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Museum of the Rockies  Bozeman, MT


Today's #FossilFriday post showcases a beautifully preserved fossil maple leaf (Acer sp) from the Paleocene aged (66-64 million years ago) Fort Union Formation of eastern Montana. The early Paleocene was cooler and drier than the latest Cretaceous. However, as the planet recovered from the K-Pg extinction event, the climate rebounded and grew warmer through the end of the Paleocene and into the Eocene. During this time, flowering plants (such as deciduous trees like this maple), first seen during the Cretaceous, spread and were a dominant plant in most mid-latitude climates.

It's Montana State University's 125th anniversary!! Here's Montana's T. rex to celebrate
on this #FossilFriday! This Tyrannosaurus rex specimen (MOR 980) is a beautifully preserved specimen and one of the more complete mounts which exhibits real fossil material. Montana's T. rex was discovered in 1997 in the Upper Cretaceous Hell Creek Formation (67-66 million years ago) of Eastern Montana. The light tan skeletal & skull elements represent reconstructed material used to complete the mount.

Happy 125th anniversary, @montanastateuniversity ! February’s celebration spotlight is on the @msu_coe and the MOR collections team has just the artifact: a bridge model constructed as a senior thesis by civil engineering students in 1916! It was designed by David Steele and constructed by George R. (Jack) Milburn II. The model (MOR84.19.15) was created as part of a proposal to replace an old wooden bridge across the Gallatin River just west of Salesville (now known as Gallatin Gateway) with a steel truss bridge. Steele & Milburn regularly took the train out to Salesville to study the wooden bridge, and once missed their train back to Bozeman, forcing them to walk 13 miles back to town! Hopefully their dedication earned them an A.
#MontanaState #MSU125 #civilengineering

Happy Valentine’s Day from MOR! This lovely Valentine (MOR87.48.16) is from circa 1900. It’s known as a ‘dimensional’ Valentine because, as you might have guessed, it’s 3-dimensional! It could be delivered folded flat, and then unfolded to reveal the Valentine’s message at the center of the card:
“To my Valentine.
In these blue Forget-me-nots,
In these fragrant roses too,
Read the message fond and true
From my faithful heart to you.”
Like many cards of this era, this one was printed in Germany. Germany was a powerhouse in the printing industry for many years (fun fact: the movable type printing press was invented in Germany way back around 1450). Happy Valentine’s Day, history lovers!
#history #museum #valentinesday #waybackwednesday #vintage

Happy Valentines Day! Stop by the MOR Store if you need fun and memorable gift. Members get 10% off every day, and MOR is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Nothing says #DarwinDay & #MuseumMonday like pictures of fossil horses through time!! First is the beautiful partially articulated Merychippus toe from the Middle Miocene Hepburn Mesa Formation. And we have MOR-1229, Mesohippus lower teeth from the late Eocene Renova Formation & MOR-736 upper teeth also from the Renova Formation (Mesohippus was an early 3-toed horse that had teeth just starting to show complexity in its tooth enamel.) We also have MOR-8150 a Cormohipparion horse from the middle Miocene 6-Mile Creek Formation (which shows relatively high tooth crowns with complex enamel for chewing more abrasive foods like grass and vegetation with high silica content). All of these specimens were collected in Montana!

#MORpaleo #montana #fossils #naturalhistory #happybirthdaydarwin

On MOR's 61st birthday, we say thank you to all of the members, donors, patrons, sponsors, employees, and volunteers who have made this place so special! Here's to another amazing 61 years!

It's #FossilFriday at #MORPaleo! Today we share a pic of MOR 548, the composite skull of a juvenile Hypacrosaurus. Hypacrosaurus was a crested hadrosaur (duck-billed dinosaur) that lived during the Late Cretaceous. Like other duckbills, it was a large, herbivorous dinosaur that lived in groups (herds). Nests, eggs, juvenile and adult specimens of Hypacrosaurus have provided a wealth of information about how they changed as they grew. As a juvenile, Hypacrosaurus lacked its distinct hollow skull crest. As it matured, the crest would develop and was likely used as a display mechanism and possibly as a resonating chamber to communicate with other Hypacrosaurs. Additionally, histological evidence suggests that Hypacrosaurus grew quite fast, reaching adult size (skeletal maturity) between 10-12 years of age. This specimen is a composite made of several cranial elements from similarly sized juveniles that were found at the same location in the Two Medicine Formation of Montana.

Now Hiring - Museum of the Rockies Summer Camp Instructors! Join us to lead outdoor science, engineering, and history themed day camps at the Museum of the Rockies for youth in first through eighth grades. For more information and how to apply, visit https://museumoftherockies.org/about-mor/employment/current-job-openings

A Groundhog's Day Edition of Fossil Friday from MORPaleo! While MOR 625, isn't quite a groundhog, it is distantly related! This skull belongs to an extinct fossil beaver known as Palaeocastor peninsulatus! Palaeocastor lived approximately 30 million years ago during the Middle Oligocene Epoch and has been found over most of the North American Badlands.
Unlike its modern aquatic relatives, evidence indicates that Palaeocastor was more of a terrestrial mammal. Corkscrew shaped fossil burrows (trace fossils), sometimes referred to as "Devil's Corkscrews" have been found with skeletons of Palaeocastor in them. Like modern beavers and other rodents, it was likely a social animal, living in family groups. MOR 625 was found in the 6 Mile Creek Formation near Canyon Ferry Reservoir.

#FossilFriday #groundhogday #fossil #beaver #MORpaleo #montana #naturalhistory

Happy #FossilFriday! This week, paleohistology was featured via Streamable Learning – with ‘live streaming’ from the Gabriel Lab for Cellular and Molecular Paleontology at MOR going out to schools across the US. In the photo, Curator of Paleontology John Scannella and Histology Lab Manager Ellen-Therese Lamm are showing some examples of specimens that have been studied under the microscope: a small section of rib and a large tibia (lower leg bone), both from Tyrannosaurus rex specimens! Students were able to watch Ellen cutting specimens on the saw and working on the grinder, learn histology basics, and see how the duck-billed dinosaur Maiasaura grew from a baby to an adult under the microscope.

#paleontology #MORpaleo #histology #naturalhistory #montana

@montanastateuniversity turns 125 in 2018! To celebrate, the university is highlighting a different division or college every month of the year and the museum is getting in on the fun by selecting a matching artifact. January’s spotlight is on @montanastatebobcats, so MOR picked this amazing ca. 1955 basketball warm-up jacket (MOR #94.35.1, donated by Margaret L. Emmett). Montana State first fielded a competitive varsity intercollegiate men’s basketball team in 1902 and a women’s team in 1976! To see more MSU artifacts, check out the new exhibit in the MOR's Paugh History Hall, “125 Years on the Hill: Celebrating Montana State University.”
#MontanaState #gocatsgo #MSU125

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