Friday, August 15, 2014

Project Go!: Big space punchouts for little astronauts (1963)

Toys in Space #2

A bit of a re-run. I finally re-scanned this item

so you could appreciate the punch-outs. In some ways this is kind of silly but

 They do include this "model" of a delta winged spaceship very similar to those being tested at the time. It also reinforces the military aspect of spaceflight development and testing.

 The designation X-1-7 puts this particular rocket firmly into the ranks of it's sibling test rockets.
 I am not convinced the flying saucer assembly had anything to do with the space theme expect it was easy to build.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Blast Off (1980)

Toys in Space #1

The next series of 7 postings I am calling "Toys in Space." As you will see my definition of children's fiction and non-fiction about space is a little blurry.  I think that all of these books (even this first one which is actually 1980) captures the space age excitement of having rockets, space explorers, and a whole set of dreams. Most of these book are few in pages so I will leave you to enjoy these images.....

Rose Art Studios.; Abisch, Roz. Blast off. New York : Mulberry Press, 14p. 27 cm. 1980.
A Mulberry adventure puppet book.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

America's Explorers in Space (1967, 1969)

This is one of the first space books I owned. I had other books before 1967 but somehow this one was very memorable. There are lots of used copies out there because of this reprint:
Which was distributed on behalf of Disabled American Veterans. I am not sure how they happen to be involved with distributing this book. Perhaps people could make a donation and have this book donated in their name to their local school or library.

Cox, Donald W. Illustrated by Dobbins, Dwight. America's Explorers of Space (including a special report on UFOs). Maplewood, NJ: Hammond Inc. (93 p.) 26 cm. Cloth, DJ.

and the 1969 edition:

Cox, Donald W. Illustrated by Dobbins, Dwight. America's Explorers of Space (including a special report on Project Apollo) (2nd edition). Maplewood, NJ : Hammond Inc. (93 p.) 27 cm. Cloth, DJ.

A biographical encyclopedia with biographies of 16 men involved in the history of space exploration including Robert Goddard, Chuck Yeager, Virgil Grissom, and John Glenn. ). Last section of book focuses on UFO's. (pp. 74-87). The 1969 edition was updated with a new text section on Project Apollo (pp. 74-87, replacing 1st edition's UFOs section) and a new sub-title.

 1967 Table of contents
1969 Table of contents

I find it very interesting that along with the biographies of space explorers they chose to have UFOs highlighted in the the 1967 edition. UFOs feel very unscientific from almost 50 years later but they may have thought that the biographies would be too dry without some "sensation."

I appreciate that they included not only astronauts but some of the people who were important in creation our theories and tools of space exploration. Usually these people were not highlighted.

This particular biography of Frank Drake I find very interesting. It is the connection between the space program portion of this book and the section on UFO's. You rarely find a discussion of the search for intelligent life in a children's book.

Although the reprint has a 1969 date it must have been rushed out in the latter half of 1969 to take advantage of the publicity of a Moon landing. The section on Apollo has very complete coverage of the Apollo 11 trip to the Moon.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Andy Astronaut (1968)

A really big book for today...

I have so many favorites but here is a special one I have not shared before. Back when I got this book I did not have access to a large bed scanner and this book really deserves not to be broken up. It is 16 inches, 1 1/3 ft. tall! And many of the illustrations are double-page.

Davis, Daphne. Illustrated by Pineo, Craig. Andy Astronaut. New York: Golden Press. (22 p.) 41 x 17 cm. 1968.

This book concerns astronaut training, his launch, flight into space, space walk and splashdown.  A bright and beautiful book. Binding is found with blue or red spine. Nice illustrations of space suit, rocket launch, splashdown. Also found with 10" 33 1/3 photograph record of text for classroom use. "Busy People" series.

Each image reinforces the stereotype of the "perfect astronaut."

It is unusual in showing what is basically a Mercury mission (being as it is published in 1968). It does include a nice spacewalk.

I also like the smile on his face as he goes about his business.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Oceans and Orbits (1980)

This is outside of the date scope of my usual posts but as I was sorting through books last week the illustrations in here reminded me of the previous book On the spacecraft (1968). A little psychedelic space art for a hot July day.

This is a textbook that is an anthology of children's fiction and non-fiction.

Eller, William Eller; et al. Oceans and orbits. River Forest, Ill. : Laidlaw Bros.216 p. 1980
The Laidlaw reading program, level 13.

Those in the know see how this story seems to mix a early 1960s animal astronaut with a Gemini capsule. which seems to be on its way to the Moon.

Luckily a friendly alien sends the dog home to his master. The next story (or really art from the story) is a futuristic flight on a space shuttle in the year 2025.

These next few illustrations are wonderful surrealistic journeys into outer space (art).

Look for more wild stuff soon.