You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to myStatesman.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks

X

Welcome to myStatesman.com

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on myStatesman.com.

Waco Mammoth Site is designated as national monument


President Barack Obama designated the Waco Mammoth Site as a national monument Friday, calling it “one of the most incredible collections of mammoth fossils anywhere in the country.”

The Waco Mammoth National Monument will protect and promote a site featuring the well-preserved remains of 24 Columbian mammoths and the nation’s only recorded discovery of a nursery herd of mammoths that were apparently trapped in a steep-sided channel and drowned when the Bosque River flooded about 65,000 years ago.

It was one of three new national monuments created Friday by the president. The other two are Berryessa Snow Mountain in California, a landscape containing rare biodiversity, and Basin and Range in Nevada, an iconic American landscape that features 4,000-year-old rock art.

With the three new designations, the White House said Obama has used the Antiquities Act to establish or expand 19 national monuments, protecting more than 260 million acres of public lands and waters — more than any other president.

The Waco Mammoth Site, surrounded by oak, mesquite and cedar trees on more than 100 acres of wooded parkland along the Bosque River, will be managed by the National Park Service in cooperation with the city of Waco and Baylor University.

It features remains of Columbian mammoths, a dominant species in North America during the Pleistocene Epoch and the largest of all mammoth species.

The excavation site also is home to remains from other animals of that epoch, including the Western camel, saber-toothed cat, dwarf antelope, American alligator and giant tortoise. The White House said area businesses, nonprofits, government and schools had demonstrated strong support for protecting the site.

According to the city of Waco website, “On a spring day in 1978, Paul Barron and Eddie Bufkin embarked on a search for arrowheads and fossils near the Bosque River. To their surprise, the men stumbled upon a large bone eroding out of a ravine. Recognizing the unusual nature of the find, they removed the bone and took it to the Strecker Museum at Baylor University for examination.”

The bone was identified as that of a Columbian mammoth, and staffers from the Strecker Museum organized a team of volunteers. “Using hand tools such as brushes and bamboo scrapers, crews slowly excavated a lost world. Between 1978 and 1990, the fossil remains of 16 Columbian mammoths were discovered,” the Waco website says.

Baylor staffers, students and volunteers have excavated the site for more than 30 years. With the support of the Waco Mammoth Foundation, the site was opened to the public in 2009.

“Waco Mammoth is a window to a world lost long ago, and with this designation, visitors from across the country will be able to continue learning about the science and history of these amazing creatures,” said Suzanne Dixon of the National Parks Conservation Association.

Former first lady Laura Bush called the designation a special day for Texas.

“President Bush and I are thrilled that the Waco Mammoth Site is America’s newest national monument,” she said. “The Waco Mammoth Site takes visitors back in time nearly 65,000 years and reminds us of our country’s connection to the history of our planet.”


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Local

Community news: Exhibition benefits Carver Museum

TRAVIS COUNTY EAST AUSTIN Fundraiser benefits Carver Museum The George Washington Carver Ambassadors Inc. and Jerry’s Artarama are sponsoring the 11th annual 100% Community Exhibition and Silent Auction fundraiser to help benefit the George Washington Carver Museum, Cultural and Genealogy Center. Artist packs will be available for pickup during...
AFFIDAVIT: Man arrested in shooting that seriously injured one Sunday
AFFIDAVIT: Man arrested in shooting that seriously injured one Sunday

Austin police arrested a man who shot and injured another man on Sunday night at a North Austin apartment complex, court records show. Raymond Tremond Allen, 24, was charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon for allegedly shooting another man during a fight at the Silver Springs Apartments on Interstate 35 on Sunday. According to an arrest...
Protest, confrontation, death threat herald end of legislative session
Protest, confrontation, death threat herald end of legislative session

The last day of the Legislature on Monday was marred by a confrontation between lawmakers on the Texas House floor that involved death threats, shoving and a call to immigration authorities. The incident occurred as protesters were being removed from the House gallery after briefly shutting down proceedings by chanting their opposition to the new law...
Texas Digest: Fleeing man caused $1 million in damage, officials say

WEST TEXAS Chase leads to nearly $1 million in damage A man fleeing from sheriff’s deputies caused nearly $1 million in damage at a chemical plant when he crashed a pickup through several gates and ran inside, according to authorities in Hutchinson County. Sheriff Kirk Coker told the Amarillo Globe-News that 22-year-old Angel Vasquez slammed...
‘Suspicious activity’ detected on Seton hospital computer network
‘Suspicious activity’ detected on Seton hospital computer network

Ascension Health said Monday it had detected suspicious activity on its network of computers, which includes the Seton family hospitals. Representatives for the hospital did not provide details on Monday about the possible security breach or when it occurred but said that they had not identified any issues with patient safety. Here is the statement...
More Stories