Can You Remember These Pieces of Vintage Culture?

If you were born in the ‘40s or ‘50s, you’ll have no problem remembering these games, foods and fashions of generations gone by. Some of the most iconic and memorable cultural phenomenons stemmed from the great midcentury boom of entertainment.

Do you remember what soda was a favorite among astronauts or which hairstyle was a fixture of ‘greasers’ in the ‘50s? Then you’ll have no problem answering the questions below!

What is this?

  • Television
  • Phonograph
  • Slide projector
  • Guitar amp

This device, which was also called a gramophone, was used to record and play music by transporting sound through the large horn on the front.

What is this device called?

  • Turkey radio
  • Chicken radio
  • Ham radio
  • AM radio

Also called an amateur radio, these devices found popularity at the start of the 20th century and again in the years between World War I and World War II.

Who is this actor?

  • James Dean
  • Marlon Brando
  • Desi Arnaz
  • Cary Grant

When James Dean was a child, he lost his two front teeth in a trapeze accident, although he would later say that it happened in a motorcycle accident. He wore false teeth for the rest of his life.

What is this classic snack food?

  • Whoopie pie
  • Ding Dong
  • Twinkie
  • Fluffernutter

The Ding Dong first came on the market in 1967 and has been produced since then. The snack has also been sold under the names Big Wheels and King Dons.

What is this old tech device?

  • Pager
  • Sidekick
  • Instant messenger
  • Cell phone

A pager, or a beeper, was a one-way messaging device that could only receive simple messages. Some medical professionals still rely on pagers because they are more reliable than cell phones.

Who is this iconic figure?

  • Buddy Holly
  • Dean Martin
  • Bill Haley
  • Elvis Presley

While Elvis Presley was in grade school he actually failed his music class and his teachers considered him a very quiet child before he launched his music career.

Who is this classic actress?

  • Marilyn Monroe
  • Katherine Hepburn
  • Grace Kelly
  • Lauren Bacall

Grace Kelly retired from acting at the age of 26 after her marriage to Rainier III, the Prince of Monaco. She then began her royal duties as Princess of Monaco.

What is this called?

  • Tablet
  • Typewriter
  • iPad
  • Control station

Actor Tom Hanks is an avid typewriter collector and he often responds to fan mail with letters typed on one of his antique typewriters.

What is this classic candy?

  • Swedish fish
  • Gummy worms
  • Pop rocks
  • Milk Duds

The Swedish fish was invented in Sweden as a way to reflect the culture of Sweden. Fishing is a large part of Sweden’s culture and fish are a large part of a Swedish diet.

Who is this classic TV character?

  • Fred Mertz
  • Fred Flintstone
  • Ward Cleaver
  • Ozzie Nelson

William Frawley demanded that his contract for “I Love Lucy” provide him time off if the Yankees made it to the World Series. Because of this, he missed two full episodes of filming.

Which iconic festival happened in 1969?

  • Woodstock
  • Coachella

The Woodstock festival was so iconic that festival organizers tried to revive it in 2019 for the original festival’s 50th anniversary. Huge acts like Miley Cyrus and Imagine Dragons signed on for the event, but it was sadly cancelled.

What are these knee-high heels called?

  • Combat boots
  • Go-go boots

Nancy Sinatra’s hit song “These Boots Are Made for Walkin’” was released in 1965 and helped popularize the go-go boots of the era. The song has since been covered by numerous artists, such as Billy Ray Cyrus and Jessica Simpson.

What was the fan frenzy surrounding the Beatles dubbed?

  • Beatlepalooza
  • Beatlemania

When the Beatles first appeared on “The Ed Sullivan Show” in 1964, it was viewed by approximately 73 million people, which is more than the entire population of France.

Which company made these turkey dinners?

  • Swanson
  • Stoufers

The first TV dinner was released by Swanson in 1953 as the solution to their huge surplus of Thanksgiving turkeys that year. Their surplus of 260 tons of turkey went to good use in the creation of this iconic culinary staple.

What was the name of the first satellite launched into space?

  • Apollo
  • Sputnik

Sputnik 1 was launched into space by the Soviet Union on October 4, 1957. It orbited around Earth’s atmosphere for three weeks before its batteries died and it fell back to Earth two moths later.

What is this toy called?

  • View-Master
  • Virtual Reality headset

The View-Master was introduced in 1939, but came into popularity in the ‘50s, when there was a rival product called Tru-Vue. View-Master produced many reels featuring Disney and Hanna-Barbera characters.

Which number takes the longest time to dial on a rotary phone?

  • Zero
  • Nine

When the telephone was invented by Alexander Graham Bell, he preferred for people to answer the phone with the greeting “Ahoy-hoy.” This phrase was derived from the Dutch word “hoi” meaning “hi.”

Which artist made this piece?

  • Peter Max
  • Ringo Starr

Peter Max’s work became very popular in the ‘70s when it was associated with psychedelic culture. His work represented the counter culture movement of the groovy era.

Who was the Alka-Seltzer mascot?

