probe Luna 3 sends back the first ever photos of the far side of the Moon.
  • October 12 – At the national APRA Congress in Peru, a group of leftist radicals is expelled from the party; they later form APRA Rebelde.
  • October 13 – The United States launches Explorer 7.
  • October 21 – In New York City, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (designed by Frank Lloyd Wright) opens to the public.
  • October 31 – Riots break out in the Belgian Congo.


  • November 1 – In Rwanda, Hutu politician Dominique Mbonyumutwa is beaten up by Tutsi forces, leading to a period of violence known as the wind of destruction.
  • November 2 – The first section of the M1 motorway in England opens between Hertfordshire, just north of London, and the border of Northamptonshire and Warwickshire. The motorway is set to be expanded over the next few years to provide an unbroken motorway link with London and Leeds. A full motorway network across Britain is also set to be developed over the coming decade and into the 1970s.
  • November 12 – The Warner Bros. religious epic The Miracle, very loosely based on the 1911 stage pantomime Das Mirakel, is released. It is a critical and financial bomb.
  • November 15 – The Clutter family of Holcomb, Kansas is brutally murdered, inspiring Truman Capote's In Cold Blood.
  • November 18MGM's widescreen, multimillion dollar, Technicolor version of Ben-Hur, starring Charlton Heston, is released and becomes the studio's greatest hit up to that time. It is critically acclaimed and eventually wins 11 Academy Awards – a record held until 1998, when 1997's Titanic becomes the first film to equal the record. To the present day, the 1959 Ben-Hur remains the last MGM film to win a Best Picture Oscar, though Doctor Zhivago, another MGM film, was nominated in 1965.
  • November 20 – The Declaration of the Rights of the Child is adopted by the United Nations.


  • December 1Cold WarAntarctic Treaty: 12 countries, including the United States and the Soviet Union, sign a landmark treaty, which sets aside Antarctica as a scientific preserve and bans military activity on that continent (the first arms control agreement established during the Cold War).
  • December 2Malpasset Dam in southern France collapses and water flows over the town of Frejus, killing 412.
  • December 8 – The Mona, a lifeboat based at Broughty Ferry in Scotland, capsizes during a rescue attempt, with the loss of 8 lives.
  • December 13 – Three years after its first telecast, MGM's The Wizard of Oz is shown on television for only the second time, but it gains an even larger viewing audience than its first television outing, spurring CBS to make it an annual tradition.
  • December 14Makarios III is selected the first president of Cyprus.

Date unknown[]

  • Pantyhose introduced by Glen Raven Mills.
  • The Workers World Party is founded by Sam Marcy.
  • The first known human with HIV dies in the Congo.[5]
  • The current (as of 2006) design of the Japanese 10 yen coin is put into circulation.
  • The Caspian Tiger becomes extinct in Iran.
  • The Henney Kilowatt goes on sale in the United States, becoming the first mass-produced electric car in almost three decades.
  • Erving Goffman publishes his seminal study in sociology, The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life.



  • January 1Azali Assoumani, President of the Comoros
  • January 4Yoshitomo Nara, Japanese artist
  • January 5Clancy Brown, American actor
  • January 6Andrew Johnson, English artist.
  • January 9
    • Rigoberta Menchú, Guatemalan writer, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize
    • Mark Martin, American NASCAR driver
  • January 12Per Gessle, Swedish singer-songwriter & Roxette guitarist
  • January 16Sade, Nigerian-born singer
  • January 17
    • Susanna Hoffs, American rock vocalist
    • Momoe Yamaguchi, Japanese singer
  • January 21
    • Paulo Miklos, Brazilian singer and actor
    • Alex McLeish, Birmingham City and ex-Scotland football manager
  • January 27Keith Olbermann, American news correspondent and sportscaster (Countdown)
  • January 29Mike Foligno, Canadian ice hockey player
  • January 31Kelly Moore, American race car driver


