871 E. 9th South

The Cosmic Aeroplane first opened its doors in June 1967 near the corner of Ninth East and Ninth South in Salt Lake City:

The Cosmic Aeroplane at 851 East Ninth South -- Scan from a 35mm slide, courtesy of Sherm Clow.

The Cosmic Aeroplane at 851 East Ninth South — Scan from a 35mm slide, courtesy of Sherm Clow.

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See the entire historical photograph as a scaleable PDF file.

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1967 was known for the “Summer of Love,” and the rapid spread of an alternative culture known as “The Movement.”

Announcement of Cosmic Aeroplane Opening by Steve Jones 1967. Digital filtering and sepia tone by M. Evans

Announcement of Cosmic Aeroplane Opening by Steve Jones 1967. Digital filtering and sepia tone by M. Evans

Among their early friends was popular late night disc-jockey Michael G. Kavanagh, who mentioned this very hip shop in the context of his own visit to Haight/Ashbury during 1967’s Summer of Love, and while he was playing the latest music out of San Francisco on AM and FM Radio in the hours after midnight.
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Peter Brandt's original sign for the Cosmic Aeroplane at 9th & 9th -- Photo by M.E. courtesy of Steve Jones.

Peter Brandt’s original sign for the Cosmic Aeroplane at 9th & 9th, painted on plywood. Direct sunlight and weather accelerates the fading of certain pigments — Photo taken by M.E. in 2013 courtesy of Steve Jones.

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Sherm Clow and Steve Jones at the original Cosmic Aeroplane on 9th South, surrounded by data from Polk’s Business Directory in 1967. Odd numbers indicate the addresses of neighboring businesses on the North side of the street. — Photo courtesy of Becky Roberts.

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I thought there should be a place where you could get underground papers, cigarette papers, jewelry, that kind of thing , said Steve Jones. Posters were a big thing at the beginning …

Examples of posters available from the Cosmic Aeroplane: (R to L) Art by Rick Griffin (see the shop window above); Art by Alton Kelley and Stanley Mouse.

Examples of posters available from the Cosmic Aeroplane: (R to L) Art by Rick Griffin (see the shop window above); Art by Alton Kelley and Stanley Mouse.

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Cosmic Aeroplane Business Card circa 1967

(Above) Sherm Clow told how the original Cosmic Aeroplane acquired a number of promotional rolling paper packets from a now-unknown wholesale company — each blank cardboard dispenser contained about a dozen delicate leaves. Sherm and Steve used the Cosmic’s rubber stamp to turn them into business cards.

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Yes, these things are licensed and taxed! (Courtesy of Becky Roberts)

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Stationary from 1967-68

Stationary from the first Cosmic Aeroplane location.

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The Cosmic Areoplane advertised in the Daily Utah Chronicle at the University of Utah:

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Sherm prepares to pose for photos with Steve outside 871 East 9th South — (L to R) Color Art by Rick Griffin; Peter Brandt; Al Capp, and in the Daily Utah Chronicle, Jules Feiffer shares space beneath the Cosmic advertisement on October 4, 1967.

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Advertisement from the Daily Utah Chronicle February 5, 1970 — The same issue which contained a story about the Cosmic Aeroplanes first days, and the transition to West South Temple. This W.C. Fields poster was a cultural icon in the 60’s, and led to new public demand for his movies, which the Blue Mouse Theater played in the early 70’s.

Uncredited article from the Daily Utah Chronicle February 5, 1970 about the first Cosmic Aeroplane transitions.

(Thanks to Steve Jones for the microfilm scans from the Marriott Library)

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From FLASH — a mimeographed underground ‘Zine, distributed FREE:

Advertisement with 835 E. 9th South address -- one bay east of the original location.

Cosmic advertisement with 875 E. 9th South address — east of the original location. From the Rare Books Division, Special Collections, J.Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah.

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After the Cosmic Aeroplane moved to a larger space near the Union Pacific Depot, the district around the corner of Ninth East and Ninth South evolved into an area of so-called Alternative shops that served people who valued culture outside of “the mainstream” for over two more generations, and continues to do so in the 21st Century.

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Sherm and Steve also published The Electric News when the Cosmic Aeroplane was at this location — See & Read: Electric News Archive

Cover of The Electric News Number One by Peter Brandt, original harmonica player for Smoke Blues Band.

Cover of The Electric News Number One by Peter Brandt, painter of the first Cosmic Aeroplane store sign, and original harmonica player for the Smoke Blues Band.

Peter Brandt — Artist and Musician:

Peter Brandt rehearsing in the back room of 366 W. South Temple -- Photograph courtesy of Smokey Koelsch.

Peter Brandt rehearsing at 366 W. South Temple — Photo courtesy of Smokey Koelsch.

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We actively request your contributions of pictures, memorabilia, and oral histories concerning the Cosmic Aeroplane — please contact our blogmeister: mike_evans_exile@yahoo.com

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