Gotta Watch: How we got to the moon
Apollo 11's lunar module, the Eagle, ascends.
November 16th, 2011
11:06 AM ET

Gotta Watch: How we got to the moon

The first moon landing was one of the nation’s most historic must-see events. An estimated 600 million people around the world tuned in to see Apollo 11 touch down on the moon. Today, the astronauts who flew to the moon are making a rare joint appearance to receive the Congressional Gold Medal, along with former senator and astronaut John Glenn. You’ve no doubt seen the moon landing footage. Now go behind the scenes and learn more about what it took to get Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins to the moon.

Cutting edge – The computer on the lunar module had 36kb of memory—that’s less than a calculator holds now. Check out the giant technological leaps we’ve made since that historic trip.

Spacesuit seamstresses – The complex spacesuits that the astronauts wore made the difference between life and death for the Apollo 11 crew. See the initial drawings of the suits and meet the women who sewed them. You can also read more about this story here.

An astronaut’s life – LIFE photographer Ralph Morse shares rare photos of the astronauts and their families in the 1960s before the famous Apollo 11 mission. See the unusual family portrait he took at three minutes into the video.

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Filed under: Gotta Watch • NASA • Shuttle • Space
soundoff (178 Responses)
  1. Cedar Rapids

    you know threatening violence like that is actually an offence right hh?

    November 16, 2011 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  2. pgher

    So pathetic that this board would stoop to Obama and Occupyer bashing...and even bring up conspiracy stuff. Our country has slid into the toilet from idiots like you all. Conservative, bible hugging, pea brained d-bags that think the world is all yours to screw up and shove you f-d up beliefs down everyone elses throats.

    November 16, 2011 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • zodiac

      you sound no different pushing your opinion. Because a politician told us we did it, must not be true.

      November 16, 2011 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Clark

      You sound just as bad, if not worse, than the people who you are criticizing. Take a long look at your words my friend. Although your on the other side... your just as guilty of the problems of this country for such radical views and not being able to understand the other sides' opinions.

      November 16, 2011 at 1:33 pm | Report abuse |
  3. oldman100

    i love you humble horrace! i'm right with you on all your points!

    November 16, 2011 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. pgher

    humble horrace is actually a pastey white uber conservative twit that makes less than 12K a year (living with momma no doubt) and feeds at the teet of the country (getting disability checks) while bashing those who oppose the increasing gulf between the rich and the poor and the corporations running washington. He's also looking for a job at Penn State so he too can take showers with boys. Just calling it how I see it.

    November 16, 2011 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Dave the Commie

    Humble Horrace:
    You are nothing but a coward. You can make threats from the anonymity of this site, but you don't have what it takes to carry through. Either get a job, or stop using your employers computer (and time).

    November 16, 2011 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  6. lolwat

    what does this have to do with the article

    November 16, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Idiots

    We went to the moon. If it was hoaxed from a western US desert, wouldn't someone have noticed the origins of the radio communications were from earth and along the path to the moon, then from the moon and back? Radio signals would have been easy to track. USSR, China, Vietnam, Iran...the list goes on of nations that would have called foul.

    Why would the US make this up? To what end? Just to lie? Did circuit miniaturization just happen without huge financial investments? The rocket launched, so where was the capsule? Another source that could have been tracked by unfriendly nations.

    You "look" at a youtube video of footage made in 1969 and conclude its fake?

    You so wish that our government was an evil empire. Sorry, but while it isn't ideal it isn't intentionally misleading the nation. Does the government keep some things, like military activity secret, I sure hope so!

    November 16, 2011 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • zodiac

      Whjy the lie?? same as ever lie a politician tells.. to pocket the meoney. Its all majic.. look here while moeny goes in their pockets

      November 16, 2011 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • SgtSerge

      TO ALL THE MORONS WHO THINK THIS WAS FAKE!!!

      The pictures from the landing sites are available for all to see. They had to abandon equipment at each landing site, the equipment is still there. The Russian images clearly show the landing zones.

      That simple people, the images are very clear and on the internet for everyone to see..... Like Obama's birth cert. this is just a bunch of people that think they are smarter then the rest of the world, but yet in the face of facts can't decide anything for themselves, so they stick to what they know, that is knowledge without proof or reason.

      MORONS!!!!!

      November 16, 2011 at 1:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Slim Shady

      Are you kidding me? There were dozens of such radio signals picked up and people have known about them for years. You can still find several of the original which were eventually posted to youtube, but I suggest you hurry. And think about this, do you really think man flew a dune buggy to the moon and drove it for miles on the lunar surface in the same year In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida was on the radio and the PC was not even a thought? Come on man, think about it. The Chinese with all their resources have tried to land a manned craft on the lunar surface for 30 plus years. Quit being used.

