0.75 cu. ft. (1 document box) (1 half document box)
This finding aid was digitized with funds generously provided by the Smithsonian Institution Women's Committee.
These papers contain correspondence with amateur and professional mineralogists, curators, and collectors concerning the examination, identification, purchase, and
exchange of meteorites, as well as eyewitness accounts of falling meteorites, in particular, the Bird City, Kansas, Meteor, 1931. Also included are photographs of the Walsenburg
Quadrangle, Roy S. Clarke, Jr., Edward P. Henderson, and J. Edgar Chenoweth; and newspaper clippings concerning meteorites. Important correspondents include Oliver Cummings
Farrington, William F. Foshag, John Enos Graf, Herbert M. Hale, Edward P. Henderson, Oscar Monnig, Harvey Harlow Nininger, Charles P. Olivier, and Alexander Wetmore.
Further information concerning the Allen Meteorite Collection can be found in National Museum of Natural History accession files, number 247668.
Arthur R. Allen (1880-1962), an amateur mineralogist, spent a large part of his adult life searching for meteorites in Colorado, New Mexico, Kansas, and Oklahoma. Allen
corresponded with professionals and other amateurs throughout the world in the hope of obtaining new specimens for his meteorite collection. After his death, his collection
was purchased by the Smithsonian Institution.
Correspondence deals with the identification, examination, and appraisal of meteorites; location of meteorites; inquiries as to origin and authenticity of meteorite
specimens; requests for eyewitness accounts of meteorite falls; arranging distribution of Allen's photographs of meteorites; and supplying information upon request on the
nature of meteorites. Correspondents include: F.W. Cassirer, dealer in minerals and meteorites in Prague, Czechoslovakia; Oliver Cummings Farrington, Curator of Geology at
the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago; William F. Foshag, Curator of Mineralogy and Petrology at the U.S. National Museum; John Enos Graf, Associate Director of the
U.S. National Museum; Herbert M. Hale, Director of the Public Library, Museum and Art Gallery of South Australia; Edward P. Henderson, Assistant Curator of Geology at the
U.S. National Museum; F. Frantz, mineral dealer in Bonn, Germany; Oscar Monnig, Texas Regional Director of the American Meteor Society; Henry Harlow Nininger, Director of
Nininger Laboratories in Colorado; Charles P. Olivier, Director of the American Meteor Society; Stuart H. Perry, Editor and Publisher of the Adrian Daily Telegram,
Adrian, Michigan; and Alexander Wetmore, Assistant Secretary of the U.S. National Museum.
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7261, Arthur R. Allen Papers
Folder 2 Journal, circa 1932. An inventory describing the various meteorite specimens that passed through Allen's collection: provenance, classification, date, weight, cost, composition, and ownership.
Folder 3 Notes, 1931. Describes in detail the occurrence of the Bird City, Kansas, Meteor. Notes, 1938, are entitled "Messages from Space" and are a collection of observations written in an autobiographical style explaining and discussing the phenomeno...