Barn doorstop bonanza

One of the largest meteorites ever recorded in Michigan only came to the attention of experts a whopping 80+ years after its discovery. Living a humble life as a 22-pound doorstop at a local farm, the space rock laid around for several decades before being recognized by the scientific community. When David Mazurek, a man from Grand Rapids, MI, bought a farm in Edmore, Michigan in 1988, he was shown around the property by the previous owner, and saw a large, strange-looking rock being used to prop open a shed door. When Mazurek asked the outgoing owner about the rock, he was told the doorstop was actually a meteorite. The man went on to say that in the 1930s he and his father had seen the meteorite shoot down at night onto their property, “and it made a heck of a noise when it hit.” The next morning, the father and son found the crater left by the object and dug the meteorite out of the newly formed ditch. It was still warm, they said.

The craziest bit? The man told Mazurek that, since the meteorite was a part of the property, he bought the farm the rock would now belong to him. And so Mazurek kept the space rock for 30 years, and continued using it as a doorstop – except for the occasions when his kids took the rock to school for show and tell. Eventually, he noticed people were making money from finding and selling small pieces of meteorites, so he figured he should get his rock evaluated. “I could tell right away that this was something special,” Mona Sirbescu, a geologist at Central Michigan University (CMU), after investigating the object. “It’s the most valuable specimen I have ever held in my life, monetarily and scientifically.”  Sirbescu, had evaluated thousands of rocks during her career. “For 18 years, the answer has been categorically ‘Sorry … not a meteorite.’” But on this occasion, the answer was different. Not only was it indeed a space rock, but a spectacular one at that. The object, nicknamed the Edmore meteorite, is a large iron-nickel meteorite with a considerable amount of nickel, constituting around 12 percent.

“What typically happens with these at this point is that meteorites can either be sold and shown in a museum or sold to collectors and sellers looking to make a profit,” Sirbescu said. In the end, Mazurek sold his meteorite to Michigan State University’s Abrams Planetarium, pledging 10 percent of the windfall to CMU’s earth and atmospheric sciences department.. The price tag? $75,000. Not too bad for an old doorstop.

Meteoric Humor

Geology rocks…but geography is where It’s at.

Why do Moon Rocks taste better than Earth Rocks?
Because they’re a little Meteor.

Schizophrenia is nothing to joke about.
That’s what my pet rock told me.

How did the cavemen survive the asteroid that killed all the dinosaurs?
Social distancing, they stayed 56 million years apart. 

August 17th Birthdays

1995 -Tarissa Farmiga, 1971 – Tammy Townsend, 1995 – Gracy Gold, 1994 – Phoebe Bridgers

1973 – Paul Wiggins,  1986 – Tyrus Thomas, 1786 – Davy Crockett, 1992 – Austin Butler

Morning Motivator:

“The difference between an obstacle and an opportunity is our attitude.”

There’s gold in them there rocks