  • Speedy
  • Sparky

With the famous catchphrase “plop, plop, fizz, fizz, oh what a relief it is!” Speedy became a famous fixture of television advertisements in the ‘50s. The character was retired in 1964 but came back for an appearance in ads in 2008.

What company introduced the hula hoop?

  • Mattel
  • Wham-O

In the first six months that the hula hoop was on the market in 1958, an estimated 120 million hoops were sold, which far exceeded expectations for the novelty fad. But, it proved to be a long-lasting trend, making a comeback in the ‘70s.

Who is this actress?

  • Audrey Hepburn
  • Sophia Lauren

In the ‘50s, Audrey Hepburn was the first actress to win an Oscar, a Golden Globe Award and a BAFTA Award for a single performance for her work in the film “Roman Holiday.” Since then she has become a style icon for her timeless beauty.

What job is this?

  • Telephone operator
  • Telephone conductor

In 1983, a woman named Susan Glines became the last telephone operator, or switchboard operator, for a hand-crank phone. Some other locations continued without hand-cranked systems well into the ‘90s.

What is this style of pants called?

  • Bootcut
  • Bell bottoms

Bell bottoms came into popularity when they were worn by sailors in the U.S. Navy before a standardized uniform was set. They were popular among sailors because the legs could easily be rolled up.

“Helps build strong bodies twelve ways” is the slogan for which product?

  • Wonder bread
  • Skippy peanut butter

When Wonder Bread sponsored the “Howdy Doody” show, host Buffalo Bob Smith would proclaim, “Wonder Bread builds strong bodies 8 ways.” The slogan was changed when more nutrients were added to the bread.

What is this technological device called?

  • Transistor radio
  • Ham radio

The small size of transistor radios made them easy to produce, so many sponsored radios were made in the ‘50s including Charlie the Tuna-shaped radios from Star-Kist and Mork from Ork Eggship-shaped radios.

What was a popular game among kids of the ‘50s?

  • Kick the can
  • Can it!

This popular game of guarding a tin can gained so much popularity that it inspired an episode of “The Twilight Zone” in 1962. The episode was later remade into a segment in “Twilight Zone: The Movie” in 1983.

What is this style of bicycle seat called?

  • Long John
  • Banana seat

Bikes with long banana seats were first produced in 1963 by the Schwinn company. The Schwinn “Sting Ray” had both a banana seat and high-rise handlebars, which became an iconic style.

What is this style of shoe called?

  • Penny loafers
  • Nickel loafers

Penny loafers were given their name because young students in the U.S. used to keep pennies in the saddle slot on the front of the shoe to use for pay phone calls.

What are the antennas on top of the television set called?

  • Fox ears
  • Rabbit ears

Indoor antennas affixed to television sets may still be able to get a signal, but they typically have very poor reception and require a lot of time and work to get a picture.

What song played at the end of the television programming day?

  • The Star-Spangled Banner
  • America the Beautiful

Before the emergence of 24-hour television broadcasting, most channels would sign-on and sign-off for each day of programming, meaning there was actually nothing to watch on TV at night.

Who is this horse?

  • Mr. Ed
  • Silver

A horse named Bamboo Harvester played Ed throughout the entire run of the series. Another horse named Pumpkin served as Bamboo’s stunt double for the show.

What is this doll’s name?

  • Talking Tina
  • Chatty Cathy

In the history of talking dolls, Chatty Cathy was definitely the kinder and sweeter evolution of Edison’s Phonograph Doll, which was invented in 1877 and featured a hand-cranked phonograph record inside.

What artist made these wide-eyed paintings?

  • Mary Blair
  • Margaret Keane

Margaret Keane’s artwork was originally attributed to her husband Walter Keane, but after their divorce in 1965, Margaret began to claim credit for her own work.

Who is this entertainer?

  • Captain Kangaroo
  • Mr. Wallaby

“Captain Kangaroo” aired on CBS from 1955 to 1984 and reruns aired on PBS until 1993. Many people have sought to bring the show back on the air since then, including actor Mark Wahlberg.

What was sold in these jars?

  • Milk
  • Jelly

Jelly jars with characters on them became very collectible in the ‘50s and featured Disney characters, Archie comics characters and other iconic stars. Many people kept and reused these jars as water glasses.

What is this handy musical device?

  • 45 Insert
  • Pizza Tray

Record sales have been rising each year for the last 14 years, with about 18 million albums sold in 2019 along. Vinyl sales represent over 15% of all current album sales.

Who created the “Peanuts?”

  • Charles Schulz
  • Dr. Seuss

“Peanuts” was published daily in 2,600 newspapers in 75 countries in over 21 languages in its peak and Schulz himself drew over 17,000 published “Peanuts” strips, and took only one vacation during that time.

Who was the queen of beach party movies?

  • Nancy Sinatra
  • Annette Funicello

The Frankie and Annette beach party films came with some controversy, because Annette Funicello wasn’t originally allowed to appear in a two-piece bathing suit by Disney executives.

What is this wax-coated candy called?

  • Lick-a-Bit
  • Nik-L-Nip

Nik-L-Nip is still produced by Tootsie Roll Industries and the iconic name is a combination of the original cost of the bottles (a nickel) and the preferred method of opening the wax bottles (a nip).

