A Year In History: 1957

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This Year in History:


Discover what happened in this year with HISTORY’s summaries of major events, anniversaries, famous births and notable deaths.

January 3

Dalip Singh Saund assumes office as the first Asian American and the first Sikh elected to Congress

On January 3, 1957 Dalip Singh Saund is sworn in as the congressional representative of California’s 29th district. Known to many as “Judge,” and also nicknamed “the Peacemaker,” he is the first Asian, first Indian American, first Sikh and first follower of a non-Abrahamic religion to be elected to the United States Congress. Born and […]

February 10

Laura Ingalls Wilder, chronicler of American frontier life, dies

On February 10, 1957, Laura Ingalls Wilder, author of the best-selling Little House series of children’s novels based on her childhood on the American frontier, dies at age 90 in Mansfield, Missouri. Laura Elizabeth Ingalls was born in a log cabin near Pepin, Wisconsin, on February 7, 1867, the second of Charles and Caroline Quiner […]

February 14

Noam Chomsky publishes his groundbreaking book “Syntactic Structures”

Noam Chomsky presents his groundbreaking theory about human speech with the publishing of Syntactic Structures on February 14, 1957 (although some scholars debate the exact date). The book launches his career as the father of modern linguistics and helps to trigger the “cognitive revolution” in psychology and other fields.  Syntactic Structures was Noam Chomsky’s first […]

March 8

Egypt begins to reopen the Suez Canal after crisis

Following Israel’s withdrawal from occupied Egyptian territory, the Suez Canal is reopened to international traffic. However, the canal was so littered with wreckage from the Suez Crisis that it took weeks of cleanup by Egyptian and United Nations workers before larger ships could navigate the waterway. The Suez Canal, which connects the Mediterranean and Red […]

March 25

Europe’s Common Market founded in major step toward economic unity

On March 25, 1957, France, West Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg sign a treaty in Rome establishing the European Economic Community (EEC), also known as the Common Market. The EEC, which came into operation in January 1958, was a major step in Europe’s movement toward economic and political union. By 1950, it was […]

March 25

U.S. Customs seizes copies of Allen Ginsberg’s “Howl”

The U.S. Customs Department confiscates 520 copies of Allen Ginsberg’s book Howl, which had been printed in England. Officials alleged that the book was obscene. City Lights, a publishing company and bookstore in San Francisco owned by poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti, proceeded to publish the book in the fall of 1956. The publication led to Ferlinghetti’s […]

April 22

John Irvin Kennedy plays for Phillies, fully integrating National League

On April 22, 1957, John Irvin Kennedy becomes the first African American player on the Philadelphia Phillies, fully integrating the National League 10 years after Jackie Robinson broke Major League Baseball’s color barrier. In the eighth inning of a 5-1 loss to the Brooklyn Dodgers at Roosevelt Stadium in Jersey City, N.J., Kennedy enters the […]

May 12

Ferrari race car crashes at Mille Miglia race, killing 11

On May 12, 1957, during the famed Mille Miglia motorsport endurance race in Italy, Ferrari driver Alfonso de Portago dies in a horrific crash. The accident, which killed the 28-year-old Spaniard, his copilot Edmund Nelson and nine spectators, leads to the discontinuation of the Mille Miglia, an annual race established in 1927. Alfonso de Portago […]

July 6

John Lennon meets Paul McCartney for the first time

On July 6, 1957, two Liverpool music-minded teenagers named John Lennon and Paul McCartney meet for the first time in a church auditorium. It would be the start of one of the most fruitful musical partnerships in history. Seven years later, they—along with George Harrison and Ringo Starr—would become worldwide phenomenon known as the Beatles. […]

July 12

Eisenhower takes first presidential ride in a helicopter

On July 12, 1957, Dwight D. Eisenhower becomes the first president to ride in the newest advance in aviation technology: the helicopter. Although experimental military helicopters had been tested since 1947, it was not until 10 years later that a president considered using the new machine for short, official trips to and from the White […]