Meteorites are some of the rarest objects on Earth. Some meteorites are viewed as cosmic objets d'art, naturally sculpted in the most exquisite forms. Some others made history. Others, rare by their composition, are scientific treasures. The Tricottet Collection of Historic Meteorites consists of rare and aesthetic specimens from primary sources, multi-sources and other rare sources. It also includes historic tektites, an extensive Library of Meteoritics, a unique archive of original manuscripts and correspondence letters, and other rare memorabillia.
This gallery displays a selection of aesthetic and rare meteorite specimens from observed falls, from the early 19th century to the mid-20th century, held by The Tricottet Collection. The journey starts in 1969, a milestone in Meteoritics, with the Allende, Mexico, carbonaceous meteorite fall, the first Antarctica meteorite recoveries and the first return of moon rocks from the Apollo missions. The journey ends at another milestone, in 1803 near L'Aigle, in the countryside of Normandy, France, where Jean-Baptiste Biot, a young scientist of the French Academy of Sciences, changed the perception of rocks falling from the sky, from mystical belief to scientific fact. All meteorite specimens displayed in the gallery have an exceptional historical provenance, as they come from the principal investigators in the recovery of these meteorites in the early days after their fall or from other rare sources.
This gallery displays a selection of aesthetic and rare specimens from meteorite finds, held by The Tricottet Collection. We here take a journey westward around the World, starting in the Great Plains of the United States of America. We then visit the desert craters of Arizona, USA and of Australia. We continue to the Filipino jungle of Bondoc to end in Siberia, near Krasnojarsk. We are accompanied in that journey by famous figures of the meteorite collecting world, such as Harvey H. Nininger, Oscar E. Monnig and Peter S. Pallas. All meteorite specimens displayed in the gallery have an exceptional historical provenance, as they come from the principal investigators in the recovery of these meteorites or from other rare sources.
The Library of Meteoritics of the Tricottet Collection contains about 300 volumes related to meteorites and tektites. It is composed of antiquarian books, collection catalogues, newspaper clippings, inscribed books and unique manuscripts and correspondence letters. The library includes works from significant figures such as A. Brezina, E.F.F. Chladni, E. Cohen, O.C. Farrington, E.L. Krinov, G.P. Merrill, S. Meunier or H.H. Nininger. Very rare books include De indole et origine Aerolithorum by J.O. Bjorn (1816) and the 2-volume The Sikhote Alin Iron Meteorite Fall (in Russian) by V.G. Fesenkov and E.L. Krinov (1959-1963). Other important works include Die Meteorite in Sammlungen, ihre Geschichte, mineralogische und chemische Beschaffenheit by O. Buchner (1863), E. F. F. Chladni's Beschreibung seiner Sammlung vom Himmel herabgefallener Massen by E.F.F. Chladni (1825), Ueber die Meteoriten oder die meteorifchen Stein und Eifenmaffen by A. Kenngott (1863), Die Meteoriten by Partsch (1843), The Ward-Coonley Collection of Meteorites by Ward (1900) and Die Meteoriten in Sammlungen und ihre Literatur by E.A. Wülfing. The library also includes correspondence letters from G.L. English, G.I. Huss, G.P. Merrill and O.E. Monnig. Transcripts of these letters can be found in our Manuscript & Correspondence Archive.
The Cabinet of Curiosities of the Tricottet Collection consists of an heteroclite accumulation of Naturalia and Artificialia related to natural history. It includes impactifacts, which are unique artifacts that have been impacted by a meteorite, extremely rare mementos of the collision between two worlds: Earth and a meteoroid.