Lot 9067: Vintage glossy 13 x 10 photo of the original seven Mercury astronauts posing in front of a US Air Force jet, signed in various ink types, "M. Scott Carpenter," "Leroy G. Cooper, Jr.," "J. H. Glenn, Jr.," "Virgil I. Grissom," "Walter M. Schirra," "Donald K. Slayton," and "Alan B. Shepard." An inscription, "To Terri & Sheri, With Warmest personal Regards—The Mercury Astronauts," has been added by Carpenter. Reverse bears ownership notations. In very good condition, with uniform overall fading, light dampstaining to top edge, scattered creasing, a bit of emulsion loss to extreme right edge, and the Slayton signature a shade light and irregular ink adhesion to the Schirra signature. Taken at Langley Air Force Base on January 20, 1961, the day of John F. Kennedy's inauguration, this photograph pictures the seven original test pilots chosen from hundreds of candidates eager to become America's first astronauts. The inscription of Terri and Sheri refers to the seven-year-old twin daughters of Joe Garino, the physical trainer for the astronauts of the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo programs. Given its association with NASA's longtime fitness trainer, this is a remarkable fully signed photo further enhanced by its uncommon size and early signatures.
RR Auction's Space and Aviation Auction 463
Thursday, 22nd October 2015
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