Neil Armstrong’s visit captivated capital

Gov. Hearnes and Neil Armstrong hold a picture presented to the people of the state of Missouri. The picture shows man's first walk on moon.

Gov. Hearnes and Neil Armstrong hold a picture presented to the people of the state of Missouri. The picture shows man's first walk on moon.

As the nation remembered Neil Armstrong on Friday, some in the Jefferson City area recalled the day Armstrong and his fellow Apollo 11 crew members came to Missouri’s capital, a year to the day after he became the first man to walk on the moon.

Crowds estimated at between 7,000 and 15,000 gathered on the Capitol steps on July 20, 1970, as the crew made a stop as part of a 50-state tour following their historic mission.

According to the News Tribune’s archives, this was the first time Armstrong, Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Mike Collins got to see their command module, “Columbia,” since they had landed in the Pacific Ocean a year earlier.

Among those at the event was a then 14-year-old boy from Chamois.

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