Armstrong Air and Space Museum

From Ohio History Central

Named in honor of Neil Armstrong, first man to set foot on the moon, this museum in Wapakoneta chronicles Ohio's contributions to the history of space flight. The building has a striking dome structure with the earth mounded around it to represents a futuristic lunar base. Among the items on display are an F5D Sky Lancer, the Gemini VIII spacecraft, Apollo 11 artifacts, and a moon rock. In the museum's Astro-theater, multimedia presentations of the sights and sounds of space unfold against a starry background. 

Following the Apollo 11 mission in 1969, Ohio governor James Rhodes proposed that a museum be built to honor not just the first man on the moon, but "all Ohioans who have attempted to defy gravity." The community raised $528,313.55 and the state of Ohio provided $500,000.00 for the project. Groundbreaking took place in 1970, and the museum completed in 1972, three years after Armstrong's famous walk on the moon. Among those attending the ceremony were Tricia Nixon Cox, Neil Armstrong, and Governor John Gilligan.

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