In a Nutshell
While Sir John Ross was exploring the arctic in 1818 he happened upon an Inughuit tribe in Greenland. Curiously, the tribe, despite believing themselves to be the only people on Earth and having no ability to mine or even smelt metal, were in possession of iron tools.
It was later discovered the Inughuit had found several meteorites and that they were the source of their iron. They had literally been eating and hunting with metal sent from space itself.
The Whole Bushel
The Arctic is virtually devoid of any mineral deposits, and mining there is almost impossible (even with modern technology). So imagine the surprise Sir John Ross felt when he discovered a tribe of Inughuit people in Greenland and found that they were using iron tools.
The Inughuit whom Ross met genuinely believed themselves to be the only people on Earth and had no visible means of extracting what little metal was in the ground—yet they were eating and hunting with iron implements. This obviously caused a great deal of confusion since the explorers knew of no physical way for the Inughuit to be in possession of such devices.
When quizzed about this by a later explorer named Robert Peary, the Inughuit explained that their tools were sent from the gods. When asked to explain further, the Inughuits took Peary to the site of several meteorites that had crashed to Earth millions of years ago, which they had affectionately named “Woman,” “Dog,” and “Tent” according to their appearance.
Noting that the meteorites were of tremendous importance in terms of both physical and spiritual value to the Inughuit people, Peary heroically took them and put them on display in the American Museum of Natural History where they continue to be displayed to this day.
The tools the Inughuit constructed varied from simple knives to harpoons—pretty impressive considering that they could only chip off chunks of metal and realistically had no real way of shaping or altering the metal after that.
The meteorites themselves were believed to be the remains of a small planet that had collided with the Earth many millions of years ago—more specifically, the center of a small planet, which would explain the meteorites’ high iron content.