3/20/73: “Soviet cosmonauts Aleksei S. Yeliseyev, left, and Vladimir A. Shatalov, right, get together with U.S. astronaut Thomas Stafford to look over a model of the linked up Apollo-Soyuz spacecrafts. The two cosmonauts are with a group of Soviet scientists and engineers that is at the Johnson Space Center in Houston to work out the details of the joint space mission which is scheduled for 1975. The two are candidates for the Soviet crew that is to be named soon. They met Stafford, who will team with Donald Slayton and Vance Brand on U.S. crew, Sunday.”
(The Soviet crewmen eventually chosen for the ASTP mission were Alexei Leonov and Valeri Kubasov.)
Orlando, FL, 2/10/75: “Spacemen Take A Jet Ride: Astronaut Donald Slayton, foreground, and Cosmonaut Alexei Leonov take a ride on the Star Jet, as the crew of the Apollo Soyuz Test Project toured Disney Worled Sunday.”
Yes! I was hoping there was more of these. They look so unimpressed here, I guess a ride that only gets a few feet off the ground pales in comparison to a real rocket ride.
This one is kind of sweet (I promise this is the last one). Note: I don’t know Russian; I plugged this into Google Translate, so it’s probably pretty bad.
Google translate isn’t too bad this time. The only word I’m unsure about is детка for baby. I don’t know if Russians would actually say that, or something else cutesy like милашка (dearie).
Space Motherfuckers You Don't Understand: The KGB were very resourceful.
I’m reading Deke Slaytons autobiography, uncreatively titled DEKE! but space folk aren’t known for creative names. The big explosion that created the universe? The big bang! That great big red spot on Jupiter? The Great Red Spot! We’re lucky we live on Earth and not Tumbling Void Rock.
Anyway, for those of you who aren’t familiar with Russian and American space relations in the seventies, they were pretty good. During the mid-seventies, the Apollo Soyuz Test Project was underway, and a lot of the training saw the Americans going to Russia. Here’s an excerpt from the book about some of Deke’s adventures in Russia;
“On our next visit to Russia, in July 1974, without any advance warning we were taken directly from the airport to Star Town [the Russian equivalent of the Cape]…driven right through the gates in our KGB staff cars, to a brand-new hotel that had been built on the site. The Hotel Cosmonaut, it was called, and it had been built just for us-American astronauts and training officials. (They used it later for other “foreign” visitors, like the Interkosmos pilots who flew Soyuz missions between 1977 and 1981. And for the French and Indian pilots, too, at least on their initial visits)
The rooms were pretty plush by Russian standards, with all kinds of furniture-too much, in fact-but also typically Russian: there weren’t curtains on the showers. Doorknobs would be missing.
They built us our own restaurant and our own bar right in the hotel, to make things easier for everyone-it certainly kept us from associating with the rest of Star Town.
It got so that whenever we wanted something, all we had to do was speak…the walls had ears. One day we decided to test it, and complained loudly that we didn’t have anything to do. “Too bad we don’t have a pool table.”
The next day, by God, there was a pool table in our bar downstairs. It was probably the only pool table in Russia: it had square corners and balls that were too big for the pockets. You could play one game all night.
Then there was the time Bob Overmyer was at a meeting in the flight control center in Kaliningrad. He decided to move his chair and tried to do so: the thing wouldn’t move, so he yanked on it…and some wires came out of the base. Everybody just sort of looked the other way.
We called this the speak-into-the-lamp mode. We actually used it to get rid of a couple technical people on the Russian side who weren’t particularly productive: just complained about them among ourselves, when we knew someone would be listening. And we never had to deal with them again.”
Those KGB, resourceful cats!
Sometimes I find a photo with really poor quality, but I like the picture and post it anyway. Like this one, of Alexei Leonov, Tom Stafford, and Deke Slayton. And Leonov’s sunglasses.
What they don’t tell you is that Alexei Leonov has just run backup commander Alan Bean’s underwear up the flagpole, in accordance with “Russian tradition.”
7/10/73: “They’ll Meet Again In Space: Alexei Leonov, right, and Valery Kubasov, center, Russian cosmonauts, were greeted at the Johnson Space Center in Houston. From left were: Astronauts David Scott and Thomas P. Stafford; Glynn Lunney, project manager; Donald (Deke) Slayton, astronaut. Kubasov, Leonov, Stafford, and Slayton are part of a planned 1975 United States-Russian space venture. The Russians are in the United States for further planning of the mission.”
2/8/75: “Self Portrait: Alexei Leonov, a Soviet cosmonaut, holds his camera as if to take a photo of himself and astronaut Thomas Stafford Saturday at the Kennedy Space Center.”
So Alexei invented Myspace?
At least Alexei’s not doing his best duck face
Also Filipchenko looks good in hats, no?
10/14/75: “Soviet cosmonaut Alexei Leonov reacts to a reporter’s questions about UFOs and flying saucers. Leonov answered by saying the only saucer he has seen is the one he is holding. The Soviet cosmonauts and the U.S. astronauts of the Apollo-Soyuz spaceflight were honored during a one-day visit to Chicago.”
I love Alexei.
Liberty, Texas, 3/25/73: “Fast With A Rope: Russian Cosmonaut Vladimir Shatalov, center, with his western hat, today as he roped a calf during a calf scramble at the Bill Daniel Plantation Ranch near here. At left Astronaut Robert Overmyer and right, Astronaut David R. Scott seem to be having a little trouble with their roping. The Cosmonauts, along with their scientist took a break from talks on the Apollo-Soyuz linkup project for the ranch visit.”
Please let there be more of these.
Even with a watermark, this is awesome.