How Well Do You Remember the Groovy ’70s?


By: Maria Trimarchi

7 Min Quiz

Image: Tom Kelley Archive / Retrofile RF / Getty Images

About This Quiz

It was a time when no one was afraid to wear a pair of roller skates with their hot pants, when they got in touch with their emotions with a mood ring and danced to the drum-machine beats of disco out at the club.

Whether it was protesting the draft or uncovering a presidential political scandal or playing the game of PONG for the first time, the 1970s were a decade of upheaval as well as some major technological advances. Look at 1973 alone. "The Exorcist" was the most popular movie in the United States. And the arcade game "Space Race," which was the first racing video game, was released by Atari. But the price of oil—brace yourself—increased by an astonishing 200%.

So, play some funky music, put on your favorite pair of bell bottoms and cozy up in your pod chair. From NASA's Apollo 13 moon mission to Farrah Faucett's now-iconic feathered hair to paying a far out visit to a galaxy far, far, away, see how much you remember about (or have picked up along the way) the '70s. Do us a solid and take this quiz—and we'll catch you on the flip side.

Which film helped kickstart the Disco Era?

Disco emerged as some of the most popular music of the decade after the film "Saturday Night Fever" hit theaters in 1977. Its soundtrack, featuring the Bee Gees, was the best-selling album until Michael Jackson's "Thriller" was released in 1982.


What popular resort opened near Orlando, Florida, on October 1, 1971?

California's Disneyland, in Anaheim, opened in 1955 and was Disney's complex through the 1960s. When it opened on October 1, 1971, the Walt Disney World Resort included The Magic Kingdom, Disney's Contemporary Resort, Disney's Polynesian Resort and Disney's Fort Wilderness and Campground.


Which band, famous for songs like "Hey Jude" and "I Want To Hold Your Hand," announced they'd disbanded in 1970?

Made up of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, The Beatles formed in Liverpool in 1960. In the mid-60s, they led what was called the "British Invasion," but by 1970, the best-selling band in history called it quits.


In the '70s, what would you say if your friend said something you agree with?

If you found yourself agreeing with something in the '70s, you said, "Right on!" The phrase was used as a response to something you thought was totally groovy. (The phrase "up your nose with a rubber hose," on the other hand, was popularized by the TV show, "Welcome Back, Kotter."


In 1974, high-wire artist Philippe Petit completed a high-wire walk between which two buildings in New York City?

On August 7, 1974, high-wire artist Philippe Petit stepped out on a tightrope that'd been rigged between the New York World Trade Center's Twin Towers—1,312 feet above the ground. He made it, but the whole event was illegal, and he was arrested on the other side (all charges were dismissed).


Pac-Man was the best-selling game on which home video game console introduced in 1977?

In autumn of 1977, Atari released its Atari 2600 game console. At launch, there were nine titles available—it originally came packaged with "Combat." Overall, popular titles included "Space Invaders," "Pitfall," and "Pac-Man." It went on to be inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame in 2007, and in 2009, IGN named it the No. 2 console of all time.


In 1971, the 26th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified, changing the voting age to what?

Citing rising pressure from groups arguing young Americans were drafted to fight in the Vietnam War before they were even old enough to vote, the United States Congress ratified the 26th Amendment on July 1, 1971. The change adjusted the legal voting age from 21 years to 18 years, in all federal and state elections.


On May 4, 1970, members of the Ohio National Guard opened fire on students at what university?

On May 4, 1970, four Kent State University students were fatally shot and nine more were injured when 28 members of the Ohio National Guard fired on a crowd of about 500 who were protesting the bombing of Cambodia by U.S. military forces.


College dropouts Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak created what computer company in 1976?

On April 1, 1976, college dropouts Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, with Ronald Wayne, founded Apple Computers, Inc. (now Apple Inc.), in Cupertino, California. In 1977, the popular Apple II, one of the world's first mass-produced computers, made its debut.


Which car was made famous in the 1977 movie, "Smokey and the Bandit," starring Burt Reynolds?

Sales of the Pontiac Trans Am reached record levels the year following the release of the hit movie, "Smokey and the Bandit," which starred Burt Reynolds, Sally Field, and Jackie Gleason. The T/A option had a 200 hp 6.6-liter V8 engine under the hood—and, of course, a giant "Screaming Chicken" on top.


