"The past is never dead. It's not even past."
- William Faulkner, Requiem for a Nun (1951)
"Old soldiers never die; they just fade away."
- General Douglas MacArthur, concluding his
farewell speech to Congress, April 19, 1951
In the year AD 1951...
- Following the introduction of Chinese troops the previous fall, the Korean War reaches its climax as US and Chinese troops battle it out for control of Seoul. The US wins and is in prime position to re-invade the North. But when brilliant but chronically insubordinate US general Douglas MacArthur begins lobbying for the use of nuclear weapons on Chinese airbases, he is relieved of command by President Truman. The plan to invade the North again is called off and the conflict falls into stalemate, with only limited and sporadic fighting around the 38th parallel until the signing of the armistice in 1953.
- The San Francisco Peace Treaty officially ends the war between the United States and Japan, restores Japan's sovereignty, and sets the stage for the end of the Allied Occupation of Japan the following year.
- The People's Republic of China forcibly annexes Tibet.
- Libya gains independence from Italy.
- The Treaty of Paris establishes the European Coal and Steal Community (ECSC), the forerunner of the European Economic Community and ultimately, the European Union.
- Winston Churchill is reelected to the post of Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, defeating Clement Attlee's Labour government after 6 years out of power.
- A woman named Henrietta Lacks undergoes an operation at John Hopkins Hospital to remove a cervical cancer. Unfortunately, the cancer has already metastasized and she passes away, but cells removed from the tumor turn out to have an unknown mutation which prevents them from aging, creating an immortal line of human cells, HeLa cells, which are still used in research to this day.
- EBR-1 (Experimental Breeder Reactor I) in Idaho becomes the first active nuclear power plant.
- The Festival of Britain attempts to revive British spirits after the destruction of World War II.
- J.D. Salinger publishes The Catcher in the Rye.
- In one of the most famous home runs in baseball history, Bobby Thomson hits the "Shot Heard Round the World," a two-run homer with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning of game three of a three-game playoff to send the New York Giants to the World Series at the expense the archrival Brooklyn Dodgers.
These people were born in 1951:
These people died in 1951:
Several memorable films appeared in 1951, including:
These television shows began airing in 1951:
1950 - 1951 - 1952