1956 Newspapers

What happened in 1956 to make this year stand out in history? 1956 was filled with cultural breakthroughs, technological innovations, and political scandals that gave reporters stories to write about. The 1950’s was a decade of acceptance and hope. Following the challenging decade of the 40s, people looked optimistically to the future. In America, consumerism was booming. Employment levels were high (amongst men), and people enjoyed the novelty of having colored televisions in their homes.

Discover which particular events characterised this year in history with an authentic newspaper from our extensive database at Historic Newspapers, featuring titles from The Guardian, The Daily Mail, and The Times.

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1956 Newspaper Headlines

Explore our 1956 newspaper articles and discover what events people were reading about in this year in history. Understand how people perceived significant events that took place during this year through first hand accounts from the time. Key 1956 headlines include the release of Elvis Presley’s hit “Heartbreak Hotel”, beginning his career as a rock and roll legend. It was the year the first Eurovision song contest was broadcast from Switzerland, Marilyn Monroe married playwright Arthur Miller, and the Suez Crisis began.

It was an exciting year in sporting news, with the Summer Olympics taking place in Melbourne, and the Winter Olympics in Italy. A 1956 newspaper is a wonderful way to commemorate this wonderful year in history, with first hand accounts from people who lived at the time.

26th January 1956
The 1956 Winter Olympics open in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy.

22nd February 1956
Elvis Presley enters the U.S. music charts for the first time, with “Heartbreak Hotel“.

23rd February 1956
Norma Jean Mortenson legally changes her name to Marilyn Monroe.

19th April 1956
British diver Lionel Crabb dives into the Portsmouth harbour to investigate a visiting Soviet cruiser and vanishes.

24th May 1956
The first Eurovision Song Contest is broadcast from Lugano in Switzerland. The winning song is “Refrain”, sung by Lys Assia.

3rd June 1956
British Rail renames ‘Third Class’ passenger facilities as ‘Second Class’. Second Class facilities had previously been abolished in 1875.

10th June 1956
Equestrian events open in Stockholm at the 1956 Summer Olympics. All other events are held in November in Melbourne, Australia.

29th June 1956
Actress Marilyn Monroe marries playwright Arthur Miller.

10th July 1956
The House of Lords defeats the abolition of the death penalty.

31st July 1956
Jim Laker sets an extraordinary record at Old Trafford in the fourth Test match of the 1956 Ashes series. Laker becomes the first cricketer to take all ten wickets in a single innings and he takes a record total of nineteen wickets in the match. Laker’s final figures are an incredible nineteen for ninety. No other player has taken more than seventeen wickets in a match.

13th September 1956
The Hard Disk Drive is invented by an IBM team led by Reynold B. Johnson.

15th October 1956
The Royal Air Force retires its last Lancaster bomber.

31st October 1956
The United Kingdom and France begin to bomb Egypt in an attempt to force the re-opening of the Suez Canal.

5th December 1956
Rose Heilbron becomes Britain’s first female judge.

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