This 1962 illustrated book imagined what space stations would look

One of my favorite websites is John Sisson's Dreams of Space, which is singularly focused on vintage non-fiction children's books and ephemera about space travel. Most of the stuff he posts is from the 1950s through the 1970s, a heyday for pie in the sky visions of humans breaking free of earth's wicked gravity.

This month, John is posting about books that speculated on space stations of the future. One of the books is simply called Space Stations, and was written in 1962 by Erik Bergaust.  In his introduction, he writes, "This book is a roundup of all current plans for space stations. It is based on official information provided by the Space Agency and by industry. The illustrations do not depict science fiction ideas; all artwork in the book was submitted by the companies currently working on our various space projects. It is based on designs by their own engineers and scientists."

Click here to see scans from the book.

Book caption for the above photo: "Back to Earth! Similar in design to the first space stations contemplated by the Space Agency, this illustration shows a 3-man crew returning from orbit. Soft landing by parachutes is accomplished after retro-rockets have been used to slow down the little space station from orbital speed."

Erik Bergaust died in 1978 at the age of 52. According to this Washington Post obituary published in 1968, he was "author of more than 50 books on aviation, space sciences and nuclear energy, as well as the official biographer of Dr. Wernher von Braun."