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VCU Archaeology

Dispatch from the Virginia Museum of Natural History, Day 3: Butchered Horses, Cut Up Cows, and Dinosaur Tracks

by Bernard K. Means, Director

Panoramic view of the archaeology laboratory.

Panoramic view of the archaeology laboratory.

Our third and last day at the Virginia Museum of Natural History (VMNH) was a brief one before we began the return trip to northern Virginia.  We began the day by scanning a horse tibia that showed marks that were either associated with butchery or perhaps removal of the hide for making leather.

Horse tibia with signs of butchering.

Horse tibia with signs of butchering.

We then scanned a cow vertebra with multiple cut marks.

Butchered cow vertebra.

Butchered cow vertebra.

Finally, we closed out the day by scanning an actual dinosaur track from a fragment of quarried stone.

Scanning a dinosaur track.

Scanning a dinosaur track.

While we were scanning, members of the VMNH staff came by to examine some of our printed plastic replicas, including a series of printed femurs (dog, cat, turkey, opossum, and raccoon) that we provided to Curator of Archaeology Dr. Elizabeth Moore for teaching and study purposes.  The printed femurs are from digital models created using bones in the VMNH zooarchaeological type collection.

VMNH staff and interns examine our printed models.

VMNH staff and interns examine our printed models.

As usual, our visit to VMNH was educational and productive and we look forward to our continued parternship.

Panoramic view of the main exhibit hall at VMNH.

Panoramic view of the main exhibit hall at VMNH.

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