1953 von Braun book references ‘Elon’ on Mars

A book written 70 years ago by German rocket scientist Wernher von Braun made a rather striking prediction.

Having pioneered Nazi Germany’s rocket technology before being recruited to work for the Americans at the end of World War II, Wernher von Braun remains a prominent figure in the history of the space race and the development of the technology that would one day take us to the Moon.

More recently, eagle-eyed space history buffs have noticed some interesting correlations between what he’d written in his 1953 book “Mars Project: A Technical Tale” and the current work by SpaceX and Elon Musk to put humans on Mars.

In response to a Tweet by Musk about destiny, one user – Toby li – noted:

“Speaking about destiny, did you know that Von Braun’s 1953 book ‘Mars Project,’ referenced a person named Elon that would bring humans to Mars? Pretty nuts.”

If we look a bit closer at this claim, while the name Elon is indeed mentioned in the book, it wasn’t the name of the person who von Braun had believed would lead humans to Mars but instead the name of the leader of the government that he predicted would be formed to rule Mars.

“The Martian government was directed by ten men, the leader of which was elected by universal suffrage for five years and entitled ‘Elon’,” the passage reads when translated into English.

“Two houses of Parliament enacted the laws to be administered by the Elon and his cabinet.”

Seeing the funny side, Musk responded by Tweeting:

“Technoking of Tesla, Imperator of Mars.”


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