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Ekstrom Library

Government Resources: History: The Cold War

Cold War Timeline

1945 - Atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan to end World War II

1946 - Churchill gives Iron Curtain Speech

1949 - Soviet Union explodes atomic bomb

1952 - United States explodes hydrogen bomb

1953 - Soviet Union explodes hydrogen bomb

1956 - Khrushchev tells U.S. “We will bury you.”

1957 - World’s first satellite, Sputnik, launched by Soviet Union

1959 - Nikita Khrushchev visits USA

Destruction at Hiroshima Sputnik satellite Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev Watching a missile test launch

1961 - Soviet Union places first man in space, Yuri Gagarin

1961 - Berlin Wall built

1962 - Cuban Missile Crisis

1962 - First Minuteman Missiles become active on October 27th in Montana

1969 - U.S. lands on moon

1972 - SALT I agreement signed - first treaty limiting nuclear arms

1972 - U.S. President Richard Nixon visits Moscow

1973 - Yom Kippur War, U.S. forces go on worldwide alert

1975 - Soviet hydrogen bomb creator Andrei Sakharov gets Nobel Peace Prize

1983 - U.S. President Reagan proposes Star Wars

1986 - Chernobyl nuclear power plant meltdown disaster

1987 - Reagan gives “Tear Down that Wall” speech in Berlin

1989 - Berlin Wall comes down

1990 - Germany reunifies

1991 - START Treaty signed by U.S. President George H.W.

Bush and Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev

1992 - Declaration ending the Cold War signed by the Soviet

Union and the U.S.

Source: National Park Service

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