The Broward County Main Library is privileged to display an actual piece of the moon. Donated by Susan Eisele Black, the wife of the late Apollo 7 astronaut Donn F. Eisele, the lunar sample is on permanent view on the 6th floor.
"Since Donn and I lived in Fort Lauderdale, I chose to place the moon rock in the Main Library in downtown Fort Lauderdale,” said Susan Eisele Black. "This location gives more people the opportunity to see it. The moon rock is an important part of our history."
The moon rock was officially dedicated to Broward County Library on Tuesday, October 23, 2007. Mrs. Eisele Black, a longtime member of the Broward Public Library Foundation, attended the ceremony with Apollo 7 Lunar Module Pilot Walter Cunningham.
The rock was awarded through NASA's Ambassador of Exploration Award Program. Apollo astronauts, on missions that took place between 1968 and 1972, were each given a portion of the 842 pounds of moon rock collected during the moon landings.
The Apollo 7 spacecraft crew consisted of Commander Walter M. Schirra, Jr., Command Module Pilot Donn F. Eisele, and Walter Cunningham as Lunar Module Pilot. NASA's first successful three-man space mission flew in Earth orbit from October 11 to October 22, 1968 so that the crew could check life-support, propulsion, and control systems. The mission was a technical success which gave NASA the confidence to launch Apollo 8 around the moon just two months later. A 20 minute film of the Apollo 7 mission runs continuously at the library exhibit. Photos of the Apollo 7 mission, space related keepsakes, and life-size replicas of astronauts are also on display.
"Broward County Library is certainly honored to be able to offer the community the opportunity to view an object of such significance," said Broward County Library Director Robert E. Cannon. "We are the only public library in the United States to have an exhibit of an actual moon rock, and we are grateful that we can give people the chance to see something so unique and momentous."
The moon rock exhibit is secured and coordinated by the Broward Public Library Foundation. The Main Library is located at 100 S. Andrews Avenue, Fort Lauderdale.