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New Acquisition News Release

ISM Website Leads to Specimen Donation

New Tully Monster Specimen

After visiting the ISM Website and seeing our online exhibit on Mazon Creek Fossils this past summer, Mr. Chuck Folden of Galveston, Texas, e-mailed the ISM Webmasters. He indicated that he had a "Tully Monster" specimen that he was interested in donating to a public museum. Dr. Richard Leary contacted Mr. Folden, and late this past summer Mr. Folden donated that "Tully Monster" specimen to the Illinois State Museum.

The fossil of this fascinating animal from the Pennsylvanian Period ("Coal Age") is contained in an ironstone nodule 19.5 cm long, 5.2 cm max. width (both halves of the nodule are present but the nodule is broken into 6 pieces). Mr. Folden collected the Tully in Grundy County during the 1970s.

The Tully itself is 19 cm long with a 2.8 cm maximum width. The animal is complete except for tail details. The fossil clearly shows segments; the "claw" at the end of the proboscis is distinct as is the cross bar with sensory organs at each end. The specimen is a very well-preserved Tully.

The Tully was a strange animal which lived just off shore when the area of Illinois south of Braidwood was a shallow, tropical sea. Tully fossils are, so far, unique to Illinois and it is the official state fossil.

You can learn more about Tully Monsters, as well as, other Mazon Creek Fossils and other Official State Symbols in our online exhibits.

You can contact Richard Leary for additional details about the specimen.