This is really exciting: The Tyrannosaurus Rex named Sue is coming to the Montshire Museum of Science in Norwich! Well, a replica of it, from May 17th through September 7th, 2014.
Sue was a Tyrannosaurus rex that roamed North America about 67 million years ago, one of the last dinosaur species and one of the largest flesh-eaters ever to have inhabited the Earth. The “tyrant lizard king,” with its extraordinarily powerful jaws and massive serrated steak-knife teeth, still dominates popular perceptions of the Age of Dinosaurs.
Sue the T. rex is named for Sue Hendrickson, who discovered the dinosaur near Faith, South Dakota, during the sum- mer of 1990. Shortly after its discovery, the fossil became the center of an intense ownership dispute. A protracted court battle ensued, and the court ruled that Sue belonged to the rancher on whose land she was discovered. The rancher decided to sell Sue at public auction.
To ensure that Sue would be preserved for future generations of scientists and visitors, The Field Museum in Chicago purchased Sue for $8.4 million at auction in 1997. After spending more than 30,000 hours preparing the more than 250 bones and teeth in Sue’s skeleton, The Field Museum made exact, fully articulated replicas so that people around the world would have the opportunity to view and study Sue.
Previously, only a handful of partial T. rex specimens had been found, none more than 60% complete. At 90% complete and exquisitely preserved, Sue is the most celebrated example of its species, permitting more detailed studies of the biology, growth, and behavior of a T. rex than previously possible.
The Exhibition brings Sue to Vermont with a “fully articulated cast skeleton of Sue mounted on a stage, with a graphic backdrop, and a reading rail”. The exhibit will also include touchable casts of Sue’s arm bone, tail bone, and rib, interactive activities that let visitors interpret surface features and anomalies of Sue’s bones, interpretive graphics and text that relate the stories of Sue’s history, from discovery to display, and incorporate actual headlines, news articles, and behind-the-scenes photos taken at The Field Museum.
They’ll also have a separate exhibit on Sue’s Skull that’ll move and growl. They’ll also have touchable models of Sue’s teeth, an interactive activity that lets visitors diagnose a pathology in Sue’s jawbone, graphics and text that describe the story of Sue’s skull from discovery to display, the legal dispute over Sue’s bones and how it led to Sue’s purchase at auction and the process of making the casts from the fossilized bones.
This looks AWESOME. Full details here.