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And Now You Know!
Bumper V-2, first launch from Cape Canaveral. This is your "launching pad" for all the answers to the NASA "firsts" quiz.

Learn more about these missions by clicking the link within each answer below.

The Early Years

1. Bumper V-2 launched July 24, 1950

Image at Right: Bumper lifts off. Image credit: NASA

2. Explorer 1 launched Jan. 31, 1958
3. Vanguard 2 in 1959
4. Echo I delivered the first TV pictures on April 24, 1962
5. Ham, a chimpanzee, launched Jan. 31, 1961

Chimp named Ham before testing the Mercury capsule. Image at Left: Ham gets ready for his Mercury test flight. Image credit: NASA

6. Mariner 2 launched Aug. 27, 1962, scanned Venus
7. The Liston vs. Clay championship fight, Feb. 26, 1964 via Relay 2
8. Mariner 4 in 1964
9. Surveyor 1 landed on the lunar surface June 2, 1966
10. Pioneer 10 launched in 1972 and is now 8 billion miles away from Earth

America's Journey to the Moon Earth as seen from above the moon's surface.

1. John Glenn, Mercury 6 in 1962
2. Neil Armstrong, Gemini 8 in 1966
3. Apollo 7 in 1968
4. Apollo 8 in 1968, and they broadcasted a Christmas Eve message to Earth.

Image at Right: This view of the rising Earth greeted the Apollo 8 astronauts as they came from behind the moon after the lunar orbit insertion burn. They became the first crew to spend Christmas in space. Image credit: NASA

5. Apollo 10 in 1969
6. Apollo 11 in 1969: The meal consisted of four bacon squares, three sugar cookies, peaches, pineapple-grapefruit drink and coffee
7. Alan Shepard, Apollo 14 in 1971
8. "Fallen Astronaut" left by Apollo 15 in 1971
9. Harrison Schmitt, Apollo 17 in 1972
10. Charles Conrad cut the hair of Paul Weitz aboard Skylab 2 in 1973

The Space Shuttle Takes Flight First space shuttle landing at Kennedy Space Center.
and the International Space Station is Born

1. Columbia, STS-2, launched Nov. 12, 1981
2. STS-8, launched Aug. 30, 1983 and landed Sept. 5, 1983
3. Ulf Merbold, payload specialist with the European Space Agency, STS-9, in 1984
4. Bruce McCandless and Robert L. Stewart, during STS-41B, in 1984
5. STS-41B on Feb. 11, 1984

Image at Right: Challenger becomes the first space shuttle to touch down at the Space Shuttle Landing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center. Image credit: NASA

6. Kathryn Sullivan, STS-41G, in 1984
7. Two monkeys and 24 rodents, STS-51B in 1985
Astronaut Susan Helms on the space station. 8. Mark Lee and Jan Davis, STS-47 in 1992
9. Susan Helms, Expedition 2, 2001
10. Ed Lu, Expedition 7, 2003

Image at Left: Astronaut Susan Helms works aboard the International Space Station. Image credit: NASA

And last but not least:

Astronaut Mike Finke was part of the Expedition 9 crew aboard the International Space Station when his daughter was born on June 18, 2004. While he floated some 230 miles above Earth, he was able to hear his baby's first cry via modern technology.
+ Read Astronaut Dad on Duty

+ Return to Questions
+ Read More NASA Firsts
Cheryl L. Mansfield
NASA's John F. Kennedy Space Center