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1983 History/Videos

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1983 The worlds most popular word processing program is launched Microsoft Word. Following on from the start of the recession in the US Unemployment Rises to 12 million. In Ethiopia following the worst drought in history the death toll reaches a staggering 4 million. The US starts deploying Cruise Missiles and Pershing Missiles in Europe at the Greenham Common Air Force Base in England and West Germany amid mass protests

Cost of Living 1983

How Much things cost in 1983
Yearly Inflation Rate USA 3.22%
Year End Close Dow Jones Industrial Average 1258
Interest Rates Year End Federal Reserve 11.00%
Average Cost of new house $82,600.00
Average Income per year $21,070.00
Average Monthly Rent $335.00
Dodge RAM 50 Truck $5,665.00



What Events Happened in 1983

  • The U.S. Embassy is bombed in Beirut, killing 63 people
  • Unemployment Rises in the US to 12 million the highest figure since 1941
  • IRA Bomb Exploded outside Harrods during the pre Christmas Shopping Season
  • Hurricane Alicia hits the Texas coast, killing 22
  • Ethiopia Appeals for world Aid for when the death toll reaches 4 million
  • The Worlds Population is estimated at 4.72 billion
  • China's Population reaches 1 billion
  • Civil War breaks out in Zimbabwe
  • A 5.2 earthquake hits Central New York
  • Richard Noble sets a new land speed record of 633.468 mph, driving Thrust 2 at the Black Rock Desert, Nevada.
  • Due to the deployment of Cruise Missiles in the UK CND organizes marches and rallies with over 200,000 attending.
  • A Terrorist attack by a suicide bomber destroys the United States Embassy in Beirut, killing 63
  • The first mobile phones, are introduced to the public by the Motorola Company.
  • Breakfast TV starts in UK with the BBC Breakfast Time and TV-am
  • Sally Ride becomes first American woman in space on the Space Shuttle Challenger.
  • The US deploys Cruise Missiles in Europe at the Greenham Common Air Force Base in England and Deploys Pershing Missiles in West Germany
  • President Ronald Reagan proposes the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI)
  • Margaret Thatcher wins landslide victory in General Elections in the UK

Popular Culture 1983

  • Final Episode of M*A*S*H airs record 125 million watch
  • Cabbage Patch Dolls are sold in shops and become a success
  • West German news magazine Stern publish the Hitler Diaries which turn out to be Forgeries

Popular Films

  • Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
  • Tootsie
  • Trading Places
  • WarGames
  • Superman III
  • Flashdance
  • Staying Alive
  • Octopussy
  • National Lampoon's Vacation
  • Never Say Never Again
  • Terms of Endearment
  • Yentl
  • Educating Rita

Popular Musicians

  • Phil Collins
  • The Police with " Every Breath that you take "
  • Hot Chocolate
  • Big Country
  • Black Sabbath
  • David Bowie
  • Johnny Cash
  • Culture Club
  • Duran Duran
  • Elton John
  • Pink Floyd
  • Ozzy Osbourne
  • Lionel Richie with " All Night Long "
  • Rod Stewart
  • Michael Jackson with "Beat It and Billy Jean"
  • The Moody Blues
  • Bob Marley and the Wailers

Technology 1983

  • ARPANET officially changes to use the Internet Protocol, creating the Internet.
  • Lotus 1-2-3 is released
  • IBM releases the IBM PC XT
  • US Space Shuttle Challenger is launched on it's maiden flight
  • Microsoft Word is first released
  • The First Person to Receive an Artificial Heart Barney Clark US dies after 112 days
  • Swatch introduce their first watches


Research for this year is provided by The People History.
See History By Year and Decade for more prices and information.
Find out more about the 80s at ThePeopleHistory.com.