  • February 2Jari Tervo, Finnish author
  • February 3UliUli Fifita, Professional Wrestler aka(Haku/Meng)
  • February 4
    • Lawrence Taylor, American football player
    • Pamelyn Ferdin, former child actress & animal activist
  • February 6
    • Ken Nelson, English record producer
    • Pat Bullard, Canadian game show host, comedian and writer
  • February 10Dennis Gentry, American football player
  • February 14Renée Fleming, American soprano
  • February 16John McEnroe, American tennis player
  • February 18Jayne Atkinson, English-born American film, theatre and television actress
  • February 22Kyle MacLachlan, American actor
  • February 26Rolando Blackman, Panamanian basketball player


  • March 1Nick Griffin, British politician
  • March 4
    • Rick Ardon, Australian news presenter
    • Irina Strakhova, Russian race walker
  • March 6Tom Arnold, American actor and comedian
  • March 8
    • Lester Holt, American television journalist
    • Aidan Quinn, Irish/American actor
  • March 9Giovanni di Lorenzo, German-Italian journalist and talk show host
  • March 10Mike Wallace, American race car driver
  • March 11Dejan Stojanović, Serbian-American poet, writer, essayist, philosopher, businessman, and former journalist
  • March 15Harold Baines, American baseball player
  • March 16
    • Flavor Flav, American rapper
    • Jens Stoltenberg, Prime Minister of Norway
  • March 17
    • Danny Ainge, American basketball player, coach, and baseball player
    • Ken Lo, actor and member of the Jackie Chan Stunt Team
  • March 18
    • Luc Besson, French film producer, writer, and director
    • Irene Cara, American singer
  • March 20
    • Steve Borden, American wrestler
    • Steve McFadden, British actor
  • March 21Nobuo Uematsu, Japanese composer
  • March 22Matthew Modine, American actor
  • March 23Catherine Keener, American actress
  • March 29Barry Blanchard, Canadian mountaineer
  • March 30Andrew Bailey, Executive Director Banking and Chief Cashier at the Bank of England
  • March 31Markus Hediger, Swiss writer and translator


  • April 2Badou Zaki, Moroccan football player and manager
  • April 3David Hyde Pierce, American actor
  • April 10Brian Setzer, American rock guitarist and singer
  • April 11Ana María Polo, Cuban-born judge and television personality
  • April 15
    • Fruit Chan, Hong Kong film director
    • Emma Thompson, English actress
    • Thomas F. Wilson, American actor
  • April 16Alison Ramsay, Scottish field hockey player
  • April 17Sean Bean, British actor
  • April 20Clint Howard, American actor and producer
  • April 21Robert Smith, British rock musician (The Cure)
  • April 22
    • Ryan Stiles, American comedian
    • Terry Francona, American baseball player and manager
  • April 24Paula Yates, British television presenter (d. 2000)
  • April 25Tony Phillips, American baseball player
  • April 27Sheena Easton, Scottish singer
  • April 30Stephen Harper, Canadian politician and present Prime Minister (2006– )


  • May 2Alan Best, Canadian animation director and producer
  • May 3
    • Uma Bharati, Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh
    • Ben Elton, British comedian and writer
  • May 5
    • Steve Stevens, American guitarist
    • Peter Molyneux, British game programmer
    • Brian Williams, American news anchor
  • May 10Victoria Rowell, American actress
  • May 12Ving Rhames, American actor
  • May 14Patrick Bruel, French singer
  • May 15Andrew Eldritch (born Andrew Taylor), British singer/songwriter (The Sisters of Mercy).
  • May 17
    • Marcelo Loffreda, Argentine rugby player and coach
    • Jim Nantz, American sports announcer
  • May 19Nicole Brown Simpson, American ex-wife of O.J. Simpson and murder victim (d. 1994)
  • May 20Israel Kamakawiwo'ole, American singer (d. 1997)
  • May 21Brian Lenihan, Irish politician (d. 2011)
  • May 22Morrissey, British singer
  • May 24Pelle Lindbergh, Swedish-born hockey player (d. 1985)
  • May 27Katherine Lanpher, American journalist
  • May 29Rupert Everett, British actor


  • June 8Bernard White, Sri Lankan-born American actor, screenwriter and film director
  • June 9Miles O'Brien, American television news anchor, pilot
  • June 10
    • Eliot Spitzer, American politician and former governor of New York
    • Carlo Ancelotti, Italian football player and manager
  • June 11
    • Hugh Laurie, British actor and comedian
    • Magnum T.A., American professional wrestler
  • June 14Marcus Miller, American bassist
  • June 17Ulrike Richter, German swimmer
  • June 22
    • Wayne Federman, American comedian, actor, and author
    • Ed Viesturs, American mountaineer
  • June 26Mark McKinney, Canadian actor and comedian
  • June 28John Shelley, British illustrator
  • June 30Vincent D'Onofrio, American actor


