Here are a few memory joggers from back then.

  • Elvis Presley introduced his hit single, ‘Hound Dog’.
  • Dwight Eisenhower is president and Richard Nixon is vice president of the United States.
  • Fidel Castro and other revolutionaries land in Cuba.
  • The Virginia legislature votes to close any school that enrolls both black and white students.
  • Israel invades the Sinai Peninsula.
  • The ‘I Love Lucy’ and ‘The Ed Sullivan Show’ are the most popular TV programs.
  • The first American of record dies in Vietnam.
  • Average yearly income: $4,450; Cost of a new home: $11.700; Cost of a new car: $2,050; Federal minimum wage: $1.00/hour.
  • The first transatlantic telephone cable goes into operation.

If you don’t recall being present then, play along anyway to come on this journey with the rest of us. Imagine what your parents were like. Where are you living in 1956? What’s it like to be there? Stay in that place until your images are clear and alive.

Next scene: You’re walking along and todays front page wraps around your leg. You fight the wind to pull it off and read the huge red headline,  ‘A Barack Obama wants to be your next U.S. President’.

Would your parents vote for him in 1956?

Would you vote for him then?

Will you vote for him now?

Why . . . ?

*****