The Year of 1987

Day 17: Hop on the internet and search for the biggest news stories in the year you were born.Infoplease is a great resource for this. Think about how these news stories, or even statistics, may have shaped your childhood or who you are today. For example, the year I was born, it was discovered that 98% of American households had at least one television set. I could write about how television influenced my generation, and continues to do so today, either positively or negatively.

OK so for 1987, I got:

World Events:

  • William Buckley, American hostage in Lebanon, reported slain (Jan. 20).
  • Iraqi missiles kill 37 in attack on US frigate Stark in Persian Gulf (May 17); Iraqi president Hussein apologizes (May 18).
  • Prime Minister Thatcher wins rare third term in Britain (June 11).
  • Klaus Barbie, 73, Gestapo wartime chief in Lyon, sentenced to life by French court for war crimes (July 4).

U.S. Events:


  • US GDP (1998 dollars):   $4,692.30 billion
  • Federal spending:   $1003.91 billion
  • Federal debt:   $2346.1 billion
  • Median Household Income
  • (current dollars):  $26,061
  • Consumer Price Index:   113.6
  • Unemployment:   6.2%
  • Cost of a first-class stamp:   $0.22


  • Super Bowl: NY Giants d. Denver (39-20)
  • World Series: Minnesota d. St. Louis Cardinals (4-3)
  • NBA Championship: LA Lakers d. Boston (4-2)
  • Stanley Cup: Edmonton d. Philadelphia (4-3)
  • Wimbledon: Women: Martina Navratilova d. S. Graf (7-5 6-3); Men: Pat Cash d. I. Lendl (7-6 6-2 7-5)
  • Kentucky Derby Champion: Alysheba
  • NCAA Basketball Championship: Indiana d. Syracuse (74-73)
  • NCAA Football Champions: Miami-FL (12-0-0)



  • Though African, Latin American and other genres of international music have been around for centuries, a group of small, London-based labels coin the term “world music,” which helps record sellers find rack space for the eclectic music.
  • thirtysomething debuts on ABC and departs from typical dramas, featuring analytical, self-absorbed baby-boomer characters.


  • Moonstruck, Wall Street, The Last Emperor, Fatal Attraction



  • Prozac released for use in US by Eli Lilly & Company. Background: Health & Nutrition
  • AZT wins FDA approval for use in the treatment of AIDS.
  • An international treaty signed in Montreal calls for a 50% reduction in the use of CFCs by the year 2000 (Sept. 16). Background: environmentalism
  • Richard Branson and Per Lindstrand make the first transatlantic hot-air balloon flight. 2,790 miles from Sugarloaf Mountain, Maine, to Ireland Virgin Atlantic Flyer (July 2–4). Background: Famous Firsts in Aviation




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