Auctions | May 2, 2019

Apollo 11 Lunar Module Timeline Book at Christie's

Courtesy of Christie's

Apollo 11 Lunar Module Timeline Book. [Houston]: Manned Spacecraft Center, Flight Planning Branch, June 19-July 12, 1969., Flown aboard the LM Eagle and annotated by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin as they landed on the moon. Estimate: $7,000,000-9,000,000.


New York – Christie’s is thrilled to announce the auction of The Apollo 11 Lunar Module Timeline Book fifty years after the historic space mission (estimate: $7-9 million). The Timeline Book is the most important manual used to accomplish the national goal of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to earth. The Timeline Book will be the star lot offered within the auction, One Giant Leap: Celebrating Space Exploration 50 Years after Apollo 11 on July 18 which will include over 150 lots of space history artefacts. The book will be unveiled in New York during 20th Century Week from May 3-17. The global tour will then include visits to Hong Kong from May 24 -27, Beijing from June 13-16 and Seattle towards the end of June. The Timeline Book will be back in New York for the public viewing from July 11-17 ahead of the auction and 50th anniversary of the moon landing.

The Timeline Book narrates the entire Eagle voyage from inspection, undocking, lunar surface descent, stay, and ascent, to the rendezvous with the command module Columbia in lunar orbit. The book was flown aboard the Eagle and was located precisely between Commander Armstrong and Lunar Module Pilot Aldrin as they made the historic landing, amidst alarms ringing and with only about 25 seconds of fuel remaining at landing. It includes the Eagle’s coordinates in the Sea of Tranquility that were written by Aldrin within moments of landing, being the first writing by a human being on another celestial body. Additionally, there are nearly 150 completion checkmarks and other annotations and made in real-time by Aldrin and Armstrong.

Christina Geiger, Head of Books & Manuscripts, comments “over 400,000 Americans were employed by NASA and its contractors to make this mission possible. An estimated 600 million people around the world watched the landing on television. However, during Eagle’s voyage itself, Armstrong and Aldrin were profoundly alone. There is no video recording of them and only imperfect audio recording. This book is a unique witness to the first manned lunar landing, arguably the most glorious adventure of all time. We are overjoyed to be given the opportunity to offer this global treasure at auction.”