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    The founding father of modern rocketry

    Robert H. Goddard 1937 Typed Letter Signed Regarding Early Rocketry, with Letter of Authenticity from JSA. A one page letter, 8.5" x 11", on Goddard's Mescalero Ranch letterhead, Roswell, New Mexico, April 17, 1937, to a correspondent in Medford, Massachusetts. Text, in full:

    "Dear Mr. Flint: The subject of rocket power, from an engineering standpoint, is so new that there are, so far as I know, no books which treat of the fundamentals of the subject in a thorough and serious way. My own work on the subject is not yet completed, but you may be interested in reading my two papers in the Smithsonian Institution Miscellaneous Collections, Vol. 71, No. 2 for 1919, and Vol. 95, No. 3 for 1936. The former is out of print, but can probably be obtained through your college library; the latter can be obtained by addressing the Secretary of the Institution at Washington, D.C. Thanking you for your interest, I am very truly yours, [signed] R. H. Goddard".

    Letter is three-hole punched and lightly toned with flattened mailing folds. JSA full certificate included. About fine.

    Robert Hutchings Goddard (1882-1945) was born in Worcester, Massachusetts, and became interested in science at an early age. At age sixteen he read H. G. Wells' The War of the Worlds which led to his lifelong dedication to the pursuit of space flight. By 1911, he had received his Ph.D. in Physics from Clark University and in 1914, Goddard was awarded his first two patents. U.S. Patent #1,102,653 described a multi-stage rocket and U.S. Patent #1,103,503 described a rocket fueled with gasoline and liquid nitrous oxide. Both are considered major milestones in the history of rocketry. His research on rocketry continued and, on March 16, 1926, he launched his first liquid fueled rocket in Auburn, Massachusetts. With the help of aviator Charles Lindbergh, Goddard received research funding from the Guggenheim family and he moved his base of operations to Roswell, New Mexico, in the summer of 1930. The period of the writing of this letter was a very productive time for him; twenty-four rockets were launched from his remote Mescalero Ranch location between 1935 and 1938. After the start of World War II, he moved to Annapolis to develop liquid-fueled rockets for jet-assisted takeoffs of aircraft. That work led to the development of the large rocket engines needed to launch the space age.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2019
    14th-16th Thursday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
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