Posted 3 years ago
Some "First" button's from the early days of Americas Space Program and First American Woman in Space. Mercury, Gemini and the Space Shuttle. (Stay tuned for the Apollo Moon landing buttons)
A little background about our first Astronauts, Each one was invited to a secret military meeting in Washington, D.C. that turned out to be for NASA's astronaut program — the first applicants were drawn from a pool of U.S. Marine, U.S.A.F. and Naval test pilots — but nobody outside a small group knew that at the time why the invitation was issued After an arduous application process seven were selected to form what became known as the "Mercury Seven." The Mercury Seven were announced by NASA on April 9, 1959 They are also referred to as the Original Seven or Astronaut Group 1. They piloted the manned spaceflights of the Mercury program from May 1961 to May 1963. These seven original American astronauts were Scott Carpenter, Gordon Cooper, John Glenn, Gus Grissom, Wally Schirra, Alan Shepard, and Deke Slayton.
Members of the group flew on all classes of NASA manned orbital spacecraft of the 20th century — Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, and the Space Shuttle.
These new NASA employees were charged with performing spaceflights, starting with suborbital hops and progressing to longer orbital ones, to see how well humans could perform in space. This "bunch of brothers had to balance being competitive with coming to decisions that were best for the program.
(1) The top left button, Welcome Astronaut Gordon Cooper was made to commemorate his 22 orbits in 1963
Leroy Gordon "Gordo" Cooper Jr. (March 6, 1927 – October 4, 2004), (Col, USAF) Cooper had to wait until almost everyone else had flown before he got his chance, but his flight ended up being the longest and last of the Mercury program. He piloted Faith 7 across 22 orbits solo — the last American government astronaut to fly alone to date — on May 15-16, 1963. The mission lasted nearly 34.5 hours, and focused on making sure that astronauts could work stably in the spacecraft when it was in different modes of operation.
(2) top right, "Around the world in 80 minutes 1st American in orbit Astronaut John Glenn Welcome back to Earth"
John Herschel Glenn Jr. (July 18, 1921 – December 8, 2016) was a United States Marine Corps aviator, engineer, astronaut, and United States Senator from Ohio
NASA launched astronaut John Glenn into orbit on Feb. 20, 1962 aboard the Mercury capsule Friendship 7 The mission was to send a man to orbit Earth, observe his reactions and return him home safely.
(3) Gemini 4 First American walk in Space June 3-7 1965
Commander James McDivitt and Astronaut Ed White
During the Gemini 4 mission on June 3, 1965, Ed White became the first American to conduct a spacewalk. The spacewalk started at 3:45 p.m. EDT on the third orbit when White opened the hatch and used the hand-held maneuvering oxygen-jet gun to push himself out of the capsule.
The EVA started over the Pacific Ocean near Hawaii and lasted 23 minutes, ending over the Gulf of Mexico. Initially, White propelled himself to the end of the 8-meter tether and back to the spacecraft three times using the hand-held gun. After the first three minutes the fuel ran out and White maneuvered by twisting his body and pulling on the tether.
(4) Unsinkable Molly Brown Americas First two man orbit (I should have put these in order by date) Young - Grissom March 23 1965
Gemini 3 was the first manned mission in NASA's Gemini program, the second American manned space program. On March 23, 1965, astronauts Virgil I. "Gus" Grissom and John W. Young flew three low Earth orbits in their spacecraft, which they nicknamed Molly Brown as Grissom was hoping to avoid duplication of the experience with his Mercury flight Liberty Bell 7 in which the capsule sank after splashdown, named the Gemini 3 spacecraft Molly Brown, in a playful reference to the Broadway musical The Unsinkable Molly Brown. NASA management did not like this name, and asked him to change it. Grissom replied, "How about the Titanic?".
(5) Sally Ride First American Woman in Space June 18 - 24 1983 on the Challenger Space shuttle
Sally Kristen Ride (May 26, 1951 – July 23, 2012) was an American physicist and astronaut. Born in Los Angeles, she joined NASA in 1978 and became the first American woman in space in 1983. Ride was the third woman in space overall, after USSR cosmonauts Valentina Tereshkova (1963) and Svetlana Savitskaya (1982) Ride remains the youngest American astronaut to have traveled to space, having done so at the age of 32
The STS-7 mission was the first to have a five-person crew and deployed two communications satellites and conducted pharmaceutical experiments. Ride was the first woman to use the robot arm in space and the first to use the arm to retrieve a satellite.
(6) "I'll try anything once" is from the 1950s and I should have saved this for the upcoming moon landing button post, It's not NASA Apollo or anything like it just space related with the "Moon or Bust" on the rocket.
(7) A different version of the Grissom - Young First two man orbit button.
(8) A different version of the 1st American in orbit button.
(9) A different version of the 1st American in orbit button.
The larger buttons are 3 1/2 diameter
The smaller are 1 3/4
The smallest is 1 3/8