NP COLLECTABLES

 

 

This is a well detailed museum quality reproduction of a Megalonyx jeffersoni (Sloth Claw) from the Pleistocene Period of Cromer Cave, West Virginia, U.S.A. The reproduction claw measures 155mm long.

FYI: West Virginia legislators have made some of its bones the new official state fossil. The Megalonyx jeffersonii has quite a story. In the 1790s, workers mining for saltpeter in a Monroe County limestone cave – in what was then western Virginia – discovered fossil bones that later ended up with President Thomas Jefferson. Serving at the time as vice president for John Adams, Jefferson presented the bones at a meeting of the American Philosophical Society in Philadelphia in 1797. He noted that the remains were found buried three feet deep in the cave. Jefferson considered the fossils fascinating and thought they belonged to a prehistoric lion. After all, the claws appeared large enough to squash basketballs, but Caspar Wistar, a physician and anatomist, deflated Jefferson’s theory and identified it as a ground sloth from the North American Ice Age. Ground sloth’s died out as late as 1550. This particular species of ground sloth was the largest known of the Megalonyxe’s. When fully grown, they were about the size of an ox and weighed 800 pounds. The sloth had a snout, peg-like teeth and a stout tail. Though Jefferson was wrong about the bones, he is still credited for their discovery, hence the fossil name, Megalonyx jeffersonii – or “Jefferson’s giant claw.” His speech in Philadelphia also marked the beginning of vertebrate paleontology in North America.

Price: 30.00




 
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Megalonyx  jeffersoni  (Sloth Claw). NP Collectables
RF349 Megalonyx jeffersoni (Sloth Claw)
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