U.S. involvement in what war ended on April 30, 1975?

On April 30, 1975, the remaining Americans, who were 10 U.S. Marines, left Vietnam, signaling the end of the U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War. The communist forces of North Vietnam won, leading Cambodia, Laos and South Vietnam to become communist states.


In which 1977 film did director George Lucas introduce us to "a galaxy far, far away..."?

About a decade after this super-popular sci-fi movie premiered in theaters, it would become one of the first movies chosen by the Library of Congress to be preserved in its newly-created National Film Registry. It would be followed by two sequels, "The Empire Strikes Back" in 1980 and "Return of the Jedi" in 1983, as well as a prequel trilogy, a sequel trilogy, and various other films and TV.


During which political scandal were White House operatives caught burglarizing the Democratic National Committee?

After tapes revealed that the president of the United States and his top aides were involved in covering up a burglary at the Democratic National Committee office in the Watergate complex, Nixon resigned before he could be impeached. Although Nixon did not face prison, a few of his top advisors did time.


The Thrilla In Manila boxing match was fought between Joe Frazier and which other heavyweight?

On October 1, 1975, heavyweights Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier stepped into the ring in their third and final match, at the Araneta Coliseum in the Philippines. In the end, Ali won 2-1, with a TKO in the 14th round.


Who won the 1973 "Battle of the Sexes" tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs?

On September 20, 1973, at the Houston Astrodome, Billy Jean King defeated Bobby Riggs in a Battle of the Sexes tennis match—in just three sets: 6–4, 6–3, 6–3. Riggs viewed the match against a woman as a publicity stunt and claimed after the loss that he didn't take it seriously.


Each of these musicians died of drug overdose at the age of 27, in 1970, except who?

Known as the "27 Club," its members are those actors, musicians or artists who all coincidentally and tragically died at the age of 27. Robert Johnson, the blues musician, was the first member of the club back in 1938.


Which swimmer set seven World Records and was the first ever to win seven gold medals at any Olympic games, at the Summer Olympics in Munich, Germany, in 1972?

In addition to winning at the Munich Games, Mark Spitz continued to compete and was named World Swimmer of the Year in 1969, 1971, and 1972. After 36 years, Spitz's record was broken by Michael Phelps with eight gold medals wins at the 2008 Beijing Games.


Who hit his 715th home run on April 8, 1974, officially passing Babe Ruth's MLB record?

From Mobile, Alabama to the Milwaukee Braves, Henry "Hank" Aaron, who was known as the "Hammer," surpassed Babe Ruth's record with his 715th home run hit in April 1974. Aaron's record reached the .300 mark in batting 14 times, 90 RBI 16 times and 30 home runs 15 times—and he captured three Gold Glove Awards along the way.


On March 28, 1979, the Three Mile Island accident occurs in what state?

A combination of equipment failure, design-related problems and employee error led to the Three Mile Island Unit 2 reactor meltdown, on an island in the Susquehanna River near Middletown, Pennsylvania. The accident, which began at about 4:00 a.m. on March 28, 1979, is the most serious commercial nuclear power plant accident in our country's history.


What year did Americans celebrate the bicentennial of the United States?

On Sunday, July 4, 1976, Americans celebrated the 200th anniversary of the adoption of the country's Declaration of Independence. Events included Operation Sail in New York City, as well as a Bicentennial Wagon Train that traveled around the country.


What transportation company formed to take passengers around the country, in 1971?

The National Railroad Passenger Corporation, known as Amtrak, is a consolidation of the existing 20-passenger railroads in the U.S. and was originally established under the Congressional Rail Passenger Service Act. The first train pulled out of the station on May 1, 1971.


When the U.S. was affected by a full oil embargo by members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, called OPEC, what was in short supply?

When the members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries—or OPEC—put an oil embargo on the United States and several other countries in October 1973, the result led to short supply of gasoline and heating oil, leading to skyrocketing prices.


Who rose to the presidency when President Richard M. Nixon resigned from office on August 8, 1974?

