50 years ago, Apollo 11 blasted off, sending astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin into space. After a three-day journey, Armstrong made the first step onto the Moon and uttered perhaps one of the most famous lines- "One small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind". In celebration of the 50th anniversary of human's first moon landing, Christie's is offering monumental items from this space mission, with the Apollo 11 Lunar Module Timeline Book as the leading lot.
The Apollo 11 Lunar Module Timeline Book
The Lunar Module Eagle was the lander spacecraft that was flown from lunar orbit to the Moon's surface
The first Moon landing and the safe return of the astronauts would not be possible without the Apollo 11 Lunar Module Timeline Book. The book will be on offer in Christie's sale, titled "One Giant Leap: Celebrating Space Exploration 50 Years after Apollo 11" at an estimated value of US$7m - 9m. It had flown on board the Lunar Module Eagle and had been annotated by both Armstrong and Aldrin in real time, 20 - 21 July 1969.
Eagle’s coordinates in the Sea of Tranquility written by Aldrin on the book
The book includes 146 data logs, step-by-step completion checkmarks, and other annotations made in real time by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin during their mission across at least 17 of the pages. Eagle’s coordinates in the Sea of Tranquility are written by Aldrin on page ten within moments of landing, being the first writing by a human being on a celestial body other than Earth.
The Timeline Book was placed between Armstrong and Aldrin as they made the historic landing with only 21 seconds of fuel was left. Faint traces of lunar dust appear on pages 19, 20, 21, 22, and parts of 23 as Armstrong and Aldrin's hands were in direct contact with lunar dust on the closed sample return containers. While Armstrong was vacuuming the containers, Aldrin was holding the book and checking off steps and flipping over pages.
THE TIMELINE BOOK – Apollo 11 LM Timeline Book.[Houston:] Manned Spacecraft Center, Flight Planning Branch, 19 June-12 July 1969.
Lot no.: 11
Provenance: Colonel Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin (b. 1930; faint pencil initials to top right corner of upper cover; full-page inscription signed “Buzz Aldrin” on the inside front cover, typed provenance letter signed on Aldrin stationery) – sold by Aldrin at a Los Angeles to the current owner in October 2007.
Estimate: US$7,000,000 - 9,000,000
Auction house: Christie's New York
Sale: One Giant Leap: Celebrating Space Exploration 50 Years after Apollo 11 (Part 1) (Lots 1-11)
Sale date: 18 July 2019
Lots offered: 11