Following Ham, just one other chimp would ever journey to space. This was reportedly because officials did not want the bad press that would come from the death of a "named" chimpanzee if the mission were a failure. [9] In 1981 he was moved to a chimpanzee colony in North Carolina where he died in 1983 at the age of 25. [2]:259. [2]:258-259 The last surviving astro-chimp, she died at age 41 on March 14, 1998. Ham the Astrochimp died in 1983. Officially, Ham was known as #65 before his flight, and only renamed "Ham" upon his successful return to earth. He was quick to bite. A 2008 animated film entitled Space Chimps was about sending chimps to space. The chimp-onaut for the second mission was Enos, aka Number 85, who was regarded as the brightest and quickest member of the chimp colony. What was the name of the chimpanzee that made an 18 minute flight in a Mercury capsule on Jan 31 1961? Ham eventually became the subject of documentaries and cartoons and graced the covers of national magazines. He is buried at the International Space Hall of Fame in New Mexico. The main character and hero of the movie was named Ham III, the grandson of Ham. Ham the chimpanzee went to the National Zoo in Washington DC after his brief career as an astronaut, where he lived for 17 years. Is the first chimp to be sent to space alive? Ham lived out the next 17 years of his life in the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. before moving to the North Carolina Zoo. A History of Project Mercury details what happened next: At nineteen hours before launch these two animals were put on low-residue diets, fitted with biosensors, and checked out in their pressurized couch-cabins. Even less remembered, in the 1940s and 1950s, monkeys perished for the U.S. cause and dogs died in Soviet spaceflight tests. Ham fitted into a special biopack couch prior to flight to space. Like Ham, he was born in Cameroon and came to Holloman in April 1960. The space chimps , Ham and Enos, were celebrated at the time. Ham, who was acting particularly feisty and in good humor, got the nod, and a female chimp was selected as alternate. He was one of the heroes of the space race, paving the way for man to orbit the Earth. The 2006 song "Monkey 61" by Irish band Bell X1 was based on Ham the Chimp. But unlike Ham, he was not friendly or cuddly. When he died in 1983 at the relatively young chimp age of 25, ... Drawer containing specimen 1871496 (aka Ham the Chimp) at the US National Museum of Health and Medicine. Popular culture. Ham, the first chimp in space, is pictured inside his capsule on this rare photo set to be auctioned. No. The chimpanzee became known as Ham – an acronym for the laboratory that prepared him for his mission, the Holloman Aerospace Medical Center. “Enos was a good chimp,” said Dittmer. 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