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Virtual Lecture – Operation Moonglow: The Politics of Project Apollo
May 4 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Sixty years ago, on May 5, 1961, Alan Shepard became the first American in space. A graduate of the US Naval Academy, Shepard challenged the Soviet Union’s lead in the Space Race and advanced US prestige. His flight also gave President Kennedy the confidence to propose Project Apollo just a few weeks later. We often remember Project Apollo as a feat of science and engineering, but from the very start, it was part of a broader geopolitical strategy to build alliances, win “hearts and minds,” and secure superpower status in the Cold War.
Dr. Teasel Muir-Harmony, Curator of the Apollo Collection at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, will trace the politics of Project Apollo, from President John F. Kennedy’s call in 1961 to win the battle “between freedom and tyranny” with lunar exploration, to President Richard Nixon’s “Operation Moonglow” diplomatic tour of Southeast Asia in 1969. Drawing on a rich array of untapped archives and firsthand interviews with Apollo astronauts, Operation Moonglow explores the intersection of spaceflight, geopolitics, propaganda, and diplomacy during the Cold War.
Cost: $15 per household for General Admission; $10 per household for HA Members and Volunteers (all fees and donations for this event support Historic Annapolis)