|T O P I C R E V I E W|
|Robert Pearlman||collectSPACE |
Apollo astronaut watch, stolen in Ecuador, recovered 30 years later
A NASA astronaut's wristwatch worn aboard the first Apollo mission in 1968 has been returned to the Smithsonian, nearly three decades after it was stolen from a museum in Ecuador.
The Omega Speedmaster Professional chronograph, which astronaut Donn Eisele was issued to wear on board the Apollo 7 mission into Earth orbit, is now back in the custody of the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum. The watch was recovered with the help of space history enthusiasts, who provided the authorities with information about the chronograph's status and location.
|Jurg Bolli||Very nice to hear that it is back.|
|TLIGuy||This is a great story with a fantastic ending. Well done to all those involved in the return of the watch to its proper home.|
|Larry McGlynn||Robert, that is a really great job in recovery of the watch. It's been missing for almost 30 years. It proves a couple of points. Artifacts never stay hidden forever and everyday people can help in the recovery of stolen objects. |
Very good article and great job gathering the disparate groups together to get that watch back. Semper V!
|Robert Pearlman||Thanks Larry. It has been incredibly rewarding to play a small role in the return of Eisele's Speedmaster and to be able to share the story of its recovery.|
|bruce||Good on you, Robert!|
|328KF||Great story and article. A question on Eisele's other Speedmaster that was sold at auction. If it was a "personal" watch, why was it engraved with a NASA serial number (#38)?|
Was it NASA property that was released to him?
|Robert Pearlman||The history behind no. 38 is not clear. NASA does not have record of it flying or being issued to Eisele, and it was never among the chronographs transferred to the Smithsonian.|
There are photos from the day of the Apollo 7 launch and post-recovery that show Eisele wearing two watches, so there is some reason to believe it flew on Apollo 7, but without Eisele around to fill in the details, its full provenance is likely to remain elusive.
|Panther494||Fantastic news. Congratulations to all involved.|
|DMScott||This is a terrific story. Great work Robert. |
|Charlie16||Very nice! Even Walt Cunningham will be happy to hear this! Thanks Robert for sharing the story.|
|Philip||105.012-63 or 105.012-66?|
|Robert Pearlman||The details concerning the watch and its condition may be available once the Speedmaster can be inspected in the Smithsonian's conservation lab.|
|TLIGuy||Great to see Hodinkee picked up the story including a link to the cS article on their main page this afternoon.|
|Skythings||Heard about it this morning on Coast To Coast with George Noory. Recovered with the help of Space Historians. |
|Robert Pearlman||CBS News Radio's Peter King interviewed me and ran a brief clip about the news. You can listen to it here.|
|DG27||It is sad when history is lost, but it is tragic when history is stolen. Thank you for your efforts in helping to recover a piece of history. Congratulations Robert. Very cool!|