  • July 3Julie Burchill, British journalist
  • July 6Richard Dacoury, French basketball player
  • July 7
    • Ben Linder, American engineer (d. 1987)
    • Barbara Krause, German swimmer
  • July 9
    • Jim Kerr, Scottish rock singer
    • Kevin Nash, American professional wrestler
  • July 11
    • Richie Sambora, American musician
    • Suzanne Vega, American singer
  • July 16Gary Anderson, American football player
  • July 17Margaret Becker, American Christian singer
  • July 18Mel Purcell, American tennis player
  • July 19Juan Jose Campanella, Argentinian filmmaker
  • July 26
    • Rick Bragg, American journalist
    • Kevin Spacey, American actor
  • July 27Hugh Green, American football player
  • July 29
    • Sanjay Dutt, Indian actor
    • Ruud Janssen, Dutch artist


  • August 3Koichi Tanaka, Japanese scientist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry
  • August 4Robbin Crosby, American rock guitarist (Ratt) (d. 2002)
  • August 5Pete Burns, British singer (Dead or Alive)
  • August 6Rajendra Singh Indian water conservationist, Magsaysay Award (2001)
  • August 8Christoph Theinert, German cellist and composer
  • August 10Rosanna Arquette, American actress
  • August 11
    • Gustavo Cerati, Argentinian singer
    • Yoshiaki Murakami, Japanese investor
  • August 13Danny Bonaduce, American actor and disc jockey
  • August 14
    • Marcia Gay Harden, American actress
    • Magic Johnson, American basketball player
  • August 15Scott Altman, American astronaut
  • August 17
    • Sakamoto Chika, Japanese voice actress and singer
    • Jonathan Franzen, American author
    • David Koresh, American spiritualist, leader of the Branch Davidian religious cult (d. 1993)
    • Brad Wellman, American baseball player
  • August 19Anthony Sowell, convicted serial killer and rapist
  • August 21Jim McMahon, American football player
  • August 25Sönke Wortmann, German film director
  • August 26Stan Van Gundy, American basketball coach
  • August 27Juan Fernando Cobo, Colombian artist
  • August 29
    • Rebecca De Mornay, American actress
    • Stephen Wolfram, British scientist
  • August 30Mark 'Jacko' Jackson, Australian rules footballer and actor
  • August 31Tony DeFranco, Canadian singer


  • September 1Kenny Mayne, American sportscaster
  • September 2Guy Laliberté, Canadian Cirque du Soleil founder
  • September 4
    • Kevin Harrington, Australian actor
    • Armin Kogler, Austrian ski jumper
  • September 8
    • Daler Nazarov, Tajik composer, singer, and actor
    • Saeko Shimazu, Japanese voice actress
  • September 14
    • Mary Crosby, American actress
    • Morten Harket, Norwegian rock singer (a-ha)
  • September 15Mike Reiss, American television comedy writer
  • September 17Charles Lawson, Irish actor
  • September 18
    • Kirk Fogg, American actor, game show host and singer (Legends of the Hidden Temple)
    • Sérgio Britto, Brazilian singer and keyboardist
  • September 21Dave Coulier, American actor and comedian
  • September 23Jason Alexander, American actor
  • September 28Dantes Tsitsi, Nauruan politician
  • September 29Benjamin Sehene, Rwandan writer
  • September 30Ettore Messina, Italian basketball coach


