The Mystery of Other Worlds Revealed. Eisinger, Larry (editor) New York: Fawcett Publications, 1952. 144 p. 24 cm. Fawcett Book no. 166. Also 1953 hardcover. Back when space flight was new and exciting there were "special issue" books that people might buy at the news-stand to learn about something current. This was not published for children but I am sure with its variety of subjects and great pictures that many children read it after "their" adult had long tired of it. I want to share just a few of the many neat illustrations in this "book"
A large paperback, featuring articles on Space Travel, Flying Saucers and Rocket Development, and heavily illustrated throughout, This will be an additional post but I will start with the designs of the British Interplanetary Society. The British Interplanetary Society (BIS), founded in Liverpool in 1933 by Philip E. Cleator, is the oldest space advocacy organisation in the world. Its aim is exclusively to support and promote astronautics and space exploration. In the 1950s they shared some wonderful designs for their visions of the future of space travel.
A Russian book about life in the future and technology. Probably not for children but I enjoy these futuristic images so much. Over the edge of the 20th century. Leningrad. 17.6 x 22.1 cm (6.9" x 8.7") 222 pages. 1962
Many of these illustrations seem familiar but I appreciate the "archetypal" nature of the soviet visions of the future. Shapes of rockets, use of helicopters, streamlined cars, etc.
I also like the buildings and other future technology. As near as I can tell the one below compares how computers used to take up buildings and now take up only a single room.
LOOK AT THAT CORN!!!
To finish out here are some nice space illustrations about the Soviet current successful missions and future plans for space.
While some people feel uncomfortable about animals in space, I like that children were told that the way people knew it was safe was because animals did it first (and yes I know it doesn't discuss the ultimate fate of these early explorers)
Although I have shared this book before, This is part of my re-scan project to present more material from the best space books. While very inexpensive I would venture to say most of you are not familiar with this wonderful book. It's painted illustrations were done by Tibor Gergely, one of the premier children's illustrators of the 1950s. He did a large number of the Golden Books and is worth seeking out. Find out more about him here: http://www.tiborgergely.com/site/Home.html
Wyler, Rose. Illustrated by Gergely, Tibor and Solenewitsch, George. Exploring Space : A True Story of the Rockets of Today and a Glimpse of the Rockets That Are to Come. New York: Simon and Schuster. (24 p.) 21 cm.
This is one of the most remembered of children's space travel books by those who grew up in the late 1950s. It covers the basics of rocket propulsion and then summarizes the current state of research up through the 1958 launch of Laika, the space dog. "Little Golden Book" (#342).
The charm for me is capturing the post-Sputnik/pre-manned flight feeling about spaceflight.
Recently some of the paintings from this book have been for sale. I thought I would share what the original pages looked like and the expertise of Mr. Gergely.
One of my favorite illustrations is the cross-section of a "typical" rocket. Observe the: radio equipment, the power plant, animal container, beacon, parachute and the two rocket stages.