Life in 1962 – Popular Culture Facts


This page offers an insight into life in 1962 and includes World news, political leaders, prices, population statistics and information about the popular culture of 1962.

The year 1962 began on a Monday. It was not a leap year.

1962 In The News

Life in 1962 The Beatles First Single released
The Beatles released their first single

14th May – Juan Carlos of Spain married Princes Sophia of Greece

5th August– Marilyn Monroe was found dead from an overdose

5th October– The Beatles released their first single: Love Me Do.

5th October– The first James Bond film: Dr No was released

14th October– The Cuban Missile Crisis began


Life in 1962 – Prices

dollar bill

Average house:
UK – £2,552; USA – $12,500
Petrol per gallon:
UK – £0.23; USA – $0.31
Loaf of Bread:
UK – £0.05; USA – $0.21
Gold per ounce:
UK – $35.23, USA – $35.5

Life in 1962 – Population

World Map

World: – 3,139,723,516
Australia: – 10,794,968
Canada: – 18,985,848
China: – 653,302,080
India: – 463,819,936
Soviet Union: 122,877,560
United States: – 185,771,008
United Kingdom: – 53,292,000


Life in 1962 – Music

Popular MusicBest Selling Single:
UK – I Remember You – Frank Ifield
USA – Stranger on the Shore – Acker Bilk
AUS – Working For The Man/Leah – Roy Orbison
CAN – The Twist – Chubby Checker

Best Selling Album:
UK – West Side Story – Original Soundtrack
USA – West Side Story – Original Soundtrack
AUS – No data – Charts began 1965
CAN – No data – Charts began 1968

Popular Artists:
Beach Boys, Chubby Checker, Elvis Presley, Four Seasons, Isley Brothers, Little Eva, Ray Charles, Roy Orbison, Sam Cooke


On the Bookshelves

BookshelfBooks Published in 1962:

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – Ken Kesey
One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich – Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? – Edward Albee
A Clockwork Orange – Anthony Burgess
Something Wicked This Way Comes – Ray Bradbury

At the Movies

Movies Films1962 Top Movies (USA box office figures):

1. The Longest Day – $17.6 million
2. Lawrence of Arabia – $16.7 million
3. The Music Man – $8.1 million
4. That Touch of Mink – $7.9 million
5. Mutiny on the Bounty – $7.4 million


Life in 1962 – World Leaders

John F Kennedy 1962
President John F Kennedy

Australia Prime Minister – Robert Menzies 
Canada Prime Minister – John Diefenbaker
China President – Liu Shaoqi
India Prime Minister – Jawaharlal Nehru
Soviet Union Leader – Nikita Khruschchev
United States President – John F Kennedy
United Kingdom Prime Minister – Harold MacMillan


Born in 1962

Jim Carrey born 1962
Jim Carrey

17th January – Jim Carrey (Actor)
6th February – Axl Rose (Singer)
11th February – Sheryl Crow (Singer)
2nd March – Jon Bon Jovi (Musician)
3rd July – Tom Cruise (Actor)
1st September – Ruud Gullit (Footballer)

Died in 1962

Hugh Dalton died 1962
Hugh Dalton

13th February – Hugh Dalton (British Politician)
27th March- Augusta Savage (Sculptor)
7th November- Eleanor Roosevelt (First Lady)
28th November – Wilhelmina of the Netherlands (Royal Family)
15th December – Charles Laughton (Actor)


1962 Sport Highlights

Rod Laver 1962
Rod Laver Tennis Champion

Football – Tottenham Hotspur won the FA Cup
Cycling – Jacques Anquetil (FRA) won the Tour de France
Tennis – Rod Laver won all four grand slam tournaments
Golf – British Open won by Arnold Palmer; US Open won by Jack Nicklaus
Baseball – New York Yankees won the World Series
Horse Racing – Mandarin won the Cheltenham Gold Cup; Decidedly won the Kentucky Derby


Christmas Wishlist

Etch a Sketch

Barbie and Ken Dolls
Chatty Cathy
Etch A Sketch
Hot Wheels
Flintstones Pedal Car

What Was New?

Audio Cassette

Audio Cassette Tape invented
Fibre-Tipped Pens developed
Washer-Dryer developed
Telstar Satellite launched
Spacewar was the first Computer Game



First published Jun 2020; updated and republished Mar 24 2022 @ 10:49 am – Updated – Mar 30, 2022 @ 12:13 pm