Moon Money: Apollo 11, Advertising, and the Media

By Rhonda Evans, Assistant Chief Librarian
July 16, 2019
Mare Humorum

Mare Humorum: From a study made in 1875. NYPL Digital Collections.

It's been over 50 years since the Apollo 11 moon landing. If you are curious about the news and magazine coverage during that summer of 1969 you can explore the hundreds of digitized newspapers and magazines that are accessible to our patrons with their New York Public Library card. However, make sure you don't skip past the advertisements! 1969 was the year of "moon madness". People across the world were obsessed with everything outer space, and this was not lost on the advertising and marketing world. It was almost impossible not to find an advertisement with some reference to NASA, Apollo 11, or the moon. NASA made sure to never endorse specific products, but they freely provided images and never objected to the commodification of this achievement. Through NYPL's magazine databases you can go back to 1969 and take a look at all of the advertisements related to this special time in history.

Product Placement

A large number of corporations contributed their services to the Apollo 11 mission, and they wanted to make sure everyone knew it. The message was, 'if it was good enough for Buzz and Neil it's good enough for you too!'

Omega Ad
Omega Ad, 1969

Town & Country, December 1, 1969. Women's Magazine Archive database.

This Omega ad from Town & Country Magazine showed the company's new tagline,"First watch worn on the moon." Women's Magazine Archive database.

Del Monte Ad 1969
Del Monte Ad 1969

Life Magazine, August 8, 1969. Life Magazine Digital Archive.

Del Monte hinted that the success of the Apollo 11 mission was in part due to the astronauts munching on their dried fruits. Life Magazine Digital Archive

Stouffer's Ad 1969

Life Magazine, August 8, 1969. Life Magazine Digital Archive.

Beauty

The beauty industry made sure not to miss the moon trend, and women's magazines from 1969 are filled with makeup, jewelry and clothing advertisements letting everyone know that space is "in"!

Tussy Ad, 1969
Seventeen Magazine, August, 1969. Women's Magazine Archive database.

In the August 1969 issue of Seventeen Magazine this Tussy makeup ad displays all of the necessary products for the perfect "space face". Women's Magazine Archive.

Revlon Ad
Cosmopolitan, September,1969. Women's Magazine Archive database.

Revlon created a new product inspired by the moon, for a "luminesque eye" try Moon Drops. Women's Magazine Archive.

Space Technology 

Everyone understood that the Apollo 11 moon landing was a phenomenal technological achievement, therefore companies made sure to highlight any tech that their products shared with NASA's successful mission.

DuPont Ad 1969
DuPont Ad 1969

Good Housekeeping, November, 1969. Women's Magazine Archive.

DuPont let consumers know that their home, "can have the same exterior protection as NASA's 'Moon Shot' building..." Women's Magazine Archive.

Sony Ad 1969
Sony Ad 1969

Life Magazine, August 8, 1969.  ​Life Magazine Digital Archive.

The technology for Sony's Superscope tape recorders was "out of this world." Life Magazine Digital Archive

Volkswagen Ad 1969
Volkswagen Ad 1969

Life Magazine, August 8, 1969.  ​Life Magazine Digital Archive.

Volkswagen shows that looks are not the most important thing with this very creative tagline. Life Magazine Digital Archive

These advertisements are just a small sampling of what you can find by exploring our online resources. If you would like to explore these magazines and papers on your own, just stop by the library and makes sure to get your New York Public Library Card!

Have trouble reading standard print? Many of these titles are available in formats for patrons with print disabilities.

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