Monday, 30 April 2012

1967, News: L'Innovation department store Fire

A fire at the L'Innovation department store in Brussels, Belgium, kills 322 people on May 22 1967.

There were approximately 2500 people shopping in the store when fire broke out in the furniture department on the fourth floor. However, almost no one was aware of the fire because no fire alarm went off, nor were there any sprinklers. The fire spread quickly because there were only a few hand-held extinguishers on hand. Fire-fighters had problems to access the store due to the narrow streets.


Panic set in when the shoppers realized what was happening. Many suffered trampling injuries after getting caught in the stampede of people trying to leave the store. Several explosions were set off as the fire hit some butane gas canisters in the camping area of the store. Many people made it to the roof seeking an escape route; at least three died jumping from the building. Most of the 322 fatalities were from smoke inhalation. Evidence pointed to an electrical fire.


The building partly designed by Art Nouveau architect Victor Horta was completely destroyed by the fire.

Poster at the opening of the store in 1903
A l'Innovation shortly after the opening in 1903

Clip from a RTBF documentary (French)

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

1966, Music: Eurovision Song Contest

The 11th Eurovision Song Contest was held on 5 March 1966 at the Grand Auditorium RTL Villa Louvigny in Luxembourg. 1966 is the first year with the rule stating that a country could only sing in any of its national languages. It was also the first time a black singer graced the Eurovision stage, Milly Scott representing the Netherlands. She was also the first singer to use a portable microphone.

Josiane Shen presented the festival and of the 18 participants Udo Jürgens wins for Austria with "Merci Cherie".
Udo Jürgens
Draw Country Artist Song Place Points
01 Germany Margot Eskens "Die Zeiger der Uhr" 10 7
02 Denmark Ulla Pia "Stop - mens legen er go'" 14 4
03 Belgium Tonia "Un peu de poivre, un peu de sel" 4 14
04 Luxembourg Michèle Torr "Ce soir je t'attendais" 10 7
05 Yugoslavia Berta Ambrož "Brez besed" 7 9
06 Norway Åse Kleveland "Intet er nytt under solen" 3 15
07 Finland Ann Christine "Playboy" 10 7
08 Portugal Madalena Iglésias "Ele e ela" 13 6
09 Austria Udo Jürgens "Merci, Chérie" 1 31
10 Sweden Lindfors & Thuresson "Nygammal vals" 2 16
11 Spain Raphael "Yo soy aquél" 7 9
12 Switzerland Madeleine Pascal "Ne vois-tu pas?" 6 12
13 Monaco Tereza Kesovija "Bien plus fort" 17 0
14 Italy Domenico Modugno "Dio, come ti amo" 17 0
15 France Dominique Walter "Chez nous" 16 1
16 Netherlands Milly Scott "Fernando en Filippo" 15 2
17 Ireland Dickie Rock "Come Back to Stay" 4 14
18 United Kingdom Kenneth McKellar "A Man Without Love" 9 8
Udo Jürgens and 1965 winner France Gall

Friday, 13 April 2012

1965, Film: The Ipcress File

The Ipcress File is a British film directed by Sidney J. Furie with a musical score by John Barry. The screenplay by Bill Canaway and James Doran was based on Len Deighton's 1962 novel with the same title. Main stars were Michael Caine, Sue Lloyd, Guy Doleman, Gordon Jackson and Nigel Green.

Plot:
A number of leading Western scientists have been kidnapped only to reappear a few days later. Unfortunately, each scientist has been brainwashed and is now completely useless. The British send their agent, Harry Palmer (Michael Caine), to investigate. Palmer is surprised to be selected for such a mission (considering his past) and believes he has been chosen because he is expendable.
Michael Caine
Michael Caine and Sue Lloyd

Awards:
  • BAFTA Film Award for Best British Art Direction (Colour): Ken Adam (1966)
  • BAFTA Film Award for Best British Cinematography (Colour): Otto Heller (1966)
  • BAFTA Film Award for Best British Film: Sidney J. Furie (1966)
  • Edgar Allan Poe Awards for Best Foreign Film: W.H. Canaway, James Doran (1966)
  • Golden Laurel for Sleeper of the Year (1966)
Gordon Jackson and Michael Caine

