Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Earth and Space Guide for Elementary Teachers (1961)

Back when spaceflight was new even the teachers had to study so they could explain it to their class. Here is a guide from the Pennsylvania Department of Public Education.

Pennsylvania Dept. of Public Instruction. Earth and space guide for elementary teachers.
Pennsylvanica: The Department, 1961. 67 p. Issue 3 of Curriculum services series

How would you answer these questions for a 2nd grade student?

Friday, November 16, 2012

Fight for Speed (1952)

Another early Russian children's book. This book was about the wonders of technology, how it would improve and change the world.  I have chosen to take just the space flight portion for today's highlight.

Lyapunov, B. Fight for Speed. Moscow: Young Guard, (238 p.) 1952

 Detail of the cover, a great image!

This is a typical illustration from the majority of the book, how technology is used in land, sea, and space in the "fight for speed".

This diagram suggests a V-2 rocket tail and the basics of rocket propulsion.

Illustrations from the history of rocketry (Russian version) with the ideas of escape velocity, rocket motors, and multi-staged rockets.
The Russian artists really love to illustrate Saturn as a planet for conquest, probably because it was so pretty in the background.


An excellent space station

 The first men to see the Moon from up close. I especially like the "lever" controls for the rocket.

 I continue to be facinated how the western and eastern visions of our space future were passed on in such similar illustrations.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Astronautics (1960)

I'm searching a little harder for books I haven't shared before. Here is a gem witten by the British astronomer Patrick Moore and illustrated by one of the best modern space artists David A. Hardy. Patrick Moore was the Carl Sagan of Britain when it came to astronomy and other spacy stuff.
This book was part of a schoolboy series of non-fiction books. Interesting and short books to capture the mind. Even though this one is only 71 pages it has a nice description of the history of space flight and a few drawings of the possible future in space from the British point of view.
Moore, Patrick. Illustrated by Hardy, D.A. Astronautics. London: Methuen. (71 p.) 26 cm. Cloth, DJ.
Part of the Methuen's outlines series. 1960.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

"A Quick Trip to Mars" from Children's Playmate (May 1955)

This is a peculiar bit of ephemera for you.  Since fictional space flight programs were big among children in the 1950s, there was a popular perception that children like to "play" spaceman.  This 1955 magazine Children's Playmate contained "A Space Skit" called "A Quick Trip to Mars".  Most of the magazine is devoted to the circus theme of that issue but it does have this one other bit of nostalgia

I encourage you to read the skit. Not only for the depiction of how space flight was percieved by adults making "space product" for children but also for sex roles of girls and boys.  The idea that you had to play a certain way and who liked to do what was passed on in the popular culture.

I like an alternate "reading" of this skit. Men are planners and were seen as likely to drive the desire to explore and conquer, women are practical in seeing that once we have conquered/arrived the real problem is how do we use Mars, how can we be at home.  Anyhow the skit made me smile so I hope you enjoy it.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Colliers Part 2 : Oct 18, 1952

I have mentioned before that the AIAA Houston section is digitally reprinting the series of Colliers magazines in their Horizons newsletter.

In this one they reproduce the 2nd issue of the series of "Man Will Conquer Space Soon!" Reprinting Collier’s from 1952 to 1954, the articles dated October 18, 1952, the 2nd of 8 installments called "Man on the Moon."

Look for the adverstisements for Dreams of Space next to the articles (replacing the old advertisements). It has been fun to be part of the effort to bring these articles and illustrations to a wider audience. Tell your friends!