The V-2 rocket (German: Vergeltungswaffe 2) was the first ballistic missile and first man-made object to achieve sub-orbital spaceflight, the progenitor of all modern rockets including the Saturn V moon rocket.
Over 3,000 V-2s were launched as military rockets by the German Wehrmacht against Allied targets in World War II, resulting in the death of an estimated 7,250 military personnel and civilians.
One of the main targets was the port of Antwerp, counting 1300 hits. The most infamous hit was the destruction of cinema Rex in the heart of the town killing nearly all spectators in the near sold out theatre.
A fun personal fact of mine is that when the US Army stole the German rocket scientists away from the Red Army, they were (mostly) all delivered to the state of Alabama in the South. One of my grandmothers was the personal nurse to several of the scientists and their families and she often told me stories about the night terrors the children had from the Allied bombings /csb
September 19, 2012, 3:56pm / 24