Extraordinary topographical map used on the surface of the moon, labeled “Hadley Rille, EVA-III,” one page, 8 x 10.5, signed and certified on the reverse in black felt tip, “This map was used aboard Lunar Rover #1 during Apollo 15, July 26-Aug 7, 1971. Dave Scott, Apollo 15 CDR.” The map depicts the LM site and intended course of navigation for the Lunar Rover during the third and final lunar surface EVA of Apollo 15. In fine condition, with light toning to adhesive remnants on reverse and expected wear from mission use.
Accompanied by a detailed signed letter of provenance from Dave Scott, in part: “I hereby certify that the Apollo 15 Lunar Rover ‘Contour Map,’ ‘Hadley-Rille, EVA-III,’ included with this letter was carried aboard Lunar Roving Vehicle #1 on the surface of the Moon for three days during Apollo 15, the first extended scientific exploration of the Moon…This Contour Map…consists of a section of the Hadley Apennine region on the Moon with contour lines depicting the relative height above the base altitude of the Moon as well as the planned route of the Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV) traverse during the third of three EVAs…The Map also includes crater names and planned exploration stations for EVA-III. Circular notes at each station define the bearing and distance from the station back to the Lunar Module…This map was used for relative heights along the traverse route as well as emergency return to the LM in the event the Lunar Rover was unable to return for any reason. A corresponding LRV photo map of the same area was produced to highlight surface ceatures such as crater size, shape, shadows and locations. This map was mounted on the Rover throughout the three days of surface excursions to be readily available. To expedite recovery and use, this map had been temporally removed from a book of ‘LM Lunar Surface Maps’ and attached to a Rover post with a large clip. The Map contains traces of lunar dust surface and was exposed to the temperature extremes, radiation, and Solar Wind on the surface of the Moon.” This contour map and the corresponding photo map—offered as lot 8329—cover exactly the same area, providing a rare opportunity to own a matching pair.
Although their route was shortened in order to meet the liftoff timeline, during the third EVA Dave Scott and Jim Irwin collected over one hundred samples from the surface and performed extensive photography tasks. Once they returned to the LM at the conclusion of EVA-III, Commander Scott performed what is probably the most famous experiment to ever be conducted on the moon when he simultaneously dropped a hammer and a feather to the surface. They hit the ground at the same time, proving Galileo’s centuries-old theory of falling objects in a vacuum. As a map actually used on the Lunar Rover during the final leg of Apollo 15’s surface operations—and which indeed appears to exhibit significant smudging from lunar dust—this is a truly extraordinary piece of tremendous historical significance.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.