Illinois Adventure #1901 “Fryxell Geology Museum”

Illinois Adventure #1901 “Fryxell Geology Museum”


WE RECENTLY VISITED THE LARGEST COLLECTION OF ROCKS AND FOSSILS ON PUBLIC DISPLAY IN ILLINOIS. THEY ARE AT AUGUSTANA COLLEGE IN ROCK ISLAND.>>WE HAVE 22-FOOT LONG THEROPOD DINOSAUR I FOUND IN ANTARCTICA IN THE 1990’S. IT WAS THE FIRST DINOSAUR DISCOVERED IN ANTARCTICA. IT WAS 12 AND A HALF THOUSAND FEET UP IN THE MOUNTAINS. AND THIS CAST IS THE ONLY CAST ON DISPLAY ANY PLACE IN THE UNITED STATES. WE HAVE TWO NEW DINOSAURS FROM TWO YEARS AGO AS WELL. ONE IS ALMOST COMPLETE BABY SKELETON. SO WE HAVE A FULL TIME TECHNICIAN WORKING HERE IN MY LAB ON THE PROJECT.>>BUNCH OF RIBS AND HERE ONE COMING UP THIS WAY, LARGE VERTEBRAE RIGHT HERE, AND PART OF THE PELVIS UP IN HERE. I HAVE BEEN WORK ON THIS FOSSIL A YEAR AND A HALF. WHEN WE WERE IN THE QUARRY, WE ACTUALLY FOUND ANOTHER DINOSAUR, GALACTASAURUS. THEY CALL EARLY ANCESTORS TO THE DINOSAURS WHAT THEY CALL BRONTOSAURUS. FRYXELL GEOLOGY COLLECTION IS THE BIGGEST OUTSIDE OF THE WONDERFUL FIELD MUSEUM IN CHICAGO. COLLECTIONS WERE STARTED IN THE 19TH CENTURY BY ONE OF OUR FIRST SCIENCE PROFESSORS, DR.LINDAHL. IN 1922, ONE OF OUR STUDENTS NOW DR.FRYXELL GRADUATED IN ’22. HE LATER CAME BACK TO THE COLLEGE TO TEACH IN ’24, AND DEVELOPED THE GEOLOGY CURRICULUM AND THE STANDARD NATURAL HISTORY CHECKS. ONE OF OUR MOST ENTRUSTED DISPLAYS WHEN YOU WALK THROUGH THE DOORS IS THIS GIANT PLATYCARPUS. IT WAS A SEA SERPENT THAT SWAM AND HUNTED THE ANCIENT SEA, INTERIOR SEAWAYS THAT WENT THROUGHOUT CENTER OF NORTH AMERICA. LIVED ABOUT 84MILLION YEARS AGO. HE IS KNOWN FOR DOUBLE HINGED JAWS, AND DOUBLE ROW OF TEETH ON THE ROOF OF THEIR MOUTHS, AND THEY WOULD SWALLOW THEIR PREY WHOLE. IT WAS FOUND IN 1934 DURING THE DUST BOWL BY A FARMER WHO WAS PLOWING HIS CORNFIELDS IN NEBRASKA. A YEAR AFTER DISCOVERING THE MOSES SWORD, MR.CAMPBELL WAS ASKED TO SHOW HIS FIND AT A COMMUNITY BENEFIT. HE WRITES, ALTHOUGH THE NIGHT WAS A STORMY SNOWY NIGHT, AND THE EVENT WASN’T VERY WELL PUBLICIZED, THEY CHARGED TEN CENTS AND 15 CENTS PER PERSON, AND THEY TOOK IN $72 THAT EVENING! (LAUGHING) HE SAYS THEY TURNED AWAY PEOPLE AT 2:00A.M. FROM THE SHOWING. ANOTHER IMPRESSIVE DISPLAY IS THE STOLENHAUFEN COLLECTION, WONDERFUL COLLECTION OF BEAUTIFULLY PRESERVED FOSSILS FROM GERMANY, 150MILLION YEARS AGO, VERY GREAT FIND IN IS SEDIMENT IN ANCIENT LAGOONS IN THAT AREA. WE HAVE REMARKABLE PRESERVATION EVEN IN OUR PIECES, LIKE A DRAGON FLY, FISH, AND JELLYFISH WHICH DON’T USUALLY FOSSILIZE, AND WE HAVE A PTERODACTYL, FLYING REPTILE. ONE OF THE MINERAL DISPLAYS IS THE FLUORESCENT MINERAL DISPLAY. YOU CLOSE THE CURTAIN AND PUSH THE BUTTONS, AND THE ROCKS GLOW BRIGHT COLORS, THIS IS DUE TO AN INTERESTING PROPERTY, CHARACTERISTIC OF ONLY SOME MINERALS. WE HAVE ULTRAVIOLET LIGHTS SHINE ON THESE MINERALS. THEY ABSORB THE INVISIBLE UV LIGHT, AND ELECTRONS IN THE ATOMS OF THESE MINERALS GET EXCITED, AND THEY MOVE TO DIFFERENT STATES, AND THAT MOVEMENT AND FALLING BACK INTO THEIR GROUND STATE GIVES OFF AN ENERGY THAT WE SEE AS A GLOW, AS A FLUORESCENT GLOW. DR.FRYXELL IS SAYS APPRECIATION OF LAND COMES ONLY WHEN ONE IS ALIVE BOTH ITS BEAUTY AND ITS MEANING. TO REACH THE FRYXEL GEOLOGY, 309-794-7318 OR GO TO AUGUSTANA’S WEB SITE, WWW.AUGUSTANA.EDU.

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