Gene Cernan's Apollo 17 EVA Cuff Checklist poised to set auction records
It’s coming up 50 years since mankind last set foot on the Moon. In perhaps the most privileged activity ever available to our species, just 12 human beings have done it, the first being Neil Armstrong on 21 July 1969 and the last was Gene Cernan on 11 December 1972.
Two landmark moments in space we no doubt all remember, are the book-end ceremonies of stepping foot onto another celestial body for the first time (Armstrong’s “one small step for man”) and Gene Cernan’s final step on the moon and mankind’s departing message: "Here man completed his first exploration of the Moon, December 1972 A.D. May the spirit of peace in which we came be reflected in the lives of all mankind.”
Now a very prominent space suit “accessory” worn on the Moon by the last Apollo moonwalker is being auctioned on the internet with bids closing later this week, and it looks like records will be broken. Estimated to sell for US$800,000 plus, bidding was poised to go well past that mark with 48 hours to go, sitting on $370,064 after 19 bids.
Cernan wore this cuff checklist on his wrist for the duration of the final EVA of Apollo 17, exposing it to the lunar environment for 7 hours and 15 minutes.
The cuff checklist is a comprehensive guide for the extravehicular activity, offering preparation procedures, simplified maps of traverse routes and landmarks.
The checklist occupies a special place in Apollo history – it not only provided instructions for man's last moonwalk – but held the handwritten notes for the last words spoken from the surface of the Moon.
This historic speech echoed the words of Neil Armstrong from three years earlier: mankind had made its giant leap, and Commander Cernan looked forward to a peaceful, hopeful future.
Cernan's cuff checklists for EVA-1 and EVA-2 were sold privately, making this the first – and most historically significant – to be publicly offered.
Source: RR Auction