Born in 1961? So Were Princess Diana and Six Flags

What Happened The Year You Were Born? 1961

If you were born in 1961, you were born in the same year as cordless power tools, electric toothbrushes, Six Flags, the rise of Legos, and more. Car sales decline for the first time, a recession starts, and many people start building fallout shelters in case of nuclear war.

Interesting Statistics from 1961

  • U.S. population: 183.69 million
  • Worldwide population: 4.38 billion
  • Life expectancy: 70.2 years
  • Price of gas: 27 cents per gallon
  • Price of a new house: $12,500
  • Annual income: $5,315

Top News in 1961

If You Were Born in 1961, Your Parents Witnessed These Historic Events

  • The Freedom Riders begin riding public transportation to test if they’re truly integrated.
  • The first manned spaceflight occurs on the Soviet Union’s Vostok 1. The U.S. soon follows.
  • President Kennedy announces his goal to get a man on the moon by decade’s end.
  • The “Tsar Bomba,” the largest nuclear bomb to date, is tested.
  • The World Wildlife Fund is established.
  • U.S. railways end segregation.
  • The 23rd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is ratified.
  • Five people involved with the Portland Spy Ring are arrested and sent to prison for espionage.

1961 Pop Culture


  • 1961 World Series: New York Yankees defeat Cincinnati Reds 4-1.
  • 1961 NFL Championship: Green Bay Packers defeat New York Giants 37–0.
  • 1961 NBA Championship: Boston Celtics defeat St. Louis Hawks 4-1.
  • 1961 Stanley Cup: Chicago Black Hawks defeat Detroit Red Wings 4-2.


  • Top-grossing movies in 1961: “West Side Story,” “The Guns of Navarone,” “El Cid”
  • Top singles in 1961: “Tossin’ and Turnin,” “I Fall to Pieces,” “Michael”
  • Top books in 1961: “The Agony and the Ecstasy,” “The New English Bible: The New Testament,” “Catch-22,” “Where the Red Fern Grows”

Who Else Was Born in 1961?

  • Barack Obama
  • Princess Diana
  • Ralph Macchio
  • Billy Ray Cyrus
  • George Clooney
  • Eddie Murphy
  • Carole Baskin
  • George Lopez

Who Died in 1961?

  • Sir Thomas Beecham
  • Ty Cobb
  • Carl Jung
  • Chico Marx