Friday, August 14, 2020

Update on the Expo Spacemen

Further to our post below of August 6, I think we have wrapped up the story of the possible astronaut-cosmonaut encounter at Expo '67.  This inquiry began with a question to Canada's History magazine, and more about this story may appear there in time.

Many thanks to Halifax writer and historian Patrick Lacroix, a reader of this blog, who sent a La Presse clipping that show Richard Gordon, an American astronaut who flew one of the Gemini missions and later orbited the moon in Apollo 12, made an official visit to the American pavilion at Expo '67. No cosmonauts. A Devoir clipping he also sent shows that before Expo 67 there was some promise of an astronaut-cosmonaut presence at the opening ceremonies, but it seems nothing came of that.

And I got to chat with NASA chief historian Brian Odom -- put that on your list of cool historical jobs, maybe? -- who sent the following:

While there was a meeting of American astronauts and Soviet cosmonauts in 1967, the meeting occurred at the 1967 Paris Air Show. The NASA History book SP-4209 The Partnership: A History of the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project (1978) discusses the meeting in chapter 9, section 3 “Rivals and Friends” which is available online at (the entire book is available online in PDF format at: While both the U.S. and USSR had pavilions in Montreal, there is no record in our collection of any meetings by members of their space agencies.

I also came across this awesome video on the US pavilion:  Very cool stuff.

Agreed about the US Pavilion. Shame about the cosmonauts. 

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