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Timescope - Questions from Our Cultural History

Question: Who was the first American in space?

Answer: Alan Shepard

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On May 15th, 1961, Alan Shepard flew a 15 minute sub-orbital flight atop a Mercury-Redstone capsule to become the first American to leave the earth. This followed by one month, the Russian Cosmonaut, Yuri Gagarin's orbital flight on April 12th, 1961. Gagarin was the first person in space and the first one to orbit the earth.