Richard Nixon photo

Message Following Successful Flight of Mariner 10.

March 29, 1974

THE SUCCESSFUL flight of Mariner 10 to the planet Mercury marks another historic milestone in America's continuing exploration of the solar system. With this mission we will begin to end centuries of speculation about our planetary neighbor closest to the Sun.

On behalf of all Americans, I extend warmest congratulations to NASA and the Mariner 10 team on their outstanding performance. The hard work, skill, and ingenuity that contributed to the success of Mariner 10 is in keeping with that historical tradition which began when men landed at Plymouth Rock and has continued through the landing of men on the Moon.

Note: The message was sent to James C. Fletcher, Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

The Mariner 10 spacecraft photographed the planet Mercury and collected data on its environment and atmosphere, surface, and body characteristics as part of a long-range goal of investigating that planet and the planet Venus. Launched in November of 1973, Mariner 10 passed within 436 miles of Mercury on March 29, 1974.

The text of the message was released at Key Biscayne, Fla.

Richard Nixon, Message Following Successful Flight of Mariner 10. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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