Nininger Moment #18 Nininger the writer

Harvey Nininger started on his long career of meteorites in 1923 when his interests drastically changed from biology to meteorites. In 47 years Harvey published some 162 papers relating to meteorites, notably a number of falls and finds. He was especially good at noting the details of the falls and finds and all the circumstances of their recovery. Such detailed accounts help pave the way for further discoveries. It also set a standard that would be used later by scientists to document falls and finds.

A wide variety of these papers were published in various scientific journals of the time, including the American Journal of Science and various State and local publications. These papers were the transitional publications from a descriptive stage, to the scientific analytical stage and represent an important part of early meteoritical studies.

Harvey Nininger also published in a great many magazines of the time like Popular Astronomy and various newspapers who would publish his interesting and educational articles on meteorites.

Also published were a number of books which include: “Our Stone Pelted Planet (1933), Out of the Sky (1952), Arizona’s Meteorite Crater (1956), The Nininger Collection of Meteorites (1950), Ask a Question About Meteorites (1961), A Comet Strikes the Earth (1942), Chips from the Moon (1947), Find a Fallen Star (1972) one of the most popular publications. This dealt with Nininger’s autobiography and the steps he had taken on all aspects of meteorites, from the early ages to to his more seasoned latter years.

The Nininger’s (Harvey and his wife Addie) started a collection of papers called the “Contributions of the Society for Research on Meteorites, which were edited by Addie and which eventually became the Meteortical Society of today.

Nininger’s contributions formed a very important part of meteoritical history for nearly a half century of time. A number of these publications can be found in the “The Published Papers of H.H.. Nininger, biology and Meteoritics (1971) by the center for meteorite studies, Arizona State University, Tempe, Az. Although this listing of publications is extensive it doesn’t include many newspaper articles and other published papers by Nininger that were published elsewhere. The Niningers also distributed many thousands of pamphlets for use in helping locals find meteorites in their area. No doubt many different ones were generated.

The Nininger Moments are articles or books written originally by Harvey Nininger and put into a consolidated form by Al Mitterling. Some of the items written in the moments might be old out dated material and the reader is advised to keep this in mind. Special credit to this post goes to Carleton B. Moore from the Published Papers of H.H. Nininger.

–AL Mitterling

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