  • October 1
    • Youssou N'Dour, Senegalese singer
    • Brian P. Cleary, American humorist, author, poet
  • October 3
    • Fred Couples, American golfer
    • Greg Proops, American comedian
    • Jack Wagner, American actor
  • October 4Chris Lowe, British musician
  • October 7
    • Lourdes Flores, Peruvian politician
    • Simon Cowell, English music producer and television talent show judge
  • October 9Michael Pare, American actor
  • October 10Kirsty MacColl, British singer and songwriter (d. 2000)
  • October 13Marie Osmond, American singer
  • October 15
  • October 17Richard Roeper, American film critic
  • October 21Ken Watanabe, Japanese actor
  • October 22Arto Salminen, Finnish writer (d. 2005)
  • October 23
    • "Weird Al" Yankovic, American singer and parodist
    • Nancy Grace, American television host
  • October 25Christina Amphlett, Australian rock singer
  • October 26Evo Morales, President of Bolivia
  • October 27Rick Carlisle, American basketball coach
  • October 31Neal Stephenson, American writer


  • November 2Saïd Aouita, Moroccan athlete
  • November 5Bryan Adams, Canadian singer and photographer
  • November 7Billy Gillispie, American basketball coach
  • November 8Selçuk Yula, Turkish football player and top scorer
  • November 9Tony Slattery, British comedian and actor
  • November 10
    • Linda Cohn, American sports reporter
    • Mackenzie Phillips, American actress
    • Mike McCarthy, American football coach
  • November 14Paul McGann, British actor
  • November 17William R. Moses, American actor
  • November 18Jimmy Quinn, Irish footballer and football manager
  • November 19
    • Allison Janney, American actress
    • Jo Bonner, American U.S. Representative for Alabama's 1st congressional district
  • November 20Sean Young, American actress
  • November 23Dominique Dunne, American actress (d. 1982)
  • November 25Charles Kennedy, British politician
  • November 27Viktoria Mullova, Russian violinist
  • November 28Judd Nelson, American actor
  • November 29
    • Rahm Emanuel, American politician
    • Platon Lebedev, Russian executive
  • November 30Lorraine Kelly, British presenter and journalist


  • December 1
    • Billy Childish, English painter, writer and musician
    • Wally Lewis, Australian sport identity
  • December 4Christa Luding, German speed skater
  • December 6Satoru Iwata, Japanese president of Nintendo
  • December 13Johnny Whitaker, American actor
  • December 16
    • Alison LaPlaca, American actress
    • Steve Mattsson, American writer
  • December 19Waise Lee, Hong Kong actor
  • December 20
    • Stephen Chan Chi Wan, general manager of TVB
    • Sandra Cisneros, Mexican-born author
  • December 21Florence Griffith Joyner, American athlete (d. 1998)
  • December 22Bernd Schuster, German footballer and manager
  • December 24Keith Deller, English darts player
  • December 25Michael P. Anderson, American Astronaut (d. 2003)
  • December 27Gerina Dunwich, American author
  • December 30Tracey Ullman, English/American comedian and actress
  • December 31
    • Alfie Anido, Filipino actor (d. 1981)
    • Val Kilmer, American actor
    • Baron Waqa, Nauruan politician and composer

Date unknown[]

  • Jacki Randall, American artist



  • January 2William D. Francis, Australian botanist (b. 1889)
  • January 3Edwin Muir, Scottish poet, novelist and translator (b. 1887)
  • January 21
    • Cecil B. DeMille, American film director (b. 1881)
    • Carl Switzer, American actor (Our Gang) (b. 1927)
  • January 22Mike Hawthorn, English race car driver (b. 1929)
  • January 26MacGillivray Milne, United States Navy Captain, and the 27th Governor of American Samoa (b. 1882)
  • January 28Walter Beall, American baseball player (b. 1899)
  • February 1Frank Shannon, American actor (b. 1874)
  • February 3 – Killed in the crash of a private plane:
    • The Big Bopper (J.P. Richardson), American rock singer (b. 1930)
    • Buddy Holly, American rock singer (b. 1936)
    • Roger Peterson, pilot (b. 1937)
    • Ritchie Valens, American rock singer (b. 1941)
  • February 3Vincent Astor, American philanthropist (b. 1891)
  • February 4Una O'Connor, Irish actress (b. 1880)
  • February 7Nap Lajoie, American baseball player (b. 1874)
  • February 11Marshall Teague, American race car driver (b. 1922)
  • February 12George Antheil, American composer (b. 1900)
  • February 14Baby Dodds, American jazz musician (b. 1898)
  • February 15Owen Willans Richardson, British physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1879)
  • February 18Gago Coutinho, Portuguese aviation pioneer (b. 1869)
  • February 20Laurence Housman, English playwright and writer (b. 1865)
  • February 22Helen Parrish, American actress (b. 1924)
  • February 23Luis Palés Matos, Puerto Rican poet (b. 1898)
  • February 26
    • Princess Alexandra, Duchess of Fife, eldest grandchild of King Edward VII (b. 1891)
    • Selig Suskin, Russian-born Israeli agronomist and early Zionist (b. 1873)
  • February 28Maxwell Anderson, American screenwriter (b. 1888)
  • March 1Mack Gordon, American composer and lyricist (b. 1904)
  • March 2Eric Blore, English actor (b. 1887)
  • March 3Lou Costello, American actor and comedian (b. 1906)
  • March 4Maxie Long, American athlete (b. 1878)
  • March 6Fred Stone, American actor (b. 1873)
  • March 15Lester Young, American jazz saxophonist (b. 1909)
  • March 17Galaktion Tabidze, Georgian poet (b. 1891)
  • March 21Edwin Balmer, American science fiction and mystery writer (b. 1883)
  • March 25Billy Mayerl, English pianist and composer (b. 1902)
  • March 26Raymond Chandler, American-born novelist (b. 1888)
  • March 27Grant Withers, American actor (b. 1905)
  • March 29Barthélemy Boganda, first President of the Central African Republic (b. 1910)


