Space Race

How the Space Race Started

During the Cold War, things started to get tense between the United States and the Soviet Union. Both countries were rushing to produce nuclear weapons in an effort to get ahead of the other and gain power. Many Americans feared a nuclear war would soon start, so they built bomb shelters. In October 1957 the Soviet Union launched the world's first artificial satellite, Sputnik. “Americans feared that if the Soviet Union could launch a satellite, it could launch missiles to attack the United States.” After the launch of Sputnik the United States government established the National Aeronautics and Space Administration or NASA and we entered the space race.

The Race to the Moon

After Sputnik was launched NASA started to send satellites of their own. Both the Soviets and the United States tried to get to the moon first. In 1969 NASA finally did it. They sent Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to the moon. They were the first people ever to set foot on the moon. Because of the moon landing the US beat the Soviet Union in the space race.