Space is the final frontier. That’s why any memorabilia from out of this world will be sought after. Here are the top 10 most expensive space travel mementoes in the world.
10. Apollo 14 Lunar Module Camera – $80,000
The Apollo 14 was the third mission to land on the moon. It was the eighth manned mission of the program. For a couple of days in 1971, Alan Shepard and Edgar Mitchell stayed on the moon and performed two moonwalks. Shepard also hit two golf balls and several other experiments were performed. Moon rocks were also collected. All of these were probably captured in one of the two 16mm cameras they had brought. One was sold for $80,000 at an auction.
9. Apollo 11 Patch – $85,400
In 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first men to land on the moon. This was the moment that Armstrong said his famous line of, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” The event was seen around the world and fulfilled President John F. Kennedy’s vision earlier in the decade that before the end of the 60’s, they would be able to land a man on the moon and bring him safely back to Earth. It also practically ended the space race in favor of the Americans. While Armstrong and Aldrin were on the moon, Michael Collins was in the command spacecraft piloting it alone while in lunar orbit. In 2010, a patch worn by Collins was sold at an auction for $85,400. It has the signature of all three astronauts, making it a truly collectible item.
8. Apollo 17 Rolex – $131,450
The Apollo 17 mission was the last one in the lunar landing program of the United States. It was the sixth landing by humans on the surface of the moon. The mission occurred in 1972 and was manned by a three-member crew, namely Eugene Cernan, Ronald Evans and Harrison Schmitt. It is still considered as the most recent landing by man on the moon and the most recent manned flight outside the low Earth orbit. It spent the longest time in lunar orbit and took home the largest amount of lunar samples. Evans was wearing a Rolex during the mission, which was sold at an auction for $131,450.
7. Apollo 11 Flight Plan – $152,000
Space travel is a meticulous event. This was proven in the flight plan of the Apollo 11 that basically listed down a detailed and minute-by-minute timeline and guide on the activities that the three astronauts should do. It also included all the preparations needed before the actual moon landing. Armstrong’s famous statement was also written on the plan, which means that when he uttered that remark, it was not spontaneous or impromptu at all. The plan was auctioned off for $152,000 in 2010.
6. Apollo 16 Checklist – $206,000
The Apollo 16 was the tenth manned mission of the Apollo space program. It was also the fifth to land on the moon and the first one to land on the so-called lunar highlands. The 1972 mission had a three-member crew, namely John Young, Charles Duke and Ken Mattingly. Young and Duke spent almost three days on the lunar surface. They also used the second lunar roving vehicle. Duke had a checklist mounted on his wrist to remind him of standard operating procedures on how to exit the spacecraft. It also included some crude drawings, including that of an astronaut with a nude girl, with the former saying, “Happy birthday, whatever your name is.” The checklist sold for $206,000 in 2009.
5. Apollo 11 Navigational Chart – $218,000
Navigational charts are extremely important during space missions. After all, you cannot just stop and ask someone for your location and direction. That was why Armstrong and Aldrin had a detailed navigational map with them during their famous walk on the moon. After all, it was the first time man had stepped on the lunar surface so the whole territory was new. Besides, with a worldwide audience watching, it would have been quite embarrassing if they had gotten lost. The chart used during the mission was signed by Aldrin and auctioned off for $218,000 in 2009.
4. Apollo Soyuz Spacesuit – $242,000
If the Americans had the Apollo program, the Soviet Union had the Soyuz manned spaceflight program. It was, after all, the Cold War and everything was a competition for the two superpowers. From building nuclear bombs to influencing lackey states to winning sporting events, the two were always battling for supremacy. It was a time of détente, so in 1975, the two had a joint space flight. It gave them the experience to work together, which proved to be important as it led to the Shuttle-Mir program and the International Space Station. One of the Russian cosmonauts at that time was Alexei Leonov. The suit he wore was sold in 2011 for $242,000.
3. Apollo 15 Attitude Control Joystick – $327,870
The Apollo 15 was a 1971 mission manned by David Scott, James Irwin and Alfred Worden. It was the first mission to ever use the Lunar Roving Vehicle. It was considered at the time as the most successful manned flight ever made. It was able to take home 77 kilograms of lunar surface materials. Some of the devices that it used included a panoramic camera, gamma ray spectrometer, mapping camera, laser altimeter, mass spectrometer and joystick to control the quadruple rocket engines that each weighed 100 pounds. The joystick was sold in 2009 for $327,870.
2. Apollo 13 Notebook – $388,375
The Apollo 13 was the seventh manned mission of the Apollo program and the third that was intended to land on the moon. James Lovell, Jack Swigert and Fred Haise manned it. The mission was immortalized in the movie “Apollo 13.” The mission was aborted after an oxygen tank exploded and crippled the service module. Calculations were made to ensure its safe return. Lovell wrote down these calculations in a notebook that sold for $388,375 in 2011.
1. Vostok Spacecraft – $2.9 million
Before man was able to reach space, dogs were already being sent there. In 1961, in the last mission before Yuri Gagarin became the first man in space, the Soviet Union launched the Vostok 3KA-2 that contained a dummy and a dog named Zvezdochka. The spacecraft was auctioned off for $2.9 million in 2011.
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