  • April 6Leo Aryeh Mayer, Israeli professor and scholar of Islamic art (b. 1895)
  • April 8Mario di Bernardi, Italian aviator (b. 1893)
  • April 9Frank Lloyd Wright, American architect (b. 1867)
  • April 12James Gleason, American actor (b. 1882)
  • April 18Irving Cummings, American actor (b. 1888)
  • May 4William S. Pye, American admiral (b. 1880)
  • May 5Carlos Saavedra Lamas, Argentine politician, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (b. 1878)
  • May 14Sidney Bechet, American musician (b. 1897)
  • May 16Elisha Scott, Irish footballer (b. 1894)
  • May 18
    • Apsley Cherry-Garrard, Antarctic explorer (b. 1886)
    • Enrique Guaita, Argentinian footballer (b. 1910)
  • May 24John Foster Dulles, United States Secretary of State (b. 1888)
  • May 30Raúl Scalabrini Ortiz, Argentinian journalist (b. 1898)
  • June 4Charles Vidor, American director (b. 1900)
  • June 8Pietro Canonica, sculptor (b. 1869)
  • June 9Adolf Otto Reinhold Windaus, German chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1876)
  • June 16George Reeves, American TV actor (b. 1914)
  • June 18Ethel Barrymore, American stage & screen actress (b. 1879)
  • June 20Hitoshi Ashida, Prime Minister of Japan 1948 (b. 1887)
  • June 23Boris Vian, French writer, poet, singer, and musician (b. 1920)
  • June 25Charles Starkweather, American spree killer (b. 1938)


  • July 6George Grosz, German artist (b. 1893)
  • July 9Ferenc Talányi, Slovene writer, partisan and painter (b. 1883)
  • July 11Charlie Parker, English cricketer (b. 1882)
  • July 15Ernest Bloch, Swiss composer (b. 1880)
  • July 17Billie Holiday, American singer (b. 1915)
  • July 25
    • King Mutara III of Rwanda (b. c.1912)
    • Yitzhak HaLevi Herzog, Polish-born Chief Rabbi of Ireland and of Israel (b. 1888)
  • August 5Edgar Guest, English poet (b. 1881)
  • August 6Preston Sturges, American film director and writer (b. 1898)
  • August 15Blind Willie McTell, American singer (b. 1901)
  • August 16
    • Benny Fields, American singer (b. 1894)
    • William Halsey, Jr., American admiral (b. 1882)
    • Wanda Landowska, Polish harpsichordist (b. 1879)
  • August 19
    • Claude Grahame-White, British aviation pioneer (b. 1879)
    • Jacob Epstein, American-born sculptor (b. 1880)
  • August 28Bohuslav Martinů, Czech composer (b. 1890)
  • September 1Jack Norworth, American singer and songwriter (b. 1879)
  • September 6
    • Edmund Gwenn, English actor (b. 1877)
    • Kay Kendall, English actress(b. 1926)
  • September 7Maurice Duplessis, Premier of Quebec (b. 1890)
  • September 11Paul Douglas, American actor (b. 1907)
  • September 13Gilbert Adrian, American costume designer (b. 1903)
  • September 14Wayne Morris, American actor (b. 1914)
  • September 17Jack Llewelyn Davies, one of the 'Lost Boys' for the Peter Pan book (b. 1894)
  • September 25
    • Solomon Bandaranaike, prime minister of Ceylon (b. 1899)
    • Helen Broderick, American actress (b. 1891)
    • Gerard Hoffnung, German-born English humorist (b. 1925)
  • September 28
    • Rudolf Caracciola, German race car driver (b. 1901)
    • Vinnie Richards, American tennis player (b. 1903)
  • September 30Taylor Holmes, American actor (b. 1878)


