1517 Greentree Lane
Garland, TX 75042
For immediate release
Fossilnet Seeks Corporate Sponsors To Donate T-rex to the Smithsonian Institution
GARLAND, TX - February 24, 1998 - Fossilnet is pleased to announce we are independently seeking corporate sponsors in the private sector to raise funds for the purchase of a T-rex for donation to the Smithsonian Institution. Currently the Smithsonian does not have a Tyrannosaurs rex on display or in it's collection. The Smithsonian has long sought such a specimen for it's collection and this one would add to their already magnificent display. This specimen includes full documentation on all aspects of the collecting, preparation, delivery and mounting. Mr. Wyatt, C.E.O. of Fossilnet, Inc. says "the placement of such a rare and beautiful T-rex in the Smithsonian would be a gift from corporate America to the American people . By encouraging funding for this project we are asking for the American business community to step forward and be counted in a big way. Historically the Smithsonian Institution has been an ever growing source of pride and achievement for the United States".
SOURCE: USA Today 1/3/98 Maria Puente
[The winning $8.3 million bid for Sue - 8 times higher than the previous record for a dinosaur fossil - came from the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. Field was able to outbid other museums, including the Smithsonian Institution, thanks to more than $4 million-put up by McDonald's and Disney. Sue will be prepared for display in public over the next two years in a new museum lab paid for by McDonald's, which is headquartered in suburban Chicago. McDonald's and Disney will get life size replicas to use to sell hamburgers and admission tickets.
...Richard Benson, chairman of paleobiology at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History. "For us, there's no price on the value of a dinosaur in terms of scientific interest." ...
Dinosaur exhibits at the Smithsonian and other natural history museums are routinely among the most popular, bringing in huge amounts of money in entry fees, donations and sales of related merchandise. Museums around the country are rushing to create or expand their own dinosaur displays - hence the bidding frenzy for Sue. Dinosaur documentaries draw millions of television viewers. Hundreds of Web sites are devoted to dinosaurs, including elaborate "catalogs" where dinosaurs are for sale.
Smithsonian twice missed getting a T-rex
By Maria Puente
The American Museum or Natural History in New York has one. The Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh has one. Even the Royal Saskatchewan Museum in Regina, Canada, has one.
But the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History in Washington the nation's premier museum of all things that have ever been alive, doesn't have a Tyrannosaurus rex. And it wants one. Very much.
But it has missed two chances to get one in just the past three months.
First, the Smithsonian was outbid for the T-rex "Sue" when it was auctioned at Sotheby's in New York in October. The Field Museum of Natural History of Chicago, which also didn't have a T-rex, got Sue with an $8.3 million bid - half of which McDonald's and Disney put up.
Meanwhile, another big T-rex was discovered in eastern Montana in the summer by a University of Notre Dame team. After some initial confusion about who owned the land, it became clear the site was federal land. Under an informal federal policy, the Smithsonian can claim fossils found on public land.
But the Montana congressional delegation balked, saying Montanans are fed up with "outsiders" digging up dinosaurs in their state and carting them off to museums where Montanans. never go.
"Folks here feel strongly that (the T-rex) had been unearthed with their help and they want to keep it here," says Brian Cavey, an aide to U.S. Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont.
"Here" is near Fort Peck, a remote community of about 500 in the northeastern corner. Local boosters hope to rescue the depressed local economy by building a dinosaur museum featuring the T-rex and other fossils found nearby.
The Montanans persuaded Vice President Gore to take their side. The Smithsonian backed off. And its search goes on.]
T-rex roamed the American west at the end of the cretaceous period, sixty-five to seventy-four million years ago. Only seventeen specimens have been found and only three are over fifty percent complete. Mr. "Z" Rex is the second most complete specimen yet found. Scientists believe that T-rex was a fast, agile reptile that was capable of running sprints up to thirty-five miles per hour. Gone are displays showing a slow, lumbering predator stalking it's prey. Now T-rex is shown kicking out with a hind leg or swinging quickly around to place a well targeted bite in the neck of it's unfortunate dinner. The diet has been found to consist, in large part, of duckbilled dinosaurs. They would eat between three and five hundred pounds of flesh each day. If T-rex was a hunter or a scavenger is still hotly debated and may never be known. By looking at the fourteen inch, razor sharp daggers it used as teeth, the full image of an agile hunter stalking it's prey comes instantly to mind! Most likely, T-rex hunted down it's three to five hundred pounds of meat a day, instead of finding dying and dead dinosaurs all across the landscape.
Name: Mr. "Z" Rex
Genus / Species: Tyrannosaurus rex
Hell Creek Formation
Locality: Harding County, South Dakota
Actual Bone: 60%
Overall Size: 11.1 to 12.6 meters
Height: 6.5 meters
Skull Length: 5 feet
Femur Length: 1360 mm +
Approximate Weight: 6.5 tons
Fossilnet is a brand new online company with operations in Garland, TX. We provide fossil specimens to museums, interior decorators and individual collectors. The Fossilnet website offers intuitive navigation, vast online catalog and 24 hour E-mail response.
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