RR Auction will offer a historic Hasselblad camera for auction in November. One of the first Astronauts took it into space in the 60s.
Wally Shirra was onne of the original seven astronauts chosen for Project Mercury. Project Mercury was America’s first undertaking to put humans in space. He was on board the Mercury-Atlas 8 mission on October 3, 1962, becoming the fifth American to be in space. He took a Hasselblad camera with him into space. This camera is now going up for auction next month.
Wally Schirra reportedly purchased the Hasselblad 500c camera at a Houston photo supply shop in 1962, and brought it back to NASA for mission use preparation.
“It was not until astronaut Wally Schirra—a known camera enthusiast—naturally sought the finest camera available at the time to accompany him on his MA-8 mission that NASA’s photographic identity began to take shape,” says Bobby Livingston, Executive VP at RR Auction.
The modifications that were made by the United States Air Force camera laboratory in conjunction with Wally Schirra and fellow astronaut Gordon Cooper included the installation of a 100-exposure film container, an aiming device mounted on the side, and modification of the camera surface, plus the original metal facing was repainted black to minimize reflections.
Following the camera’s initial success with Schirra on MA-8, Cooper used a Hasselblad—along with the same Zeiss lens on the next Mercury mission, MA-9.
A special live auction of the First Hasselblad Camera used in Space is scheduled to take place on November 13, 2014 at 3:00 pm ET, at RR Auction’s Boston Gallery (site).
Hasselblad has advertised with the space use. You can see the ads in the story gallery.