Lovecaft’s uncle Edward F. Gamwell, describing the weird exotics in the Harvard Botanical Garden, in an article by him on the gardens in the Cambridge Chronicle Magazine 1898…

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Slightly more exotic was this farm-landed meteor, described in Edward F. Gamwell’s own newspaper in 1909…

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from The Cambridge Tribune 9th October 1909 and 23rd October 1909 respectively.

The meteor was later written up in Science, in a report which called it… “entirely different from any meteor on record”.

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There was a later letter to Science, questioning if Prof. Very had been duped by a hoax using a standard glacial erratic stone. In March 1910 Very followed up his description with a further article outlining the probability of fraud — albeit by presenting a hypothesis that the purchasing dime museum had found the rock elsewhere, possibly in a swamp, heated it until red hot, and then transported it to the site, then set off several firework rockets to fall in the correct direction and thus be seen by the locals.

Nevertheless the reports of the meteor would have interested Lovecraft, then deep in his astronomy phase. And his imagination may have been sparked by the idea of it being “entirely different from any meteor on record”.

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