Screenshot 2020 04 24 at 9.16.04 pm

1955–1975

  • Deflation

  • Minimum Wage Increases

    The minimum wage is increased from 75 cents to $1 per hour.
  • Jonas Salk Develops Polio Vaccine

    Jonas Salk Develops Polio Vaccine
    Soon after Salk's vaccine was licensed in 1955, children's vaccination campaigns were launched. The results were amazing: 60 – 70% prevention. The vaccination program saved more than $5 in direct costs and approximately $11 in additional costs to society. The annual number of polio cases fell from 35,000 in 1953 to 5,600 by 1957. By 1961 only 161 cases were recorded in the United States.
  • Disneyland

    Disneyland
    Disneyland, the brainchild of Walt Disney, whose father had worked at previous world's fairs and inspired his son to build the iconic Magic Castle and other exhibits opens in Anaheim, California, with the backing of the new television network, ABC. Disneyland California remains today as one of the greatest theme park capitals of the world and some say it is second only to his second park built some years later on the other side of the country, Disney World Florida.
  • Stock Market Suffers

    As a result of the President's heart attack, the stock market suffers. The market that had seen stocks triple on Wall Street in the previous seven years went into a tailspin, the Dow Jones plummeting over 6 percent and losing $14 billion in value by the end of what would prove to be the worst single day for markets since the start of World War II.
  • US Installs Diem as Leader of South Vietnam

    US Installs Diem as Leader of South Vietnam
    Diem was viewed by the U.S. officials as the best hope for a leader for an independent, democratic, South Vietnam. This affected the economy because since South Vietnam was no longer a communist nation like the North, we were able to trade with them. Throughout this period, the level of U.S. aid and political support increased.
  • Rosa Parks Incites Montgomery Bus Boycott

    Rosa Parks Incites Montgomery Bus Boycott
    It was the first example of the economic clout that the community had because eventually, the bus company had to desegregate their buses or face serious financial difficulties as very many black Americans used the buses. Without their economic input via fares, the bus company of Montgomery faced probable bankruptcy.
  • AFL and CIO Merge in America's Largest Labor Union

    The American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations merge to form the AFL-CIO, boasting a membership of fifteen million. With this, an organization of workers came together to achieve common goals such as protecting the integrity of its trade, improving safety standards, achieving higher pay and benefits such as health care and retirement, increasing the number of employees an employer assigns to complete the work, and better working conditions.
  • Interstate Highway Act

    Interstate Highway Act
    The government gave the “okay” to build an interstate. From this people were allowed to transport goods quicker across the country and that reduced cost of the overall price. If they got it there faster, it was less costly to the consumer. For example, the raw materials from farmers made it to market without spoiling and gave the consumer a greater life on the produce.
  • Eisenhower Doctrine

    Eisenhower Doctrine
    Under the Eisenhower Doctrine, a country could request American economic assistance/aid from U.S. military forces if it was being threatened by armed aggression from another state. This kept countries economically independent and free from communism.
  • Civil Rights Act of 1957

    The goal of the 1957 Civil Rights Act was to ensure that all Americans could exercise their right to vote. The U.S. Congress approves the first civil rights bill since reconstruction with the additional protection of voting rights. This affected the economy because it was another step in the Civil Rights Movement.
  • Russians Launch Sputnik; "Space Race" Begins

    Russians Launch Sputnik; "Space Race" Begins
    Sputnik was the first artificial Earth satellite. This affected the U.S. economy because there was a new emphasis on science and technology in American schools.
  • First U.S. Attempt to Launch

    First U.S. Attempt to Launch
    The first attempt by the United States to launch a satellite into space fails when it explodes on the launchpad. This was important to the economy because it showed that we were trying to win the space race over the Russians.
  • Recession

  • Explorer I

    Explorer I, the first U.S. space satellite, is launched by the Army at Cape Canaveral. It would discover the Van Allen radiation belt. We were one step closer in the space race.
  • Business Expansion Begins

  • NASA Formed

    NASA Formed
    NASA created many jobs for the economy. NASA also selects the first seven military pilots to become the Mercury Seven, the first astronauts of the United States.
  • National Defense Education Act

    This act funded education institutions at all levels. America was competing with the Soviet Union in the areas of science & technology. This affected the economy because they were making breakthroughs. It was important because it encouraged students to continue their education after high school.
  • Cuban Revolution

    Cuban Revolution
    During the Cuban Revolution, it transformed the relationship between Cuba and the United States. Castro took over Cuba and from that, the U.S. lost trade with them.
  • New Tax Rate

