One of only 100, rarely offeredApollo 15 Lunar Module Flown "Sieger" Crew-Signed Cover, Serial Number 057, One of 100 Sent to and Sold by Herman Sieger in 1971, with Notarized Certification on the Verso. A philatelic cover with a color cachet based on the Apollo 15 mission insignia. At upper left is written the following: "Landed at Hadley, Moon/July 31, 1971" above the tow moonwalkers' signatures: "Dave Scott" and "Jim Irwin". At lower left are the signatures of the crew: "Dave Scott", "Al Worden", and "Jim Irwin". It bears a 10¢ "First Man on the Moon" stamp (Scott #C76) cancelled on the launch date of July 26, 1971 at Kennedy Space Center. At lower right is a se-tenant pair of 8¢ Decade of Achievement/ United States in Space stamps cancelled on board the U.S.S. Okinawa on the splashdown date of August 7, 1971. On the center of the verso is the typed statement: "This is to certify that this cover was onboard/ the Falcon at the Hadley-Apennine, Moon/ July 30-August 2, 1971" which is signed and notarized by Mrs. C. B. Carsey of Harris County, Texas (Houston) along with her Notary blind-stamp. At lower left of the verso Sieger's name "H.W. Sieger" is stamped then signed by him below the handwritten serial number "#057". This is the first time Heritage has been privileged to offer one of these first 100 lunar-flown cover. Others that we have offered previously are from the remaining 298 that were kept by the crew. A rare opportunity. Excellent.
The story behind these famous, moon surface-landed covers is extraordinary. In 1970, a German stamp dealer by the name of Hermann Sieger set out to recruit an Apollo crew to carry some philatelic covers to the moon and back. The Apollo 15 crew agreed to carry one hundred covers for a payment of $7000 to each of them. The agreement was that they would not be sold until after the Apollo program wrapped up. Along with Sieger's covers, the astronauts added 300 of their own (actually 298 as two of the 300 were destroyed before the flight). The NASA rule was that the astronauts had to obtain permission prior to taking anything with them on the spacecraft. For unknown reasons, these were never reported. All the covers were cancelled just after midnight the day of the flight (except this one) and then rushed through the Manned Spacecraft Operations Building, where they were vacuum-packed and sealed in fireproof fiberglass. They then went to Launch Complex 39A where Scott took the package and put in a pocket of his spacesuit. These were not properly manifested. After the flight, the crew had the covers stamped and cancelled onboard the rescue ship. They signed the covers on the way back to Houston. Shortly thereafter, the one hundred covers were forwarded to Siegel in Germany and he immediately began to sell them. The astronauts made efforts to retrieve the covers, but failed. They returned his payments but a congressional inquiry caused NASA to suspend all three from active flight status. The 298 remaining covers were confiscated and held until 1983 when NASA settled Al Worden's lawsuit out of court and returned the covers to the crew.
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