Mercury

Mercury
[un-manned only]
program spacecraft


This page contains philatelic information on the Mercury [un-manned only] program spacecraft. Catalog numbers, years of issue, and notes on the spacecraft featured are given when available. If readers know of additional information or images, please contact the authors using the e-mail addresses at the bottom of this page.

This page includes only those Mercury program missions which resulted in an orbited payload AND which were un-manned missions. Sub-orbital Mercury [un-manned only] program launches are included in the research rockets page.

Launch information
(found elsewhere)
Launch covers
(including anniversary-of-launch covers, and launch-related event covers)
(farther below)
Other postal items
(stamps, souvenir sheets, aerogrammes, postal cards, etc.)
(immediately below)
Mercury
[un-manned only]
Mercury
[un-manned only]
Mercury
[un-manned only]


Below is a list of Mercury [un-manned only] program spacecraft postal items (stamps, souvenir sheets, aerogrammes, postal cards, etc.).

CountryCatalog NumberType of ItemYear of IssueNotes on Content
Mercury [un-manned only] and pre-Mercury
St. Thomas and Prince IslandsMi9916-9919_ms4MS4 (Mi9916-9919)2021"60th anniv. of Mercury-Redstone 2" mission that carried the chimpanzee "Ham"
St. Thomas and Prince IslandsBL1731SS1 (Mi9920)
St. Vincent4231b (Mi?)From MS4 (4231 (a-d))2021On 31 January 1966, the chimpanzee "Ham" traveled in the Mercury MR-2 capsule to an altitude of 251 km in a sub-orbital rocket mission; the stamp design with "Ham" and a handler is based on this photo
St. Vincent4231d (Mi?)The Mercury-MA-5 launch of chimpanzee Enos into orbit on 29 November 1961 is based on this photo
St. Vincent4232 (BL?)SS1MR-2 capsule, from this photo; on 31 January 1966, the chimpanzee "Ham" traveled in the capsule to an altitude of 251 km in a sub-orbital rocket mission
United States1193 fdc1 (Mi822 fdc1)(Multi-color printed) cachet on FDC1962"Project Mercury MA-5 first chimpanzee [Enos] in orbit"
United States1193 fdc2 (Mi822 fdc2)(Multi-color printed) cachet on FDC"Astrochimp 'Ham' was the first chimpanzee launched into sub-orbital space aboard Mercury-MR2 on 31 Jan 1961"
United StatesC45+1204 cover (Mi?+? cover)(Ernie Crager) cachet on cover1962Mercury MA-5 launch of "'Enos' 11-29-1961"
United States1193+1031 cover (Mi822+? cover)(Ernie Crager) cachet on cover1963Mercury MA-5 launch of "'Enos' 11-29-1961"
United States1474 fdc (Mi1090 fdc)(Ernie Crager) cachet on cover1972Mercury MA-5 launch of "'Enos' 11-29-1961"


Below is a list of Mercury [un-manned only] program spacecraft launch covers (including anniversary-of-launch covers, and launch-related event covers).

CountryCancel DateCancel LocationType of ItemNotes on Content
Mercury [un-manned only]
1961-02-21: Mercury-MA-2 [sub-orbital]
United States1961-02-21Port Canaveral FL(Sarzin) cachet on coverMercury-MA-2 successful test flight from Cape Canaveral; reached 183 km; the capsule was recovered 2305 km downrange
United States1961-02-21Port Canaveral FL(Swanson/DuBeau? black and magenta rubber-stamp and red printed) cachet on (airmail) cover
1961-04-25: Mercury-MA-3 [sub-orbital]
United States1961-04-25Patrick AFB, FL(Swanson black and magenta rubber-stamp) cachet (and signature) on coverMercury-MA-3 test flight from Cape Canaveral. The roll-and-pitch sequence failed to initiate and the RSO destroyed the rocket 43 seconds after the launch when it was at an altitude of 7 km. The escape tower activated when the destruct command was sent and lofted the Mercury spacecraft to safety. It descended by parachute to the Atlantic where it was recovered and eventually re-used. This was the first Mercury-Atlas launch with a live escape tower and the Mercury team were at least able to verify the reliability of the launch escape system as a result of the failure.
United States1961-04-25Patrick AFB, FL(C. Swanson blue rubber-stamp) cachet on cover
1961-09-13: Mercury-MA-4
United States1961-09-13Port Canaveral FL(Sarzin) cachet on coverMercury-MA-4 launch
United States1961-09-13Patrick AFB, FL(SpaceCraft) cachet on coverMercury-MA-4 launch
United States1961-09-13Port Canaveral FL(Harry Gordon) cachet on (airmail) coverMercury-MA-4 launch
Mercury-MA-4 (events)
United States1962-08-20USS Decatur(Magenta rubber-stamp) cachet on coverMercury-MA-4 splashdown/recovery (on 13 Sep 1961)
1961-11-01: Mercury-MS-11 [failed]
United States1961-11-01Patrick AFB, FL(C. Swanson magenta rubber-stamp) cachet on coverMercury-MS-1 launch [failed]
United States1961-11-01Patrick AFB, FL(C. Swanson purple rubber-stamp) cachet (and signature) on coverMercury-MS-1 launch [failed]
1961-11-29: Mercury-MA-5 (chimp "Enos")
United States1961-11-29Port Canaveral FL(Black and magenta rubber-stamp) cachet on coverMercury-MA-5 launch
United States1961-11-29Patrick AFB, FL(SpaceCraft) cachet on coverMercury-MA-5 launch
United States1961-11-29Patrick AFB, FL(SpaceCraft) cachet (and signature) on coverMercury-MA-5 launch
United States1961-11-29Patrick AFB, FL(C. Swanson green rubber-stamp) cachet on (airmail) coverMercury-MA-5 launch
United States1961-11-29Port Canaveral FL(Sarzin) cachet on coverMercury-MA-5 launch
United States1961-11-29Port Canaveral FL(Sarzin) cachet (different) on coverMercury-MA-5 launch
United States1961-11-29Port Canaveral FL(Goldcraft Cachets) cachet on coverMercury-MA-5 launch
United States1961-11-29Port Canaveral FL(Alfred Lonky) cachet on coverMercury-MA-5 launch
United States1961-11-29Port Canaveral FL(Zaso black printed) cachet on coverMercury-MA-5 launch
Mercury-MA-5 (events)
United States1961-12-01Patrick AFB, FL(C. Swanson magenta rubber-stamp and black typed) cachet on cover"Enos returned to the Eastern Test Range for a round of physicals"
Mercury-MA-5 (anniversaries)
United States2016-11-29Sagamore Beach MA(Coverscape) cachet on cover55th anniv. Mercury-MA-5 launch
1962-10-03: Mercury-MA-8 [manned]
United States1962-08-11Patrick AFB, FL(Sokalsky red, and black typed) cachet on coverMercury-MA-8 pre-launch event

1Mercury-MS-1 information


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Updated: 2024-01-11