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Guinea Pig in Space

Guinea Pigs are not famous for their space journeys, but they beat Humans into space by 34 days.  The first space traveling Guinea Pig was a Russian one which went into space on March the 9th 1961. It re-entered the Earth's atmosphere after a single orbit,  with the deadly heat of re-entry being adsorbed by the capsule's heat shield as it partly burned away, and landed safely by parachute in a remote area of Siberia.

On its heroic flight the Guinea Pig was accompanied by a dog named Chernuska and some mice and reptiles. There was also a dummy called Ivan Ivanovich.

Despite the deadly dangers this pioneer of space survived, it received no recorded award and little recognition by history. I hope its carers at least gave it a good meal after the flight.

The first Human went into space on April the 12th 1961. The first man in space received a well deserved award and was promoted.

The first man to go into space was the then Major Yuri Gagarin. After the flight he became Colonel Gagarin.

Here is Yuri Gagarin being congratulated by the crew of Gemini 4.



The first higher primate in space was Ham, a four year old Chimpanzee from Gabon. He  survived his suborbital flight on January the 31st 1961. While weightless he successfully performed the tasks he had been set, proving that an animal could not only survive, but could do complicated things requiring intelligence while weightless.
After safely splashing down into the ocean he was congratulated by the captain of ship which fished his capsule out of the water.




Ham died many years later. His remains were buried with respect in front of the International Space Hall of Fame in Alamogordo, New Mexico.
Here lies Ham the Astrochimp.