On this day in 1957, the Soviets successfully sent Sputnik into orbit around Earth, launching not just a satellite, but an age, and spurring on a rivalry that would dominate the coming decades.

To bring back the feeling of the era, we've put together a slideshow of stamps about space from the Soviet Union. Their vivid colors and particular style give us a taste of what the Soviet space program looked like from behind the iron curtain.