MEDFORD, Ore. – Tomorrow marks the 60th anniversary of the Telstar satellite call between Medford and Medford’s sister city in Italy.
The United States launched the first telecommunications satellite, Or Telstar, back in 1962.
It was used to connect 23 cities in the U.S. with their European sister cities.
Medford was the only city in the Pacific Northwest to be selected and was paired with Alba, Italy.
The two were paired because of their numerous similarities including their location, both being near valleys, as well as both being centers of agriculture.
The two cities had only communicated via letter until the satellite call strengthened a relationship that spans the globe.
“That was like the first time they were able to connect other than letters, but now we can connect instantly with the technology we have,” President of the Medford-Alba City Association Robin Snider said.
Both cities keep the relationship alive today through a student exchange program.
The mayors of both cities will be speaking to each other tomorrow to commemorate the 60th anniversary of their connection.
The call will start at 10:00 a.m.
The link to the call can be found on their website.