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Apollo 11 insurance cover offered at Heritage

The Apollo 11 insurance cover is one of 214 flown specimens

A flown Apollo 11 insurance cover will be among the highlights of Heritage Auctions' November 11 space exploration sale.

The lot is from the personal collection of the mission's module pilot Michael Collins and is signed by all three Apollo 11 astronauts.

Apollo 11 cover
The Apollo 11 insurance cover was designed to provide peace of mind to astronauts

It's offered with a reserve of $32,000.

Unsurprisingly, insurance companies were not queuing up to offer cover to the pioneers of the US space programme.

The workaround that NASA came up with was the introduction of the insurance cover, which were issued in limited numbers and cancelled on the day of launch.

They were designed to become valuable in the event of the astronauts' deaths. The money raised from their sale would have gone to their families.

Around 1,000 were printed.

This example is one of only 214 actually flown on the shuttle.

Other flown Apollo 11 covers have sold for close to $50,000 in the past.

A painting by astronaut Alan Bean, titled Our World at My Fingertips (2005), is expected to beat $20,000.

It incorporates real Moon dust from the Apollo 12 mission (Bean was the lunar command module pilot).

Bean explained the work captures a moment he remembers from his time on the Moon: "Reaching up, I balanced the Earth between my gloved thumb and forefinger.

"Our world, the whole earth was safely cradled in my fingertips."

Another of Bean's paintings just sold for $74,398 at RR Auction.

Click here to check out our incredible range of space memorabilia.

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Images: Heritage Auctions

Last updated: 26 October 2016