A bag containing traces of moon dust sold for $1.8 million at an auction on Thursday following a galactic court battle.
The sale at Sotheby's in NY was surrounded by some fallout from a galactic court battle.
Neil Armstrong, the first human to plod on the moon, stuck the purse-like pouch in a pocket of his spacesuit and used it to hold rocks he plucked from near where the Eagle lunar module touched down.
It was entirely possible that the bag was already mislabeled at that point-since Ary wasn't exactly the most rigorous record-keeper-which may explain why, when the lunar bag then went up for auction in 2015, US Marshals failed to included any marker that tied it to Apollo 11-and Carlson scored the deal of the century. The feds lost that case past year and ceded the bag to Carlson, who is selling it Thursday.
But space historians are already looking ahead to the 50th anniversary in 2019: For example, Space Center Houston, the visitor center for NASA's Johnson Space Center, today launched a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign that's aimed at boosting the restoration of the center's Apollo-era Mission Control Center in time for the golden-anniversary party.
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The bag auctioned in 2015 was among the items found in 2003.
US District Judge J Thomas Marten in Wichita, Kansas said that while it should not have gone up for auction, he did not have the authority to reverse the sale. OK, so there's not a grain of truth to the conspiracy theories that say the Moon Landing was a hoax (more on that in the next paragraph).
A nonprofit group called For All Moonkind agrees with NASA that priceless artifacts like the moon bag are a precursor to the future exploitation of space goods that will happen if the United Nations doesn't step in to declare six lunar landing sites as landmarks of global importance.
Carlson, a collector, knew the bag had been used in a space flight, but she didn't know which one. Though its journey wasn't as smooth as it could have been, it is now in the limelight as the star of the just-concluded Space Exploration Auction at the famed Sotheby's auction house.
FILE - In this July 1969 file photo, Astronaut Edwin Aldrin walks by the footpad of the Apollo 11 Lunar Module. It sold to an online bidder for $275,000, well above its pre-sale estimate high of $40,000.
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