Tuesday, June 09, 2009

History of the Camp Verde meteorite

Steve Ayers is quickly becoming the most prolific newspaper reporter of geologic-related stories in Arizona. His latest piece in the Verde News is a history of the Camp Verde meteorite.

It was reportedly discovered by a pot hunter who uncovered a burial cyst in ~800-year old Sinagua ruins above West Clear Creek in 1927 (although some sites say it was 1915). Wrapped in a feather blanket was the 135 pound piece of iron that ultimately was determined to be part of the Canyon Diablo meteorite that created Meteor Crater.

It was named the Camp Verde Meteorite by famed meteor collector Harold Nininger who acquired it in 1939 and eventually sold it along with his large collection, to ASU, where it sits now.

Archeologists speculate that the presence of the meteorite so far from where it apparently impacted, is evidence of the indigenous peoples respect for the object, something supported by it's reverent burial in the ruins.

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