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Video:The Apollo 11 Moon Landing

with David Wilson

The Apollo 11 Moon Landing put America at the forefront of space exploration. In this history video from About.com learn about the first lunar landing and the first man on the moon.See Transcript

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Transcript:The Apollo 11 Moon Landing

Hello, my name is David Wilson. I'm an historian and a teacher of U.S. and World History. I'm here today with About.com to discuss the Apollo 11 Mission to the surface of the Moon.

The Apollo 11 Lunar Landing

The Apollo 11 Space Mission was launched on July 16, 1969, and returned to Earth in the Pacific Ocean July 24, 1969. On board were astronauts Neal Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins. On July 20, 1969, Neal Armstrong radioed Nasa Control in Houston with the now famous statement: “Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed.” At 10:56 p.m., Neal Armstrong stepped out of the Eagle, and said: “That's one small step for man; one giant leap for mankind.”

The First Man on the Moon

Aldrin joined Armstrong on the surface of the Moon about 20 minutes later. Once on the surface of the Moon, the two astronauts spent two-and-a-half hours setting up equipment, planting a United States flag, established some scientific tools, and set up a video camera, as well as still cameras, and collected about 50 pounds of lunar soil and rock samples for study on the Earth.

The Return of the Apollo 11 Space Mission

On July 24th after leaving the Moon's orbit, Apollo 11 splashed down 13 miles from the U.S.S. Hornet near Hawai'i. The astronauts were immediately quarantined on the Hornet, and then transferred to a 58-room lunar receiving laboratory in Houston, where they remained in quarantine to ensure they had not picked up any diseases on the Moon.

The Cold War Space Race

The successful landing and recovery of astronauts from the face of the Moon was an historic step for the United States in its ongoing Cold War battle with the Soviet Union. Both countries were established super powers and seeking dominance in space. This was the fruition of Kennedy's promise to explore Outer Space with American know-how and American ingenuity.

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