Pair of flown heel restraints carried on the Apollo 14 mission, each consisting of a metal heel bracket with heavy duty brown Velcro stirrup straps. Parts tags are sewn to the longest strap on each restraint, one reading: “Heel Restraint L.H., BW-1053-001, S/N: 1142, Date of Mfg: 8/21/69, Mfg. by: B. Welson Co.” The other tag reads: “Heel Restraint R.H., BW-1053-002, S/N: 1140, Date of Mfg: 8/21/69, Mfg. by: B. Welson Co.” In overall fine condition, with some light stains to the tags. Accompanied by a signed letter of provenance from Mitchell, in part: “This document certifies that the accompanying set of heel restraints were flown into lunar orbit aboard Kittyhawk on the Apollo 14 mission, which launched from Cape Kennedy on January 31, 1971.” These heel restraints locked the astronauts’ feet in place for safety during liftoff of the Saturn V rocket from Earth. If the astronauts were not tightly restrained in their couches during the launch phase, the violent motion induced from extreme acceleration could result in injury. As an important piece of safety equipment used during the mission that followed the near-disastrous Apollo 13, this pair of restraints is an important and extraordinary artifact of manned spaceflight.
Category Archives: Edgar Mitchell
A color calibration plate used on the lunar surface by Edgar Mitchell during the Apollo 14 mission. Metal plate measures 6 x 6, serial number 1006, with various colors and shades of grays on one side. Reverse bears a metal and plastic clip and is signed in black felt tip, “This camera calibration plate used on the lunar surface during the Apollo 14 exploration of Fra Mauro, February 1971, Edgar Mitchell Apollo 14 LMP.” In fine condition. Accompanied by two letters of authenticity from Mitchell. One dated January 4, 2000, reads, in part: “I certify that the accompanying Apollo 14 Color Calibration plate was used by me on the lunar surface at Fra Mauro…Its purpose was to help determine true color in a natural environment where there was essentially none. The plate is still coated with very fine lunar dust resulting from its exposure to the lunar environment…It has been in my personal space collection since its return to me by NASA in 1971.” The second letter, dated January 17, 2000, reads, in part: “The accompanying camera calibration plate was carried to the surface of the moon on board the ‘Antares’ spacecraft during the Apollo 14 lunar expedition. It was stowed in the equipment bay of the Antares before the launch, carried to the surface during the lunar landing and returned to the spacecraft ‘Kittyhawk’ following lunar surface activities…It has been in my possession as part of my personal collection of memorabilia since its return to Earth.” Present also are three photos of Mitchell, including one of him signing the plate, and another signing one of the letters. Also included are six 10 x 8 photos of the plate on the lunar surface, each signed in black felt tip by Mitchell, adding a brief inscription to one, and writing, “This is the color calibration plate in action.” An understated, but vitally important surface-used item, necessary for bringing back accurate photographs for further scientific study, and astronaut certified lunar surface items represent the pinnacle of space collecting. Pre-certified Steve Zarelli and RR Auction COA.