Original U.S. 1948 Operation Sandstone Atomic Bomb Test Certificate

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. Operation Sandstone was a series of nuclear weapon tests in 1948. It was the third series of American tests, following Trinity in 1945 and Crossroads in 1946, and preceding Ranger. Like the Crossroads tests, the Sandstone tests were carried out at the Pacific Proving Grounds, although at Enewetak Atoll rather than Bikini Atoll. They differed from Crossroads in that they were conducted by the Atomic Energy Commission, with the armed forces having only a supporting role. The purpose of the Sandstone tests was also different: they were primarily tests of new bomb designs rather than of the effects of nuclear weapons. Three tests were carried out in April and May 1948 by Joint Task Force 7, with a work force of 10,366 personnel, of whom 9,890 were military. The successful testing of the new cores in the Operation Sandstone tests rendered every component of the old weapons obsolete. Even before the third test had been carried out, production of the old cores was halted, and all effort concentrated on the new Mark 4 nuclear bomb, which would become the first mass-produced nuclear weapon. More efficient use of fissionable material as a result of Operation Sandstone would increase the U.S. nuclear stockpile from 56 bombs in June 1948 to 169 in June 1949. Nuclear weapons were developed during World War II by the Manhattan Project, which created a network of production facilities, and the weapons research and design laboratory at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Two types of bombs were developed: the Mark I Little Boy, a gun-type fission weapon using uranium-235, and the Mark III Fat Man, an implosion-type nuclear weapon using plutonium.

Certificates were given out as a novelty to participants in the testing, very few remain in existence today. This example is offered in very good condition and measures approximately 13 3/4" x 9 3/4" it is framed. It reads as follows:

Grand Council Exclusive Order of the Eniwetok Guinea Pigs To all loyal Brother pigs, Greetings, Know Ye, that (Name looks like) Pasquale Tuccelli having, through an exaggerated sense of patriotism subjected your body to the rigors attendant to atomic weapons, gamma rays, rain, storms, mermaids,small boats, canned beer, jeeps, rationed water, telephones, small planes, palm trees, helicopters, sea shells, sand fleas, coconuts, mal-de-mer, and the like is by this document accorded full status as a Brother Pig and all brothers are hereby commanded to give him due recognition as same under penalty of being driven from the common trough. Given under my hand this Spring day of 1948 Royal Director of the Trough Darol Froman, PhD., L.A.S.L. * Grand Dispenser of the Slop James S. Russell, Capt., U.S.N. * All Highest, Ruler of Guinea Pig Heaven J. E. Hull Lt. Gen. (Around the edges): U.S.A. JOINT TASK FORCE SEVEN U.S.N. U.S.M.C. Atomic Energy Com. J-2 CIC NRL NOL Los Alamos Lab E G & G U.S.A.F. U.S.A.
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