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9/1/2010
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NASA Shares Historical Photos On Flickr

Online archive documents the space agency's history, construction, launches, and founders.




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In a move that continues NASA's efforts to share its vast photographic collection with the public, the space agency has posted a series of historical photos to Flickr's online archive.

The new NASA on the Commons site shares more than 175 images that show the history of NASA, from its early days of building its facilities to the first rocket launches of the space race.

The images on the site are from an online compilation of photographs created by the Internet Archive, which the agency selected in 2007 to organize its image archives. The NASAimages.org site came out of that work in 2008.

In addition to its online image collections, NASA also has an online archive of all its social media activity. That collection -- available online through the Archive-It collection service -- is an extension of the NASAimages site.

NASA tapped history and photography experts to choose three sets of photos that span more than half a century for its Flickr site -- Building NASA, Launch/Takeoff, and NASA Center Namesakes.

The Building NASA set, which contains 44 images, shows a series of photographs that chronicle the construction of various agency facilities. Each photo is annotated with details about the facility, such as its purpose, location, the date the photo was taken and other information.

The Launch/Takeoff set of 104 images contains photos of historic NASA launches, including the first-ever rocket launch of the Bumper V-2; the Mercury-Redstone, which put the first American, Alan Shepard, into space; and the Apollo 11, which landed on the moon.

The NASA Center Namesakes set features 32 photos of the founders and early leaders of NASA's 10 field centers.

The Commons on Flickr, launched in January 2008 in partnership with the Library of Congress, is aimed at providing an online archive of public photographs. People are invited to make comments about or tag the photos as a way to share knowledge and ideas about history with the public.

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