A 67 million year old T. rex named Stan will be auctioned by Christie’s October 6th and will be on display in the windows of Christie’s Rockefeller Center starting Wednesday.
Robert Frank | CNBC
A fossilized Tyrannosaurus Rex, nicknamed Stan, auctioned off for $ 31.85 million and became the most expensive dinosaur fossil ever sold.
The 67 million year old specimen, one of the best known T. rex fossils due to its good condition, ruined its original sales estimate of $ 6-8 million. The sale showed widespread interest from wealthy dinosaur bone collectors and reflected a strong market for rare trophy work despite the global coronavirus pandemic.
Stan is one of only 50 or so T. rex fossils ever discovered, most of which are on display in museums. It has been on display at the Black Hills Institute for Geological Research in Hill City, South Dakota for years. It is one of the most complete T. rex fossils ever found, with 188 bones, a flawless head, and teeth over 30 cm long. It was often used as a model for T. rex figures and representations.
A Tyrannosaurus Rex (T-Rex) skeleton named STAN is on display during a press preview at Christie’s Rockefeller Center in New York City on September 15, 2020.
Angela Weiss | AFP | Getty Images
The fossil was found in 1987 by amateur paleontologist Stan Sacrison, hence the name of the fossil in the Hell Creek Formation, part of an area known as the Chalk Badlands.
Initially, the bones were misidentified as the more common triceratops. But in 1992 paleontologists at the institute recognized it as T. rex. The careful excavation lasted more than 30,000 hours and was later installed and exhibited at the institute.
Paleontologists say Stan weighed 7 to 8 tons at his peak and showed signs of a difficult and violent life. He suffered a broken neck with two of his vertebrae connected and a third immobilized. He also had a stitch in the skull and ribs.