      November 16, 2011 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Slim Shady

      Hey SgtSerge, show me a link to those photos. I can save you time from having to look. You can't.

      November 16, 2011 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • SgtSerge

      www dot nasa.gov/mission_pages/LRO/news/apollo-sites dot html
      Quite clear, and real :)

      November 16, 2011 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • wagonis

      @Slim: You keep asking for links and proof but don't provide any for your own claims. Care to share?

      November 16, 2011 at 2:14 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Brian

    I remember watching Apollo 11 when I was three and it inspired me to be interested in mathematics and science and today I am a mathematician. We are finding it hard to inspire students to go into the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) despite the fact that these jobs can pay well and can be in high demand. All of the electronic toys we have grown to love and take for granted, such as an iPad, cell phone, or HD TV, were developed by people in the STEM areas. The technology we will have in the future will be developed by the next generation of people who choose a STEM field. If we do not take STEM seriously, not only will the iPad 3 be made in China, it will be developed in China as well. We will truly become a third world country where one day we will watch a Chinese land on Mars and exclaim, "One small step for a Chinese, one giant leap for China." I am not prejudice against the Chinese or any other nationality. They are working hard to become #1 while we have ceased to be the best in science and mathematics for a long time now and don't seem to care.

    November 16, 2011 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  9. SgtSerge

    TO ALL THE MORONS WHO THINK THIS WAS FAKE!!!

    The pictures from the landing sites are available for all to see. They had to abandon equipment at each landing site, the equipment is still there. The Russian images clearly show the landing zones.

    That simple people, the images are very clear and on the internet for everyone to see..... Like Obama's birth cert. this is just a bunch of people that think they are smarter then the rest of the world, but yet in the face of facts can't decide anything for themselves, so they stick to what they know, that is knowledge without proof or reason.

    November 16, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Slim Shady

      How about providing a link to those supposed photos?

      November 16, 2011 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • SgtSerge

      www dot nasa.gov/mission_pages/LRO/news/apollo-sites dot html
      for your viewing pleasure!!!

      November 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • wagonis

      Hey Slim, how about searching for them?

      November 16, 2011 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Louis del Valle

    Terrible reporting. What the hell happened to Miles Obrien?

    November 16, 2011 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. BOMBO

    Hard to believe how stupid people can be. Hard to believe that these conspiracy theorists are even part of the same species as the rest of us.

    November 16, 2011 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Slim Shady

      How about explaining to us poor simpletons how a flag waves in the wind on the lunar surface.

      November 16, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • chipfields

      It only moves when the astronauts move it...go back to the grassy knoll

      November 16, 2011 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • To Conspiracy Theorists

      The flag moves becuase of "conservation of momentum" – i.e. the astronauts motion imparts a motion onto the flag. Go back to high school and pay attention during physics class....

      November 16, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • BOMBO

      Again, I refer you to the Mythbusters moon landing episode. They got exactly the same effect in a vacuum chamber. Solid bar across top, bottom free corner waves back and forth as you shift the flag's position. Were you not taught the basics of Newtonian physics in Junior High and High school?

      November 16, 2011 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Earl Weaver

      With all the flags on the moon that were being blown by the "wind", why wasn't there any dust being blown around?

      November 16, 2011 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      @slim shady, answer Earl Weaver's question and also that while it moved for a short time (seconds), why did it stand PERFECTLY STILL for the rest of the video? Where'd the "wind" go?

      November 16, 2011 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
  12. BOMBO

    Is the Earth flat too? Because it sure looks flat. Morons.

    November 16, 2011 at 1:29 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Slim Shady

      Wow, I posted several examples contradicting you and you have no response?

      November 16, 2011 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • BOMBO

      I've got work to do. I come back for breaks. It's called a JOB. Go get one, so you can get off welfare.

      November 16, 2011 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
  13. banasy©

    @Brian:
    Great post!

    November 16, 2011 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  14. us1776

    We were able to send men to the moon during the "analog" age of the 1960's.

    What has taken us so damn long to send men to Mars and beyond in the "digital" age?

    When I revisit those 1960's moon launches it just amazes me how much was done with so very little to accomplish the landings on the moon.

    .

    November 16, 2011 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  15. s kel

    I do not agree with humble horrance politically but damn cut the man some slack.

    November 16, 2011 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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