The exploration of space by Russia entered a
new phase with the first Moon landing by Luna 1 in 1959. In 1960
Russia issued a souvenir sheet which featured a cosmonaut and a lunar
vehicle. The stamp on the sheet features images of the three Luna
space vehicles and a map of the moon centered at 15°N 120° with North
at approximately 11:30. This is the back side, or dark side, or unseen
side of the moon.
The map shows several dark areas. The dark patch at the
upper right is Mare Moscoviense at 146°E 25°N. Below and to the left
are two larger dark areas. Mare Marginus, “the Sea of the Edge,” and
Mare Smythii, named for William Henry Smith (1788-1865), a British
Astronomer. At the lower right is the crater Tsilokovskiy, named for
Konstantin Tsilkovskiy (1857-1935), a Russian rocket scientist.
On the right side of the stamp there is a curved line
of dashes which marks the “terminator” or edge (generally speaking) of
the moon’s visible and hidden sides. A solid line slightly below the
middle of the moon, is the moon’s equator.
A similar map of the hidden side of the moon, based on
a photograph taken on October 7, 1959 was issued in 1984 by Bulgaria