Astounding Science Fiction – July, 1941 (Featuring “Methuselah’s Children”, by Robert Heinlein) [Hubert Rogers]

Illustration by Charles Schneeman, for “The Seesaw”, by A.E. van Vogt (p 61).

“The Seesaw” was the first part of what would eventually be developed, through both short stories and books, into A.E. van Vogt’s “Weapon Shop” stories. 

“The Seesaw,” together with “The Weapon Shop” (Astounding Science Fiction, December, 1942) and “The Weapon Shops of Isher” (Thrilling Wonder Stories, February, 1949) would in time become the basis of van Vogt’s full novel – also entitled “The Weapon Shops of Isher” – in 1951, as well as his companion novel The Weapon Makers.

In that context, Charles Schneeman’s art depicts the initial encounter between reporter C.J. (Chris) McAllister of the Gazette-Bulletin, and Lystra, the daughter of a Weapon Shop Owner.  The pair are viewing the Imperial City of Isher from the Weapon Shop of Lystra’s father.    

Curiously, though time travel is not the focus of the story, merely being a plot element, it is noteworthy that the tale implies parallel time streams, simultaneously commencing upon June 11, 1941, and, “June”, in year 84 of the “4,700th year of the Imperial House of Isher”.


Astounding Science Fiction – December, 1942 (Featuring “The Weapon Shop”, by A.E. van Vogt) [Hubert Rogers]

“The finest energy weapons in the known universe.”

Illustration by William A. Kolliker, for A.E. Van Vogt’s story “The Weapon Shop” (p. 9)

Illustration by William A. Kolliker, for A.E. Van Vogt’s story “The Weapon Shop” (p. 22)

Illustration by Paul Orban, for Edna Mayne Hull’s story “The Flight That Failed” (p. 29)

Illustration by Charles Schneeman, for Frank Bellknap Long’s story “To Follow Knowledge” (p. 87)

Illustration by Paisilang R. Isip, for Robert Moore Williams’ story “Johnny Had a Gun” (p. 99)