The Pointe

MidPointe Library's Official Blog

"Middletown's Mark on the Moon" -- a nod to the 50th anniversary of the first Moon landing Saturday, July 20

This Saturday, July 20, as America celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first human to set foot upon the Moon, Middletonians can feel proud of the contributions their fellow citizens and industries provided to the historic endeavor. 

Four days before Apollo 11 launched into Space – and world – history, the Middletown Journal published articles about two local men and two industries with links to the historic mission. 

They were Stanley R. Reinartz, Marion Kershner, Aeronca Inc. and Armco Steel. 

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In an article titled “MHS Grad Helped Develop Saturn,” the Journal reported that Reinartz, “son of Mrs. C. Herbert Reinartz of 15th Ave., is department manager of the Apollo Applications Program in the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala. ..” 

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“The huge Saturn V rocket that lifted Apollo 11 from earth was developed under the direction of the Marshall Center, NASA’s largest organization. 

“Reinartz, a graduate of Middletown High School, received his degree in mechanical engineering in 1956 from the University of Cincinnati...” 

A detailed biography of Reinartz from NASA is available for viewing at : https://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/atoms/files/stanley_reinartz_biography_2.pdf

Below is a YouTube presentation of an image of the Saturn V rocket being projected upon the Washington Monument in Washington D.C., on Tuesday, July 16 — 50 years to the day the Apollo 11 astronauts launched toward the Moon. An Associated Press photo of the rocket as it launches appears farther down in this blog. The photo appeared in the July 16, 1969, Middletown Journal.

In a second article titled “Local Man NASA Guest,” the Journal reported that “Marion Kershner of Barbara Drive, [Middletown] executive vice president of the National Management Association, Dayton, is at Cape Kennedy, Fla., today for the launch of Apollo 11. 

“Kershner is a guest of the National Aeronautics & Space Administration. He was invited as the chief operating officer of one of the world’s largest associations of management men...He also is a member of the board of directors of the American Society of Association Executives.” 

The Journal also reported that two local industries played significant roles in the moon launch: 

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Under the headline, “Aeronca Got NeaPerfection for Moonship,” the article by Staff Writer Fred Sennet stated that “Aeronca employees, who helped develop the brazed honey-comb panels that guard the astronauts against the intense temperatures of outer space, have a lot riding on today’s moon shot...”  

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The Middletown connection to Apollo 11 was even stronger because the brazed panels “were built from Armco stainless steel....,” referring to the Armco Steel Corporation, as it was known at the time. 

When you look at the Moon this special Saturday night, remember that a part of Middletown, Ohio, was there, too... 

If you enjoy all-things-Space, you’ll love MidPointe Library’s Summer Reading Program for all ages, going on now at all locations through July 31! This year’s theme, “A Universe of Stories,” is a nod to the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing. Read books for prizes, enjoy special guests and more!  

For details, go to: www.midpointelibrary.org > Services > Summer Reading  

A complete calendar of all MidPointe events is available at: www.midpointelibrary.org > Events 

 In the meantime check out our catalog of Space-related items (books, magazines, movies and more) at www.midpointelibrary.org > Catalog Search 

 And our eLibrary : www.midpointelibrary.org > eLibrary

 

Share your memories of July 20, 1969, the day Ohioan Neil Armstrong put “one small step for man...” on the Moon. (You know the rest of his famous quote!)

Sources: 

Images for this blog are from the July 16, 1969, Middletown Journal, available on microfilm at MidPointe’s Middletown location, 125 South Broad Street. 

The photo of Stanley Reinartz is from the 1951 Middletown High School yearbook, The Optimist. A collection of MHS yearbooks is available for viewing at MidPointe-Middletown's Ohio Room, a depository of local history materials, and online at:  

www.midpointelibrary.org > eLibrary > Digital Archives > The Optimist, Middletown City School District High School Yearbooks