Tuesday, April 19, 2022

The Denoyer Geppert Lunar globe

I am generally speaking a collector of American globes that are pre 1930. However there are a few touchstone pieces that I think every serious globe collector needs to consider, the Denoyer Geppert Lunar globe is one of those. During the space race NASA managed to send an orbiter to map the dark side of the moon and then they coordinated with Denoyer Geppert to manufacture the first complete lunar globe. This is the result:
This globe was first manufactured in May 1969 with a limited run of only 200 examples, many going to NASA dignitaries and even President Nixon. After the original run of 200 the next group of these globes bore the mark " edition : 1969" this globe is one of those, it pre dates any lunar landing sites. Later editions of this globe were updated with the Apolo landing sites right on the map surface.
This globe came to me completly by chance, whenever I travel I like to stop at the antique malls and group shops along my route. This gem was found at a large group shop just outside Cincinati Ohio. It was a shop I had probably visited half a dozen times in the past, but persistance in the hunt paid off this time. It really is all about the hunt isnt it ? I love the rush i get when knowledge and circumstance collide ! Below i have a picture of the utilitarian beauty of the Denoyer Geppert mid century globes, form and function.
Given this lunar globe's immense size it's safe to assume it was an item that was aimed at the educational market. Few of these ended up in homes. Today they do become available sporadically in the antiques market. They usually survive in very good condition, owing to their robust construction with a metal orb on which the paper gores were applied. My goal as a collector has been to assemble a representative collection of American globes that tells a story, every story needs an ending and i beleive this globe is a fitting end point for my collection. I cant see a reason to add any globe that is newer than this globe's 1969 date. I will endeaver to fill in the missing spots from Wilson to Geppert. Given the signifigance of the space race, and the national pride associated with mapping, orbiting and landing men on the moon this globe will always be a signifigant collectable item for collectors of all things space related, as well as globe collectors. Being the first globe to map the entirety of the moon it is historical and therefore a desirable piece to add to a collection. Below i have included the oficial NASA photograph of the Apolo 13 crew complete with the Denoyer Geppert lunar globe.

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