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Published December 26, 2018
Updated October 17, 2019

30-Year-Old Doorstop Turns Out To Be $100,000 Meteorite

22 Pound Meteorite

Central Michigan UniversityThe 22-pound meteorite is part nickel, part iron.

It had been holding open doors for the last 30 years. They thought it was a rock. Turns out it was a meteorite — and it’s valued at $100K.

An anonymous Michigan man brought the rock to Mona Sirbescu, a Central Michigan University geology professor who’s had many false alarms regarding “space rocks” brought to her lab, earlier this year. “For 18 years, the answer has been categorically ‘no’ — meteor wrongs, not meteorites,” Sibescu said in a statement.

But this time, it was a different story. “I could tell right away that this was something special,” Sibescu said. Indeed, not only was it a meteorite, it is the sixth-largest found in the state and it could fetch up to $100,000.

The anonymous man was touring the property of a farm he had purchased in Edmore, Mich. when he spotted the rock propping open a door in the shed. When he asked the owner about it, the owner simply said that it was a meteorite which had fallen to the farm back in the ’30s.

The owner told the man buying his farm that the meteorite was part of the property and was, therefore, his now. The meteorite became a fixture in the man’s home and he brought it with him when he eventually moved out of the farm decades ago.

Closeup of the world’s most expensive doorstop.

The rock went with his children to school for show-and-tell and continued to prop open doors for the last 30 years until it dawned on him that other Michigan residents had been taking their strange space-related materials to be appraised.

“I said, ‘Wait a minute, I wonder how much mine is worth.'”

“It’s the most valuable specimen I have ever held in my life, monetarily and scientifically,” Sibescu said.

The anonymous man has agreed to give 10 percent of whatever the sale turns out to be to the University.

“Just think, what I was holding is a piece of the early solar system that literally fell into our hands,” Sibescu gushed.

Leah Silverman
Leah is the associate editor for All That's Interesting. Her work has appeared in Catapult, Town & Country, Women's Health, and Publishers Weekly. She is currently pursuing an MFA from Columbia University's Creative Writing program.