Wednesday, September 12, 1962: 'We choose to go to the moon'

Speaking at Rice Stadium in Houston, Texas, President Kennedy forcefully reaffirms the United States' commitment to space exploration. The most famous passage:

But why, some say, the moon? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask why climb the highest mountain. Why, 35 years ago, fly the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas?

We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon ... we choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one we intend to win, and the others, too.

Photo from John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum.

* Transcript and video (Miller Center, University of Virginia): @
* Newsreel: @
* "50 years ago, Kennedy reached for stars in historic Rice speech" (Douglas Brinkley, Rice University, September 2012): @
* The Rice Thresher (student newspaper, September 19): @
* Speech materials from Kennedy library: @

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