An article published by New Scientist has uncovered a number of women who were among the first astronauts to have their bodies photographed and photographed again, but not in public.
The article describes a series of women, including Mary Ellen “Mead” Felt, who had her first private photoshoot at the age of 32.
Mary Ellen Felt and her family from South Dakota in 1954, photographed at their home, with the view to one day working on the Apollo 11 mission.
They were only allowed to take photographs in private.
But the first woman to have her own private view was Elizabeth “Lizzie” Lizzie from New Jersey in 1957, who photographed herself and her husband from the Apollo 17 capsule, which took off from Cape Canaveral in July 1961.
Elizabeth “Moe” Smith and her sister from Massachusetts in 1957 were among several women to have private photographs taken in public, and Elizabeth “Sue” Mathers and her mother from Georgia in 1956 were among many other women to take private photographs in public for the first time.
But this was not the only time they had their own private pictures taken.
In 1962, Marilyn Monroe and her daughter, Jeanette, were photographed together, and in 1965, actress Jean Dujardin and her son, Jack, were among others to have photos taken in the public space.
But it was the second time in the space age that a woman took a private photograph of herself.
On the moon in 1969, Sally Ride, a former Nasa astronaut, took her own photos of herself on a moon rock as a teenager and published them in a book.
She wrote that the photographs “have the quality of being a memory and a picture.
They remind me of the first moments of my life, the memories of the beauty and wonder of the world.”
Sally Ride in 1969.
Photograph: AP In her book, Sally wrote that she was “an avid photographer of the moon” and that she “was not averse to being photographed in public” as a “pioneer”.
She was photographed on the surface of the Moon in 1968 and took photographs in the same area later that year.
Sally Ride took her first photo of the surface in 1969 when she was 17 years old.
She went on to have a private spaceflight on the Gemini 10 mission in 1971, taking photographs from her helmet, which were published by Space Magazine.
In her memoirs, Sally said: “The images in my book are a representation of my own experiences.
I took them as a young, adventurous, curious girl who had grown up on the Moon.”
Sally rides on the lunar surface in 1972.
Photographs taken by her on Gemini 10 in 1972 are now the only images she has publicly published.
Sally rides the lunar rover in 1973.
Photograph of Sally Ride from a NASA video in 1973 with her daughter Jeanette.
Photograph by Jack R. Riddle Jr. Sally has since gone on to work as an astronaut on the International Space Station, where she is also an astronaut communications specialist.
In 2006, Sally announced that she would be retiring from Nasa.
But Sally has never said whether she has ever shared her first and only photograph of the space surface with the public, or if she has been in the position of sharing that image with any other woman.
The New Scientist article was published online on January 11.
It was written by Andrew Marr and originally appeared in the New Scientist magazine.