1968 in the News

Space Program
1968 saw the heightening of the race to the moon between the USSR and the USA.

In January, Surveyor 7 is launched to land on rough surface area of the  moon. It sends back over 1,200 pictures.

Yuri Gargarin, the first man in space, is killed in Russia in an air accident.

Apollo 7 takes off in October for an 11-day orbital test run. Astronaut Wally Schirra cracks jokes on live TV to Earth: "Keep those cards and letters coming in , folks." The astronauts get colds and complain about crumbs in space.

Apollo 7 astronauts

The Russians send ZOND 6 around the moon, and show photos of both sides of the moon.

ZOND's trip through space

Apollo 8 blasts off in December to orbit the moon. The three astronauts aboard area the first men in history to escape Earth's gravity. They come home in a "perfect splashdown" with pictures from space. The trip paves the way for the moon landing the following year.

Apollo 8 astronauts



This website is currently under development and will be updated periodically. Images are from the editor's collecton of photos, and scans from print journals from 1968. If you would like to offer comments or suggestions contact the webmaster at thatwasthen1968@gmail.com

back to top