Born Leslie Lynch King Jr. on July 14, 1913, in Omaha, Nebraska, it was Gerald Ford who was sworn in as America's 38th president after Richard Nixon resigned in disgrace. In September 1974, Ford pardoned Nixon.


Which was the first cable TV network in the U.S.?

When it launched in 1972, Home Box Office—known most commonly as HBO—was the first premium cable (pay-television) network in the United States. Just three years later, HBO began to be delivered to homes nationwide via satellite transmission. By the end of the decade, 21 major markets around the country were wired with cable and nearly 16 million homes were cable subscribers.


Due to unfortunate lightning strikes, which East Coast city endured a 25-hour blackout on July 13 and July 14, 1977?

Multiple unlucky lightning strikes plunged most of New York City and its surrounding area into darkness on July 13 - 14, 1977, during a brutal summer heatwave. The result of the 25-hour blackout ended with citywide looting, arson, violence and other criminal acts.


Which song by the Sugarhill Gang is commonly credited for hip-hop's rise in popularity?

When Big Bank Hank, Wonder Mike and Master Gee laid down their rhymes over Chic's No. 1 hit "Good Times," hip-hop culture had a hit—in fact, the 14-minute single hit Billboard's charts in October 1979.


In April 1975, Bill Gates and Paul Allen founded which company known for its Windows operating system?

Bill Gates and his childhood friend Paul Allen founded Microsoft, a computer software company, in April 1975. By 1987, Bill Gates became the world's youngest billionaire at age 31.


What skyscraper was the tallest building in the world when it was built in 1973?

Built as (and still commonly referred to as) the Sears Tower, the Willis Tower, named so in 2009, is a 110-story, 1,450-foot skyscraper located at 233 South Wacker Drive in downtown Chicago. When it was completed in 1973, it was the tallest building in the world until it was surpassed in 1998 by the Petronas Twin Towers located in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.


Which football team's "immaculate reception" gave them a victory in the AFC Divisional playoffs against the Oakland Raiders in 1972?

On December 23, 1972, the Pittsburgh Steelers were losing to the Oakland Raiders, facing a 4th and 10 in the AFC Divisional playoff game at the Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In one of the most famous plays in football, the Steelers running back Franco Harris caught the ball in an "immaculate reception," leading the Steelers to a 13-7 victory.


What was the name of NASA's first space shuttle, introduced in 1976?

Construction began in June 1974, and the Enterprise, the first orbiter built as part of the Space Shuttle program, was introduced on September 17, 1976—although it was rolled out without such critical things as engines or a heat shield. Originally to be named Constitution, it was given the name Enterprise after fans of Star Trek took up a letter-writing campaign.


Louise Brown, born in 1978, is known for being the first person born after conception by what?

Born July 25, 1978, Louise Brown became the very first human to be conceived using in vitro fertilization, better known as IVF. Since her birth, roughly 8 million babies have also been born using the technique.


What is the name given to the fossilized hominid, of the species Australopithecus afarensis, found in Ethiopia in 1974?

Evidence for walking upright, called bipedalism, early on in human evolution was found when a fossilized hominid was discovered in the Afar region of Ethiopia in 1974—an idea that shook up what was popular belief at the time. Named AL 288-1 or "Lucy," this example of the species Australopithecus afarensis was discovered by paleoanthropologist Donald Johanson.


Which was the first space station launched by the U.S.?

Skylab, which launched into Earth orbit on May 14, 1973, and was occupied until February 1974, was the first space station designed, launched and operated by NASA. The station was created with a solar observatory, a workshop, and other systems critical for scientific experiments, as well as crew survival. In 1979, the station fell back to Earth and, on July 11, disintegrated during re-entry.


What nickname was given to 1970s, as a decade?

The 1970s got its nickname from an essay, "The 'Me' Decade and the Third Great Awakening," written by author Tom Wolfe. In it, he coins the phrase the 'Me Decade' to describe the many young people who were deciding to focus on themselves instead of the greater world.


In an important step toward better relations, what country did President Nixon visit in 1972?

After years of diplomatic isolation, President Richard Nixon traveled to Beijing for a week in 1972 in an effort to improve relations between the U.S. and the communist People’s Republic of China (PRC).


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