Got $20k? If so, you may be able to purchase the 166-page Ph.D. dissertation written by German rocket scientist Wernher Von Braun in 1934. Von Braun was the technical director of Germany’s V-2 rocket program during World War II and later became the first director of NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, where he led the development of the Saturn V rocket that sent Apollo astronauts to the moon. He also wrote regularly for Popular Science.
The dissertation, which includes hand-written notes and charts, is recognized as an important milestone in modern rocketry. It was originally classified as “top secret” and remained unpublished until 1960.
The auction will take place on December 4 at Bonhams New York.—Dawn Stover