Pop Culture Madness!
Pop Culture Madness!

1939 Trivia, Facts & History

<< - 1938

World Series Champions

New York Yankees

NFL Champions

Green Bay Packers

Stanley Cup Champs

Boston Bruins

U.S. Open Golf

Byron Nelson

U.S. Tennis (Men/Ladies)

Robert Riggs/Alice Marble

Wimbledon (Men/Women)

Bobby Riggs/Alice Marble

NCAA Football Champions

Texas A&M

NCAA Basketball Champions


Kentucky Derby


The Hotties, Sex Symbols and Fashion Icons

Ingrid Bergman, Claudette Colbert, Olivia de Havilland, Betty Grable, Rita Hayworth, Katharine Hepburn, Hedy Lamarr, Vivien Leigh, Myrna Loy, Brenda Marshall, Ginger Rogers, Barbara Stanwyck, Lana Turner

"The 1939 Quotes"

"Today, I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth."
- Lou Gehrig, July 4, 1939, to the 62,000 who attended Lou Gehrig Appreciation Day, at Yankee Stadium.

"There's no place like home"
"Toto, I've got a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore."
- Judy Garland in 'The Wizard of Oz'

"Better living through chemistry"

"Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn"
- Clark Gable in 'Gone With The Wind'

"After all, tomorrow is another day!"
"As God is my witness, I'll never be hungry again."
- Vivien Leigh, in 'Gone with the Wind'

"Elementary, my dear Watson*"
- Basil Rathbone, in 'Adventures of Sherlock Holmes'
* never actually said in the original Arthur Conan Doyle stories about Mr. Holmes!

"I'll get you, my pretty, and your little dog too!"
- Margaret Hamilton, as the Wicked Witch of the West, in 'The Wizard of Oz'

"Either I'm dead right, or I'm crazy! "
-James Stewart, as Jefferson Smith in 'Mr. Smith Goes To Washington'

Time Magazine's Man of the Year

Joseph Stalin

Miss America

Patricia Donnelly (Detroit Michigan)

The Scandal

The Los Angeles Times got the Oscar Winner's names before the official presentations. THAT's why Price Waterhouse gained control of holding the winner's names, although they had been tabulating the votes since 1935.

1939 Pop Culture News

The popular dance craze in America, The Jitterbug, was a slang term (i.e. "the jitters") used to describe someone so under the influence, they'd shake or jitter.

War of the Worlds Broadcast

The first Thin Mint cookies were baked by the Girl Scouts in 1939

In September 1939 the last thing BBC television aired before going off the air was a Mickey Mouse cartoon. When broadcasts resumed in 1946, the same cartoon was replayed.

The 1939/1940 New York World's Fair opened - 'The World of Tomorrow'

Penicillin, discovered in 1925, was tested on human beings, curing many diseases including tuberculosis and gonorrhea. It was the first true anibiotic.

NBC broadcast its first black-and-white television images. Only approximately 1,000 homes had television sets in the New York area at this time.

World War II News and Information

WW2 started on September 3rd, 1939, but the British did not suffer their first service fatality in France until 3 months later, on December 9th (Corporal Thomas W. Priday was killed leading a patrol). This period of relative calm is commonly referred to as the Phony War, or Sitzkrieg.

The famous 'Keep Calm and Carry On' slogan was a propaganda poster produced by the British government in 1939 in preparation for the Second World War.

The last Nuremberg rally was planned for 1939 under the title 'Rally of Peace', but was cancelled on short notice when Hitler started the Second World War by invading Poland.

The Habits:

On March 3, 1939, Harvard freshman Lothrop Withington, Jr, became the first goldfish swallower, winning a $10.00 bet.
Watching Gone With The Wind in movie theaters.
Reading The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
Reading The Day of the Locust by Nathanael West
Reading Finnegans Wake by James Joyce

1939's Most Popular Christmas Gifts

Batman Comics

Popular Movies:

Another Thin Man, Babes in Arms, Beau Geste, Charlie Chan at Treasure Island, Dark Victory, Daybreak, Destry Rides Again, Drums Along the Mohawk, The Four Feathers, Gone With The Wind, Goodbye Mr. Chips, Gunga Din, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, The LIttle Princess, Love Affair, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Ninotchka, Of Mice and Men, Only Angels Have Wings, The Roaring Twenties, The Rules of the Game, Stagecoach, The Story of the Last Chrysanthemums, The Wizard of Oz, The Women, Wuthering Heights, Young Mr. Lincoln

More Pop Culture Resources

Popular Music in 1939 ~ # 1 Hits of 1939