Holbrook Collection of Meteorites from the American Museum of Natural History
Navajo County, Arizona
On July 19, 1912 a meteorite shower of thousands of tiny stones peppered the town of Holbrook, Arizona. The smallest meteorites ever recovered (less than one millimeter in diameter) originate from this event. Dr. Harvey Nininger (see lot 38) visited the site in 1931 and benefited from some unexpected assistance in his recovery of Holbrook meteorites.
As described by author O. Richard Norton in his now classic Rocks From Space, "Large red ants removed the tiny celestial bodies from their original resting places and piled them into anthills...[Nininger] recovered the world's smallest meteorites from the world's smallest meteorite collectors." While these meteorites do not have an anthill provenance, these four pebble-sized specimens covered in fusion crust are from the American Museum of Natural History, with the catalog numbers 1456, 1460, 3281 and 3332.(4)
The smallest specimen measures 3 x 5 x 9mm and weighs 1.0 grams and the largest specimen measures 19 x 22 x 12mm and weighs 7.9 grams.