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In the remaining time, Armstrong and Aldrin scooped up about 60 Ibs. (earth weight) of rocks for one of the lunar sample boxes. Using a core sampler, Aldrin was to have dug some 13 in. into the moon's surface, but he had to hammer the tool vigorously to drive it no more than 9 in. deep. "The material was quite well packed," he said. "The way it adhered to the core tube, it gave me the impression of being moist." The astronauts managed to collect 20 Ibs. of rocks for the sample box that was supposed to hold sorted and identified rocks. Unfortunately, with time running out, none of the rocks were actually catalogued. At the urging of controllers ("Head on up the ladder"), the astronauts rolled up the solar wind experiment, placed it in a sample box, sealed both boxes, and hauled them via a clothesline-like pulley into the lunar module. Two hours and 31 minutes after Armstrong first emerged, both men had climbed back inside Eagle, and the hatch was closed.
In addition to the flag, the astronauts left behind a number of mementos from the earth. There was a 1½-in. silicon disk bearing statements (reduced in size 200 times) by Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon, and words of good will from leaders of 72 different countries. The disk also bore a message from Pope Paul VI quoting from the Eighth Psalm, a hymn to the Creator:
When I behold your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars which you set in place—
What is man that you should be mindful of him, or the son of man that you should care for him?
You have made him little less than the angels, and crowned him with glory and honor.
You have given him rule over the works of your hands, putting all things under his feet. . .
Attached to a leg of the lunar module's lower stage, which would remain on the moon when the upper portion blasted off, was the already famous "We came in peace" plaque signed by President Nixon and Apollo 11 Astronauts Armstrong, Aldrin and Collins. Also to be left behind: medals and shoulder patches in memory of Yuri Gagarin, Vladimir Komarov, Virgil Grissom, Roger Chaffee and Edward White, five men who have died while in Soviet or U.S. space programs.
Later, after reopening the hatch, the astronauts tossed out LM equipment unnecessary for the return trip, their backpacks, boots and other items that had been exposed to lunar soil and dust. Then, their lunar excursion successfully completed, they settled down to a relaxed meal and a rest. It was strange to think that while much of the U.S. slept, two Americans were also sleeping in their cramped quarters on the distant and silent moon. Some 21 hours after landing on the moon, Armstrong and Aldrin were ready to blast off in the five-ton upper stage of the lunar module. Later, they were to rendezvous and dock with the orbiting Columbia.