Trailer

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

1964, Cars: Škoda 1000 MB

The Škoda 1000 MB was introduced in April 1964. The letters MB are the abbreviation for Mladá Boleslav, the city in the Central Bohemian Region of the Czech Republic where Škodas are still in production today. The 1000 MB was the first rear-engined Škoda and the beginning of what would eventually evolve into a long line of rear-engined Škodas. The 1000 MB was powered by a rear-mounted, water-cooled, 988cc, four-cylinder overhead valve engine, which produced 33 kW. The engine combined an aluminium block with a cast iron cylinder head.
Škoda 1000 MB
For a small/medium-sized car with a 1-litre engine, the 1000 MB gave acceptable performance. The top speed was 120 km/h, reaching 100 km/h from standstill in 27 seconds. Overall fuel economy was around 6.5 l/100 km.
Škoda 1000 MBX
The development of the 1000 MB goes back as far as 1955 when the Motokov officials visited the Paris Salon d'Automobile. They were especially impressed by the new Renault Dauphine with a rear-mounted engine. The placement of the engine in the back could significantly cut costs and Volkswagen, BMW, Fiat, NSU, Renault, Hillman and Chevrolet had success with this formula. In 1959 a prototype was ready and in 1960, 50 cars were built, as a "zero-series".

In August 1969 the 'MB series was replaced by the Škoda S100/110 series. A total of 443,903 'MBs were built.


Škoda 1000 MB Ad


Škoda 1000 MB Tribute

Brochure Dutch

Saturday, 7 April 2012

1963, Television: The Fugitive

The Fugitive, an American television series created by Roy Huggins, aired on ABC (US) from 1963 to 1967. A total of 120 51-minute episodes were produced. The first three seasons were filmed in black and white, the fourth and final season was in colour. The main cast are David Janssen as Richard Kimble, Barry Morse as Police Lieutenant Philip Gerard and Bill Raisch as the "one-armed man".

The series tells the story of Dr. Richard Kimble, a well respected surgeon from Stafford, who is falsely convicted of his wife's murder and given the death penalty. However, on the way to prison, Kimble's transport crashed. Kimble escapes and tries to find out why his wife was killed and who the murderer really is. He is relentlessly pursued by Samuel Gerard, a U.S. Marshal, and is forced to keep out of contact from any friends or relatives...

David Janssen as Richard Kimble
Barry Morse as Police Lieutenant Philip Gerard

Opening Credits

Thursday, 5 April 2012

1962, Science & Technology: Telstar

On July 10, 1962 Telstar 1 was launched on top of a Thor-Delta rocket. It was the first commercial communications satellite relaying successfully through space the first television pictures, telephone calls, fax images and live transatlantic television broadcast. Telstar 2 was launched May 7, 1963.

Telstar was a co-venture between AT&T (American Telephone and Telegraph Company), Bell Telephone Laboratories, NASA, the British General Post Office, and the French National PTT.

Assembling Telstar at the Bell Telephone Laboratories

The satellite was built at Bell Telephone Laboratories. The spherical satellite measured 87,63 cm and weighs about 77 kg, the outer surface was covered with solar cells to generate electrical power. The power produced was a tiny 14 watt.

Assembling Telstar at the Bell Telephone Laboratories
Telephone a Star (Reprint from the May, 1962, National Geographic) 

Monday, 2 April 2012

1961, Fashion: Simone d’Aillencourt

One of the top fashion models in 1961 was Simone d’Aillencourt.

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1955 Dress by Lachasse
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1957
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1957 Dress by Dior
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1957 Dress by Horn
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1957 Dress by Horn
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1957 Dress by Horn
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1957 Dress by Horn
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1957 Dress by Horn
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1957 Dress by Jean Patou
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1957 Dress by Pierre Balmain
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1958 Dress by Guy Laroche
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1959 Dress by Galanos
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1959 Dress by Gustave Tassell
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1959 Dress by Traina-Norell
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1960 Dress by Fabiani
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1960 for Harper's Bazaar
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1960 for Harper's Bazaar
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1960 for Harper's Bazaar
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1960 Dress by Lanvin-Castillo
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1960 Dress by Nina Ricci
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1960 Dress by Simonetta
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1961 for Du Pont
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1961 for Du Pont
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1961 for Du Pont
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1961 for Du Pont
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1961 for Du Pont
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1961 for Harper's Bazaar
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1961 for Harper's Bazaar
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1961 for Harper's Bazaar
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1961 for Harper's Bazaar
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1961 for Harper's Bazaar
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1961 for Harper's Bazaar
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1963 for Harper's Bazaar
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1963 for Harper's Bazaar
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1963 for Harper's Bazaar
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1963 for Harper's Bazaar
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1963 for Harper's Bazaar
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1963 for Harper's Bazaar
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1963 for Harper's Bazaar
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1963 for Harper's Bazaar
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1964 Dress by Barentzen
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1964 Dress by Galitzine
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1965
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1965
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1965 Dress by Uli Richter
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1967 for Vogue
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1967 for Vogue