Gemini 3 in Photos: The 1st Crewed Flight of NASA's 2-Person Spaceship

A Stunning Display


On March 23, 1965, NASA launched the Gemini 3 mission, NASA's first crewed flight of the Gemini program, with astronauts Gus Grissom and John Young aboard. See how the mission went in photos in this space history gallery. This Image: In 1964, the Gemini-Titan spacecraft stands proudly on the launch pad at night. The rocket is lit brightly by the launch pad lights and spotlights shine in the background.

Gemini 3 Crewmembers


On April 13, 1964, chosen crewmen for the upcoming Gemini 3 mission pose for an official NASA photo. From left to right, prime crew John W. Young and Virgil I. "Gus" Grissom, and backup crew Walter M. Schirra and Thomas P. Stafford.

Simulator Time


At McDonnell Aircraft Corp. in St. Louis, Missouri, astronauts Virgil I. Grissom, also known as Gus, and John W. Young (right) sit inside a Gemini mission simulator.

Checking Out the Digs


On Nov. 19, 1964, astronauts Virgil I. Grissom, at center, and John W. Young, on the left, examine the Gemini spacecraft interior.

Straddling the Craft


During a water egress training at Ellington Air Force, astronaut John W. Young, the Gemini-Titan 3 prime crew pilot, sits atop a Gemini spacecraft.

Liftoff Ready


Before the March 23, 1965 launch of the Gemini 3 mission, the Gemini-Titan launch vehicle stands on the launch pad with the erector lowered.

Meal Planning


Dehydrated beef pot roast, bacon and egg bites, toasted bread cubes, orange juice and a wet wipe make up part of the rations for the Gemini 3 mission. As seen here, water is inserted into the pouch to rehydrate food before consumption.

Eyes for the Journey


During a physical before the Gemini 3 mission launch, astronaut Virgil I. Grissom undergoes an eye exam.

Assisted Entrance


As the Gemini-Titan 3, three-orbit, manned mission launch looms close, astronaut John W. Young enters the Gemini spacecraft in the white room on top of the Gemini launch vehicle with assistance from a McDonnell Aircraft Corp. engineer.

Checking Their Work


On March 25, 1965, astronauts Virgil I. Grissom and John W. Young, on the right) look over photographic negatives from their three-orbit mission around the Earth.

Final Checklist


Suit technician Joe Schmitt studies a checklist with astronaut Virgil I. Grissom in the suiting trailer at Pad 16.

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Christine Lunsford
Producer and Contributing Writer

Christine Lunsford joined the team in 2010 as a freelance producer and later became a contributing writer, covering astrophotography images, astronomy photos and amazing space galleries and more. During her more than 10 years with, oversaw the site's monthly skywatching updates and produced overnight features and stories on the latest space discoveries. She enjoys learning about subjects of all kinds.