Skip to comments.Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Great Meteor Procession of 1913
Posted on 02/09/2013 11:52:18 AM PST by SunkenCiv
Explanation: One hundred years ago today the Great Meteor Procession of 1913 occurred, a sky event described by some as "magnificent" and "entrancing" and which left people feeling "spellbound" and "privileged". Because one had to be in a right location, outside, and under clear skies, only about 1,000 people noted seeing the procession. Lucky sky gazers -- particularly those near Toronto, Canada -- had their eyes drawn to an amazing train of bright meteors streaming across the sky, in groups, over the course of a few minutes. A current leading progenitor hypothesis is that a single large meteor once grazed the Earth's atmosphere and broke up. When the resulting pieces next encountered the Earth, they came in over south-central Canada, traveled thousands of kilometers as they crossed over the northeastern USA, and eventually fell into the central Atlantic ocean. Pictured above is a digital scan of a halftone hand-tinted image by the artist Gustav Hahn who was fortunate enough to witness the event first hand. Although nothing quite like the Great Meteor Procession of 1913 has been reported since, numerous bright fireballs -- themselves pretty spectacular -- have since been recorded, some even on video.
(Excerpt) Read more at 126.96.36.199 ...
This event came as a surprise, as I've never heard it recounted by any of my elderly relatives, and most of them died before I read about it in this book. A number of other such impacts, including some which hit or nearly hit people, ships, animals etc, are described in this book, which I recommend. My review on Amazon is still there, but much shorter than I remember...
Did a relative see this?: Please tell us in APOD's discussion forum
I seen a bright fireball over Utah a few years ago at 1:30 am or so. Lit up the sky like day time. I though a transformer had blown as that often lights up my yard but when I could see the mountains that are about 10 miles away I knew it was something big.
Neat - back in the late ‘60s, a friend and I were outside his house in the suburbs just south of Rochester, NY. We saw a meteor, moving low across the sky and i was kin of eerie because it almost seemed to be moving slow and there was no noise; just the bright light at full daylight. The news said it had landed in a swampy area north of Rochester (possibly east too). but I have no Idea if they ever found it. It was reminiscent of looking up at just the right time and seeing a picture fall off the wall - just happened to look up during the right 20 second or so time frame.
On a pitch black winter morning in Juneau, Alaska I was the only car on the road and a bright meteor passed right overhead - it was low enough to see burning chunks breaking off and it seemed to be moving rather slowly. It was maybe a ten second view and upon arriving at work I called the local radio station, told the DJ what I’d seen and he mentioned it on the air right away. Nobody else called in or reported the sighting.
Back in the early 70’s when I was in middle school, my dad, older brother and I spent a night in the back yard watching for meteors. After about an hour, having seen nothing, my brother went inside to get a drink. Just then, a meteor streaked across the sky and exploded in a shower of fragments. It lit up the whole sky. My dad and I just stared at each other in awe until my brother came out of the house. That’s when I said “He’ll never believe us.”
Although I knew the event was miles up in the atmosphere, I could have sworn I heard the sizzle and pop as it flashed across the sky and exploded. I have heard other people claim the same thing.
That vertical meteor trail about mid-image is interesting....
What henkster mentioned about sound — that is something that observers have reported from time to time, it probably has to do with how near the object is once it reaches the lower atmosphere.
Each time since childhood that I’ve tried lying out in the cool grass watching for ‘shooting stars’ I’ve gotten bored and just come inside for the night. Except for one time, the only things I’ve seen have been that quick motion detected in my peripheral vision, which leaves nothing by the time I’ve turned my head; occasionally I’ve been looking dead-on, but there’s been almost no ‘streak’ because these objects (usually smaller than one’s thumb, or even thumbnail) burn up after a second and ten to twenty miles of upper atmosphere.
The one I saw in 2002 happened during the day, and while it made no noise that I could hear, and I never heard anything about it on the news and whatnot, someone pointed it out, asking me, “is that a shooting star?” He’d been watching it for at least a few seconds by that time, and I watched it perhaps ten seconds before it sank below the trees and hills and whatnot. It was large enough at whatever distance it was to appear irregular in shape and tumbling, leaving a trail of light and dark, as it was apparently falling apart. Wish I had vid of that.
Very much so. In 1992 the “Michelle Knapp” object (it wrecked her parked car as it hit, punching a hole and thudding into the ground below) came down in Peekskill, NY. This happened in the late evening or anyway as the sky got dark, and a number of people were at high school football games, armed with video cameras, taping the object burning across a good chunk of the NE US.
Seems like the video snip of a circa 1970 daylight meteor which was never found after its terminal descent over the Grand Canyon National Park showed rapidly dividing pieces of the original object traveling on parallel trajectories.
This is my photo shop representation of what I saw.
The front end was a lot, lot brighter than I can represent.
The green and a few white sparkles were a lot, lot brighter also.
Seeing it dynamically moving, the sparkles would burn out and constantly be refreshed by new ones, kind of like a fireworks sparkler.
Would have thought the sparkle trail would have had more of a slant to it because of speed, but it didn't, struck me as kind of odd, but I have never seen one with this much detail.
This happened in April of last year.
I guess I observed it for 10 seconds and lost it when a tree was in the way.
No sound or boom, didn't see the final outcome because of the tree.
Even made a thread about it.
And thank you!
When I was about 16 or so, I was looking up into a starlit sky at the Summer Triangle. I saw a “star” moving kind of slowly and erratically. It circled Deneb, and then went on a tangent. A second or two later, it winked out.
The whole display lasted about 20 seconds. I have no idea what it could possibly have been.
Later I realized that if something seems to be wandering approximately in the same place, it could be headed right at me. I lucked out that time if that were so.
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