This Wednesday @CTHistorical: A Movie Under (and about!) the Stars

By Jenny Steadman, Adult Programs Manager

Houston, we really have a problem, due to inclement weather, tonight’s showing of Apollo 13 has been cancelled, and rescheduled to next week, July 22, at 8:15 pm, doors open at 7:00 for access to the Connecticut 50 Objects/50 Stories exhibit.

Apollo 13 Movie Poster“Houston, we have a problem.” The classic line from the movie Apollo 13 still makes my pulse race. The drama of risking everything to explore the cold void of space still seems like science fiction rather than history.

Under the stars is the perfect place to watch this thrilling movie—be sure and join us on the CHS lawn with your blanket or chair and a picnic this Wednesday evening from 8 to 10:30 p.m.! If you haven’t been in to see the replica space suit (or, to be precise, the Extravehicular Mobility Unit) designed by UTC Aerospace Systems and loaned to us for our Connecticut: 50 Objects/50 Stories exhibit, be sure and come at 7 p.m., because we’ll be opening our galleries with free admission before the movie begins.

Space Suit, aka the Extravehicular Mobility UnitMade up of 18,000 parts, the space suit on display in the exhibit is the “world’s smallest crewed space craft,” and it is amazing to imagine having it as your only protection from “micrometeoroids traveling at 17,000 miles per hour” and temperatures ranging from -250 to +250 degrees every ninety minutes.

Rated PG, Apollo 13 dramatizes the tense days of the Apollo 13 lunar mission crisis in 1970, as directed by Ron Howard. Astronaut Jim Lovell (Tom Hanks) leads command module pilot Jack Swigert (Kevin Bacon) and lunar module driver Fred Haise (Bill Paxton) on what is slated as NASA’s third lunar landing mission. All goes smoothly until the craft is halfway through its mission, when an exploding oxygen tank threatens the crew’s oxygen and power supplies. As the courageous astronauts face the dilemma of either suffocating or freezing to death, Mattingly and Mission Control leader Gene Kranz (Ed Harris) struggle to find a way to bring the crew back home, all the while knowing that the spacemen face probable death once the battered ship reenters the Earth’s atmosphere. The film received an overwhelmingly enthusiastic critical response and a Best Picture nomination.

Please be sure and check our website in the event of rain or the threat of storms to find out if we’ll go ahead with the screening or postpone to our rain date of Wednesday, July 22.

Here are all the details:Ad for Apollo 13

When: Wednesday, July 15

7 to 8 p.m.: Free admission to Connecticut: 50 Objects/50 Stories

8:15 p.m.: Apollo 13 will begin on the CHS lawn. The movie runs approximately 140 minutes.

Rain date: Wednesday, July 22.

Where: The Connecticut Historical Society, 1 Elizabeth Street, Hartford (free parking!)

Be sure and bring a chair or a blanket and a picnic.

Questions? Contact me at (860) 236-5621 x289 or

Jenny Steadman is the Adult Programs Manager of the Connecticut Historical Society, and has been in that position since 2012. She holds her Ph.D. in women’s history and literature from Emory University and has taught at Emory University, Trinity College, and most recently at the President’s College of the University of Hartford. She published Traveling Economies: American Women’s Travel Writing with Ohio State University Press in 2007. Stories of women’s travel, adventure, and accomplishment inspire her and sharing those stories is a life-long passion.

About the Connecticut Historical Society

A private, nonprofit, educational organization established in 1825, the Connecticut Historical Society is the state’s official historical society and one of the oldest in the nation. Located at 1 Elizabeth Street in Hartford, the CHS houses a museum, library, and the Edgar F. Waterman Research Center that are open to the public and funded by private contributions. The CHS’s collection includes more than 4 million manuscripts, graphics, books, artifacts, and other historical materials accessible at our campus and on loan at other organizations.

The CHS collection, programs and exhibits help Connecticut residents connect with each other, have conversations that shape our communities, and make informed decisions based on our past and present.

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The Connecticut Historical Society will reopen on August 18. All on-site programs and events are canceled at this time.
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