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Willamette Meteorite

Willamette Meteorite - American Museum of Natural History

Willamette Meteorite

The Willamette Meteorite is an iron-nickel meteorite and the most massive meteorite found in North America and the sixth-largest in the world. There was no impact crater at the discovery site. Scientists believe the meteor landed elsewhere and was transported during a glacial period at the end of the last Ice Age, 13,000 years ago.

Initially found in the Willamette Valley of Oregon, it was long held sacred by indigenous people of the area who referred to this stone with the name Tomonowos or the visitor from the sky. In 2005, the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon sued to have the meteorite returned to their control, but they were unsuccessful.

Willamette Meteorite

  • Title:                   Willamette Meteorite
  • Found date:       1902
  • Find site:           United States, Region Oregon
  • TKW:                  14,150 kilograms
  • Type:                  Iron
  • Classification:  Medium Octahedrite
  • Composition:   7.62% Ni, 18.6ppm Ga, 37.3ppm Ge, 4.7ppm Ir
  • Museum:           American Museum of Natural History

A Tour of the American Museum of Natural History, New York

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“Isn’t it astonishing that all these secrets have been preserved for so many years just so we could discover them!”
– Orville Wright

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Photo Credit: JOM

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