Moments in Time: From Gagarin to the Moon
The Cold War really heated up when on April 12, 1961 Russia’s Yuri Gagarin became the first man to orbit the Earth. He circled our home planet for an astounding one hundred and eight minutes. Gagarin instantly became not just a Russian hero, but one celebrated around the world. In America, his trip 187 miles above land set off alarm bells and led directly to President Kennedy’s declaration that the US would land a man on the Moon by the end of the 1960’s. A feat the U.S. achieved on July 16, 1969.