MEMENTO FROM OCTOBER 4, 1957 LAUNCH, INSCRIBED BY SERGEI KOROLEV.
Paper phalange label, 30mm diameter, 1957, with red ribbon.
Provenance: Oleg Ivanovsky (1922-2014), with Typed Letter Signed ("Oleg Ivanovsky") and dated April 16, 1999.
THE ORIGINAL TAG FROM THE SPUTNIK-1 SATELLITE, REMOVED JUST BEFORE LAUNCH AT BAIKONUR COSMODROME, SIGNED & INSCRIBED by the father of the Soviet space program, OKB-1 head Sergei Korolev. The obverse contains the designation of the satellite, the part number, and the arm number: ["No. 9, 6064, III (third)"]. The reverse a holograph note from Korolev: ["4 Oct 1957 year, THE FIRST SPUTNIK, Tag from the antenna on the Third(III) arm / S.P."]
Oleg Ivanovsky was appointed by Sergei Korolev as chief designer at OKB-1, specifically working as deputy chief designer of Sputnik-1 and Sputnik 2, chief designer of the Vostok spacecrafts, and he also worked on the space probes. Included is a typed letter, signed ("Oleg Ivanovsky"), April 16, 1999, in English, stating: "I certify that this phalange label was one of four that was attached to one of the arms of the first Sputnik launched October 4th, 1957. I took this off as a routine course right before the flight and was the last one who placed the sputnik on the R-7 rocket at Baikanaur Cosmodrome." The tag was given to Ivanovsky by the architect of the Soviet space program Sergei Korolev as a memento of a successful launch. It's unlikely that they realized then that this memento marks not only a highlight of 20th century achievement, but also the ushering in of a new international scientific age.