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Oklahoma History Center

The Oklahoma History Center, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, is a museum with a comprehensive set of exhibits documenting the history of the state of Oklahoma and notable Oklahomans, from the state's Native American and Wild West era all the way up to the Space Age.

Of course, the reason that brought me to the Oklahoma History Center was the exhibit recognizing people like Owen Garriott, Bill Pogue, Stu Roosa, Gordon Cooper, and Tom Stafford: Gemini 6, the spacecraft piloted by Tom Stafford.

Gemini 6 is located in a bright, sunny hallway. Restored in 2003 by the Cosmosphere, it is encased in what has become the standard Cosmosphere "aquarium" (similar to Liberty Bell 7 at the Cosmosphere and Gemini 12 at Adler Planetarium). The combination of the aquarium and the bright sunlight, of course, make for frustrating reflections.

I find it somewhat odd that the Oklahoma History Center was chosen by the Smithsonian to display Gemini 6: The Stafford Air & Space Museum is only about an hour away from Oklahoma City in Weatherford and has a wide array of artifacts from the space program. To me, placing Gemini 6 at Stafford would have been a natural fit, especially since Tom Stafford was a Gemini 6 crew member. Perhaps the Smithsonian felt that Weatherford was a bit too far out of the way and Gemini 6 would receive more visitors at the History Center.

Aerial view.

 
Oklahoma History Center
Oklahoma History Center
Gemini 6
Gemini 6
Gemini Suit
Gemini Suit
Wiley Post Helmet (Replica)
Wiley Post Helmet (Replica)
Moon Rocks
Moon Rocks