Most of his life Gerhard Zucker was involved in rocketry. Zucker’s first successful rocket experiment took place in his home town, Hasselfelde, in the German Harz maintains, after local authorities of Cuxhaven, banned the experiment from taking place from Duhen to the island of Neuwerk in the North Sea.
The rocket was launched on 31st August 1933 and it was followed by many other rocket experiments in Germany and abroad. Zucker was the first rocket pioneer to have large quantities of Rocket Labels and Vignettes printed for use on his rocket mail. He used rocket night flights and catapult launches.
During the 30’s rocket launches, rather simple when compared with today’s efforts, were great attractions. Zucker was invited to show his stuff abroad. He visited Great Britain, The Netherlands, Belgium, Italy and Switzerland to demonstrate his rockets. Many experiments failed, often mail was lost or partly burned. Singed covers are quite common from Zucker’s four experiments in Britain.
Written by Bert van Eijck and translated for Orbit by Charles Bromser.
One of 100 covers from Zucker’s 15 April 1931 flight in Halberstadt.
In Switzerland Zucker used a catapult to launch his rocket from the M.S. Silberhecht, on the Boden Lake, to Rheineck. The rocket carried 200 cards.
Zucker’s Italian launch took place in Triest. The successful flight carried some 1600 items. Zucker had prepared special triangular vignettes for the flight.