1966-11-11 USA Gemini 12

Gemini 12 (GT-12), launched on November 11, 1966, was the final manned flight in Project Gemini. It was crewed by James A. Lovell and Edwin E. Aldrin. Gemini 12 was designed to perform rendezvous and docking with the Agena target vehicle, to conduct three Extravehicular Activity (EVA) operations, to conduct a tethered stationkeeping exercise, to perform docked maneuvers using the Agena propulsion system to change orbit, and demonstrate an automatic reentry.

1966 GT-12 Orbit Covers cachet cover with launch day postmark. This mission featured three periods of extravehicular activity (EVA) by Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin, lasting a total of 5 hours and 30 minutes. It also achieved the fifth rendezvous and fourth docking with an Agena target vehicle. Signed by Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin and James A. Lovell. Canceled in Cape Canaveral on launch day November 11, 1966.
Gemini 12 official NASA cachet on cover with a Kennedy Space Center machine cancel, signed by James A. Lovell and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin.
Gemini 12 official NASA cachet on cover with a Kennedy Space Center hand cancel.
At the completion of the previous Gemini flights, the program still had not demonstrated that an astronaut could conduct extra-vehicular activity (EVA) operations easily and efficiently. In preparation for Gemini 12, underwater training for space walk simulation was first introduced by Adrin himself. Even today, this training technique is still widely used to simulate a weightless environment for an astronaut to practice EVA operations.

Photo: "SHORTLY after 1:20 p.m. Tuesday, astronauts James Lovell and Edwin (Buzz) Aldrin landed in the Atlantic ocean safely, ending a four day space flight and bringing to a close the 20 month two man Gemini program. With the safe completion of the Gemini 12 flight, former Milwaukeean Lovell became the world's most traveled spaceman. The astronauts finished their mission with a pinpoint splashdown within four miles of the aircraft carrier Wasp. Almost as soon as the capsule hit the water, navy frogmen (upper), members of the recovery team, leaped from a helicopter to attach flotation gear to the spacecraft and assist the spacemen."
Gemini 12 USS Wasp Captain's cover.
Beck printed cachet cover B706 with USS Wasp hand cancel is less common than the machine cancel on such cover.
Gemini 12 recovery ship cover with a Gemini 11 Beck rubber stamped cachet.