1963 “Astronaut Pictures” (R709-6)
Topps Chewing Gum, Brooklyn, New York, USA

Series Title: Astronaut Pictures
American Card Catalog No.: R709-6
Manufactured by: Topps Chewing Gum
Country: Brooklyn, New York, USA
Number of Cards: 55 cards
Card Dimensions: 2½ × 3½ inches
Circa: 1963


The “Astronaut Pictures” set of 55 cards was issued by Topps in 1963. The pictures are color NASA photographs of America’s space explorers, their training exercises, and their equipment. The fronts of the cards focus on America’s “Mercury 7” Astronauts: (1) Alan Bartlett Shepard, Jr. (1923-1998), U.S. Navy; (2) Virgil Ivan (Gus) Grissom (1926-1967); (3) John Herschel Glenn, Jr. (1921-), U.S. Marine Corps; (4) Malcolm Scott Carpenter (1925-), U.S. Navy; (5) Walter Marty (Wally) Schirra, Jr. (1923-2007), U.S. Navy; (6) Gordon (Gordo) Cooper, Jr. (1927-2004), U.S. Air Force; and (7) Donald Kent (Deke) Slayton (1924-1993), U.S. Air Force. The captions and text appear in a yellow block on the front of the card, with the starry blue circle containing the card number attached to one side. The backs of the cards are a series of futuristic 3-D sketches in orange and green. The images on the backside needed to be viewed with a special cellophane and cardboard 3-D eye-glasses. The overall dimensions of the cards are 2½ × 3½ inches. The American Card Catalog reference number for the set is R709-6.

The Other Set

The Popsicle “Space Cards” (F253) 55 card set was issued shortly after the 1963 Topps “ Astronaut Pictures ” (R709-6) set. The two sets share the same artwork and card numbers. The front of the #55 checklist card has the word “Topps” removed. Other than that, the fronts of the two sets are identical. The card backs are a different story. The 3-D sketches had been removed and have been replaced by a generic advertising card. The F253 backs feature an advertisement for "frozen confections" and a "Joe Lowe Corporation" manufacturer identification.



“1963 Astronaut Pictures”
Topps Chewing Gum
 Card No.Card Front Title3-D Card Back Title
1Picking the Astronaut TeamHigh Jumps on the Moon
2Floating AstronautsRockslide on the Moon
3Testing the ChimpsHeroic Pioneer
4In OrbitBug Creature of Venus
5Recovery TrainingChasing a Comet
6Space ExplorersTrouble in the Engine Room
7The Seven AstronautsSupplies for Lunar City
8Takeoff InspectionLanding on Venus
9Training the AstronautLunar Landing
10Astronaut Alan ShepardSaturn: The Ringed Planet
11The First U.S. AstronautJourney through Space
12Awaiting the Take-offSuccessful Separation
13Shepard in SpaceRepairing the Rocket
14Picking up ShepardRobot Explorer
15Successful RecoveryTrapped in Quicksand
16Carrying the CapsuleChecker Game in Space
17Back from SpaceBound for Jupiter
18Astronaut Virgil GrissomThe First Men on the Moon
19Reporting New InformationBaseball Game in Outer Space
20Spacesuit CheckupMonorail on the Moon
21Grissom in SpacesuitTouring an Unknown Planet
22Putting on a Space HelmetExploring a Martian Moon
23Putting on His ParachuteUnderwater Kingdom
24Grissom in Pressure SuitPropelled by a Jet Gun
25Final CheckupFlying Terror
26Grissom Awaits CountdownRepairs above Earth
27Grissom Gets ReadyDust Storm on an Asteroid
282nd U.S. SpacemanTragedy on the Space Wheel
29Grissom Blasts OffLeaving an Asteroid
30Grissom in SpaceSpace Pilot in Action
31Mercury Atlas 4Frightened Space Traveler
32Astronaut John GlennDanger in Space
33Glenn and the F-106Exploring a Strange World
34Space HeroThe Floating Tools
35Glenn & GrissomMysterious Jungle
36Taking a BreakSpace Vehicle In Flames
37Rest Day for GlennT.V. Camera in the Sky
38Getting into the SuitFleeing the Twister
39Checking His SuitTesting an Astronaut
40Inside the Test ChamberSpace Voyage
41Glenn in TrainingEmergency Job
42Posing for PhotographersMoonquake!
43Studying His MapsMuscleman on the Moon
44Before Glenn’s Take-offCrashing into the Ocean
45Glenn in SpaceFrying an Egg on Mercury
461st Man in OrbitWinged Beast
47Glenn Meets the PresentAstronaut on a Life Raft
48Our 1st SpacemenDestination Earth
49Astronaut CarpenterFirst Martian Expedition
50Carpenter Checks His SuitBuilding a Space Station
51Astronaut Donald SlaytonThrough a Meteor Storm
52Astronaut Gordon CooperRocketship Collision
53Astronaut Walter SchirraWatching the Heavens
54Astronauts In Flight SuitsBuilding a Space Station
55Topps Astronaut Pictures Checklist (1-17)Astronaut (checklist 18-55)


  1. John A. Shupek: The Skytamer Archive Digital Image Database

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