- "We were having mostly explosions with our rockets," Charlie Duke, a NASA astronaut, recalls in the video of the period just before NASA was created. "It seemed like 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, blow up, more than liftoff, back in those days." Engineers finally had a successful launch on Jan. 31, 1958, but Congress didn't want the space efforts to lose momentum.
Next year is going to be full of celebrations of the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11. Less than ten years after NASA was formed, we were on the moon.
October is the official NASA Birthday as the first NASA employees got their badges and the legislation went into effect on October 1.