Museum of Old Newbury Presents China’s Rocket Man: A Deportee from the US Launches China into Space

Monday April 19, 2021

Newburyport – The Museum of Old Newbury, partnering with the Governor’s Academy, will present a virtual program entitled China’s Rocket Man: A Deportee from the US Launches China into Space on Thursday, April 22 at 7 p.m. This program, presented on a Zoom platform,  is the 10th in a series of student symposia highlighting the work of students and their original research. In the story of Qian Xuesen,  presenter Tianyu Fang sees a cautionary tale for our time.
Consequent to an uncertain McCarthy-era accusation of Qian’s affiliation with the Communist Party USA, Eisenhower deported Qian back to China where the MIT- and Caltech-trained engineer, who had been developing rocket engines in Caltech’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, went on to boost China’s space and ballistic missile technologies.
Tianyu M. Fang, a 2020 graduate of The Governor’s Academy, is a first-year student at Stanford University and a freelance journalist based in Beijing and California. His articles have appeared in Foreign Policy, South China Morning Post, SupChina, and other publications around the world.
To register for this program, go to the Museum’s website at and click on the calendar page. There will be a link to Eventbrite to reserve your ticket. All those making a reservation will receive a Zoom link to the program. There is no charge for this program, although donations to the museum are gratefully accepted.
The Museum of Old Newbury preserves and interprets the history of Newbury, Newburyport, and West Newbury from pre-settlement to the present and carries out its mission through the administration of the Cushing House, the Perkins Engraving Plant, and other historic structures on its High Street campus and furthers its purpose through lectures, exhibitions, educational programs, publications, and research.

Photo caption: Qian Xuesen, left, confers with counsel during a deportation hearing in 1950. Courtesy photo

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