Life Timeline

For those born January 1, 1962.

Not your birthday? Find your timeline here.

1961
Before you were born

You're one of the first people who's never lived in a world without human spaceflight.

In April 2011, The Atlantic editors collected essays about human spaceflight on the 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin's historic trip.

1962
Year 55

You were born in January of 1962. This year, The Atlantic celebrates its 160th birthday, making it 3 times as old as you.

The year you were born, Robert Moses, the controversial and influential city planner who shaped the development of New York City, defended his vision for the American city.

1962
Beginnings

Around the time you were born, the United States embargo against Cuba came into effect.

In March 2016, Clare Foran wrote about President Barack Obama's visit to Cuba, which ended the trade embargo.

1969

NASA

Man on the Moon

At 7 years old, you were alive to behold people walking on the moon.

Over the years, the moon landing has come to be lauded as the pinnacle of human achievement, although it was often derided at the time. In 1963, NASA astronauts took to The Atlantic to plead the case for landing on the moon.

1975

John Springer Collection / Corbis via Getty

The teenage years

This is what Hollywood thought teenagers looked like the year you became one.

Cooley High was released in 1975.

1980
Coming of age

Around your 18th birthday, U.S. President Jimmy Carter initiated a grain embargo against the Soviet Union with the support of the European Commission.

In June 1980, George McGovern wrote about the inadequacy of the Carter administration's policies toward the Soviet Union.

1986

Stefan Wermuth / Reuters

Contemporaries

In 1986, Tom Cruise, who was born the same year as you, starred in the film Top Gun.

In July 2015, David Sims wrote about how Cruise's Mission: Impossible franchise resists character development in favor of insane stunts.

1989
Half a life ago

Your life can be divided into two halves: before and after Game Boys.

In April 2014, Eric Levenson looked back on the games that popularized handheld gaming.

2007

NASA / JPL-Caltech / Space Science Institute

Across the Universe

When you turned 45, you watched humankind reach the outer solar system.

With NASA's Cassini-Huygens mission in 2005, humans landed a probe in the outer reaches of the solar system for the first time, a moment Ross Andersen called the most glorious mission in the history of planetary science.

2025
Forecasts

By the time you turn 63, experts at the Pew Research Center warn that there will be no "surveillance-free spaces."

In December 2014, Adrienne LaFrance wrote about how the way we see privacy will change over the next decade.

Today
History in the making

History is happening all around you, every day.

The Atlantic is here to help you process it, in stories like these: