The Meteorite Report
Relation of a voyage made to the Département of Orne in order to verify the Reality of a Meteorite observed on the 6th of Floreal of the Year 11 (April 26th, 1803), by Jean-Baptiste Biot
On the 6th of the month of Floreal of the year 11 of the French Republic, that is April 26th, 1803, around 01:00pm, a meteorite exploded in the atmosphere above the city of L'Aigle, in Normandy, and scattered some 3,000 pieces of stone over the countryside. Men and beasts got away with a memorable scare, but nobody and nothing came to serious harm.
That the meteorite of L'Aigle would remain of momentous importance in the history of science is due to Bonaparte’s Interior Minister deciding to dispatch a bright young scientist, Jean-Baptiste Biot, to investigate the "moral and physical circumstances" of the event. Biot conducted his investigation with the brio of a master detective in a whodunit, and was able to demonstrate once and for all, by sheer logical deductions, a fact which the science of the time had been obstinately denying: that stones of exo-terrestrial origin fell from the sky...