Very Special Historical Iron Meteorites from
Arizona State University

March 3, 2013

SORRY, NO pictures at this time.
All material is presently getting prepared professionally and will be available during
the Tucson Show, Hotel Tucson City Center (InnSuites) Room 322.


A mass of 10.65kg was found in 1907 by a boy who noticed it partly buried in the sand besides a small creek in Brown County, Nebraska. It was acquired by the American Museum of Natural History where it was cut, studied and determined to be a IIAB Coarsest Octahedrite. It was also noted that one face looked freshly broken, indicating that other fragments must exist.
A typical section shows two elements: irregular kamacite grains, in the center of which rosettes of schreibersite can be found.
Listed and pictured in the Nininger Catalog. Cut from ASU specimen #420.1.


Ainsworth:  5 pieces, 4.7g.   Price:   $45 / gram

A mass of 21 kg was found in 1912 about 600m from the outlet of Moon Lake in the Wasatch mountains of north-eastern Utah. It was recognized as a meteorite, and acquired by Nininger in 1933. When found the meteorite showed little weathering and still had some fusion crust, but one face had been severely hammered and re-heated.
It has been classified as a IVA Fine Octahedrite.
Listed and pictured in the Nininger Catalog. Cut from ASU specimen #168.


Altonah: 7 pieces, 12.4g. Price: $70 / gram

A mass of about 27kg was found in 1901 about 25km south-southwest of Ashfork (north central Arizona). Most of it is in private collections, only 1470g is in the American Museum of Natural History in New York, and 218g in the ASU collection. It is a coarse octahedrite, both  Buchwald and Wasson concluded that it was most likely a transported specimen of Canyon Diablo. And, as it is unshocked, it was probably found in the plain surrounding the crater. 
Cut from ASU specimen #717.


Ashfork:  3 piece, 17.5g   Price: $50 / gram

A mass of 33kg was found before 1888 on a peak of the Sierra de San Francisco called La Bella Roca, near Santiago Papasquiero, Mexico. It was acquired by H.A. Ward who sliced it and distributed it.  And some was acquired by Nininger.
It has been classified as a shock-hardened Medium Octahedrite, of the group IIIB, with a well-developed Widmanstatten pattern and a heavy concentration of uniformely dispersed schreibersite and troilite.
Listed and pictured in the Nininger Catalog.  Cut from ASU specimen #266.


Bella Roca: 3 pieces, 9.7g.   Price: $70 / gram

A mass of 89kg was found in 1934 by a farmer disking a field, about 20km south-southwest of Norris, South-Dakota. It was an irregular, angular mass, somewhat weathered. Etched slices show clear sets of Neumann bands crossing the surface in four directions, this indicates that it was a single ferrite crystal. It is classified as a shocked hexahedrite of the group IIA.  
Listed and pictured in the Nininger Catalog.
  Cut from ASU specimen #374.1.


Bennett County: 3 piece, 25g.   Price: $80 / gram

A mass of 24.5kg was found in 1903 during farm work 6km est of Billings (Christian County, Missouri). It was then exhibit in a street fair in Billings where it took the first prize, as an iron ore!. A horseshoe nail was even forged from it. Eventually it was recognized and acquired by Ward who sold half of it to the Field Museum in Chicago, then sliced it and distributed the rest.
It is a IIIA Medium Octahedrite with a clear Widmanstatten pattern.
Cut from ASU specimen #151.


Billings: 4 pieces, 12.7g.   Price: $80 / gram

In 1931, while visiting the National Observatory in Mexico City, Nininger saw the 11kg end-piece of an unknown meteorite. He set about tracing its source and eventually found and purchased the 43 kg main mass from the discoverer in Chihuahua City. However the original site of the discovery was never established.  He later sliced and sold some pieces but the 16.1kg end piece was acquired by ASU in June 1960 along with the whole Nininger Collection.
It is classified as a polycrystalline, recrystallized anomalous iron of the IC group.
Listed and pictured in the Nininger Catalog. Cut from ASU specimen #27.


Chihuahua City: 4 piece, 31.9g.   Price: $80 / gram

A mass of 24.6kg was found 47km northwest of Duchesne (Utah) on the slopes of Mt Tabby in 1906. Most of the mass was acquired by the University of Utah, and in the 1920s Nininger borrowed it, sliced some of it and distributed it under the name Duchesne, not knowing that some pieces had been chiseled off earlier and had been acquired by Harvard and the Field Museum of Chicago under the name Mount Tabby. It is classified as a Fine Octahedrite, typical of the IVA group. 
Cut from ASU specimen #40.


Duchesne: 4 pieces,  12.1g.   Price: $80 / gram

In 1954 a mass of 303kg was found  while plowing on a collective farm near Gressk, in the district of Minsk (Belarus). The following year, two young girls cleaned off a thick layer of oxide and took it to the central store; it would have been melted with other scrap iron if it had not been noticed by the manager who then sent it to the Academy of Sciences in Minsk where it was recognized as a meteorite.
It has been classified as a hexahedrite, group IIA, recrystallized in places.  
Cut from ASU specimen #664.


