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Dateline: Events/Headlines – Week Of December 24, 1970 In News, Pop Culture, Tech, Celebrity, Sports, Entertainment & Fascinating Facts




In The News

President Nixon issues an order requiring an estimated 40,000 industries plus new ones, must get federal permission to dump their waste into U.S. waterways.

Secretary of state William Rogers accuses North Vietnam of a “contemptible maneuver” in giving two Democratic senators an “official” list of U.S. prisoners that he says had been disclosed previously. The Saigon government now holds some 8,000 POW’s.

The U.S. command announces that 23 Americans were killed in combat last week – the lowest number in five years, but the Christmas cease-fire was marred by a series of enemy-initiated incidents. 

At Da Nang – South Vietnam – Comedian Bob Hope and a 76-member troupe of entertainers give a Christmas Eve performance for 13,000 American servicemen jammed into a sun-baked amphitheater outside South Vietnam’s second largest city. Along the performers – Lola Falana, the Golddigers, Les Brown Orchestra and Cincinnati Reds catcher Johnny Bench.

Manson – Nancy Pitman (19) – a friend of  Charles Manson is arrested while attempting to smuggle two balloons full of narcotics into jail for him.

The White House warns that the North Vietnamese appear to be preparing for a major defensive. 

President Nixon accuses North Vietnam of “total disregard” of the Geneva conventions by allowing U.S. prisoners of war to be used in a film for what her termed propaganda purposes.

Leaders of Israel’s ruling coalition parties vote to return to peace talks with Egypt and Jordan.

The Senate kills President Nixon’s family assistance plan and trade measure and virtually completes action on a 10% across-the-board increase in Social Security benefits for 26 older Americans.

Health – Federal officials impound some 8,000 of kingfish in Los Angeles – the first such DDT-fished laced seizure from salt water fish. Sam DeLuca, president of State fish Co. Inc which distributed the fish, said there was no way to trace them. The fish were to be sold for pet food. 

The North Tower of the 110-story World Trade Center is topped out with the emplacement of a steel column 1,370 feet above the streets of Manhattan. The second or South Tower of the twin-tower center, which will also rise to 110 stories, is still more than 30 stories from its topping-out point. What’s interesting – the North Tower is now affecting TV signals to the north as predicted with ghosting.  

 Martha Mitchell has a book out titled, “On With the Wind: Martha Mitchell Speaks.”


Entertainment/Celebrity/Broadway news - December 24, 1970

The production of Agatha Christie’s murder mystery “The Mousetrap” clams a world record after the play’s 7,511th performance. “The Mousetrap” opened at London’s Ambassador Theater on Nov. 25, 1952 and has since been staged in 41 countries.

“Hello Dolly” says goodbye to Broadway where it had been running for nearly seven years. Ethel Merman is the last Dolly. Attending – Carol Channing – the first Dolly. “Dolly” closed after its 2,844th performance – the longest-lasting lady on Broadway. “My Fair Lady” closed after 2,716 performances. “Fiddler on the Roof” which is still running, has played 2,610 times. Two nonmusical shows have been running longer – “Life with Father” – at 3,224 performances and “Tobacco Road,” at 3,182. 

More stage as Eartha Kitt makes her London debut as a straight actress. The play is “the High Bid.”


Technology news – December 24, 1970

Biochemists have developed a slippery water that more than doubles the ability of firemen to douse blazes. Says a spokesman for the chemical additive – “You can cut off $1 million of damage in a $10 million fire with $300 worth of the stuff.” The additive is actually polyethylene oxide.

Fascinating Facts – Bumper Stickers Seen – December 8, 1970

Bumper stickers are hot… seen –

“Have a Nice Day.”

“Control Your Local Stork.”

“They Shoot Students Don’t They.”

“Help Stamp Out Bumper Stickers.”


Top news stories for the year 1970:

Apollo 13

Shootings at Kent State

Vietnam war spreads to Cambodia

Terrorism spreads across the U.S.

Arab guerrillas hijack four jetliners and hold hostages

November U.S. elections

Recession and inflation

Senate rejects Supreme Court appointment of G. Harrold Carswell

Growing concern over pollution

Terrorists kidnap and kill in Canada


In a Gallup Poll – Mamie Eisenhower gets the top spot for women most admired followed by:

Mrs. Richard Nixon

Mrs. Golda Meir

Mrs. Joseph Kennedy

Mrs. Aristotle Onassis (Jackie)

Mrs. Lyndon Johnson

Mrs. Robert (Ethel) Kennedy

Mme. Indira Gandhi

Sen. Margaret Chase Smith

Mrs. Martin Luther King


Music news – December 24, 1970

Ian & Sylvia, Kris Kristofferson at Carnegie Hall.

