A Popular Culture Time Line of the United States and The World during the production of the Chevrolet CosworthVega

March 26, 1975 through July 31, 1976

A Chevrolet Vega Time Capsule

March 26, 1975: Ken Russell's Tommy, which is based on the rock opera by The Who, premieres in London, England

April 1975: Miller Brewing Co. begins to market Miller Lite Beer.

April 5, 1975: Chiang Kai-shek dies.

April 8, 1975: The Godfather Part II becomes the first film sequel to win best picture at Academy Awards.

April 15, 1975: Karen Ann Quinlan lapses into a coma after mixing alcohol and small doses of Librium and Valium. She stays alive for the next eight years.

April 19, 1975: U.S. bicentennial celebration includes re-enactment of the battles of Lexington and Concord.

April 19, 1975: "The Hustle" by Van McCoy debuts on Billboard charts.

April 30, 1975: Emergency helicopter evacuation removes last 1,000 American troops from Saigon. A few hours later, South Vietnamese government surrenders.

April 30, 1975: Starsky and Hutch pilot airs on ABC-TV starring Michael Glaser as Starsky and David Soul as Hutchinson (Hutch) as two tough policemen on a search for the person who has trying to get them killed. Michael Conrad, who later plays Sgt. Esterhaus on Hill Street Blues co-stars.

May 1975: After rejecting names like "The Portable Crushers" and "The Vague Dots," David Byrne, Tina Weymouth, and Chris Franz settle on "The Talking Heads," which they found in an old issue of TV Guide.

May 4, 1975: Moe Howard of "The Three Stooges" dies.

May 13, 1975: Country music pioneer Bob Wills dies.

May 25, 1975: Alaska okays private use of marijuana.

June 1975: Jaws and Nashville are released.

June 4, 1975: The Rolling Stones become first band from the West to receive royalties from the Soviet Union.

June 21, 1975: "Love Will Keep Us Together" by the Captain and Tennille hits Number 1 on Billboard's Top 40. The couple, Daryl Dragon and Toni Tennille had met while singing back-up for The Beach Boys in the early 1970s. Unsigned to a major label, they were married Valentine's Day 1974 while driving through 22 states to promote their single "The Way I Want to Touch You." A&M Records eventually signs them and rereleases single.

June 26, 1975: Sonny and Cher's divorce is finalized.

June 28, 1975: Rod Serling, creator/host of The Twilight Zone and Night Gallery dies. Right before his death, Serling had been involved in an ABC-TV summer comedy series, "Keep On Truckin", but died of complications following open-heart surgery before the series began.

June 30, 1975: Cher marries Gregg Allman.

July 4, 1975: Hardware store owner Harold Keith Davisson seals a time capsule containing a Chevrolet Vega, a blue Kawasaki motorcycle, a Teflon frying pan, and a blue leisure suit among other things, to be opened in 2025. (HOME Top of Page)

July 5, 1975: Bad Company releases single, "Feel Like Makin' Love."

July 10, 1975: Cher files for divorce from Gregg Allman. She accuses him of moonlighting with an old flame

July 17, 1975: U.S. and Soviet astronauts team up for Apollo/Soyuz space mission.

July 31, 1975: Former teamster president Jimmy Hoffa is reported missing.

August 1975: Shop owner/music manager Malcolm McLaren nicknames singer John Lydon as "Johnny Rotten" after telling him "You're rotten, you are." (He names Lydon's band, "The Sex Pistols.")

August 11, 1975: Aerosmith's album, "Toys In The Attic," goes gold.

August 16, 1975: Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin, his wife, and two children almost die in car wreck in Greece.

August 26, 1975: TV series Adam 12, starring Kent McCord as Officer Reed and Martin Milner as Officer Malloy, ends after seven-year run. In this episode, an ex-convict living on skid row seeks out his acquaintance, Malloy with a request: He wants to go "home"--to a federal prison.

August 30, 1975: "Get Down Tonight" by Miami, Florida-based KC and the Sunshine Band hits Number 1 on Billboard's Top 40.

