The first evidence of a human being dying from a meteorite has been found after intensive research over the years. According to reports, the incident took place on August 22, 1888, when a man was killed and another was paralyzed by a meteorite hitting the Sulaymaniyah region in Iraq, which was under the Ottoman empire back then. The researchers went through multiple records and documents found in the General Directorate of State Archives of the Presidency of the Republic of Turkey to reach the conclusion.
The evidence and records were published in the journal Meteoritics and Planetary Science, which stated that the event was also reported to Abdul Hamid II (34th sultan of the Ottoman Empire) by the governor of Sulaymaniyah. The findings suggest other historical records may still exist that describe other events that caused death and injuries by meteorites. The papers stated, 'the proof of the event is based on three manuscripts written in Ottoman Turkish that were extracted from the General Directorate of State Archives of the Presidency of the Republic of Turkey." However, researchers did not find any evidence to support the exact location where the incident took place or the speed and size of the meteorite that killed the man, but they suggested that it struck a pyramid-shaped mountain in Iraq.
According to reports, before the papers were published the first known meteorite striking a human being occurred in 1954 in the United States, where a 34-year-old woman named Ann Elizabeth Fowler Hodges was injured by a grapefruit-sized Sylacauga meteorite. The piece of rock from the outer space crashed through the roof of the farmhouse in Alabama and hit her. The paper stated that the lack of evidence of people being killed by a meteorite in earlier times might be due to the fact that either the manuscript was written in a language other than English or there is not enough interest in historical records.
(Image Credit: NASA)