Astronaut John Glenn presented President Kennedy with this Model of the Mercury spacecraft Friendship 7 on Atlas 6 booster rocket, painted silver and red, on round black base.
The Friendship 7 model is at the JFK Presidential Library and Museum in Boston, Massachusetts.
JFK Chooses the Moon
Today in history, President John F. Kennedy delivered a speech at Rice University on the nation’s space effort. In one of the most memorable passages JFK said:
"We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard…"
Images: Lunar sample made of mare basalt encased in a glass pyramid with rectangular base. This piece of moon rock was brought back to earth by Apollo 15 mission on August 7, 1971. The rock, called “breccia”, weighs 160 grams and is more than three billion years old. Courtesy of NASA Lunar Sample Display Program.
President John F. Kennedy Speaks at Rice University. 9/12/62.
"We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard,
because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills,
because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win … ”
President John F. Kennedy
To Boldly Name…
With the first space shuttle ready to be unveiled in September 1976, President Ford was asked to approve the craft’s name before meeting with NASA administrator Dr. James Fletcher.
Fans of “Star Trek” had sent NASA hundreds of thousands of letters requesting that the space shuttle be named “Enterprise” after Captain James T. Kirk’s starship. Several of the President’s advisers also noted that the name had a long association with U.S. Navy vessels dating back to the Revolutionary War.
President Ford officially signed off on the name “Enterprise” on September 8, 1976.
View documents about the naming of the Space Shuttle “Enterprise” from the Presidential Handwriting File at http://www.fordlibrarymuseum.gov/library/document/0047/phw19760908-01.pdf
-from the Ford Library
Ike Signs the NASA Act - Today in History
On July 29, 1958, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the National Aeronautics and Space Act of 1958 establishing the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Woot!
President Eisenhower Presents NASA Commissions to Dr. T. Keith Glennan as the first administrator for NASA and Dr. Hugh L. Dryden as deputy administrator. Courtesty of NASA.
Mr. Speaker, let us all salute Neil Armstrong, Ed Aldrin and Mike Collins and pray for a safe splashdown in the Pacific on Thursday. But let us also say a prayer for Roger Chaffee, Gus Grissom and Ed White and pay tribute to them for the heroic contributions they made so that Eagle might land on the moon and return to planet earth.
Statement by Representative Gerald R. Ford regarding the Apollo 11 space flight, placed in the body of the Congressional Record of Tuesday, July 22, 1969.
Let us all salute Neil Armstrong, Ed Aldrin, Mike Collins, Roger Chaffee, Gus Grissom and Ed White.
"IN EVENT OF MOON DISASTER"
Unbeknownst to the American people, one President Nixon’s speechwriters, William Safire, was asked to write a statement that the President would make to the American people in the event of a disaster and the Apollo 11 astronauts were stranded on the Moon. Though never delivered, it remains an eloquent tribute to the bravery and pioneering spirit of the astronauts. When the astronauts of Apollo 11 returned safely to earth, their mission was hailed around the world as an achievement of epic proportions, and this statement was quietly tucked away into the record.
JFK Visits Cape Canaveral
On what would be his last visit to Cape Canaveral, President Kennedy is briefed by Dr. Wernher Von Braun regarding the Saturn rocket on November 16, 1963.
Pictured: (L-R) Associate Administrator of National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Dr. Robert C. Seamans, Jr.; Senator George Smathers of Florida; unidentified (mostly hidden); President Kennedy; Administrator of NASA James E. Webb; Dr. Von Braun (partially hidden); Deputy Administrator of NASA Dr. Hugh L. Dryden; Military Aide to the President Chester V. Clifton. (Cecil Stoughton/JFK Library)
-from the Kennedy Library