A child sleeps in his space-themed bedroom and dreams of a flight to the Moon.
The Apollo spacecraft hangs above, suspended in imaginary flight. Although just a toy, it is very real to him. He lost count of how many times he has taken his make-believe voyages. Tonight, it again takes him far beyond his space-themed bedroom.
The moonlight streams in through the window above his bed. He steals one last look at our glowing celestial neighbor, then lowers his helmet visor and drifts off into a world of his imagination.
Little could distract him from his dreamtime mission - not the cat mischievously swatting the toy Mercury pilot's helmet, nor the subtle lights from his nightstand lamp and the orrery at the foot of the bed.
Fueling this flight of fancy is the room's payload of inspiration. Star charts, mission maps, posters, and books impress upon him the knowledge of how to successfully navigate the heavens. Magazine articles describe in understandable terms the engineering of the incredible machines required to make the trip. Stories of the brave flyers who had already made historic journeys into outer space and set foot upon another celestial sphere provide a pathway for him to reach the stars.
He launches atop a giant Saturn V rocket just like the one he rehearses with daily. After undocking from the Command Module, he descends to the Moon's surface and lightly touches down in the spider-like Lunar Module seemingly as fragile as his souvenir paper model. There is a specific spot marked on his lunar globe which serves at the target for his pinpoint landing, and the fold-out map confirms the intended touchdown site on the Moon.
As soon as tomorrow, one of his books confidently tells him, he too will go to the Moon. Even after he wakes from his nighttime celestial journey, he will still be dreaming of one day being among the explorers we call heroes who inspire us all to achieve the impossible.
Bedspread celestial map adapted from David Rumsey Map Collection, David Rumsey Map Center, Stanford Libraries: Der nordliche gestirnte Himmel, 1833.
A virtual space walk through a world of inspirational wonder
A child's bedroom can be a magical storehouse for inspiration and dreams of the future. It is the place young people can call their own. It is where they will learn and grow into their future selves.
A bedroom can serve as a kind of personal museum and archive where young curators exhibit collections acquired on adventures such as family vacations, school field trips, or excursions to book stores. Even the mailbox can yield objects of wonder to be displayed in one's room.
This room is no exception. Come step into this world of wonder and explore your own inner child's fantasies of space flight.
You might recognize some of the things you find in this room. You may even have had some of them, yourself. During your virtual walk in this space, discover again (or for the first time) the nostalgia of space memorabilia and collectibles.
Were you inspired as a child to dream of taking a flight to the moon? Are there young ones in your life who might find excitement in learning about these souvenirs of the Space Age?
Listed, below, are the items corresponding to the numbered image, above. Many of the things depicted were real books, posters, magazines, and toys that were available during the time of the Apollo flights.
- Toy Apollo Command and Service Modules (artist's creation)
- Toy Apollo Lunar Module (artist's creation)
- Modern Space Map, Rand McNally & Co., 1959
- LIFE magazine special edition, To The Moon And Back, August 11, 1969
- LIFE magazine, The daring contraption called LEM, March 14, 1969
- Apollo Saturn V rocket model
- Saturn V America's Moon Rocket, NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, ca. 1967
- (a) You Will Go to the Moon, 1959
(b) How and Why Wonder Book of The Moon, 1963
- Tellurian, Trippensee Planetarium Company, ca. 1940s-1950s
- G.I. Joe Mercury capsule, astronaut and helmet (with cat)
- Journey to the Moon, NASA Facts 40/11-67, 1967
- Map of the Moon, Esso/Hammond Inc, ca. 1969
- Replogle Lunar globe , ca. 1969
- Paper model, Apollo Lunar Module, Gulf Oil Company, 1969
- (a) School Bulletin, No. 25, March 18 1968
(b) Moonshot 1970, 1967
- NASA insignia shirt
- Bedspread celestial map adapted from David Rumsey Map Collection, David Rumsey Map Center, Stanford Libraries: Der nordliche gestirnte Himmel, 1833
- Toy astronaut space helmet, Ideal, ca 1960s
- Space Age, Educational Posters #117, 1959
- Apollo Manned Lunar Landing GOSS (Ground Operational Support Systems) - Mission Profile, NASA Office Manned Space Flight, 1967
- Trip to the Moon, Esso/Hammond Inc, 1969
- Solar system rendering (by the artist)
- Papier mâché Earth and Moon with glow-in-the-dark stars (artist's creation)