Apollo 11

Narrated by Eileen Collins, the first woman commander of a Space Shuttle, this episode chronicles the story of women in the ultimate Man’s World: the labs and Shuttle crew cabins of NASA. Told in the first person, we explore the experiences of NASA’s first woman engineers, scientists, and first astronauts. We also hear about the fascinating story of a group of women pilots who – in the early 1960s – were led to believe that they would be America’s first female astronauts, and were even given the same physical tests as the Mercury astronauts.

Narrated by Mae Jemison, the first African-American woman in space, this episode tells the unlikely story of Civil Rights and the Space Program. The Space Age began when America was going through a wrenching battle over Civil Rights. And, because the heart of the old Confederacy was chosen as its base, NASA played an unintended role in Civil Rights history. In this episode, we hear about those who broke the color line at NASA, their stories of frustration, and their stories of perseverance.

The Lunar Landing: “Rocketing Ahead”

Jul 12, 2019
Dan Ox/Flickr, License: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/legalcode

In 1969, humans landed on the Moon. But why? Why did we go? The answer has a little bit to do with science and a lot to do with politics. In this episode, we learn about how the Democrats rode Sputnik to the White House in a campaign that forever changed science, technology, and academia in America.


artwork by Lindsey Grojean

Next month, KRCU Public Radio will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing with special programming.

Each year on the anniversary of the Moon landing, or on the anniversary of President Kennedy’s call to send a man to the Moon, the media is filled with nostalgic sounds from the 1960’s and images of dark lunar footprints and fiery rocket pads. But, in the glory of those remembered moments, it’s easy to forget the political climate that shaped the race to the Moon.