Neil Armstrong's Lunar Sample Bag
Photo Credit: Sotheby's

Neil Armstrong’s lunar bag up for auction

The lunar sample bag that NASA astronaut Neil Armstrong broke back from the Apollo 11 moon landing could soon be yours, if the price is right.

The bag, which still contains traces of moon dust will be auctioned off at Sotherby’s in New York on July 20, the anniversary of the moon landing. It is expected to fetch between $2-4 million.

It’s not the first time the bag has been up for auction. The government lost track of the bag until a few years ago when it was bought at an auction by an Illinois woman for less than $1,000.

The bag was found in the garage of the president of a Kansas space museum who was arrested for stealing artifacts that were donated by the government. The bag was confiscated and mistakenly labeled as a bag from the Apollo 17 space mission, which would have been worth significantly less. The bag was offered up for auction several times by the U.S. Marshal’s office until finally it received the $995 bid.

After getting the bag authenticated, it was discovered that the bag was actually from Apollo 11 and a lengthy court battle between NASA and the winning bidder ensued with courts ultimately ruling in her favor.

For more on the bizarre journey of the lunar sample bag, check out this piece in the Washington Post.

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