Woman (Cape York) main content.

Woman (Cape York)

Part of Hall of Meteorites.

A.5.4.1. Woman (Cape York) hero

Exhibition Text

Hammering away

Although iron meteorites are incredibly hard, the Inuit people successfully chipped off pieces of the fragment known as the Woman using hammerstones made of basalt. The iron was then used to make tools such as knives and harpoons.

When explorer Robert Peary located the Woman in 1894 with the help of an Inuit guide, some 10,000 hammerstones were scattered around the three-ton meteorite. Over the years, Inuit people had carried these basalt stones to the area from far away because the rocks found naturally around the Woman were too soft to break iron.

Collection Information


Found 1894

West Greenland, Greenland


AMNH 868

For Educators

Topic: Earth Science

Subtopic: Meteorites

Keywords: Meteorites, Astrophysics, Astrogeology, Inuit--Greenland--Folklore

Audience: General