Skip to main content

The National Portrait Gallery remains temporarily closed. To view the status of the Smithsonian’s other museums and the Zoo, visit: si.edu/museums

Mercury Seven Astronauts

Mercury Seven Astronauts
Usage Conditions Apply
Artist
Flip Schulke, 24 Jun 1930 - 15 May 2008
Sitter
Malcolm Scott Carpenter, 1 May 1925 - 10 Oct 2013
Walter Marty Schirra, Jr., 12 Mar 1923 - 3 May 2007
Virgil Grissom, 3 Apr 1926 - 27 Jan 1967
Alan Bartlett Shepard, Jr., 18 Nov 1923 - 21 Jul 1998
Unidentified Man
John Herschel Glenn, Jr., 18 Jul 1921 - 8 Dec 2016
Donald Slayton, 1 Mar 1924 - 13 Jun 1993
L. Gordon Cooper Jr., 6 Mar 1927 - 4 Oct 2004
Date
1961
Type
Photograph
Medium
Gelatin silver print
Dimensions
Mount: 50.8 x 40.6 cm (20 x 16")
Mat: 55.9 x 71.1 cm (22 x 28")
Image/Sheet: 21.7 × 33.5 cm (8 9/16 × 13 3/16")
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Restrictions & Rights
Usage conditions apply
Copyright
©Flip Schulke Archives
Object number
NPG.99.163
Exhibition Label
When NASA opened its doors on October 1, 1958, one of its first tasks was to develop selection criteria for the first U.S. astronauts. Though the organization was ready to consider civilians, President Dwight D. Eisenhower declared that astronauts were to be chosen only from the nation’s active-duty test pilots. In 1959, NASA introduced the seven Project Mercury astronauts. Known as the Mercury Seven, they included (standing, from left to right): Alan Shepard (1923–1998), Walter Schirra (1923–2007), Virgil “Gus” Grissom (1926–1967), Scott Carpenter (1925–2013), John Glenn (1921–2016), Donald “Deke” Slayton (1924–1993), and Gordon Cooper (1927–2004). Flip Schulke photographed the group in 1961, as they gathered around a monitor displaying a gantry at Cape Canaveral, Florida. In May of that same year, Shepard became the first American in space, and several months later, Glenn became the first American to orbit the earth.
Una de las primeras tareas de la NASA, establecida el 1 de octubre de 1958, fue crear criterios de selección para los primeros astronautas estadounidenses. Aunque la agencia estaba dispuesta a considerar civiles, el presidente Dwight D. Eisenhower dijo que debían ser pilotos de prueba en servicio activo. En 1959 la NASA presentó a los siete astronautas del Proyecto Mercury. Conocidos como “los siete del Mercury”, eran (de pie, desde la izquierda): Alan Shepard (1923–1998), Walter Schirra (1923–2007), Virgil “Gus” Grissom (1926–1967), Scott Carpenter (1925–2013), John Glenn (1921–2016), Donald “Deke” Slayton (1924–1993) y Gordon Cooper (1927–2004). Flip Schulke los fotografió en 1961, reunidos en torno a un monitor donde se ve una grúa en Cabo Cañaveral, Florida. En mayo de ese año Shepard se convirtió en el primer estadounidense que llegó al espacio, y meses después Glenn fue su primer compatriota en orbitar la tierra.
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
See more items in
National Portrait Gallery Collection
Place
United States\Florida\Brevard\Cape Canaveral