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[i]Cassandra Hatton, Bonhams Senior Specialist in Space History, reflected on the suit's appeal: "The Mercury spacesuit epitomizes the earliest days of space exploration, a time when our world was a smaller place. A direct parallel can be drawn to the time when Columbus first set sail in 1492. No one knew if he would ever make it back, and one could only imagine what he would encounter on the voyage. It was a time of fear and wonder, and the Mercury era was exactly the same. Astronauts were regarded as heroes, doing what we all wished we had the courage to do, and risking their lives for the greater good of mankind. This suit is a symbol of that courage, and an important historic relic."
In addition to the iconic project Mercury suit, Bonhams will offer a Russian Strizh spacesuit, designed to protect cosmonauts from ejection at altitudes up to 30 kilometers and speeds up to Mach 3 (est. $15,000-20,000). The rare example is one of only 27 created for test and training purposes between 1981-1991, many of which were damaged or destroyed.[/i]
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