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14200 Solomons Island Road
Solomons, MD 20688
P: 410-326-2042
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15 Million-Year-Old Whale Skull Excavated at Stratford Hall, VA

Aug 2, 2013, 12:52

P.O. Box 97 * 14200 Solomons Island Road
Solomons, MD  20688
Valerie Giroux * 410-326-2042 x17

August 2, 2013
For Immediate Release                                      

15 Million-Year-Old Whale Skull Excavated at Stratford Hall, VA

History was unearthed yet again by employees of the Calvert Marine Museum (CMM) on Saturday, July 20th when they recovered a 15 million-year-old whale skull at Stratford Hall, Virginia.  This baleen (filter feeding type) whale skull is one of the largest ever collected locally coming in at six feet long; the entire whale would have been 25 or more feet long.  The rest of the skeleton still remains in the cliff and excavations will continue to recover all of this ancient creature's bones. 

Led by Paleontology Collections Manager John Nance, volunteers, interns, and staff from both CMM and Stratford Hall, spent countless hours and put in a huge effort to uncover the historic skull over the month of July.  Over 30 people gave their time and energy on Saturday to help move the delicate skull from the beach to the museum. The skull was loaded onto a boat captained by Stratford Hall employee Randy Stevens who then took his boat to the ramp at Westmoreland State Park.  Ken Benson, Westmoreland State Park Manager, and his staff moved the skull from the boat to the bed of the museum truck with the use of a tractor and sling. 

This excavation truly would not have been possible without the help of so many people.  The Paleontology Department at CMM is very thankful for everyone's assistance and excited to begin working on and researching this momentous find. 

Three excavation photos attached.

The museum is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Effective July 1, 2013, admission is $9.00 for adults, $7.00 for seniors and military with valid I.D., and $4.00 for children ages 5 - 12; children under 5 and museum members are always admitted free. For more information about the museum, upcoming events, or membership, visit the website at or call 410-326-2042. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


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