It’s no secret that those who collect rocks and other tidbits sometimes strike gold (literally). But, lately the trend is showing broader success stories. There are vast amounts of valuable material out there which aren’t quite as hard to find as you might think.
Some of you will likely have something stowed away in your cupboard or attic. We’ve truly reached the era of rock n’ roll once again!
£670,000 moon rock
A moon rock picked up by a Russian space probe in 1970 was recently sold for $855,000 – £670,000 – at auction. That is truly an astonishing figure when you consider that while rare, there’s quite a lot of moon rock to go around (a whole moon full in fact…).
The three small fragments, sold together, were no more than two inches long and had been bought by the seller 25 years earlier for $442,500. That’s the catch with this one. $855,000 yes, but from a $442,500 investment. That rules out most of us.
Meteorite a cheap alternative to moon
While you’re unlikely to start trading moon rock (unless you’ve just won the lottery of course) there are easier ways to get involved.
Rock collectors are occasionally lucky enough to find bits of the Moon that arrived on Earth as a result of outer space collisions, but you are more likely to discover a bit of meteorite.
A 2.5-gram finger nail-sized piece of the Barwell meteorite that fell in a Leicestershire village on Christmas Eve in 1965 now changes hands for £200. We repeat, THE SIZEOF A FINGER NAIL. Not a bad bit of business.
It gets even better. A half-inch fragment of the 25kg Wold Cottage meteorite that alarmed people in East Yorkshire on December 13, 1795 (yes, remember that?!), can sell for £250. Such pieces of rock have increased in value because of their auspicious history. Everyone loves a good story to go with a good piece of rock, right?
How do I get on board with this as a new way to generate extra income, we hear you ask? Well, it’s quite easy, simply start collecting. Start close to home, by exploring your area’s geology – what minerals and rocks are present in your current locale? Are there any interesting geological features, or caches? Maybe you or your family/friends are already in possession of a piece of meteorite, the only way you’ll know is if you ask around!
How will you know if you have something valuable? Well, if you find an unusual rock – a piece of meteorite can look like slag metal – and wonder if it may hold the key to your retirement fund you should contact the Natural History Museum.
Good luck and rock on!