Dima Zel

The man who sold the moon

Many of us look out our windows every night at the moon and the stars and dare to dream. We dream of standing up to our boss, we dream of traveling the world, we dream of visiting space, and more. One man had a bigger dream than most, when he looked out the window and decided, he would own the moon.

In 1980, Dennis Hope was unemployed and recently divorced, things were not working out for him. One night after looking out his window, he had the novel idea of laying claim to the moon. He says that after reading the 1967 Outer Space Treaty (which does exist) he realized that it stated that no one country or government could lay claim to the moon. However, it did not mention individuals. With this new information in hand, Hope (who is aptly named for pursuing this idea) filed a claim for ownership with a local U.S Government office.

Hope maintains that the claim was signed and returned although he has misplaced the official documentation and can not seem to get a copy from the government. In his mind, he now had the approval of the U.S government, but what about the rest of the world. He wrote letters to government officials around the world informing them of his new claim and asking them if they wished to contest. As you could imagine, he received no contest from any of them and so assumed that his claim was validated by the world. 

From here, Hope began to sell individual acres of moon land for $20 apiece. He says he has now sold the equivalent of US$1 billion of space land to this date. We are not entirely sure whether Hope is serious in any of what he says, making a joke, or just making an incredible business move. Either way, you can buy plots of land from Hope on his website. To this date, he says many companies, presidents and celebrities have already done so. If you wish to be Tom Hanks’ neighbor on the moon someday, make a purchase today.