Rocket Scientist ROBERT GODDARD

He launched the space age with a 10-ft. rocket in a New England cabbage field

Robert Goddard was not a happy man when he read his copy of the New York Times on Jan. 13, 1920. For some time, he had feared he might be in for a pasting in the press, but when he picked up the paper that day, he was stunned.

Not long before, Goddard, a physics professor at Clark University in Worcester, Mass., had published an arid little paper on an outrageous topic, rocket travel. Unlike most of his colleagues, Goddard believed rocketry was a viable technology, and his paper, primly titled "A Method of Reaching Extreme Altitudes," was designed to prove...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!