May 17, 1954

In a landmark case, Brown v. Board of Education, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously rules that segregation in schools is unconstitutional.

July 1954

Lavon Weber, who grew up during the great drought of the early 30s on an Oklahoma Dust Bowl farm, starts selling Tupperware.


Anna and Howard Tate leave Stanley Home Products. Howard is appointed to the Tupperware staff.

September 1955

Lavon and Bob Weber are promoted to a distributorship in Wichita, Kansas.

Sylvia Boyd
Courtesy of Jon and Sylvia Boyd

Sylvia Boyd

Sylvia Boyd starts selling Tupperware.

July 1956

Tupperware holds the Wish Fairy Jubilee.

August 22, 1956

The Tupperware Wish Fairy appears on "The Steve Allen Show."


The Soviets launch a space satellite called Sputnik.

Brownie Wise
Jerry Wise Collection

Brownie Wise

Brownie Wise is fired from Tupperware Home Parties, Inc. She launches Cinderella, a direct sales cosmetics company.

Tupperware holds its Full Sales Jubilee, with a pirate theme.

FBI director J. Edgar Hoover publishes Masters of Deceit: The Story of Communism in America and How to Fight It.

July 1958

Earl Tupper sells Tupperware to the Rexall Drug and Chemical Company for $16 million and buys himself an island in Central America.


Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev and American vice president Richard Nixon hold their "Kitchen Debate" about the relative merits of capitalism and communism.


Jon and Sylvia Boyd are promoted to a distributorship in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy is elected president.

May 1960

The U.S. Food and Drug Administation approves the birth control pill.


President Kennedy establishes a Presidential Commission on the Status of Women, and names former first lady Eleanor Roosevelt its chair.

May 25, 1961

President Kennedy announces he plans to put a man on the moon and return him to Earth before the end of the decade, and before the Soviets do.

October 1962

The Cuban Missile Crisis erupts after the discovery of Soviet ballistic missiles in Cuba. Public and private diplomacy defuses the crisis and pulls the world back from the brink of nuclear war.


Elsie Mortland helps bring Tupperware sales to Mexico and Guatemala.

Congress passes the Equal Pay Act, which prohibits sex-based wage discrimination between men and women in the same establishment who are performing under similar working conditions.

Betty Friedan publishes The Feminine Mystique.

The Mary Kay home party cosmetics company is started, modeled on the direct sales success of Tupperware.

November 22, 1963

President Kennedy is assassinated in Dallas, Texas.


President Lyndon Johnson pushes the Civil Rights Act of 1964 through Congress. He also issues an executive order laying out his policy of equal employment opportunity for all Americans.


Elsie Mortland helps bring Tupperware sales to Hong Kong.


Li Walker brings Tupperware to the Phillipines.

The National Organization for Women is established.


The first issue of Ms. Magazine hits the newsstands.


Earl Tupper moves to Costa Rica.

Congress passes the Equal Rights Amendment and sends it to the states for ratification.


Congress passes the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.


Congress amends the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to prohibit discrimination because of pregnancy.

The World Federation of Direct Selling Associations is formed.


Earl Tupper dies.

Sylvia Boyd is appointed to the Tupperware staff, becoming only the third female regional vice president in company history.


The U.S. Supreme Court rules that sexual harassment is a form of illegal job discrimination.


Brownie Wise dies.


The Direct Selling Women's Association is formed.

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