September 1975: Space 1999 premieres as a syndicated series. The Mission Impossible team of Martin Landau and Barbara Bain reunite in a series whose credibility is heightened by authentic-looking sets, Rudi Genreich's costumes, and for television, spectacular special effects. On Moonbase Alpha, which monitors lunar storage sites for atomic wastes shuttled from Earth, Commander Koenig (Landau) and Dr. Russell (Bain) oversee an 11th hour attempt to avert an explosion that could blast the moon out of its orbit.

September 1975: Dog Day Afternoon is released

September 1975: Gerry Cross starts Senior Year in college. His hometown Chevy dealer won't let him sit in their 1975 Cosworth, even though he bought a new 1974 Vega Kammback at their dealership in May, 1974.

September 5, 1975: Former Manson cult figure Lynette "Squeaky" Fromme attempts to kill President Ford in Sacramento. He is on his way to address the California Legislature about starting a national effort to curb violent crimes, including stricter gun control laws.

September 8, 1975: Sigmund and the Sea Monsters premieres on Saturday morning TV. Disowned by his family for his inability to scare humans, Sigmund, a sea monster, leaves home (a cave by Dead Man's point) and begins to wander along Cyprus Beach in California. He is found by Johnny (Johnny Whitaker of Family Affair fame) and Scott (Scott Kolden), two brothers who befriend him and decide to keep him. The series relates to the efforts of Johnny and Scott to keep Sigmund’s presence a secret and protect him from his family--who deviously scheme to retrieve him when emergencies arise that require his presence at home. (Also co-starred Margaret Hamilton, best known as The Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz, who plays Miss Eddels, the Stuart family's nosey neighbor.)

September 9, 1975: First episode of Welcome Back Kotter airs on ABC-TV. Comic Gabe Kaplan stars as Gabe Kotter, a fledgling high school teacher saddled with classroom terrors who are much like he was when he attended the same school 10 years before. Marcia Strassman plays his wife Julie. In this opening episode, Gabe's academic misfits are challenged to a formal debate on the topic "Resolved: Humans are basically aggressive." (Also the national debut of John Travolta, who plays student Vinnie Barbarino--later to be in Saturday Night Fever.)

September 18, 1975: Patricia Hearst is arrested in San Francisco.

September 22, 1975: Sara Jane Moore attempts to assassinate President Ford.

September 26, 1975: The film The Rocky Horror Picture Show premieres at the United Artists Westwood Theatre in Los Angeles.

September 30, 1975: Home Box Office begins programming across U.S.

October 9, 1975: Sean Ono Lennon is born

October 11, 1975: NBC's Saturday Night premieres. It is described in TV Guide as "a variety series that blends a range of musical acts with a topical brand of comedy." George Carlin is the host for the opener, which features singers Janis Ian, performing her hit "At Seventeen" and Billy Preston three "new talent" segments; and sketches and blackouts from regulars Albert Brooks, Jim Henson and the Muppets, and a repertory group--Dan Ackroyd, John Belushi, Jane Curtin, Garrett Morris, Laraine Newman, and Gilda Radner. Lorne Michaels is the producer.

October 16, 1975: The First Women's Bank opens in New York as first American bank committed to economic parity for women.Among its clients are Bloomingdales, CBS, Inc., Ms. Magazine, The New York Times, Miller Brewing Co. and Mobil Oil Corp.

October 18, 1975: Simon and Garfunkel reunite on Saturday Night Live to play "My Little Town."

October 27, 1975: Time and Newsweek covers feature Bruce Springsteen.

October 31, 1975: Queen releases "Bohemian Rhapsody" in England.

November 1975: Roxy Music's "Love is a Drug" climbs to number 30 in Billboard Magazine's Top 100.

November 1975: Betamax home video recording system by Sony first appears in America. People who wish to purchase it must buy it in a console that also includes a Sony color TV. Cost is up to $2,295.

November 1975: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest is released.

November 6, 1975: The Sex Pistols have first gig at St. Martin's Art College in London, England. Show is arranged by Malcolm McLaren.

November 10, 1975: United Nations adopts resolution that equates Zionism with racism.

November 20, 1975: Generalissimo Francisco Franco dies.

December 1975: Joey Stivic is born to Mike and Gloria on TV series All in the Family.

November 23, 1975: Cher and David Bowie sing duets of "Fame, "Can You Hear Me," and "Young Americans" on her tv show.

December 1, 1975: Bette Midler has an emergency appendectomy.

December 16, 1975: One Day At A Time premieres on CBS-TV. The series, which is set in Indianapolis, Indiana, depicts incidents in the lives of Ann Romano (Bonnie Franklin), a 34-year-old divorcee and he two teenage daughters Julie (Mackenzie Phillips) and Barbara (Valerie Bertinelli). Cooper retains her maiden name while her daughters carry on their father's name. Mark Hamill, later of Luke Skywalker/Star Wars fame, makes sporadic appearances as Harvey, the nephew of nosey, posturing apartment building superintendent Dwayne Schneider (Pat Harrington).

December 17, 1975: Lynette "Squeaky" Fromme is sentenced to life in prison for attempted assassination of President Ford.
December 19, 1975: Ron Wood named as new guitarist for The Rolling Stones.

January 1, 1976: Robert Plant walks again, after a year in a wheelchair, following an auto accident a year earlier in Greece.

January 6, 1976: Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman premieres. The show by Norman Lear is described by The New York Times as "interesting innovation." Scene is lower middle class neighborhood in fictional Fernwood, Ohio. Mary (played by Louise Lasser) is a befuddled housewife who has an all-American husband, temporarily impotent, and a 12-year-old daughter.

January 10, 1976: "Convoy" by C.W. McCall hits Number 1 on Billboard's Top 40.

January 10, 1976: Howlin' Wolf dies in Chicago.

January 10, 1976: First lady Betty Ford makes a cameo appearance on The Mary Tyler Moor Show, as a tag to a story about Mary's trip to Washington D.C. with her boss, Lou Grant (played by Ed Asner).

January 14, 1976: The Bionic Woman premieres on ABC-TV. A spin-off from The Six Million Dollar Man, the show depicts the life of Jaime Sommers (played by Lindsay Wagner) who has undergone a special bionic operation to save her life and serves as a special agent for the O.S.I. (Office of Scientific Intelligence).

January 23, 1976: Donny and Marie premieres as a weekly variety hour of music, songs, and comedy sketches, hosted by Donny and Marie Osmond of the wholesome Osmond family. Regulars include Paul Lynde, The Osmond Brothers, and The Ice Vanities.

January 26, 1976: Forces backed by Western powers leave Angolan capital.

January 31, 1976: Gary Wright's "Dream Weaver" climbs into Billboard's Top 40. (It goes to gold March 8, 1976.)

February 1976: Martin Scorcese's Taxi Driver is released.

February 1, 1976: Rich Man, Poor Man premieres. A nine-part miniseries based on the novel by Irwin Shaw, the show follows the lives of the Jordache brothers: Rudy, the straight one who moves up the establishment ladder, and Tom, the troublemaker. The series, which is among the first miniseries innovations, simultaneously covers the changes in America from World War II through the mid-1960s.

February 12, 1976: Actor Sal Mineo is murdered in Los Angeles at age 37. He is best remembered for acting in films after a 1957 Top 10 hit with "Start Movin'."

February 12, 1976: Soviet-backed forces in Angola claim victory.

February 21, 1976: "Show Me The Way" by Peter Frampton is released as a single.

February 29, 1976: The book "Helter Skleter" hits #1 on best seller list.

March 9, 1976: Family airs on ABC-TV, featuring incidents in the complex day-to-day lives of the Lawrences, a middle-income family of six living at 1230 Holland St. in Pasadena, Calif. Cast includes James Broderick, Sada Thompson, Meredith Baxter-Birney, Gary Frank, and Kristy McNichol.

March 20, 1976: Patricia Hearst is found guilty of armed robbery and is sentenced to prison. (On February.. 1, 1979, she is released under executive clemency granted by President Jimmy Carter.)

