Vintage NASA Photography Highlights Our Space Legacy

Published April 1, 2015
Updated January 19, 2018
classic nasa eugene cernan

December 1972, Apollo 17 mission: Portrait of astronaut Eugene Cernan by Harrison Schmitt.
Huffington Post

Due to relatively recent funding cuts at NASA, it seems that interest in and support of space travel is at an all-time low. It hasn’t always been this way, though. The Cold War helped convene scientists, politicians and security specialists and focus attention to the stars. The developments that followed catapulted us to places previously unknown, and greatly altered the way we conceive of space, science and security. These vintage NASA images take us back to that time of fear, excitement and opportunity.

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November 1966, Gemini 12: Astronaut Buzz Aldrin takes the first selfie in space. Huffington Post

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December 1972, Apollo 17: Harrison Schmitt captures Eugene Cernan with the Earth hovering above an American flag. Huffington Post

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June 3rd, 1965, Gemini 4: Ed White makes the first EVA (extravehicular activity) or Spacewalk for the US, over New Mexico. Photo by James McDivitt Huffington Post

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December 1968, Apollo 8: William Anders captures the first Earth-rise ever to be seen by humans. Huffington Post

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February 1971, Apollo 14: Edgar Mitchell photographs Alan Shepard and the American flag on the moon’s surface. Huffington Post

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February 1967, Lunar Orbiter 3: First high quality image taken of the ‘dark side’ of the moon. Huffington Post

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July 1969, Apollo 11: Buzz Aldrin photographs Neil Armstrong on the surface of the moon. This is the only clear image of Armstrong on the moon’s surface, and was not known about for decades. Huffington Post

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November 1969, Apollo 12 EVA2: Alan Bean captured with the image of photographer Pete Conrad reflected in his visor. Huffington Post

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October 1968, Apollo 7: On-board photograph of Walter Cunningham shot by Walter Schirra. Huffington Post

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June 1966, Gemini 9: “The Angry Alligator” photo by Eugene Cernan. Huffington Post

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October 1968, Apollo 7: Photo by Walter Cunningham of the Florida Peninsula with the sun shining high above the Earth’s surface. Huffington Post

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July 11th, 1969 Image of the surface of the Earth partially covered by shadow. Huffington Post

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April 1972, Apollo 16 lifts off on its mission to be the 5th manned spacecraft to land on the moon and the first to land in the lunar highlands. Huffington Post

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October 20th, 1946 the first photograph taken from space. Taken 65 miles above the planet’s surface, the photograph was developed by engineer Clyde Holliday. Huffington Post

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August 1971, Apollo 15, Al Worden photographer: oblique telephoto panorama of the North Rim of Crater Pasteur, on the far side of the Moon. Huffington Post Reproduction, © Bloomsbury Auctions

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May 1969, Apollo 10: Telephoto panorama view of the moon floor and western rim of Mendeleev Basin. Huffington Post Reproduction, © Bloomsbury Auctions

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August 1st, 1971, Apollo 15 EVA-2: David Scott at the ALSEP site near the LM, Station 8, panoramic view. Huffington Post Reproduction, © Bloomsbury Auctions

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August 1st, 1971, Apollo 15 EVA-2: Panoramic view of David Scott photographing a geologic ¬find at Hadley Delta mountain, near Station 6. Photos by James Irwin. Huffington Post Reproduction, © Bloomsbury Auctions

classic nasa hadley station 6
August 1st, 1971, Apollo 15 EVA-2: 300 feet up the flank of 11,500-foot-high Hadley Delta mountain, Station 6. Photos by James Irwin. Huffington Post Reproduction, © Bloomsbury Auctions

Erin Kelly
An All That's Interesting writer since 2013, Erin Kelly focuses on historic places, natural wonders, environmental issues, and the world of science. Her work has also been featured in Smithsonian and she's designed several book covers in her career as a graphic artist.
Savannah Cox
Savannah Cox holds a Master's in International Affairs from The New School as well as a PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, and now serves as an Assistant Professor at the University of Sheffield. Her work as a writer has also appeared on DNAinfo.
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Kelly, Erin. "Vintage NASA Photography Highlights Our Space Legacy.", April 1, 2015, Accessed May 22, 2024.