Nobel Prizes[]

  • PhysicsEmilio Gino Segrè, Owen Chamberlain
  • ChemistryJaroslav Heyrovský
  • Physiology or MedicineSevero Ochoa, Arthur Kornberg
  • LiteratureSalvatore Quasimodo
  • PeacePhilip John Noel-Baker


  1. ^ Fantasia had also used a multi-speaker stereophonic sound system, but it was primitive compared to the one used in Sleeping Beauty.
  2. ^ "Three Rescue Vessels Reach Ship-Iceberg Collision Scene". Tribune (Oakland): p. 1. 1959-01-31. 
  3. ^ "21 Die as Jet Hits School On Okinawa", Oakland Tribune, June 30, 1959, p1
  4. ^ "Iraq revolt Is Stil Reported Raging". St. Petersburg Times (St. Petersburg, FL): p. A1. July 21, 1959. Retrieved June 27, 2012. 
  5. ^ "An African HIV-1 sequence from 1959 and implications for the origin of the epidemic". Nature 391 (6667): 594–7. DOI:10.1038/35400. PMID 9468138. 

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at 1959. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.

People of the year 1959 at Familypedia

59 people were born in 1959

 FatherMotherAge mother at birth
Araceli Adam-Salvatierra (1959)
Florina Angheliu (1959)
Rosanna Lisa Arquette (1959)Lewis Michael Arquette (1935-2001)Mardiningsih Olivia Nowak (1939-1997)
Venturina Arrivabene-Valenti-Gonzaga (1959-)Leonardo Arrivabene-Valenti-Gonzaga (1904-1971)Maria delle Grazie Brandolini d'Adda (1923-2018)
Audrey Baginski (1959-2009)Charles Baginski (1929-2005)Dawn Brik (1923-2000)
Haja Bangura (1959)
Margaret Batjer (1959)Samuel Batjer (1930-1999)Janet Smet (1929-2003)
Collette Marie Bennett (1959)Glenn Bennett (1926-1999)Genya I Benaderet (1929-1996)
Mike Boyd (1959)Kenneth Boyd (1922-2012)Alexandra Baumgartin (1920-2008)
Francesco Bramante (1959-)Antonio Bramante (1922-1981)Clementina Zileri dal Verme degli Obbizi (1930-)
Sherry Brewer (1959)Anthony Brewer (1927-1998)Stephanie Bell (1932-2003)
Lina Broers (1959-)Kees Broers (bef1959-)Gre Appelman (bef1959-)
Dorothy Walker Bush (1959)George Herbert Walker Bush (1924-2018)Barbara Pierce (1925-2018)
Mary Elizabeth Conklin (1959-)Donald Blodgett Conklin (bef1959-)Helen Elizabeth Gleason (bef1959-)
Rick Loren DenisonRay Laville DenisonBette Irene Burgess (1934-)
... further results

