Astronaut's homes in the 1960's....

When NASA announced that they were relocating to Houston in the early 60's, the astronaut corps needed to find somewhere to live. Relatively comfortable after the deal with Time Magazine, the original Mercury 7 mostly decided to settle in the new neighbourhood of Timber Cove, under construction at the time.

Later cohorts either joined the established group in Timber Cove,or set up home in the neighbouring area of El Lago. But most of these houses were built specifically for, and in conjunction with, the astronauts, who were the first resident in the house.

I was quite surprised at how modest most of these houses were, given the residents were already American heros....

So, first up, and rather sombre, the homes of the Apollo 1 crew. Hard not to imagine the sorrow these houses saw in January 1967, as fellow astronauts had to walk up the driveways to deliver the bad news. For Betty Grissom, that was Mike Collins, and for Roger Chaffee it was next-door neighbour, Gene Cernan.

So, first, Gus Grissom

Ed White

Roger Chaffee

On to the rest of the Mercury 7:

Alan Shepard was the only one of the 7 not to set up home in Timber Cove - he chose an apartment in Hermann Park, near Rice University. It's now a Marriott hotel run for the families of patients at the MD Anderson Cancer Center across the street.

Having done OK for himself, he then upgraded a little...

Back to more normal housing, we have Wally Schirra, Gus Grissom's next door neighbour..

John Glenn, first American in orbit

...who lived next door to Scott Carpenter

Next up, the rest of the "Next Nine" cohort of Gemini astronauts... Starting with the three who became my favourite crew, that of Apollo 8:

Frank Borman

Bill Anders

And the better-known Jim Lovell. During Apollo 13, when Marilyn Lovell prohibited TV crews setting up transmitters on her front lawn and told them "If they have a problem with that, they can take it up with my husband. He'll be home ... on Friday", this is the lawn she was talking about...

Elliot See - never made it to space after being killed in a T-38 crash in St Louis in heavy fog, en-route to the factory building the Gemini capsules.

Jim McDivitt

Tom Stafford

Pete Conrad moved into Timber Cove...

...and later moved literally just around the corner...

John Young, later the first commander of the Space Shuttle.

And, slightly better known, Mr N. Armstrong

Who was ably assisted by Mr E. "Buzz" Aldrin

And finally, a few notable/honourable mentions:

Charlie Duke - Apollo 16 LM pilot who, along withJohn Young, were snoozing on the moon at the time I was born...

Last man on the moon, Gene Cernan

And one you'll never of heard of, Mr Jack Kinzler.... Look him up on Wikipedia! He was NASA's Mr Fixit and developed, amongst other things, the flag pole mechanism used to put up the flag on the moon, and the adapted shovel Al Shepard used as a golf club on Apollo 14

And lastly, the fabulous Mr Eugene Kranz - not sure if this is his original house from the 1960s, but this would appear to be where he now lives...