Steppenwolf – a top-selling rock band, sues Dunhill Records – seeking more than $204,000 in back royalties and an unspecified amount in personal damages from Dunhill Records. The personal damage charge results from Dunhill’s allegedly requiring the group to record its latest album “Steppenwolf 7” with “complete disregard for the group’s health and welfare. John Kay, the group’s lead vocalist, was ordered to record despite a punctured and bleeding eardrum. They’ve sold about 11 million records.

1950’s are coming back! In Las Vegas – Little Anthony is appearing at the International and Fats Domino is at the Flamingo.

Former Sheriff William N. Morris Jr. says Elvis Presley gave him a $9,000 foreign-made car for Christmas and understood Elvis did the same for other friends. “I’ve enjoyed Elvis’ friendship for about 12 years, I guess,” said Morris. 

Music In Movies – “Groupies” starring Joe Cocker and the Grease Band, Ten Years After, Alvin Lee & Co, Spooky Tooth, Terry Reid.


Top music albums – December 24, 1970

All Things Must Pass – George Harrison

Close to You- Carpenters

Grand Funk Live – Grand Funk Railroad

Jesus Christ Superstar –

John Lennon and the Plastic Ono band

Led Zeppelin III

Sly & The Family Stone Greatest Hits

Stephen Stills

Sweet Baby James – James Taylor


Top pop hit music singles(top-40) – December 24, 1970

One Less Bell To Answer – 5th Dimension

My Sweet Lord – George Harrison

I Think I Love You – Partridge Family

Tears of a Clown – Smokey Robinson

Stoned Love – Supremes

Gypsy Woman – Brian Hyland

No Matter What – Badfinger

Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is – Chicago

Knock Three Times – Dawn


Radio news – December 24, 1970

CBS Radio inaugurates a daily series featuring varying shades of opinion on current issues called “Spectrum.” There will be three features a day and heard will be – M. Stanton Evans, Jeffrey St. John, Stewart Alsop, Jon K. Jessup, Nicholas Von Hoffman and Murray Kempton. All have print backgrounds. 


Entertainment/Celebrity/Movie news – December 24, 1970

David Frost was a featured performer at the hour-long “Christmas Evening at the White House” show before 180 guests, but was said to have offended President Nixon with a political joke – “Christmas has come to the White House. Santa Clause came down the chimney and met Walter Hickel on his way out.” Mr. Nixon recently fired Hickel as secretary of interior. He also told about the little girl practicing for a Christmas Nativity scene who said, “it’s very easy to be a shepherd but it’s jolly hard to be a virgin.”

Passing – Comedian Charles Ruggles. He was 84.

Elizabeth Taylor is making her first movie in nearly two years. She says, ”On the second day, I had a huge scene and hit the panic button. I was afraid my memory had done. When I got home, Richard (Burton) told me not to look at the script again that night because that would make it worse.” And he was right. The movie is “Zee and Co.” being made near London at Shepperton Studios.

Richard Zanuck (36) resigns under fire as president of 20th Century-Fox Film Corp. 

For the second year, Paul Newman is selected as the No. 1 box-office star in a poll conducted by Motion Picture Herald. Others in the top 10: Clint Eastwood, Steve McQueen, John Wayne, Elliott Gould, Dustin Hoffman, Lee Marvin, Jack Lemmon, Barbara Streisand and Walter Matthau.


Television news – December 24, 1970

Goodbye Cigarette Commercials - Cigarette commercials to go away on January 2 at 12:01am and they’re going out in a bang as Philip Morris buys the 11:30p to midnight commercial slots of all three networks on January 1. And the January 1 Bowl games will be jammed with cigarette commercials. It’s said, the networks are now faced with a 10% loss of their gross revenues because of the disappearance of cigarette ads. Network ad salesmen have been pressing national retail chains, credit card companies, insurance companies, brokerage houses and travel-oriented businesses to display their messages on TV. Ads will be disappearing from radio as well.  


John Wayne – his family and ranch will be featured on CBS’ Merv Griffin Show in February. 

New Emmy Award to be given out – starting with the next one – “Outstanding Talk Series.” Look for it in May.


Tuesday night television listings/programs/TV guide – December 24, 1970

CBS – Beverly Hillbillies, Green Acres, Hee Haw, To Rome With Love, CBS News Report, Merv Griffin

NBC – Don Knotts, Julia, NBC Tuesday night at the movies, Tonight

ABC – Mod Squad, Movie of the Week, Marcus Welby, MD, Dick Cavett

NET – The Advocates


Don Knotts – Sid Caesar, Lulu and Doug McClure.

Hee Haw – Roy Rogers and Dale Evans.

 Made for TV movie – “Gidget Grows Up” with Karen Valentine.

Merv Griffin – Jackie Vernon, Doug McClure and Charo guest.

Johnny Carson – Andy Griffith, Jess Thomas, Ace Trucking Co.

Dick Cavett – Roberta Flack.


Some top movies – December 24, 1970



Little Big Man

Song From Norway


Walt Disney’s The Aristocats

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