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Ministry of
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CFPL Timeline - 1959

“This is 1959 revisited…. a year marked by the weather’s whims -- and by the starkness of tragedy.…The year was another rung in mankind’s upward climb. It was a year of lessons learned…. and unlearned. Journey with us -- through the highlights and headlines of a year which now belongs to history. This was 1959!”

images from CFPL News 1959

National and International News Stories of 1959:

  • The Avro Arrow and its accompanying Orenda Iroquois jet engine program is abruptly cancelled sparking a long and bitter political debate.

  • Georges Vanier, a former Canadian Soldier and diplomat, is sworn in as Governor General replacing Vincent Massey. He is the first French Canadian Governor General.

  • Jacques Plante becomes the first goalie to wear a protective facemask. Hit in the face by a shot from New York Rangers player Andy Bathgate, Plante goes to the dressing room for stitches and returns wearing a crude goalie mask.

  • At the opening of the American National Exhibition in Moscow Vice President Richard Nixon and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev discuss the merits of their economic systems, capitalism vs. communism. The discussion, which takes place as the Cold War is escalating, will become known as the Kitchen Debate.

  • The Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The Sound of Music opens at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre on Broadway. It will run for 3 ½ years. It is nominated for 10 Tony awards and wins 5. In 1965 it will be made into an academy award winning motion picture starring Julie Andrews and Canadian Christopher Plummer.

  • Fidel Castro is sworn in as Cuba's President after leading the revolution that overthrows Fulgencio Batista. Castro will continue to lead the country until 2006 when health problems result in his transferring power to his younger brother.

View Other Years:

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Story Citations:

Film footage

This Was 1959 – Year End Show 1959 (excerpts)
black and white 16mm motion picture film, silent and sound
Reference Code: F 4396-2-1-6
Archives of Ontario


Was 1959 – Year End Show 1959 (excerpts)
news script
Reference Code: F 4396-2-2
Archives of Ontario