The World Of December 1958 – Past Daily Reference Room

To the average American in 1958, brave new world indeed.

To the average American in 1958, brave new world indeed.

. . . or click on the link here for Audio Player – Eric Sevareid Commentaries – December 1958 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection

Some idea of how far-flung and wide-ranging our world was in 1958 can be heard in a sampling of these two commentaries by the legendary Broadcast Journalist Eric Sevareid, given as a nightly commentary on the news of the day in December of 1958.

The Cold War took precedence over just about everything – fear of a new World War was the constant and relentless drumbeat and upheavals taking place throughout the Middle East and former colonies of Africa were an almost daily occurrence.

And there was the political climate. In 1958 we were already thinking about what a run for the White House in 1960 was going to look like. In December of 1958 we had had our mid-term primaries in November and were wondering what Congress was going to do in the coming year. Discussing new faces on the horizon. One in particular; Senator Albert Gore (Sr.) and the possibility of his name on the ballot as potential Presidential material in 1960 was a consideration worth mulling over.

And the talk about Space exploration. Now that the Russians one-upped us with Sputnik the year before – what were we going to do? And was this “conquest of space”, as it was called in some circles, going to be a Soviet or American conquest? And did the arrogance extend that far that the vastness of outer-space could be the under the control of any country on earth?

A sampling of how the world was turning, this December of 1958, as viewed by Eric Sevareid of CBS Radio. Six minutes which speak volumes about a world on the brink of something, but no one was sure what it was at the time.

History never ceases to amaze, especially in hindsight.

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