Friday, April 13, 2018

Rockets, Satellites and Space Travel (1958)

I spend a lot of time being excited to show people books that I have never seen before, but that leaves out those of you who aren't familiar with the best of the space books. So here is definitely a greatest hit!

Coggins, Jack, Pratt, Fletcher, and Ley, Willy. Illustrated by Coggins, Jack. Rockets, Satellites, and Space Travel. New York: Random House. (64 p.) 29 cm. Illustrated Boards. 1958

An updating of Coggins and Pratt. "Rockets, Jets, Guided Missiles, and Space Ships” (1951). Much of the text is the same tracing the history of rockets and planning for an expedition to the Moon. The updating includes discussions of artificial satellites research and the US and Russian launches of satellites. It also updates discussion of the Moon trip and atomic powered rockets. There are several added painting of Moon landers, a round space station and satellites. See 1951 1st edition here:

 This chart (and the book itself) lays out an ambitious plan for future exploration. It is amazing how much had changed in the 7 years since the 1991 first edition.
 Jack Coggins was a renowned artist, especially of hardware so his paintings are very unique.

 I like the 1950s hi-fi gear and basic electronics against the background of orbiting the earth.
 A "tricked-out" space station with all the extras (solar, television, work space, man-cave etc.)

 A re-used painting from the 1951 edition, almost like an airliner in space, to circle the Moon

 A much revised moonlander.
 This painting of explorers on (Titan?) is a great combination of Bonestell and Coggins' own imagination

 A superior Mars-buggy for the modern explorer


  1. Stunning artwork! Thank you for sharing these images.

  2. Do you notice how the “atomically driven spaceship” still uses the good ol’ mercury boiler for cabin power? Seems like they could, y’ know, run an extension cord aft… [Notwithstanding its four 16-cylinder Diesel engines, the Hindenburg had outboard propeller generators for onboard electric power. Hey, waste not, want not.]