Kaluga: Kn. izd-vo, 1964. Item #5
55 pp.: ill. 4vo.
A fine copy. Original cloth binding with the decoration in ink. The title page is signed by Yuri Gagarin.
Together with: a postcard, ‘The Day of Cosmonautics’ (1965) depicting the monument in Tsiolkovsky’s honor in Kaluga. The postcard is signed by Gagarin.
Together with: a photograph of Gagarin visiting Kaluga, the hometown of Tsiolkovsky.
This little collection of three items shows the bond that existed between the main Soviet theorist of space travel—Konstantin Tsiolkovsky (1857-1935)—and the first man in space—the Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin (1934-1968).
Tsiolkovsky was the pioneer of cosmonautical theory and his contemporaries considered him more a dreamer than a scientist—the dreamer obsessed by the idea of putting a man in space. Ridiculed at the time Tsiolkovsky nevertheless continued to publish his works and he stood by his belief that space-travel was possible.
Yuri Gagarin proved it 26 years after Tsiolkovsky’s death.
In 1961, Gagarin laid the first brick of Tsiolkovsky’s museum in Kaluga—the first museum in the world dedicated to cosmonautics.