The sign accompanying the suit. It reads
Mercury Space Suit
Last Line of Defense
The Mercury capsule's snug cabin protected the astronaut from the rigors of
spaceflight and the harsh space environment. If, however, the capsule
malfunctioned - for example, if its oxygen leaked into space - the Mercury
astronaut could fall back on his last line of defense, his silver space suit.
The Mercury space suit was continuously improved between July 1959, when NASA
awarded the B.F. Goodrich Company the contract to make Mercury suits, and May
1963, when Project Mercury ended. Displayed here is the suit worn by astronaut
Wally Schirra during training for his MA-8 mission. It resembles
the suits worn by Alan Shepard during Mercury-Redstone 3 (May 5,
1961) and Gus
Grissom during Mercury-Redstone
4 (July 21, 1961).