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Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014
Dinosaur DayPosted Saturday, March 15, 2008, at 8:53 PM
This life-size replica of the Missouri Dinosaur was unveiled to the public at the Bollinger County Museum of Natural History Friday, March 14. According to scientists, the duck-billed Hypsibema Missouriense was more maternal than most dinosaurs and stayed close to the nest until her eggs hatched. Bones of this dinosaur were discovered at GlenAllen in Bollinger County in 1942 and it was declared the Missouri State Dinosaur in 2004.
I've always loved the study of dinosaurs; there's something grand and outlandish about animals so big! My son Todd may be a "big boy" of 34 now, but from the time he was four, he was fascinated with dinosaurs and knew all the names. He used to laugh with glee, as my mother tried to read his dinosaur books to him.
Anyway, this dinosaur, a duck-billed herbivore, roamed Southeast Missouri in the Late Cretaceous Period at least 65 million years ago. Bones from this creature were discovered in 1942 near Glenallen in Bollinger County. The site is still being excavated today, as I understand it, and is restricted at the present time, though Friday's speaker, State Rep. Rod Jetton, is hopeful that it will one day be a State Park.
Some impressive forces have come to play in the recreation of the dinosaur. The life-size model was a two-year project by Guy Darrough of Lost World Studios, based in Arnold, Mo. In 2004, Missouri House Rep. Rod Jetton presented a bill which declared the Hypsibema Missouriense the Missouri State Dinosaur. Eva Dunn, the director of both the museum and the Bollinger County Library, has written grants to help fund the project, as well as the renovation of the old Mayfield College building, a wonderful three-story brick structure which sits atop a hill of no small size...
This was my first visit to the museum, but it certainly won't be my last! The dinosaur exhibit is on the second floor of the beautiful old building, and other Smithsonian-quality exhibits are on the first floor - including Advance amateur archaelogist Paul Corbin's collection of Native American artifacts.
I think it is SO COOL that we have such a neat piece of history and science so close to us! Who would have thought???!
The museum is open on Thursday through Saturday, noon to 4:30.
Check out the website and watch a group of dinosaurs march across the top of the page: http://www.bcmnh.org/
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Madeline (Giles) DeJournett is the Advance writer for the North Stoddard Countian. A retired high school English/history teacher, she spent 32 years teaching in 5 schools in Missouri and Alaska. These days, she lives quietly with a menagerie of wild and domestic animals on 52 secluded acres in the remote Tillman hills south of Advance. She graduated from Dexter High School in 1960 and Southeast Missouri State in 1964. She can be contacted at email@example.com or by phone at 573-722-5322.
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