Bohnam’s auction house in New York City will be taking bids on hundreds of tiny treasures from the glory days of NASA’s space program. If it weren’t for this damn recession, I’d have me one of those lunar rock box thingys. Here’s a sampling from the catalog (pdf):
LUNAR ROCK BOX COVER
Lunar rocks were placed in an aluminum storage box that was vacuum sealed on the lunar surface. The crew then placed the box inside the container covers of this type for the journey back to Earth, to prevent lunar dust from spreading inside the Lunar and Command Modules.
$2,000 – 3,000
ASTRONAUT CHARLES DUKE’S SPACE SUIT CUFF CHECKLIST
The cuff checklist used by Lunar Module Pilot Charles Duke, Jr. was exposed directly to the lunar environment for over 12 hours during those exploration periods. Apollo mission planners were well aware of the importance of making every minute productive while astronauts explored the lunar surface. In order to make certain the lunar explorers did not overlook planned tasks, spiralbound cuff checklists were created to provide a detailed script of each task or activity. The crew of Apollo 16 found a special drawing on the next leaf. It features a drooling space-suited astronaut melting away in the arms of a buxom nude woman. The astronaut says: “Happy Birthday Whatever Your Name Is.” This gag illustration continued the tradition started on Apollo 12 with the cuff checklists that had small images of Playboy pinups and Snoopy cartoons.
$200,000 – 300,000
MAN’S FIRST CELESTIAL MEASUREMENTS MADE WHILE ON THE MOON
The navigational chart used by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to determine their exact position on the lunar surface just after their historic lunar landing. From Buzz Aldrin: On the back of the star chart, there is a square velcro patch. It has an overall tint of gray with darker grayish material embedded within. Those gray areas are most likely lunar dust that came off our space suits or from various equipment such as the sample return container.”
$70,000 – 90,000
(Thanks, Hrag Vartanian.)