- Osama bin Laden, terrorist
- March 25 - Treaty of Rome establishes the European Economic Community (EEC); see EU
- International Geophysical Year
- October 4 - launch of Sputnik I, the first artificial satellite to orbit the Earth.
- November 1 -- Michigan's Mackinac Bridge opened.
- Physics - Chen Ning Yang, - Tsung-Dao Lee
- Chemistry- Lord Alexander R Todd
- Medicine - Daniel Bovet
- Literature - Albert Camus
- Peace - Lester Bowles Pearson