Apollo XI

The “Giant Step” Heard Round the World: Simply the Finest Set of Presentation Apollo 11 Photos Inscribed to One of the First African American NASA Employee’s and Including the Among the Most Important Words Ever Uttered Referencing Armstrong’s “Giant Step for Mankind” When Stepping on the Moon!

The “Giant Step” Heard Round the World: Simply the Finest Set of Presentation Apollo 11 Photos Inscribed to One of the First African American NASA Employee’s and Including the Among the Most Important Words Ever Uttered Referencing Armstrong’s “Giant Step for Mankind” When Stepping on the Moon!

 

Spectacular signed and inscribed large color photo of Buzz Aldrin standing near the lunar module's landing gear during Apollo 11, with a reflection of Neil Armstrong in Buzz's mask. Color photo 13.75" x 10.75". Adhered to a large mat to a completed size of 20" x 16", with a superb signed inscription by Neil Armstrong signed and inscribed:

 "To Elton - With Sincere Thanks

For Being Both One Step Ahead of Us

And One Step Behind Us Throughout "GIANT STEP" -

Neil Armstrong Apollo 11"

 

Both the photo and the mat are in superb condition. Minor photographic flaws mentioned only for accuracy, this is an absolutely stunning piece. (With Armstrong holding the camera throughout the mission, most all the lunar pictures were taken by Armstrong and depict Aldrin on the surface).

 

Armstrong paraphrases his famous quote "one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind." in this large stunning signed inscription with color photo.

 

Michael Collins Signed and Inscribed:

 "To Elton

With sincere Best Wishes

and Giant Thanks

from  Apollo 11

Michael Collins"

 

A stunning overall 14” X 11” photo of the spidery Lunar Module “Eagle” Ascent after lifting off of the moon.  

The Ascent Stage and Descent Stage of the Lunar Module had completely isolated fuel and oxidizer tanks. The tanks in the Ascent Stage were still full, even though the Descent Stage was running on empty. You couldn't pass fuel between stages, and in fact, you wouldn't want to.

 

Buzz Aldrin Signed and Inscribed:

 

“To Elton

C’etait un grand plasir de vous avoir ev

Avec nous pendant le voyage de Giant Step

Et d’avoir eu votre service comme interprete

Buzz Aldrin”

 

Translated:

“To Elton

it was a great pleasure to have you tour with us during the Giant Step Journey voyage and to have had you as an interpreter

Buzz Aldrin”

 

The photo 20” X 15” depicts Buzz descending from the ladder of the LM.

 

Elton Stepherson, Jr., Special Assistant to the Area Director for the Near East and South Asia was the interpreter on the Apollo 11 crew’s World tour and an African American pioneer at NASA.

 

Go back in time to 1969…

As the dust settled on the moon's "Sea of Tranquility", after the landing engine of the Apollo 11 Lunar Module shut down, Commander Neil Armstrong's steely voice crackled over the radio to Mission Control, a quarter of a million miles away: "Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed." The relief on Earth was tangible: "Roger, Twan...Tranquility. We copy you on the ground. You got a bunch of guys about to turn blue. We're breathing again. Thanks a lot." Spacecraft Communicator (CAPCOM) Charles Duke stuttered to Armstrong who, with Lunar Module Pilot Buzz Aldrin, had just become the first astronauts to safely land on the moon. This historic exchange on July 20, 1969 marked the end of a perilous journey to the lunar surface, but a multitude of threats still faced the pair of NASA astronauts during their surface operations while Command Module Pilot Michael Collins looked down alone, orbiting high above the lunar landscape.

 

And, despite arriving in one piece, the expert touchdown was by no means certain. Numerous unplanned events occurred during the mission, the worst of which was after arriving in lunar orbit and later separating from the Command Module to begin their landing sequence, Armstrong and Aldrin had little idea that their moon landing plans had already been modified by an overlooked effect of Newtonian physics. A couple of hours earlier, as the spidery Lunar Module "Eagle" undocked from the Command Module "Columbia," residual pressure inside the tunnel that connected the two spacecraft before undocking wasn't sufficiently vented, causing Eagle to get an additional boost as it separated. It was slight, but at around nine minutes before touchdown, Armstrong realized they were going to overshoot their landing site, estimating they'd miss by approximately three miles (which was a close educated guess, they actually missed by four). As the moon is littered with boulders and craters, the planned landing site was chosen as it was comparatively smooth. So with the modified flight plan, the duo had to find another suitable place to safely touch down.

 

As if that wasn't enough drama, the Eagle's computer had been distracting them with program alarms throughout their descent. Radio communications with Mission Control were also patchy. The recurring alarm was being triggered by the onboard landing computer that was warning of an overload. Fortunately, as the alarm was intermittent, Mission Control deemed the risk of computer overload low and green-lit the landing. As the minutes ticked down, and the pair watched the lunar surface getting closer by the second, another problem became clear: they were burning more fuel than calculated. Due to their overshot landing, they were nearly running on empty so there was even more urgency to find a landing spot. With only 30 seconds of fuel left in the tank, Armstrong guided the Eagle softly down onto its impromptu landing site that, moments later, would become "Tranquility Base" - the first (temporary) human outpost on the moon.

 

Although other drama unveiled throughout, the crew all completed the mission safely. Humans walking on the Moon and returning safely to Earth accomplished Kennedy's goal set eight years earlier. In Mission Control during the Apollo 11 landing, Kennedy's speech flashed on the screen, followed by the words "TASK ACCOMPLISHED, July 1969".

 

To understand the value of this trio one must look at comparables on the market. Although in our opinion nothing is as good as this trio.

 

A somewhat related item sold at Bonhams in 2010 and was a flight plan signed only by Armstrong with his famous quote even though Armstrong told his biographer James Hansen that he never wrote this phrase for anyone, making our Photo and this especially scarce since these two inscriptions must have slipped his mind https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/17778/lot/1161/  - this sold for $152,000!

 

This photo  https://www.rrauction.com/PastAuctionItem/3363168 lacking the “giant” words fetched $56,000. And the two above are for items signed by Neil alone.

Spectacular trio that could not be duplicated at any cost.

 

These items come with a Certificate from Steve Zarelli the foremost space expert and john Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.

We provide in-house shipping worldwide.

 



Item: 67343

Price: $37,500.00
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Apollo XI
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