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Treasures From Beyond the Moon!

February 12, 2015

Actually, they’re from the moon. And Neil Armstrong smuggled back these items that were recently discovered.

Moon TreasuresNeil Armstrong became the first man to walk on the moon in 1969. He died in 2012, but he left behind some priceless souvenirs from his historic mission that were only recently found and are now being shared with the world.

Armstrong’s wife, Carol, was going a closet when she discovered a white cloth bag. It turns out it as an official piece of NASA gear called a Temporary Stowage Bag or McDivitt Purse. They are used by astronauts to carry objects they might need on a space flight, and are meant to be left behind with other space junk. Armstrong, it would seem, just couldn’t bear to leave it in space. It was presumed that the bag had been left behind in the Eagle, which was left behind by the Apollo astronauts when they returned to Earth. The Eagle, left in the moon’s orbit, ran into the moon years ago and disintegrated. In fact, the bag is mentioned in transcripts of the mission. Armstrong called it “just a bunch of trash.”

Inside the white bag, which opens at the top like a doctor’s bag or a clutch-style purse:

  • A camera that had been mounted to the window of the Eagle module. This is the one that caught images of Armstrong walking on the moon
  • A waist tether
  • A light bulb assembly kit
  • A helmet tie-down strap
  • A mirror
  • An emergency wrench

The bag, and the items inside it, are currently on display at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in an exhibit called Outside the Spacecraft, celebrating the 50th anniversary of American space flight.

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