Distinguished Lecture and Book Signing: JFK’s Race to the Moon

Date(s) - June 25, 2015
8:30 pm - 10:30 pm


John Kennedy, Richard Nixon, and the American Space Program

Learn the history of JFK’s decision to send America to the Moon, and Nixon’s deliberations to end the Apollo program, from author John Logsdon, whose books detail space history’s most dramatic period to date. Book signing to follow.

The 1961 decision by U.S. President John Kennedy to send astronauts to the moon “before this decade is out” remains the most dramatic choice in space history, and on July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong took ‘one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.’

The success of the Apollo 11 mission satisfied the goal that had been set by the US president, but also raised the question ‘What do you do next, after landing on the Moon?’ It fell to President Richard M. Nixon to answer this question, and their response has changed the course of the US space program ever since.  ISU faculty member John Logsdon, author of the 2010 book “John F. Kennedy and the Race to the Moon” and the 2015 book “After Apollo?:
Richard Nixon and the American Space Program” will discuss the reasons for Kennedy’s decision and the steps the young president took to turn the decision into a successful Apollo program, and will discuss the deliberations by President Richard Nixon to to end the Apollo program and put the US space program on a different course.

Baker Center Theater