Space Men

In the 1950s and early '60s, a small band of high-altitude pioneers exposed themselves to the extreme forces of the space age long before NASA's acclaimed Mercury 7 would make headlines. Though largely forgotten today, balloonists were the first to venture into the frozen near-vacuum on the edge of our world, exploring the very limits of human physiology and human ingenuity in this lethal realm.

My American Experience

My American Experience photos

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What are your Cold War memories? Do you remember the Space Race? Share your story with American Experience.

  • Additional funding for this program was provided by

  • Yawkey Foundation