The Staunton meteorite is a IIIE type meteorite, a rare type of meteorite made up mostly of iron and nickel alloys of which only 21 are currently known to exist. Iron meteorites come from the cores of planetary bodies that were destroyed through impacts that occured during the early history of our solar system. The crosshatch pattern, called a Widmanstätten pattern, is caused as the cores of those objects cooled and solidified.
Six uncovered fragments total make up the Staunton meteorite, totaling a weight of 270 pounds (122.5 kg), and were collected by different individuals. The first piece was ploughed up near Staunton, Virginia around 1869. Fragments of the Staunton meteorite reside in the collections of a number of museum and university collections in the US and Europe.