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> >
> > Sue has waited at least 65 million years to be studied; a few more
> will
> > probably not hurt.  A career or two may be impacted, however.
>Sorry, but this is NOT so.
>An excavated fossil skeleton is a delicate thing, even one
>as large as Sue.  Unless stored in a proper enviornment, it
>will quickly deteriorate.  There is no evidence that the FBI
>knows (or cares) how to store a valuable fossil of this sort.
>Quite the contrary, there are reports of improper storage
>conditions.  It might well be that the skeleton is *already*
>seriously damaged, and of little further scientific value.
>For this, of for no other reason, Sue needs to be transfered
>to the posession of a qualified custodian appointed by the court.
>swf@elsegundoca.ncr.com         sarima@netcom.com
>The peace of God be with you.

As I have pointed out Sue is currently under the "care" of the South Dakota
School of Mines and Technology staff at the Museum of Geology. The person
in charge of Sue is a qualified curator, and the staff of the Museum
include a number of very qualified VP's who actually were involved in the
training of the Larson's originally. It is not in some government warehouse
like the "ark" was in Indiana Jones <grin> but is in the care of some
training and qualified custodians like you are espousing.

You have to realize, however, that there is no love lost between the SDSMT
and the BHGI. The Larsons as I understand had training through the Grad
level under the SDSMT but that the parting was as I have heard less than
friendly since they started their career in selling fossils while
finnishing their work (I don't think they completed their degree, but I may
be wrong) which did not sit well with the SDSMT. I don't have to elaborate
on the controversy that exists between many VP's and dealers. Pete and his
brother, however, also were aware of how poorly funded VP work is,
especially on dinosaurs. They thus felt that they could do the work they
loved to do by supporting it through fossil sales. They keep the unique and
one of a kind specimens and are planning on a major musuem in Hill City.
This of course is not a philosopy that sits well with many VP's but many
others sympathize and understand how poorly funded dinosaur VP work is. 

My reason for the above diversion is just to point out that since relations
between the SDSMT and BHGI may not be all rosy you will have to realize
that the  BHGI may claim the specimen is under improper care in order to
gain sympathy for its return. I am not taking sides on who really owns Sue,
just wanting to point out that the issues are complex and there are alot of
half-truths and such being put forth by many of the vested parties in this
controversy. But Sue is in the hands of very qualified professionals and
not the FBI, so at least we can hopefully put that issue to rest and get on
with instead finding ways to solve the ownership controversy and most
important of all getting Sue out for all to study!!!

  Russ Jacobson                     INTERNET:jacobson@fred.isgs.uiuc.edu
  207 NRB, 615 E Peabody            217-244-2426   Home Phone: 217-384-6983
  Illinois Geological Survey         DINOSAUR RUSS: who lives, eats,
  Champaign, IL 61820                breathes and smells dinosaurs!!!
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