An exchange between two HAM radio operators began our search for the story behind a shiny piece of material.
A HAM radio operator who now lives in Beverly Hills, Florida made contact with another radio hobbyist in Baltimore, Maryland. The second man said he was a NASA engineer and pioneered some early space projects. Before signing off, he promised to send a memento of their conversation.
Some time later our Florida contributor received a three inch-square of metallic fabric, one half covered in a mysterious pink powder, along with a hand-drawn diagram. Piecing together information from the radio exchange and notes on the diagram, our contributor believes this could be a piece of an early space satellite.
History Detectives host Tukufu Zuberi consults with experts at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, and visits the Navy Lakehurst Historical Society in New Jersey to see whether this swatch of reflective material ever orbited the earth.
- Also with Tukufu Zuberi Birth Control Box Could this unusual wooden box be an early contraceptive device?
- Related Investigation Red Cloud Letter How was a leader of the Lakota people connected with the controversial sculptor of Mount Rushmore?
- Also with Tukufu Zuberi Preston Brook's Riding Crop Was this riding crop a gift from Jefferson Davis as a reward for attacking a political opponent?
- Also with Tukufu Zuberi John Brown Letters How is this woman in Sacramento related to John Brown, the 19th-century abolitionist?
- Related Investigation Camp David Letter Could a box found in a dumpster hold information about the founding of a top-secret Presidential retreat?
- Also in Season 8 Iwo Jima Map What role did this map play in one of World War II's fiercest battles?
This is a place for opinions, comments, questions and discussion; a place where viewers of History Detectives can express their points of view and connect with others who value history. We ask that posters be polite and respectful of all opinions. History Detectives reserves the right to delete comments that don’t conform to this conduct. We will not respond to every post, but will do our best to answer specific questions, or address an error.