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Collecting Space
One of each...

Buy space artifacts flown in space...Collect autographs of astronauts and cosmonauts...Build a Soviet Union space stamp collection...Buy meteorites...Buy new space collectibles...Build a mission patch collection...

Credits: NASA History Office - Mercury Patches

Collecting memorabilia of space exploration has become one of the most popular and lucrative of space hobbies.

American baby-boomers, for example, with their kids grown up and out of the house and only their stock portfolios to keep them company, have grown nostalgic about the 1960's and the space race and they love to purchase mementos of the time. Just listen to Ron Howard or Tom Hanks talk about the 1960's space program and you will get an idea of the potential.

Space collectibles include everything from astronaut autographs to stamps to pieces of real space hardware to toys. Regardless of whether your collection becomes a future treasure, collecting can be a fun and educational hobby.

Note: here the term memorabilia refers to those items that can be authentically traced to a past era. Collectibles, on the other hand, is used as a general term for items, new or old, that come in a series, such as patches, or fall into some general category, such as toys, that lend themselves to collecting.

Impressions of Outer Space
Impressions of Outer Space
by Larry Elgart - 1953 Brunswick
See Space Age Pop of the 1950's and 1960's

In addition to the collectible categories discussed in this section, consider also collecting space music, space art, and space movies.

Tips on Space Collecting

!! Disclaimer!!!

HobbySpace does not endorse or certify in any way the sites listed here and is not responsible for any of the contents on those sites. All the links and site descriptions were simply obtained from publicly available information on the web or in print and given here for your convenience.

So exercise all reasonable caution when making purchases of collectables and memorabilia of any sort. See the above tips for advice.

News Sources & Events

Space Collecting at Space-for-All

Space Artifacts

Space artifacts include objects directly involved with space exploration and especially those that have actually flown in space.

These can be a space suit, a component of a spacecraft or even moon dust.

See Flying Memorabilia in Space for information on companies that provide rides to space to enhance the value of a souveniers items.

Farthest Reaches- Flown-in-Space Memoribilia
Farthest Reaches offers a wide range of space memoribilia including various artifacts flown in space. Recent items include Liberty Bell 7 components and a variety of space shuttle equipment pieces.

ArtifactCloud.com - "Premium space memorabilia, authentic autographs and merchandise"
This space memoribilia sitdeals in various space collectibles including flown artifacts. It has also offered the opportunity to fly small items, e.g. business cards, on Russian supply ships to Mir and the ISS. It also sold patches of moon dust taken from a bag used on Apollo 15 and from a camera magazine on Apollo 11 (see Space Rock Collecting).

Space Collectibles
"Space Collectibles gives you the opportunity to start and enhance your collection of valuable space collectibles, space artifacts, space memorabilia and space prints from Nasa and Soviet space programs." Space news, history, and other resources are available. See also the Space Collectibles Blog.

NASA Artifacts
NASA has a program for non-profit museums, universities, and schools to obtain surplus space artifacts, which now includes lots of space shuttle related items, for public display and educational purposes:

More sites

Russian/Soviet Collectibles

The enormous space program under the Soviet Union and mostly inherited by Russia resulted in a wide array of collectibles. These range from patches to actual flight hardware.
Alex Panchenko Colllectibles
Full range of space and aviation collectibles including Models, Autographs, and more.
Cosmonaut Autographs
Lots of info and tips concerning cosmonaut autographs. Includes images of many cosmonaut autographs ranging from those flying in the 1961-1975 period and the 1976-1981 period. These images are useful for authentication purposes.
More sites

Space Autographs

Astronaut and cosmonaut signatures are treasured just like those of movie stars and sports heroes. The autographs of the space pioneers of the 1960's are especially popular.

Many astronauts and cosmonauts will respond to a mailed request for autographs, although response my be slow and some charge a fee.

Remember that unless you see the autograph made in person there is no absolute guarantee it is authentic. See Pedro Amaral's Beware of Autopens.

Some of the sites below give images of authentic signatures of many astronauts and cosmonauts that you can use for comparison. See the FAQ at the Ultimate Space Place.

Astronaut Autograph Club
Astronaut Scholarship Foundation has created the Astronaut Autograph Club, which will provide authenticated astronaut signatures. The proceeds will go to the foundation's scholarship fund.

ApolloSpace (formerly Apollo8.com) offers autographs in separate sections for Mercury, Gemini & Apollo, for Shuttle era, and for cosmonauts.

ASE Collectibles
The Association of Space Explorers (all members are astronauts & cosmonauts who have been in space) offer posters of their Congresses that have been signed by a space explorer.
Astronaut Autographs at NovaGraphics
Novagraphics offers both autographed space art and autographed photos. Autographed art includes works from Alan Bean and Alexi Leonov. See, in particular, Bean's Reaching for the Stars, which is signed by 24 astronauts. Autographed photos include those of the Original 7 Mercury astronauts and from several Apollo astronauts.

Sells astronaut and cosmonaut autographed photos. Also, a book section includes autographed editions of astronaut and other space related books.

Lunar Legacies
Lunar Legacies
offers various space memorabilia including autographs of famous astronauts, cosmonauts and space scientists. They hold regular auctions of space items.

Premiere Space Editions
Online store offering Apollo astronaut autographed photos accompanied by a Certificate of Authentication. They also offer some autographed books.

Astronaut/NASA Notables:

More space autograph sites and resources

Mission Patches

Credits: NASA History Office - Apollo Patches

NASA commissions a unique patch for every mission with artwork that symbolizes the goals and spacecraft of the particular flight. The patches have become among the most popular of space collectibles.

NASA Mission Patches
NASA's official History site provides images of all the mission patches since the Mercury days.