    Eisenhower recommends the continuation of a 52 percent tax rate on corporate profits.
  • Alaska and Hawaii Become States

    The United States is growing. Also, Alaska's economy is based on the oil industry. Tourism is the second industry in the state. It brings about a billion dollars to the state economy. Travel and tourism are super important in Hawaii. They have tropical weather and beaches that attract tourists from all over.
  • Get America Moving Again

    John F. Kennedy’s campaign promised to “Get America moving again” which he referred to as the American economy. He wanted economic growth at an annual 4-6% and unemployment at 4%.
    This showed that the government wanted to move forward and improve the statistics from previous years. He also wanted to cut taxes and pressed for medical help for the elderly.
  • Tax Incentives

    "The tax system must be adequate to meet our public needs. It must meet them fairly, calling on each of us to contribute his proper share to the cost of government. It must encourage the efficient use of our resources. It must promote economic stability and stimulate economic growth. Economic expansion, in turn, creates a growing tax base, thus increasing revenue and thereby enabling us to meet more readily our public needs, as well as our needs as private individuals."
  • The Other America

    Michael Harrington published "The Other America" which exposed the poverty of the United States. This then exposed the issues that the American economy was facing and showed the people what was actually happening.
  • Stock Market

    The stock market was falling and unemployment still hovered at 7%. This showed instability in America’s economy. It was thought that there was a rapid growth of loans and bank credit.
  • President Kennedy Assassination

    President Kennedy Assassination
  • U.S. in Vietnam War

    U.S. in Vietnam War
    The Vietnam War was responsible for a heavy strain on the financial resources of the US economy.
  • Creation of Medicare and Medicaid

  • The Great Inflation

    The great inflation begins - a period of time in which the inflation is unusually high. The rise of inflation is what allowed for excessive growth in the supply of money.
  • Employment and Corporate Profits

    5.5 million more Americans were employed and corporate profits grew more than 70%.
  • Minimum Wage Increases

    Minimum Wage Increases from 1.25 to 1.60 dollars an hour.
  • MLKJ Assassination

    MLKJ Assassination
    Martain Luther King Jr. was always working to form a coalition of poor Americans–black and white alike–to address such issues as poverty and unemployment. Ames Earl Ray ended up shooting Martin Luther King Jr. This was important because many blacks saw King’s assassination as a rejection of their vigorous pursuit of equality through the nonviolent resistance he had championed.
  • The Civil Rights Act of 1968 is Signed

    The Civil Rights Act of 1968 was signed into law by President Johnson. This provided for equal housing opportunities regardless of race, religion, or national origin and made it a federal crime to force or by the threat of force, injure, intimidate, or interfere with anyone, by reason of their race, color, religion, or national origin.
  • U.S. Spending on War

    The US was spending $22 billion a year on the Vietnam war, a full 12% of the total federal budget.
  • Man on the Moon

    Man on the Moon
    Mission commander Neil Armstrong and pilot Buzz Aldrin land on the moon. The U.S. economy spends a lot of money to make this happen.
  • 1973–1974

    The United States is affected by the Arab Oil Embargo; gasoline prices skyrocket as supplies of gasoline and heating oil are in short supply. In response, Daylight Savings Time is started in January (nearly four months earlier than usual), and the national speed limit is lowered to 55 mph.
  • PBS

    The Public Broadcasting System (PBS) begins operations, succeeding National Educational Television. PBS has a big impact on the economy because it opened a lot of jobs. Also, there was a lot of merchandise sold associated with the shows that were broadcasted on PBS. This puts manufacturers to work.
  • 26th Amendment

    The 26th Amendment is ratified, allowing 18-year-olds to vote. Not all people believed that this amendment had a positive effect on our nation. In fact, some people thought (and still think) that it is to blame for major governmental and economic collapse due to the under-educated voting.
  • Nixon Visits China

    Nixon Visits China
    President Richard Nixon visits China, an important step in formally normalizing relations between the United States and China. This helped open trade for the economy.
  • Trans-Alaska Pipeline

    Trans-Alaska Pipeline
    The Trans-Alaska Pipeline is 800 miles of pipeline that conveys oil from Prudhoe Bay to Valdez, Alaska. The pipeline was built after the 1973 oil crisis that caused a sharp rise in oil prices in the United States. This rise made the exploration of the Prudhoe Bay oil field economically feasible. In the end, it cost the economy billions.
  • Microsoft

    Bill Gates founded Microsoft, which in a time dominated the home computer operating system market.