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Hadrosaurus Foulkii Leidy Site facts for kids

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Hadrosaurus foulkii Leidy Site
NHL Marl Pit 2.JPG
Marl pit at the site, in which the bones were found
Location Haddonfield, New Jersey, USA
Area 4 acres (1.6 ha)
Built 1858 (1858)
NRHP reference No. 94001648
Quick facts for kids
Significant dates
Added to NRHP October 12, 1994
Designated NHL October 12, 1994

The Hadrosaurus foulkii Leidy Site is a historic archaeological site in Haddonfield, Camden County, New Jersey. Now set in state-owned parkland, it is where the first relatively complete set of dinosaur bones were discovered in 1838, and then fully excavated by William Parker Foulke in 1858. The dinosaur was later named Hadrosaurus foulkii by Joseph Leidy. The site, designated a National Historic Landmark in 1994, is now a small park known as "Hadrosaurus Park" and is accessed at the eastern end of Maple Avenue in northern Haddonfield.

History

William Parker Foulke, an attorney and amateur paleontologist affiliated with Philadelphia's Academy of Natural Sciences, was vacationing in Haddonfield in 1858, when he was alerted to the discovery in 1838 of large bones on the farm of Joseph Hopkins. Hopkins and farm workers had been quarrying marl when they uncovered bones resembling vertebrae. Foulke proceeded to direct a careful excavation in the area surrounding Hopkins' marl pit, turning the finds over to Dr. Joseph Leidy for analysis. Foulke unearthed 35 of an estimated 80 bones from the Hadrosaurus, which is believed to have been herbivorous, 7 meters in length, and weigh 2.5 tons. It lived during the Cretaceous period, 73 million years ago. Leidy published an analysis in 1865, and oversaw the creation of a reconstructed skeleton of the creature found in 1868. This reconstruction, put on public display at the Academy, brought the find a wider public audience.

The site lingered in obscurity until 1984 when a local Boy Scout from Troop 65, Christopher Brees, as part of an Eagle Scout project researched the site and generated publicity, eventually leading to the species being designated the official dinosaur of New Jersey.

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