Delaware may be one of the smallest states, but its economic and cultural contributions to our nation have been substantial. Our state tells a story of opportunity and innovation that stretches back before the founding of our nation. And perhaps one of our greatest contributions can be seen 50 years ago today, when our great country became the first to successfully land a man on the moon following the launch of Apollo 11. In the words of Neil Armstrong, it was “one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”
Frederica’s ILC Dover – which represents some of the very best in American innovation and ingenuity – created the space suits worn by Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins on their successful, giant leap for mankind. The space suits were predominantly made with materials from another well-known First State company, DuPont.
The important work that was done at ILC Dover prior to the success of July 20th, 1969 – and that continues to this very day – shows how partnerships between government and private industry have the potential to yield results that can truly change the course of history. Since 1947, ILC Dover has designed and manufactured materials for NASA space suits, various hi-tech inflatable devices, gas masks for military and civilian use, flexible containment products for pharmaceutical processing, and blimps for military surveillance and commercial advertising purposes.
Today, the First State remains at the forefront of American ingenuity and progress and I couldn’t be prouder of how far we’ve come and will continue to go. The success of Delaware’s economy can be traced back centuries to the early gunpowder factories of Irenee DuPont, to the suits worn in space, all the way through to the groundbreaking research facilities and financial giants that dominate Wilmington’s skyline today. Delawareans have set themselves apart as masters of industry and it has, quite literally, taken us to the moon.
Although it may be small geographically, Delaware is mighty, and we continue to punch above our weight. Through the strength of its citizens, businesses and traditions, Delaware has led our nation from the very beginning.
As we remember 50 years since the first moon landing, I invite you to join me in remembering where you were when man took their first steps on the moon or watched as Apollo 11 launched into the sky and made history forever. Share your story with me on Facebook or Twitter!