August 30, 2008
(Left photo) Dr. Edgar D. Mitchell's flight-certification portrait
(Right photo) The first limited edition ever created utilizing a complete lunar artifact
David Frohman, President of Peachstate Historical Consulting Inc., announces the creation of "Earth Our Cradle", the first limited-edition ever produced utilizing complete lunar artifacts
August 30, 2008
Prior to Apollo 14's launch, a quantity of identical mission emblem patches were silk-screened onto specially prepared sheets of white "Beta Cloth". "Beta Cloth" was a white fireproof cloth developed after the Apollo 1 fire that was also used on the astronaut's spacesuits. The silk-screened mission emblems measure nine-square inches in size, and were sealed together for flight to the Moon in several "White Room" stowage bags shortly before launch.
The Apollo 14 mission emblems then flew to the Moon with astronauts Alan Shepard, Edgar Mitchell, and Stuart Roosa aboard their Command Module "Kittyhawk". After they arrived there, the emblems orbited the Moon mere miles above its surface 34 times over three days. They also flew at speeds approaching 25,000 miles per hour while accelerating into deep space, and again upon their fiery plunge back into Earth's atmosphere shortly before splashing-down in the Pacific Ocean!
After the mission, astronaut Edgar Mitchell was presented with the majority of the flown Apollo 14 mission emblems still sealed in their original flown pink "White Room" bags. Mitchell then carefully preserved the emblems for more than three decades in his personal space collection.
Over the years, a number of collector limited-editions have been created that incorporate small bits and pieces of space-flown artifacts. For example, small swatches of flown cloth or "Kapton Foil" from the exterior of spacecraft. While quite nice, these limited editions do not incorporate complete artifacts.
In the summer of 2008, David Frohman devised the idea of utilizing a portion of Edgar Mitchell's nine square-inch Apollo 14 Mission Emblems to create a unique and very limited edition of only 50 pieces!
The Apollo 14 emblem in the center of each sheet of white "Beta Cloth" was originally silk-screened on prior to flight. Faithfully utilizing the original silk-screening process on only fifty identical emblems, Frohman then added the historic "Earth our Cradle" textual quotation from Mitchell's autobiography.
That moving phrase then became the title of Frohman's limited edition.
In addition to the quote from Mitchell's autobiography, mission information and a flight-certification statement was also silk-screened on each emblem. Mitchell then signed and numbered each flown emblem to certify their status, and also initialed his personal "Lunar Receiving Laboratory" stamp.
The final step to complete "Earth Our Cradle" was preparing of a formal flight-certification certificate that related the history and official flight-status of each mission emblem. Each certificate bore the same serial number as its accompanying copy of "Earth Our Cradle" and was signed by Mitchell.
"Copy Number 1" of "Earth Our Cradle" was presented by David Frohman in 2008 to Dr. Mitchell for his personal space collection, with the balance then made available to museums and collectors. Today, "Earth Our Cradle" is the only-known limited-edition ever created to date utilizing complete lunar artifacts returned from the Moon!