23 children were born to the 29 women born in 1959

258 people died in 1959

 FatherMotherAge at death
Roy Christopher Abercrombie (1888-1959)Frederick Abercrombie (1836-1916)Annie Utting (c1850-)71
Vivian Adair (1914-1959)William Henry Adair (1883-1949)Esther Ann Snyder (1889-1970)
Albert Adams (1880-1959)George William Adams (1843-1913)Mary Ann Brown (1849-1916)
Alice Pearl Airey (c1875-c1959)George John Taylor Airey (1840-c1905)Emma Lord (1840-c1918)
Stephen Alfonesca (1908-1959)Peter Alfonesca (1880-1952)Alexandra Baade (1882-1953)
George Underwood Alley (1868-1959)George Underwood Alley (1840-1932)Frances Parnell Wernick (1841-1914)
Marissa Amato (1900-1959)Alfredo Amato (1875-1930)Javiera Cruz (1878-1940)
Christina Anderson (1872-1959)Swen Peter Anderson (1827-1881)Sissa Andersdotter (1831-1919)
Thomas Henry Anlezark (1866-1959)Charles Henry Anlezark (1844-1918)Rachel Harrison (1847-1872)
Arthur Lawrence Robinson Archer (1900-1959)James Lawrence Archer (1887-1941)Catherine Maud Robinson (1880-1966)
Samuel Vincent Howard Ardern (1890-1959)Vincent West Ardern (1866-1937)Harriet Ada Earl (1866-1937)
Charles Ashman (1890-1959)
William Vincent Astor (1891-1959)John Jacob Astor (1864-1912)Ava Lowle Willing (1868-1958)
Pierre Auger (1876-1959)
David Aumann (1899-1959)
... further results

8398 people lived in 1959

Lady Irina Bud de BudfalvaLord János Bud de BudfalvaBaroness Anna Tisza de Borosjenő et Szeged
Tsunekichi Yonogi (1905-2015)Shigeru Yonogi (1876-1940)Miyoko Yonogi (1882-1950)
Alfred Alonzo Aaron (1883-1969)Thomas Aaron (1850-1932)Sarah Dobbs (1858-1948)
Sadie Aaronson (1908-1970)Jack Aaronson (1880-1927)Laura Barenboim (1882-1932)
Rebecca Ababio (1926-1998)
Isabella Abadiano (1930-2003)
Annabelle Abargil (1922-2000)
Jennifer Abaya (1918-1996)
Alysson Abberton (1935-2012)
Charles Greeley Abbot (1872-1973)Harris Abbot (1812-1884)Caroline Ann Greeley (1836-1911)
Janet Abbot (1910-1970)
Jordan Abbot (1876-1960)
Julia Abbot (1900-1979)Jordan Abbot (1876-1960)Helen O'Malley (1879-1959)
Anthony Abbott (1911-1993)
Joseph Palmer Abbott (1891-1965)Joseph Palmer Abbott (1842-1901)Edith Solomon (1854-1935)
... further results

Events of the year 1959 at Familypedia

60 people were married in 1959.

 Joined with
Michael Allen (1931-2006)Janet Brickell (1937-1999)
Carlos Hipólito Assumma (1928-1997)Emma Azucena Galeano (1937)
James Best (1926-2015)Jobee Ayers + Dorothy Collier
Patricia Claire Blume (1931-)Rodney Stephen Steiger (1925-2002)+Hillard Elkins (1929-2010)+Philip Milton Roth (1933-)
Reggie Boyce (1933-1986)Mary Morgan (1932-2006)
Janet Brickell (1937-1999)Michael Allen (1931-2006)
Robert Borgfeldt Brown (1928-1967)Sharon Mae Disney (1936-1993)
Richard Austen Butler (1902-1982)Sydney Elizabeth Courtauld (1902-1954)+Mollie Montgomerie (1907-2009)
Francis F. Case (1902-1982)Fern Bessie Terry (1909-1959)+Rose Marie Conti (1921-2004)
Nicholas Joseph Clooney (1934-)Nina Warren (1939)
Rose Marie Conti (1921-2004)Carl A. Johnson (1905-1968)+Francis F. Case (1902-1982)
Mavis Clara Jean Crouch (1911-1976)Albert Augustine Nosworthy (1899-1955)+Edwin Field (1906-1975)
Halit Culun (1934-1977)Nimet Culun (c1938-)
Sharon Mae Disney (1936-1993)Robert Borgfeldt Brown (1928-1967)+William S. Lund
Hans Albert Einstein (1904-1973)Frieda Knecht (-1958)+Elizabeth Roboz (1904-1995)
... further results

There were 0 military battles in 1959.

0.0070254822576804 0.79310344827586 0.030721600381043