Goddard 1935 A-Series Rocket


Display Status:

This object is on display in the Rockets and Missiles exhibition at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA.

Collection Item Summary:

This is probably the liquid-fuel rocket Robert H. Goddard tried to launch on September 23, 1935, at Roswell, New Mexico, in an attempt to demonstrate its capabilities to supporters Charles Lindbergh and Harry Guggenheim. The Guggenheim Foundation for the Promotion of Aeronautics funded Goddard's experiments in New Mexico.

A technical problem prevented the flight. But because earlier A-series rocket launches had succeeded, Lindbergh and Guggenheim felt Goddard was on the right track. Lindbergh thus persuaded Goddard to donate a complete A-series rocket to the Smithsonian, which he did in November 1935. This rocket became the first liquid-fuel rocket in the Smithsonian collections.

Collection Item Long Description:



Inventory Number


Credit Line

Donated by Dr. Robert H. Goddard


Country of Origin

United States of America


Aluminum skin, thin gauge, along tail section from bottom of fins to bottom of mid-section. Aluminum skin also on parachute section and nosecone wholly of spun aluminum except for steel attachment screw. Steel skin (for greater strength and insulation) below nosecone, over mid-section (over propellant tanks), and around small section above fins. One steel tube or pipe on each side of rocket, along propellant section; one smaller diameter copper tube on one side. Steel nozzle and other interior components. Fabric parachute


Overall: 15 ft. 4 1/2 in. long x 1 ft. wide x 9 in. diameter x 1 ft. 9 1/2 in. span (468.63 x 30.48 x 22.86 x 54.61cm)

Data Source

National Air and Space Museum

Restrictions & Rights

Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum


CRAFT-Missiles & Rockets

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