1970s Trivia and Facts

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about the 70s

Seventies trivia is abundant in the Trivial Pursuit board game, but there's no specific edition dedicated to the decade like you'll find with the '60s, '80s, or '90s. I'm not sure why this is the case, as the '70s were an eventful decade filled with all manner of developments in history, politics, and pop culture. Maybe the folks at Hasbro have something against disco.

Since there's no '70s trivia game from Trivial Pursuit, it looks as though I'll have to step in and fill the void. Below, you'll find a wide range of questions about the 1970s, and you're encouraged to print them off and take turns answering them with friends. Learning these facts about the '70s could result in an interesting dinner conversation, or it might be a fun way to pass the time on a road trip. But no matter what you use them for, you should come away a little wiser about the decade nestled between the turbulent '60s and the economic growth of the '80s.

Which sometimes androgynous singer achieved a number one hit in the U.S. with "Fame" in 1975?

David Bowie enjoyed massive crossover success in the U.S. with "Fame" (from the album Young Americans). He would go on to sell over 140 million albums during his lengthy and eclectic career.

Which natural disaster claimed the most lives during the 1970s?

In 1970, the Bhola cyclone struck West Bengal and East Pakistan and claimed an estimated 500,000 lives. It is the deadliest cyclone in recorded history, and it currently ranks fifth as the worst natural disaster of all time. The 1976 earthquake in Tangshan, China ranks ninth on the list.

Which three teams won the FIFA World Cup during the '70s?

During the 1970s, the FIFA World Cup was won by Brazil (1970), West Germany (1974), and Argentina (1978).

Eleven Israeli athletes were abducted and eventually murdered during what 1972 event?

The 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, Germany. The culprits were members of a Palestinian terrorist group known as Black September. Nine of the hostages were killed during a botched rescue attempt, along with five of the eight terrorists.

Which author launched in career in 1974 with the publication of a book about a teenage girl with psychic powers?

The author was Stephen King and the novel was Carrie. King would later write 50 novels and nearly 200 short stories (and counting).

Who was the first woman to lead a major political party in the United Kingdom?

Margaret Thatcher became the leader of the Conservative Party in 1975 and the first female Prime Minister in 1979.

Starting on January 2nd, 1971, which product was banned from television and radio advertising?

Cigarette advertising was banned after Congress passed the Public Health Cigarette Smoking Act. As of this writing, the ban continues.

Which bloody nine-year conflict began with Soviet troops being deployed on December 24th, 1979?

The Soviet War in Afghanistan would eventually claim the lives of between 600,000 and 2,000,000 Afghan and Soviet troops, making it one of the deadliest conflicts in human history.

In 1973, who became the only U.S. Vice President in history to resign because of criminal charges?

Spiro Agnew resigned after pleading no contest to one charge of income tax fraud, although he was also initially charged with extortion, bribery, and conspiracy. He was replaced by Gerald Ford, who would later become President after Richard Nixon was forced to resign.

What Ugandan dictator seized power in 1971?

Idi Amin became ruler of Uganda after a military coup and held the position until 1979. During his regime, it's estimated that between 100,000 and 500,000 people were murdered.

On November 4th, 1979, 52 members of the American embassy were taken hostage in what country?

Iran. Known as the Iran Hostage Crisis, the situation lasted for 444 days and became a fixture on American news broadcasts. The hostages were released while President Ronald Reagan was giving his inaugural address.

Which American university saw National Guard troops open fire on students, killing four and wounding nine?

Kent State University in Kent, Ohio. This occurred on May 4th, 1970 during protests over the U.S. invasion of Cambodia during the Vietnam War.

Which two performers won Best Actor Oscars in the 1970s but refused to accept them?

George C. Scott won for "Patton" in 1970, while Marlon Brando won for "The Godfather" in 1972. Scott refused to accept on the grounds that actors shouldn't be measured by competition, while Brando declined as a protest over Hollywood's depiction of Native Americans.

What movie soundtrack topped the charts for 24 straight weeks in 1978?

Saturday Night Fever: The Original Movie Sound Track sold over 15 million copies, generated five number one hits on the pop charts, and remained the top soundtrack album for 15 years (when it was surpassed by The Bodyguard).

Which NFL team won the most Super Bowls during the 1970s?

The Pittsburgh Steelers won the Super Bowl in 1975, 1976, and 1979. All of these championship teams were coached by Chuck Noll and quarterbacked by Terry Bradshaw.

What was the highest-grossing film of the 1970s?

"Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope" was the highest-grossing film of the 1970s. Made on a budget of $11 million, this sci-fi classic would earn $460 million in the U.S. and another $314 million abroad.

Which two boxers participated in the legendary 1975 bout known as the Thrilla in Manila?

Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier. This was the third and final time the pair would meet in the ring, and Ali won by TKO when Frazier's corner stopped the fight after the 14th round (just moments before Ali's corner was about to do the same).

If you came here in the mood for '70s trivia, I hope this article provided the necessary fix. The seventies were an exciting decade marked by social and political upheaval, as well as innovations in science, technology, and the arts. Trivial Pursuit isn't blind to that fact, which is why most of their editions include a healthy dose of questions set during the period.

More Trivia by Decade

1960s

1980s

1990s