Amelia Earhart's scarf and wristwatch to fly into space

Albert Bresnik was the pioneering aviator Amelia Earhart's only official photographer, and now his grandson, Randolph Bresnik, wants to perform another service for legendary explorer.

He has been chosen as an astronaut to deliver supplies and spare parts to the International Space Station, via space shuttle Atlantis.

To honour both Earhart and his grandfather, Bresnik wishes to take something of Earhart's with him: her scarf, which is embroidered with the Ninety-Nines red and white emblem.

The Ninety-Nines were the group of 99 women aviators founded in 1929, of which Earhart was President. The scarf, which Earhart is known to have worn, is on loan from the Museum of Women Pilots in Oklahoma City which traces their history.

The International Space Station
The Earhart memorabilia will be taken aboard the International Space Station

Remarkably, this is not the first scarf of Earhart's to travel in space. The first woman to pilot the space shuttle back in 1995, Eileen Collins, took another of Earhart's scarves with her.

Likewise, astronaut Shannon Walker has been entrusted with Earhart's wristwatch by Joan Kerwin, director of the Ninety-Nines, which Walker will take with her for her mission to the Space Station in the spring of 2010.

The watch was with Earhart for both her transatlantic flights, and is engraved to that effect on the back.

Bresnik believes the carrying of such items has a poetic aspect to it.

"If nothing else, some part of Amelia will have finished her around the world trip," he said.

Earhart made the first transatlantic flight by a woman in 1933, but vanished in 1937 in the Pacific Ocean while attempting a round the world flight with Fred Noonan, her navigator.

It is likely that interest in Earhart memorablia will be significantly boosted by a new Hollywood biopic of her life, entitled Amelia, starring actress Hilary Swank, released in US cinemas today.

At Paul Fraser Collectibles, we currently have four pieces of memorabilia from pioneers of space: an autographed photo of the Mercury 7, and signed photos of the Apollo 11 crew, both individual and as a group. You can even buy Michael Collins's spacesuit.



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