Year
1966
Month Day
March 01

Soviet probe crashes into Venus

Venera 3, a Soviet probe launched from Kazakhstan on November 15, 1965, collides with Venus, the second planet from the sun. Although Venera 3 failed in its mission to measure the Venusian atmosphere, it was the first unmanned spacecraft to reach the surface of another planet. Four years earlier, the U.S. probe Mariner 2 was the first spacecraft to pass close enough to Venus to take scientific measurements of the planet, discovering surface temperatures in excess of 800 degrees Fahrenheit on its surface.

In 1967, Venera 4 succeeded where Venera 3 failed, successfully ejecting several scientific instruments, including a thermometer, a barometer, an atmospheric density gauge, and gas analyzers, into Venus’ atmosphere. Then, in 1970, Venera 7 became the first spacecraft created by humans to soft-land on Venus, successfully sending back images and data for 23 minutes before succumbing to the extremely high temperature and atmospheric pressure found on the planet’s surface.

Tags
terms:
Space

FACT CHECK: We strive for accuracy and fairness. But if you see something that doesn't look right, click here to contact us! HISTORY reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it is complete and accurate.

ALSO ON THIS DAY

President Kennedy establishes the Peace Corps

On March 1, 1961, President John F. Kennedy issues Executive Order #10924, establishing the Peace Corps as a new agency within the Department of State. The same day, he sent a message to Congress asking for permanent funding for the agency, which would send trained American men ...read more

Salem Witch Hunt begins

In Salem Village in the Massachusetts Bay Colony, Sarah Goode, Sarah Osborne, and Tituba, an Indian slave from Barbados, are charged with the illegal practice of witchcraft. Later that day, Tituba, possibly under coercion, confessed to the crime, encouraging the authorities to ...read more

Lindbergh baby kidnapped

On March 1, 1932, in a crime that captured the attention of the entire nation, Charles Lindbergh, Jr., the 20-month-old son of aviation hero Charles Lindbergh, is kidnapped from the family’s new mansion in Hopewell, New Jersey. Lindbergh, who became an international celebrity ...read more

Bomb explodes in Capitol building

A bomb explodes in the Capitol building in Washington, D.C., causing an estimated $300,000 in damage but hurting no one. A group calling itself the Weather Underground claimed credit for the bombing, which was done in protest of the ongoing U.S.-supported Laos invasion. The ...read more

New York Yankees star Mickey Mantle retires

On March 1, 1969, New York Yankees center fielder Mickey Mantle announces his retirement from baseball. Mantle was an idol to millions, known for his remarkable power and speed and his everyman personality. While “The Mick” patrolled center field and batted clean-up between 1951 ...read more

Yellowstone Park established

President Grant signs the bill creating the nation’s first national park at Yellowstone. Native Americans had lived and hunted in the region that would become Yellowstone for hundreds of years before the first Anglo explorers arrived. Abundant game and mountain streams teaming ...read more

Trains buried by avalanche

Two trains are swept into a canyon by an avalanche in Wellington, Washington, on March 1, 1910, killing 96 people. Due to the remote location of the disaster and the risk of further avalanches, efforts to rescue survivors and find the bodies of the dead were not completed until ...read more

The Articles of Confederation are ratified after nearly four years

On March 1, 1781, the Articles of Confederation are finally ratified. The Articles were signed by Congress and sent to the individual states for ratification on November 15, 1777, after 16 months of debate. Bickering over land claims between Virginia and Maryland delayed final ...read more

Zimmermann Telegram published in United States

On March 1, 1917, the text of the so-called Zimmermann Telegram, a message from the German foreign secretary, Arthur Zimmermann, to the German ambassador to Mexico proposing a Mexican-German alliance in the case of war between the United States and Germany, is published on the ...read more