In August of 1958, U.S. Senator John Glenn Beall, Junior announced that the federal government would establish a “Space Projects Center” in Greenbelt, Maryland. The center site was part of the Department of Agriculture’s Beltsville Agricultural Research Center.
Months later, after the passage of the National Aeronautics and Space Act of 1958, the Naval Research Laboratory’s Project Vanguard was legally transferred to the “Beltsville Space Center,” though it remained at the Naval Research Laboratory facilities until the completion of the new center.
In May of 1959, NASA formally announced that the new facility would be called Goddard Space Flight Center, after Dr. Robert Hutchings Goddard. Robert Goddard, whom is widely considered the father of modern rocketry, theorized that rockets would work in a vacuum, and thus could potentially be used to send payloads into space. On March 16, 1961, the 35th anniversary of Goddard’s first liquid-propellant rocket launch Goddard Space Flight Center was officially dedicated.
In 1942, John Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory was established to help create the proximity fuze, known as the VT Fuze, that was instrumental in improving American site defenses during World War II. Since the era of the space race, the John Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory has worked with NASA to develop deep space research and other space technologies.
My daughter Krystal Marie Hamilton’s grandmother Charlene Roelecke and Richard G. Shelton both work for the John Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory campus in Laurel, Maryland. There is an addition Applied Physics Labratory in Silver Spring, Maryland.
The musuem exhibits aircraft from the age of air pioneers as well as those used in multiple wars, capsules from the Mercury and the Apollo missions during the space race, and fragments of meteorites form space.
Various posters showed that during World War I there was a great emphasis placed on the manufacture of airplanes for the war effort.
One section of the museum has an original model of the first jet aircraft in the world that was built in Nazi Germany during World War II. Nazi Germany had planned on mass producing the jet aircraft in the mid 1940s, but lost the war and was unable to manufacture jets under the treaty signed with the allied forces in 1945. Therefore, the United States and the Soviet Union were the first to mass produce jet aircraft during the Cold War.
Attorney Marion Reynolds built the brick Reynolds hotel from 1925 to 1928, in Shamrock, Texas, and operated the hotel for about fifty years. The hotel went out of business, and the building was repurposed as the Pioneer West Musuem in 1978.
I really enjoyed this museum since it covered a wide variety of history in Northern Texas through newspapers and artifacts donated by locals.
The musuem has an exhibit on the Texas Rangers that were formed by Stephen Fuller Austin in 1823. The rangers helped protect American settlers from Native Americans and hostile Mexicans during and after the Mexican- American War.
The phrase, “One Riot, One Ranger” was created in 1896, by a Texas Ranger in Dallas, Captain William “Bill” McDonald.
The musuem had articles about the grand Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations in the town of Shamrock.
The “War Room” had many artifacts from Chester Beasley, who was a prisoner of war in Austria during World War II. Some of the items included maps of the Civil War and other American conflicts.
There was a space exhibit based on astronaut Alan LaVern Bean an astronaut from Wheeler, Texas who was the first training astronaut to dive into the Neutral Buoyancy Simulator. Alan LaVern Bean was on the Apollo XII Mission and passed away earlier this year on May 26, 2018.
In the 1930s, German scientists were the first in the world to build liquid fueled rockets, with the potential to reach the atmosphere of the earth, after their development of the Vergeltungswaffen-1 Rocket.
Hitler commanded that the space program, for the Vergeltungswaffen-1 Rocket (which during the war was also called the Vergeltungswaffen-1 Flying Bomb), be converted to a weapons program, so that the rockets could be used to hit structural targets of adversaries in Europe. On June 13, 1944 the first Vergeltungswaffen-1 Rocket attacks against London occurred a week after the D-Day landings.
Before, the first rocket attacks against London occurred, a larger ballistic missile was already in development. In October 3, 1942, the Vergeltungswaffen-2 Rocket became the first device to reach space after flying 118 miles. On September 8, 1944, Vergeltungswaffen-2 Rockets were launched for an attack against Paris.
After the end of World War II, part of the negotiations between Great Britain, France, the Soviet Union and the United States involved dividing the scientists who had worked on the Vergeltungswaffen-1 and the Vergeltungswaffen-2 rocket programs between each country. In 1946, President Harry S. Truman’s administration and the Stalin regime in the Soviet Union had a severe deterioration in relations as highlighted by the Miller Center of the University of Virginia. The “Russia Report” that had been created by Truman’s white house aids, further added to Truman’s determination to counter the expansion of the Soviet Empire. This deterioration of relations between the Soviet Union and the United Stated, further contributed to the, then deemed, national security necessity of the Joint Intelligence Objectives Agency’s Operation Paperclip.
Respectively, France, Great Britain and the Soviet Union also had different German scientists, who had worked on the Vergeltungswaffen-1 and the Vergeltungswaffen-2 rocker programs, work on their missile and space programs.
The National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) was formed after the Naval Appropriations Act, which had a rider creating NACA for the regulation of flight, was signed into law by President Woodrow Wilson in March 3, 1915. NACA was the predecessor to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and was dissolved October 1, 1958.