One Small Step: 50 Years of Lunar Exploration
Our sensational stamp issue commemorates the anniversary of the Moon landing, but also all the missions that led up to that one small step. Through our stamps we have sought to show you the beauty of space, the Moon and the vehicles that took humanity to the Moon. Through subtle references and codes on the stamps (and within NASA guidelines) we have included those incredible NASA staff in Mission Control, the astronauts, the programs directors and those who gave their lives.
Our first stamp features the Moon, the target of the Apollo missions. To the left of the image is the GPS coordinates of Rice Stadium, Houston, where President Kennedy made his speech announcing the Apollo programme. Upper right we have the date of this event. Kennedy was listed as a significant person, as well as Webb, the second Administrator of NASA and Gilruth, the first Director of NASA’s Manned Spacecraft Center. Down the right side we have the famous line from President Kennedy’s speech “WE CHOOSE TO GO TO THE MOON IN THIS DECADE.”
Our second stamp features the Apollo Mission Control Room during the Apollo 11 lift-off. On the bottom left of the image we have the GPS coordinates of the Mission Control centre in Houston and top right, we have included the time and date of Apollo 11’s Moon Landing. The featured names are Phillips, Director of NASA’s Apollo Manned Lunar Landing Program; Low, a NASA administrator; Kraft, an American aerospace engineer and Faget, the mechanical engineer involved with the design of the Mercury spacecraft, the Gemini and Apollo spacecraft as well as the Space Shuttle. The quote is from Charles M. Duke Jr., the spacecraft communicator for Apollo 11. “ROGER, TRANQUILITY. WE COPY YOU ON THE GROUND.”
Our third stamp features a view from Apollo 7 of Florida, the location of the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (now ‘Cape Kennedy’ Air Force Station). Left of the image, the stamp includes the GPS coordinates of lift-off location and upper right is the date and time of launch. Also included are the names of the crew, Schirra, Eisele and Cunningham, and the quote is from Shirra, “look at the sunrise. There you go. That’s the thrill of this business.”
Our fourth stamp features a view from Apollo 8 of the first ‘Earthrise’ seen by humanity. Included upper right is the date and time of Apollo 8 lift-off. To the left of the stamp are the GPS coordinates of the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, where the launch vehicle is housed. The crew names appearing on the stamps are Borman, Lovell and Anders. Genesis was recited during the Apollo 8 mission and William Anders recited the verse, “IN THE BEGINNING GOD CREATED THE HEAVEN AND THE EARTH.”
Our fifth stamp features a view from Apollo 9, the first manned flight of the lunar module in space. The time and date of lift-off is included upper right and the GPS coordinates of the Air and space museum in Chicago, where the launch vehicle is housed. The crew names McDivitt, Scott and Schweickart are also included and the quote is from McDivitt, “THERE’S THAT HORIZON. BOY, IS THAT PRETTY!”
Our sixth stamp features a view from Apollo 10 of the lunar module descending during the dry run rehearsal. On the bottom left of the stamp we have the GPS co-ordiantes that show the location where the Apollo 10 shuttle is housed. The upper right is the time and date of this event. The crew names Stafford, Young and Cernan are included and the quote “LOOKING GREAT HERE. YOU’RE LOOKING BEAUTIFUL” is from Charles M. Duke Jr, a member of the astronaut support crew for Apollo 10.
Our seventh stamp features the first footprint made by humanity on a body other than Earth. Included on the left are the exact coordinates of the landing site on the Moon. The mission was on schedule and the numbers on the upper right reflect the exact date and time the first of the five F-1 engines ignited. The crew names Armstrong, Aldrin, Collins are also featured and the quote is Neil Armstrong’s famous words, “THAT’S ONE SMALL STEP FOR MAN, ONE GIANT LEAP FOR MANKIND.”
Our eighth stamp features a view on the surface of the Moon of equipment from Apollo 12, alongside equipment left from Surveyor 3, a previous Moon mission. Surveyor 3 conducted experiments to see how the lunar surface would fare against the weight of an Apollo lunar module. Included on the left of the stamp are the exact coordinates of the landing site of Apollo 12 on the Moon and on the upper right we have the time and date of the Apollo 12 lift-off. Included are the crew names Conrad, Gordon, and Bean and the quote is from Bean who stated “WE KNEW IT WAS GOING TO BE DIFFICULT. WE DIDN’T KNOW HOW DIFFICULT.”