Sky Force Space Patches
Joseph Fricano has been an avid space patch enthusiast since 1965. His online store sells patches for all the US space missions. The patches come with "detailed explanation of the significance and importance behind the symbols and colors choices used in the making of the patch."
Astronaut Connection
The Astronaut Connection sells a wide range of patches in its space catalog. Their patches come not only from NASA missions but also from commercial military, and other space agencies
Space Age Collectibles
A site devoted to space collectibles including patches. The site has many pages and images describing the official NASA commemorative designs for each mission.
The SpaceStore
The Space Store carries a broad set of patches covering missions from Mercury to the ISS. Also, includes - non-USA patches.
More Space Patch resources:
Space Stamps

Space exploration has been a popular theme for stamps ever since Sputnik. Many countries, including those without space programs, have issued commemorative stamps of significant space events such as the Moon landings.

Collecting such space stamps has grown into a popular hobby and there are many groups and websites devoted to it.

Note that philatelic hobbies include not only stamps but also the collecting of covers, especially First Day Space Covers. A cover is an envelope with a canceled stamp on it. So a First Day Space Cover would be an envelope with a canceled space stamp on the first day the stamp was issued.

Covers of particular interest are those with a cachet (ka-shay), a stamped design, such as a drawing of a rocket or portrait of an astronaut, that commemorates some space event.

An autographed space cover would have an autograph of someone associated with the space stamp, e.g. an Apollo 11 astronaut and an Apollo 11 commemorative stamp.

For more introductory information, see Joe Frasketi's Basics of Space Covers.

Note: there are literally thousands of websites devoted to the general hobby of stamp collecting. See the link lists at American Air Mail Society and Spacecover to start exploring the wider philatelic cosmos.

Also, check out the nice stamp collecting section of the US Postal Service site. It includes a useful glossary of stamp terms.


Rocket Mail
In was hoped in the early days of rocketry that delivering mail via rocket would become a viable market. Attempts at creating such a business were made right up to the 1960's.

While it never developed into a practical system, the stamps and covers that flew on the rockets have become collectors items.

See Paul A. Roales' Rocketmail page for a nice history of the topic and a number of references. Here are some related sites:

More Resources

General Space Memoribilia & Collectibles

These sites deal with more than one type of space collectible or memoribilia. Buy, trade and collect space items for fun and to build a possibly valuable collection someday in the future.

Related Topics:
  • Russian/Soviet Collectibles - see the above sub-section for stores selling memoribilia from the Soviet and Russian space programs.
  • Shopping - Space stores sell space memorabilia and collectibles, as well as general space items that may become the valuable collectibles of tomorrow.
  • Music - collect space inspired music.
  • Art - collect space art
All the Right Stuff
Space toys and gifts that will could become the space collectibles of the future.
Astronaut Connection
The Astronaut Connection provides several pages in its catalog for collectible space items.

Astro Collection
" Great reference site for space collectors"

Robert Pearlman's site is dedicated to space related collecting of any sort. The site offers an enormous amount of information, news, forum participation, and more on topics related to both space collectibles and space history.

Cosmosphere's Cargo Bay
The Cosmosphere gift shop offers collectibles such as flown artifacts, autographs, signed space art, etc.
Emphasizes astronaut and cosmonaut autographs but also deals in other types of space memoribilia and collectibles such as first edition space books.

Galactic Voyager
Big selection of Space Exploration Memorabilia, rocket and spacecraft models and NASA patches.

Johnson Space Center - ShopNASA.com
The JSC gift shop offers collectibles and memoribilia.
Lunar Legacies - Astronaut and Space Memorabilia Lunar Legacies is devoted to selling space memoribilia of all sorts including Flown Items Space-Jewelry Apollo
Paul Fraser Collectibles
This dealer the UK includes space memorabilia in their on line store:

Swap meet at RocketMan
RocketMan (Ky Michaelson) offers this classified ad page for NASA memoribilia. See also his Rocketman Space Museum to see his collection.

Space Age Collectibles
NASA, Patches, Caps, coins, Photos, Videos, Models, Philatelic, Covers, Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, Space Shuttle, Space Station.

Space Age Museum
John, Veronica and Peter Kleeman have built a big collection from the Space Age of "familiar objects such as toys, amusements, fashion, advertising, decorative arts, architecture — things that reveal how deeply the spacefaring vision infused our culture".

The Space Center Shop
The Space Center (imagine5.com) provides a shop offering patch collections, memoribilia, and more.

Space collectibles and memoribilia for sell:

"...Each and every month this website will launch a sale of premium Space Memorabilia - autographed photos, covers, flown artifacts. Every month at the pre-announced date and time we upload a completely new inventory onto this page. All unsold items remain available for sale until the next launch."

Includes items sold on consignment.

This UK site offers access to over 7500 space related items. SpacePortUK is

"..a UK based authorized dealer for Alpha Industries Inc. - manufacturer of military clothing for the USAF and US Navy for over 40 years. We are also suppliers of products relating to the achievements of man/woman in space over the last 40 years."..

The catalog includes embroidered mission apparel, vinyl models, patches, and more.

The Space Shop - UK
Collectables NASA Special And Rare Editions. Flown In Space. Display Desk Models And More.

Space Media Store
The Space Media Store offers a range of collectible items including astronaut autographed photos and pewter models.

The Ultimate Space PlaceThe Ultimate Space Place provides sells space collectibles and memoribilia such as astronaut autographs, Life magazines with space covers, stamps, etc. Sections:
Yahoo! - Space Memoribilia Yahoo! listing of space memoribilia sites.
More Collectors Stores


The Art of C. Sergent Lindsey











Rocks from Space: Meteorites and Meteorite Hunters
O. Richard Norton - 1998
Amazon: US

Cosmonaut autographs : Identification guide
Stephen R. Datz- 1994
Amazon: US













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