It might be difficult today to imagine the size of the challenge that President Kennedy set for the nation on Sept. 12, 1962, when in a speech at Rice University in Houston he elaborated on his goal to land astronauts on the moon before the end of that decade. The space program was in its infancy, much of the technology didn't exist, and such a mission had never been accomplished before.
“We meet in an hour of change and challenge, in a decade of hope and fear, in an age of both knowledge and ignorance,” Kennedy said.
But on July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong beat Kennedy's deadline and became the first person to step foot on the moon, as shown in the photos below.
Fifty years and several iterations of the American space program later, Kennedy's call to land humans on the moon can still resonate.