ANDOVER – The first satellite television transmission in history was beamed to Pleumeur-Bodou, France, from the Andover Telstar Tracking Station on July 10, 1962, via Telstar I, the world’s first communications satellite, which had been built by Bell Telephone Laboratories and launched from Cape Canaveral in Florida that same day.
The site was chosen because it would allow the satellite to be tracked for the maximum distance in its south-to-north orbit above the East Coast. Tracking Telstar required a 38-ton antenna in a giant dome that was the largest air-inflated structure in the world, 161 feet high and 210 feet across.
Although the dome is gone, the station is still operated, today by WorldCom – and the local high school is called Telstar High School. Route 120 on the road to Roxbury Pond.