FASTEST FLOWN FLAG FOR CHICAGO.
Flown Chicago city flag, silk, 4 by 6 inches, displayed with Typed Letter Signed ("Thomas P. Stafford"), on his letterhead.
Provenance: From the collection of Astronaut Thomas Stafford.
ONE OF THE FASTEST SPACE ARTIFACTS TO EXIST FROM THE APOLLO PROGRAM, FLOWN IN THE LUNAR MODULE.
The flag is INSCRIBED and SIGNED: "Flown to the Moon on Apollo X, TOM STAFFORD," along the lower edge under the bottom blue bar.
THOMAS P. STAFFORD'S signed provenance display letter reads: "The Chicago city flag displayed below was flown to the Moon on Apollo X during May 18-26, 1969. I was commander of this mission which tested critical flight maneuvers that would enable Apollo 11 to make the first lunar landing just two months later in July 1969. I took this flag with me inside Lunar Module Snoopy where Gene Cernan and I approached within 50,000 feet of the moon to prove the approach path down to the lunar surface would work on Apollo 11.
Prior to the beginning of the Apollo X re-entry into the Earth's atmosphere on May 26, John Young, Gene, and I, as well as this flag, established the all-time record for the fastest speed ever flown by man - 24,791 nautical miles per hour or the equivalent of 28,528 statute miles per hour. No other Apollo crew matched or exceeded this speed. Therefore, this flag is one of the fastest flown space artifacts to exist from the Apollo Program. This speed record will not be broken until an astronaut crew returns from a mission to Mars sometime during the twenty-first century."