There are few prosthetic applications in sci-fi more famous than those of Leonard Nimoy’s pointed Vulcan ears. And while making the original Star Trek, Nimoy knew they were special mementos from a groundbreaking series. When the series wrapped in 1968, Spock’s ears came home with him. Afterward, he kept them in a special case, as it was, Nimoy’s character would say, the logical thing to do. Now, via Boing Boing, we’ve learned that Nimoy’s family recently donated the world-famous ears to the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. And you can watch the Smithsonian conservation labs’ unboxing video of these ear tips below.
Here is Adam Nimoy’s statement on this extremely cool donation to the Smithsonian.
“When he finished filming the original Star Trek series in 1969, my father brought home a small memento to commemorate his three years of dedicated work on the original series—a pair of Spock’s Vulcan ears. Mounted in a black box, those ears have been in our family for over fifty years as a tribute to Dad’s outstanding performances as Mr. Spock. And the inspiration and hope that Star Trek has given to generations of fans all over this planet.
Today it’s my honor to donate the iconic Spock ears to the National Air and Space Museum, where they can be experienced by visitors firsthand. The donation honors Beit T’Shuvah and the Leonard Nimoy COPD Research Fund at UCLA. Two organizations supported by our family and dedicated to the Vulcan salutation of long life and prosperity.”
Spock’s ears are hardly the only iconic sci-fi piece at the Smithsonian. The original Enterprise also makes the Smithsonian home. The museum painstakingly restored that 11-foot model just a few years ago. Also included is the mothership from Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Their most recent addition was an X-wing from Star Wars. And Spock’s ears are just as big a part of sci-fi history. And they deserve their place of honor to live long and prosper for all time.