1977 has always fascinated me because it’s my birth year. I did some digging on the internet to find out what happened in this year and I found some really interesting facts.
Fact is, some good things and some bad things happened in this year. I trust that you’ll find my list of events interesting.
Here are 20 Notable Events in 1977:
1. There was a new US president in the Oval Office
Jimmy Carter was inaugurated as the 39th President of the United States in this year.
2. Fleetwood Mac released Rumours in this year
The now legendary album has sold over 40 million copies to date.
3. There was plane crash in the Canary Islands in 1977
On the 27th of March of this year one of the World’s Worst Air Disasters in history occurred. Two jumbo jets collided on the airport runway killing 583 people.
4. Two Personal Computers were introduced in 1977
Yes folks, the Apple II and Commodore PET personal computers were first sold in this year.
5. Atari launched the legendary 2600 gaming system
It was sold for $199 when it was released. The Atari 2600 had 128 Bytes RAM. +/- 30 million units were sold between 1977 and 1982.
6. Elvis Presley performed his last concert in this year
The last Elvis Presley concert happened on the 26th of June 1977. He died in Memphis, Tenessee in the US on the 16th of August 1977. 75,000 fans lined the streets of Memphis for this funeral.
7. David Berkowitz was arrested in this year
This serial killer was more commonly known as the “Son of Sam”. He killed 6 people and wounded 7 over a period of one year in New York City.
8. NASA launched 2 legendary spacecraft
The Voyager 1 unmanned spacecraft (which later did flybys of Jupiter and Saturn was launched. The Voyager 2 unmanned spacecraft was also launched. Voyager 2 did flybys of Jupiter (in 1979), Saturn (in 1981), Uranus (in 1986) and Neptune (in 1989).
9. Steve Biko was killed in 1977
The South African anti-apartheid activist died in police custody after being arrested under the Terrorism Act at a roadblock.
10. Pele retired from football
This Brazilian player was considered by some as the best soccer player of all time.
11. France stopped using the guilotine as an execution method
The last execution by guillotine was carried out in this year. Convicted murderer Hamida Djandoubi became the last person to meet his end by the “National Razor”.
12. The Clash released their debut album
Their self-titled debut album peaked at number 12 on the UK charts. The album was produced by Mickey Foote.
13. James Earl Ray escaped from prison
Ray was jailed for the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. He escaped from Brushy Mountain State Prison in Petros, Tennessee but was recaptured 3 days later in this year.
14. New York City blacked out for 25 hours
The infamous blackout occured on the 13th of July 1977 and caused looting and other disorders in the city.
15. Led Zeppelin played their last US concert
The concert was held in July 1977 in Oakland, California.
16. The first Star Wars movie was released
Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope was released on the 25th of May 1977 in the US. To date the film has raked in over $775 million at the box office. The film was made on a budget of $11 million.
17. It was a violent year in South Africa
There were several bombings in South Africa on these dates
- 24 February 1977 – Daveyton Police Station on the East Rand.
- 7 March 1977 – Pretoria restaurant
- 25 November 1977 – Carlton Centre (the then tallest building in Africa) in Johannesburg
- 30 November 1977 – On a Pretoria bound train
- 14 December 1977 – Benoni Railway Station on the East Rand.
An uexploded bomb was also found at a supermarket store in Roodepoort on the 22nd of December 1977.
18. Two nations joined the United Nations
Djibouti (in Africa) and Vietnam (in Asia) got their seats in the general assembly. Djibouti gained independence from France in the same year.
19. Some classic TV shows aired in this year
Three’s Company, Eight is Enough, CHIPs, The Love Boat and Soap made their debut on US television in this year.
20. The Sex Pistols tried to disrupt Silver Jubilee celebration
The band performed their version of “God Save the Queen” from a boat on the River Thames in London in June 1977.
Well, there you have it, 20 Notable Events in 1977. I trust that you found this list interesting. If you did, feel free to share this article.
Watch this space for regular updates in the History category on Interesting Facts.