|Apollo 7 launch cover signed by Walter Schirra, Donn Eisele and and Walter Cunningham.|
Telemetry capability for Cape Canaveral consisted of a chain of antennas stretching from a central station on Merritt Island to several fixed ground stations located downrange. Telemetry stations were located on the Florida mainland, Grand Bahama Island, Antigua and Ascension Islands.
During the flight of 260 hours and 163 orbits, several live telecasts were made from the Apollo spacecraft, giving the viewer a tour of the spacecraft, a look at the astronauts at work, and a glimpse at their view of the earth. It was the first successful transmission of live television from an American manned spacecraft.
On October 22, after an 11-day trip, the Apollo began its descent. The reentry was automatically controlled by the spacecraft's computerized guidance system. The spacecraft splashed down upside down within 0.3 of a mile (0.5 km) of its target in the Atlantic Ocean. It was soon righted with inflated bags, and within an hour after landing, the astronauts were aboard the carrier Essex. Subsequent medical examinations showed them to be in good condition.
Apollo 7 primary recovery ship USS Essex Beck printed cachet cover.
A rare USS Essex ship's cachet on an Apollo 7 recovery ship cover.