Every Collection has a StoryThe Archives holds records that document the Smithsonian’s people, events, buildings, and research. The history of the Smithsonian is a vital part of the history of American experience, scientific exploration, and international cultural understanding.


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Moonwatch Volunteers, 1965, by Unknown, 1965, Smithsonian Archives - History Div, 96-960.

June 30, 1975

Operation Moonwatch, the worldwide volunteer satellite tracking network run by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, ends after 18 years.  These volunteers played a major role in tracking artificial satellites after the launch of the Russian satellite Sputnik in 1957. The Volunteer Flight Officers Network is also disbanded.More

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