What is the name of this cereal commercial kid?

  • Mikey
  • Seth

In 1999, the “Hey Mikey!” Life cereal advertisement was ranked number 10 in TV Guide’s 50 Greatest Commercials of All Time list. Even though it hasn’t been shown regularly on television for decades, most people of a certain age still remember it well.

What are these retro snacks called?

  • Astro Chow
  • Space Food Sticks

The original producer of Space Food Sticks, Pillsbury, stopped making this classic item in 1980. But, they are still available from a few locations including the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.

Who is this famous host?

  • Merv Griffin
  • Johnny Carson

Merv Griffin was known for his talk show, but he influenced TV in many other ways. He is the creator of both “Jeopardy!” and “Wheel of Fortune,” which both still air in many countries across the world.

What is the name of this doll?

  • Betsy-Wetsy
  • Sarah-Darah

This doll introduced a unique feature to audiences: eyes that shut when she laid down. Many young people got their first experience caring for a small child with these dolls.

What model of car is this?

  • 1957 Chevy
  • 1959 Skyliner

’50s Chevys have maintained their value in the last few decades, with some restored vehicles going for prices as high as $100,000. The sleek body and style of these cars is truly timeless.

What is this old tech called?

  • VHS
  • Betamax

Betamax lost favor to VHS tapes during the home movie boom of the ‘80s and ‘90s. But, it wasn’t until 2002 that Sony stopped producing Betamax recorders. And new Betamax cassettes were available until March 2016.

What is this classic toy?

  • Silly Putty
  • Play-Doh

Silly Putty almost went out of business during a period of peak sales in 1951 because silicone, the main ingredient in silly putty, was put on ration during the Korean War.

Who is this classic actor?

  • Warren Beatty
  • Steve McQueen

Warren Beatty is one of only two people to have been nominated for an Academy Award for acting in, directing, writing and producing the same film. He did so twice for “Heaven Can Wait” and “Reds.”

Where could you order sea monkeys?

  • Grocery stores
  • Ads in comic books

The creator and seller of the Amazing Sea-Monkeys, Harold von Braunhut, also sold X-Ray Specs and Invisible Goldfish. He held 195 patents for strange and quirky products.

What hairstyle is this?

  • Ducktail
  • Combover

If you picture a ’50s greaser, you’re probably imagining them with a ducktail hairstyle. Elvis Presley helped bring the look to prominence among the youth of America at the time.

What game is being played here?

  • Skully
  • Hopscotch

Skully was one of the most popular street games in New York City throughout the ‘50s and ‘60s, but most kids don’t know about it today. But, there are still spray painted skulls boards found in many school yards.

What is this name of this trickster?

  • Mr. Toad
  • Froggy the Gremlin

Froggy the Gremlin was a character created for the show “Smilin’ Ed’s Gang” and he was always introduced with the well-known catchphrase “plunk your magic twanger, Froggy!”

Which dance trend did Chubby Checker sing about?

  • The Twist
  • The Charleston

The song “The Twist” was one of the biggest hits of the 1960s and it was added to the National Recording Registry in the Library of Congress in 2013. It also ranked 451 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

What was this fashion trend called?

  • Love beads
  • Mood rings

Many hippie trends of the ‘70s have stood the test of time, like making organic food more available and practicing yoga. Even the fashions of hippies have stood the test of time.

What were these toy planes made out of?

  • Balsa wood
  • Plastic

Balsa wood plane kits have been a staple toy of young kids for generations. Even in the 1920s kids enjoyed popping out pieces of balsa wood to make these flying figures.

What soft drink was a favorite among astronauts?

  • Mountain Dew
  • Tang

Tang is a drink mix that is sold in powdered form, which made it easy for astronauts to use while in orbit. But, in 2013, former NASA astronaut Buzz Aldrin made his opinions on Tang known saying, “Tang sucks.”

What is going on in this ‘50s classroom?

  • Duck and Cover drill
  • Hide and Seek

Duck and cover drills were taught to try and protect people from the effects of a nuclear explosion. This method was taught to school children in the ‘50s and educational cartoons featuring a talking turtle were produced to teach ducking and covering.

What is this device called?

  • Gym key
  • Church key

The reason these vintage can openers are called church keys is because they resembled the large ornate keys typically used to open the doors of old churches.

What were these valuable vintage stamps called?

  • S&H Green Stamps
  • Box Tops

During the ‘60s, families could receive these stamps at the checkout counters of supermarkets, department stores and gasoline stations. They could then be traded for products in the S&H catalogue.

Who is this daredevil?

  • Evel Knievel
  • Fonzie

Evel Knievel was such an icon that his life was turned into a rock opera by composer Jef Bek. The show about Knievel’s life opened to positive reviews in 2007.

What is this classic office toy?

  • Dippy Bird
  • Slinky

The origin of this toy may go back to the early 20th century when a Chinese drinking bird toy called the “insatiable birdie” was invented. There are even similar inventions dating as far back as the 1760s.
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