13. Madoc Meteorite (1854)
Canada’s first meteorite was discovered in 1854 near Madoc, Ontario, although the exact location and identity of the person who found it are unknown. We do know that when William Logan found the meteorite, it was propping up the corner of a barn. Most likely it was discovered during the clearing or ploughing of a field.
Logan’s offer to replace what he recognized as a valuable specimen with a “good square stone” was accepted by the barn’s owner, and Logan moved the meteorite to the Survey’s museum in Montreal. The Survey’s chemist, T. Sterry Hunt, examined it and determined that it was an alloy of iron with about 6% nickel. It was included in the display of Canada’s mineral resources at the 1855 Exposition Universelle in Paris.
The Madoc Meteorite weighs in at 167.8 kg and measures about 50 cm in diameter. Its acquisition marked the beginning of the National Meteorite Collection of Canada, which now has samples from 1100 meteorites including 52 of the 62 known Canadian meteorites. The Madoc Meteorite remains the largest single mass of any Canadian meteorite and the largest single Canadian iron meteorite mass.
Category: Rocks, Fossils, Minerals and Meteorites
Weston, T.C., 1899. Reminiscences among the rocks: in connection with the Geological Survey of Canada; Warwick Bro’s & Rutter, Toronto, 328 p.
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