Dinosaur 13

Dinosaur 13—a documentary about the Tyrannosaurus rex fossil nicknamed Sue and owned by our own Field Museum of Natural History—reaches its nadir when paleontologist Peter Larson confesses that he used to talk to Sue through the exterior window of a storage space at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology. Larson, a founder of the Black Hills Institute of Geological Research, Inc., supervised excavation of the giant fossil in August 1990 after Sue Hendrickson, one of his staff, discovered it in the Cheyenne River Indian Reservation in western South Dakota. Two years later the FBI, disputing Larson’s purchase of the fossil, raided the BHI facility in Hill City, South Dakota, and seized the artifact, which was then housed at the school pending the outcome of court proceedings. “Peter was in love with that dinosaur,” testifies a tearful BHI staffer, and strings swell over a reenactment of Larson murmuring to Sue through the window. Continue reading >>