- from Space
In the twentieth century, the dream of space travel became a reality. It began in 1957, when the first human-made object roared into space. That was Sputnik 1.
This satellite, which orbited Earth, was built by the USSR. (Russia was the dominant member of the USSR, also called the Soviet Union.) The launch of Sputnik 1 took Americans by surprise, and right away started the space race, an intense rivalry with the USSR. Then, in 1975, U.S. and USSR crafts linked up in space. The competition had finally turned into cooperation.