Gressk: 2 piece, 22.8g.   Price: $120 / gram

A long, somewhat turtle-shaped mass of 51kg was found in 1860 near La Grange, Oldham County, Kentucky. It was then acquired by J.L. Smith who cut and distributed about a third of it.
It is classified as a fine Octahedrite of the IVA group. Etched sections show a rather indistinct Widmanstattern pattern quite distorted in places. An interesting feature is the presence of troilite melt in fine zigzag fissures.
Cut from ASU specimen #291.


La Grange:5 pieces, 16.5g.   Price: $40 / gram

MONAHANS   1938: 
A mass of 29.5kg was found in 1938 30cm below the surface in the sandy hills 11km south-southeast of Monahans (eastern Texas). After removal of the thick oxidized crust, the weight was 27.9kg when Nininger bought it in 1939. It is described and pictured in his Catalog, a roundish mass with a deep fissure.
It has been classified a a plessitic octahedrite, of the group IIF with common crystals of chromite, but structurally different.
Listed and pictured in the Nininger Catalog. Cut from ASU specimen #256.


Monahans (1938): 2 piece, 15.4g.   Price: $100 / gram

A mass of 384kg was found in 1887 by Jacob Snyder who intended to plant an apple tree next to his house, 8km south of Gettysburg (Pennsylvania).  He sold the whole mass for $685 and it was later acquired by the Vienna Museum. It was cut, and its true nature was then revealed: it is an extremely coarse octahedrite, with grains that can be over 5 cm across.  Half of the mass was distributed by Ward, and Nininger acquired a 8.5kg slice.
Listed and pictured in the Nininger Catalog. Cut from ASU specimen #299.48.


Mount Joy: 3 piece, 32g.   Price: $50 / gram

A mass of 3.3kg was plowed up in 1918 in a field about 5km northeast of Ogalalla (Western Nebraska) . In 1930 it was acquired by Nininger who photographed it for his book  "The Nininger Collection of Meteorites". He described it as well preserved with some fusion crust still visible, but noted a clearly visible heat-affected rim zone all around the edge of the cut faces.  
It is classified as a coarse octahedrite, group IAB.  
Listed and pictured in the Nininger Catalog. Cut from ASU specimen #90.1.


Ogalalla: 5 pieces, 22.3g.   Price: $95 / gram

A mass of 112kg was found on a ranch in the district of Igaratinga (Brazil), it was then described as the result of a witnesses fall in 1934, however it is a weathered mass indicating a high terrestrial age, and certainly not a recent fall. 
The main mass is in the National Museum of Rio de Janeiro, it is angular, roughly in the shape of a dog's head. It has been classified as a fine octahedrite, chemically indistinguishable from the others members of the IVA group.  Cut from ASU specimen #604.1.


Para de Minas: 2 piece, 22.9g.   Price: $80 / gram

A mass of 19kg was found in 1931 in the province of Antofagasta (Chile) but the exact location is unknown since this is all the information provided by the original owner when he sold it to the Smithsonian in 1936. It was examined by Nininger (1939) then by J. Wasson (1968) who concluded that it was similar to the other hexahedrites from North-Chile but sufficiently different to be considered a different fall. However V. Buchwald disagrees, and lists it as a severely distorded Group IIA hexahedrite. 
Cut from ASU specimen #387.1.


Puripica (North Chile): 1 piece, 18.3g.   Price: $60 / gram

In 1927 a small fragment was sent to Nininger was examination, it was said to come from a mass of 100 pounds found in the Sandia Mountains (New Mexico) and later lost. However Nininger tracked it down and acquired about 15 kilos of it, supposedly half of the whole mass. In 1965 Lincoln La Paz admitted that despite intense searches he had been unable to locate any further pieces of that meteorite. It is a coarsest octahedrite, group IIB, with a visible Widmanstatten pattern, and skeleton schreibersite crystals.
Listed and pictured in the Nininger Catalog. Cut from ASU specimen #108.


Sandia Mountains: 7 pieces, 4.4g.   Price: $100 / gram

A mass of 5.1kg was found before 1939 near the mining settlement of Silver Bell 60km northwest of Tucson (Arizona). In 1940 it was donated to the University of Arizona in Tucson. A few slices were later cut but the main mass of 3375g is still in the collection of the University of Arizona.
It has been classified by J. Wasson as a coarsest octahedrite, goup IIB, with large skeleton crystals of schreibersite. 
Cut from ASU specimen #793.


Silver Bell: 2 pieces, 7.4g.   Price: $150 / gram

According to Nininger a mass of 10.4kg was found in 1934 near Spearman, Hansford County, Texas, but the circumstances of the find were never published. The size and shape of the original mass are also unknown since it was thoroughly cut and distributed by Nininger in the 1930s.
V. Buchwald classified it as a shock-hardened medium octahedrite; chemically transitional between Goups IIIA and IIIB.  
Listed and pictured in the Nininger Catalog. Cut from ASU specimen #230.3.


Spearman: 1 pieces, 7.6g.   Price: $95 / gram