March 21, 1976: Pilot for Charlie's Angels airs on ABC-TV. In this premiere episode, Sabrina Duncan (Kate Jackson), Jill Munroe (Farrah Fawcett), and Kelly Garrett (Jaclyn Smith) must put their lives on the line to find the body of a vineyard owner believed to have been killed by his former right-hand man.

March 29, 1976: Elizabeth Taylor closes Academy Awards ceremony by leading a salute to the U.S. bicentennial. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest is the big winner.

March 31, 1976: New Jersey Supreme Court rules unanimously that Karen Ann Quinlan's father can request she be removed from a respirator. It is turned off on June 10.

April 1976: "Swine flu" epidemic threatens the U.S. Washington D.C. responds by mounting a $135 million inoculation program. The warning turns out to be a false alarm.

April 1976: All the President's Men is released.

April 6, 1976: Howard Hughes dies.April 9, 1976: Folk singer Phil Ochs (I Ain't Marchin Any More) hangs himself.

April 22, 1976: The last convertible of the decade to roll off Detroit assembly line is a Cadillac Eldorado.

April 22, 1976: Anchor Barbara Walters gets $1 million deal with ABC-TV.

May 1976: Eight thousand supporters of the Equal Rights Amendment from 30 states convene in Springfield, Ill. to rally for its passage in Illinois, Indiana, and Missouri. Among them is Ms. Ginny Stroud, a history teacher at Robert E. Lee High School.

May 1976: The Man Who Fell to Earth starring David Bowie is released.

May 24, 1976: Concorde jet lands for first time in United States at Washington D.C.'s Dulles Airport.

May 25, 1976: U.S. Rep. Wayne Hays reveals that he is having an affair with his secretary, Elizabeth Ray.

June 1976: The Omen is released.

June 14, 1976: The Gong Show premieres on NBC-TV. Winner of this variety show of undiscovered talent hosted by Chuck Barris gets trophy and a check for $516.32. (The prize is eventually raised to $712.05.)

July 3-4, 1976: Israeli soldiers rescue Israeli passengers and French crew members of plane that is hijacked by Palestinian terrorists to Entebbe Airport in Uganda.

July 12-15, 1976: Jimmy Carter clinches Democratic nomination for U.S. president, with running mate Walter Mondale.

July 4, 1976: Operation Sail, part of U.S. bicentennial celebration, features hundreds of U.S. and foreign vessels making their way up New York's Hudson River.

July 10, 1976: Tavares' "Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel" hits Billboard's Top 40. The family R&B group from New Bedford, Massachusetts is named for its members, all of whom are brothers in the Tavares family.

July 12, 1976: Game show Family Feud premieres on ABC-TV, hosted by Richard Dawson. The game show features families competing to match answers given by people who have been quizzed in nationwide surveys

July 17, 1976: Heart releases single, "Magic Man."

July 20, 1976: The first of two U.S. Viking spacecraft land on Mars.

July 21-24, 1976: Mysterious ailment called "legionnaire's disease" kills 29 people attending American Legion convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Cause is found to be a bacterium on June 18, 1977.)

August 8, 1976: Boston releases its debut album, "Boston."

August 13, 1976: The Clash performs its first concert in London, England.

August 16-19, 1976: Gerald Ford and Sen. Robert Dole win Republican nomination for U.S. president

August 21, 1976: First French-European Punk Rock Festival is held. The Sex Pistols are not asked by promoters to play.

August 31, 1976: Pilot for TV series Alice airs on CBS-TV. Linda Lavin plays the title role in this show about a widowed mother who is working as a waitress in Mel's Diner in Phoenix, Arizona while waiting to resume her career as a piano-bar singer. The comedy, based on the 1974 Martin Scorcese movie Alice Doesn't Live Here Any More also stars Alfred Lutter as her son Tommy; Beth Howland as waitress Vera; Polly Holiday as waitress Flo; and Vic Tayback as Mel.

August 31, 1976: Judge rules that George Harrison subconsciously plagiarized The Chiffon's "He's So Fine" in writing his "My Sweet Lord."