Collecting Historical Falls from THE Meteorite Collector
My path first crossed with Bob's back in 1993. Bob was one of the most famous meteorite collectors, and thus a magnet for other collectors. But this year marked a transition for me in meteorite collecting when six wonderful witnessed falls from the Robert A. Haag collection left to join my collection. Further, all but one of the specimens were stones I studied more than a decade again the pages of Bob's 1992 Field Guide of Meteorites and Collection Catalog.
Robert A. Haag 10th Anniversary Edition Catalog (1992). This copy is
worn with years of study and dreaming. Many years ago, I made a
glossary for the catalog by alphabetizing all the specimens along
with their page numbers. I sent the list to Bob marking our first
The V in CV3!
Vigarano, Italy is a rare, historic fall from Italy.
This CV3.3 (reduced) carbonaceous chondrite fell in
1910, and later became the type-specimen for the CV
This wonderful 61 gram parcel of cosmic carbonaceous
real estate quickly became one of my most favorite
As if a gorgeous
crusted slice of the
famous Vigarano is
not enough, this
specimen also has a
number right next to
Two larger CAIs in this CV3.3 are
treasures within a treasure. The
CAIs, likely older than the earth
itself, make the historical fall
date of Vigarano seem quite recent.
A rare CM2 fall from 1879
In a stroke of luck for me (and one of madness
for Bob), I was able to purchase his 112g
partial end section of Nogoya, Argentina, a CM2
that fell in 1879. Only a single stone of 4kg
fell, and Nogoya is extremely low in its
distribution among collections worldwide.
Inclusions and chondrules in Nogoya are small
and multi-colored, and as Bob notes in his
catalogs, a more silica rich appearance compared
to other CM2s. To me, they have a rather
Crust always improves a meteorite's look in my
opinion. Topping a tenth of a kilogram, this
partial end section offers plenty of surface to
look at, both inside and out. Bob traded this
rare stone out of the
La Plata Museum in Argentina. I doubt
anything like that will happen again anytime
|Welcome to Bob's Tattoo Parlor: Names and a number are a slight historical blemish on this specimen, but I prefer to see as a beauty mark. I know for a fact that Bob misses this piece, and I am especially thankful he let me place it in my cabinet.
|A hundred grams of any meteorite is a good thing, but 112 grams of a CM2 fall from 126 years ago is amazing. In this case, 12g have left the piece since it starred in Haag's 1992 catalog as pictured above.
Greenwell Springs, Louisiana
Type LL4 chondrites are
very rare, but fresh
crusted falls of LL4
material are almost
unheard of. Top that off
with being from
Louisiana and a sub-1kg
total known weight, and
you have a prize piece
no matter the size of
For some reason I did not buy this piece while in Tucson. But when I came home and came to my senses, I called Bob right away hoping like crazy that Greenwell Springs was still available to me.
Now it isn't.
Bob took three lines to write the name
on the edge of this slice. Originally
Bob purchased his slice from a collector
who was able to buy a considerable
portion of the single mass of this fall
from the finder. The slice of Greenwell
Springs I now hold in my collection had
been in Bob's collection almost since
its 1987 arrival on earth.
|Very few collections hold any samples of Greenwell Springs. The difference in weight between my piece and the one pictured in Haag's 1994 catalog is 23g. I wonder where the missing material went?
Bovedy, Northern Ireland
A House-Hitting Type-3 whose fall was seen,
heard, and recorded!
A large, crusted
slice from an
chondrite of low
weight is always
a joy to add to
adding the Bob
Haag history to
the slice, as
an actual audio
recording of the
this slice of
even though it
the same year as
the first lunar
story of its
places it in the
|It is always a pleasure to spend time looking at a meteorite whose class type ends in a 3.
|The name Bovedy is written two ways: on the right in paint, and on the left in ink. Bob received this slice in a trade with another meteorite dealer.
|Bovedy on its own is a real catch because of its low distribution, but Bovedy as a documented piece from the Haag Collection happens only once. Well Maybe twice since 22g are missing from my slice compared to the picture in Haag's 1994 catalog.
More than a Kilo of Crusted Italian History
|This slice feels like a bookend- and would work as one too. A fine piece of Italian real estate like this only comes along once in a very great while. When Bob offered me this slice, even though rather expensive, I hesitated for mere seconds.
Although over 200kg of Alfianello is reported to have fallen, less than a quarter of that is accounted for in collections worldwide according to the Catalogue of Meteorites. That places this single piece as between 2% and 3% of all the known material of Alfianello in the world.
|The thumbprints in this crust are obvious adding more to the wonder of this piece. When slices are thin, one can only assume depressions or rises in the slice's edge are from thumbprints, but with this slice you can actually place your thumb in a thumbprint
|Years ago, when I studied this photograph of Alfianello as pictured in Haag's 1992 catalog, I had no grasp of how big the piece really was. Now I know it is like holding a hardback book. I can now also imagine something much bigger and that is the original 1.9kg slab Bob traded out of the Berlin Museum (see card above).
Nadiabondi, Burkina Faso
A real piece!
(Many pieces of "Nadiabondi" are actually Gao-Gueine)
|Looking much different than Gao, I was sad I lost out on this piece in Tucson when the Hupe' brothers bought it from Bob. Later, it was offered on ebay (a no-sale), and then I was able to acquire it in a partial trade. I know it is not a rare class, an ancient fall, nor pictured in Haag's 1992 catalog, but it is a real piece of Nadiabondi from the Haag Collection. Further, with a documented total known weight of only 8.1kg, mostly made of smaller individuals, I suspect this is one of the largest pieces of Nadiabondi in the world.
|As a partial end section, this piece has plenty of crust. Bob Haag was able to trade it out of the Paris Museum of Natural History.
|I like the added touch of little circles dotting the letter i's. Bob is a happy person and it shows in little details like this.
The above photograph shows
Nadiabondi's cameo appearance in
Haag's 2003 collection catalog
along with the Haag Collection
The intense amount of larger
iron flakes scattered throughout
the cut face of the slice, as
shown in Bob's picture, is
another difference between Gao
Although six months still remain till the next Tucson Show, I am already excited about what wonderful specimens will fly home with me in 2006. But no matter what, the thrill of carrying home so many amazing specimens purchased directly from Bob Haag in Tucson makes me wonder if a similar feeling came over collectors who spent time with H. H. Nininger, then left for home with a bag of goodies.