Digging the past
May 4, 2007 7:13 AM   Subscribe

A retired construction guy with a large property was bulldozing a new driveway and noticed some shiny rocks. He excavated carefully, revealing an entire forest of upright, undisturbed petrified trees (photo gallery). Soon he began cataloging and selling pieces to museums but has since stopped. More about his find. (via girlhacker)
posted by mathowie (29 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
I love fossils! But I hate having my browser re-sized (photo gallery link). On balance, very nice post indeed.
posted by Mister_A at 7:19 AM on May 4, 2007

In Firefox, you can stop your browser from being resized by going to Options > Content > Advanced javascript settings and unticking the relevant boxes.
posted by Aloysius Bear at 7:26 AM on May 4, 2007

What a cool find on his property. Too bad about the vultures circling every time there's fresh meat. Dude could start up a helluva ebay store!

Got to wonder about the no roots thing though. I'm curious what they come up with for that.

Only thing I've found on my property are some old bricks...
posted by Eekacat at 7:38 AM on May 4, 2007

One of the photo captions said something about the trees inhabiting a dried lake bed which later filled in with water (and even later, lava) so maybe the roots rotted away before petrification?
posted by DU at 7:47 AM on May 4, 2007

That'd be my guess DU. The rotting I mean.
posted by Mister_A at 7:55 AM on May 4, 2007

Wow, that's awesome!

Makes my collection of found action figures from my yard a little less awe-inspiring (just don't tell my toddler he shouldn't be so impressed by them).
posted by fenriq at 8:12 AM on May 4, 2007

Obviously this man is some kind of snake-haired demon, who lives with two immortal sisters in a disused temple in Libya. I would therefore avoid looking at any pictures of this man, lest one suffer the same stony metamorphosis that was the fate of these poor trees.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 8:20 AM on May 4, 2007

Great, our first gorgonist comment. Way to go quidnunc, you latin bastard.
posted by Mister_A at 8:50 AM on May 4, 2007

You mean that guy from "Star Trek"?
posted by Dizzy at 8:53 AM on May 4, 2007 [1 favorite]

posted by DU at 8:55 AM on May 4, 2007

Obviously Mister_A is some kind of female personification of vengence, who torments those who have sworn a flase oath or killed their own mother. I will therefore avoid killing my own mother (although I do not swear that I will not do thus, thereby tempting fate) and instead I shall unwittingly marry my own mother and kill my father. Sorry Dad.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 8:57 AM on May 4, 2007

Um, I checked with the other members of the Massachusetts Star Trek Society For The Preservation of Star Trek Society (society) and they assured me no mothers were killed in that episode.
I think Scotty got a hickey, though.
And the Gorgon was played by Ralph Bellamy I think.
(I left my Concordance in my Gremlin.)
posted by Dizzy at 9:04 AM on May 4, 2007

At first I was afraid.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:08 AM on May 4, 2007 [4 favorites]

You really have to know these petrified wood collectors to understand that Mr. Clyde Friend is a "dead man walking".

Seriously, he is sitting on literally millions of dollars. His land can create the DeBeers of petrified wood.
posted by spock at 9:13 AM on May 4, 2007 [1 favorite]

Obviously Dizzy is a lecherous divinity of shepherds and their flocks, of the wild mountain-side, of rustic folk music, and of the rustling and tremulous forests that seethe with dank and various moulds. Also he has hindquarters and horns of a goat. I will therefore quiver with fear at the touch of his hairy paw as he leads me into a dark glade to enact his wild lusts on my hitherto virginal body.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 9:14 AM on May 4, 2007 [1 favorite]

Obviously the quidnunc kid needs to switch to decaf.

Very neat post!
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 9:15 AM on May 4, 2007

Great, our first gorgonist comment.

Nah, TQC just forgot to put the [NOT GORGONIST] in. But it was imploed by his comment.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 9:22 AM on May 4, 2007

It's a shame natural wonders of the world like this get broken up and sold as trinkets.
posted by Rumple at 9:28 AM on May 4, 2007

Wasn't Spock turned into a ruminant in "The Tholian Goat"?
Wish my mom would get back from her double at the Wal-Mart so I could check.
posted by Dizzy at 9:34 AM on May 4, 2007

You're thinking of "Tommorow is Last Week", where Klingons replace Kirk's mom with her identical twin, a check-out girl. Then Sulu and Checkov fuck.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 9:50 AM on May 4, 2007 [1 favorite]

Wow, cool post. Pics #4 and #7 are amazing.

Thanks for the link to girlhacker, mathowie. Nice site.
posted by dozo at 9:59 AM on May 4, 2007

Check out the excavations from above!
posted by luriete at 10:17 AM on May 4, 2007

Those trees are clearly there to help the Tree Emperor rule in the afterlife.
posted by Cyrano at 10:20 AM on May 4, 2007

GYOF... oh, wait.

Excellent post, thanks!
posted by perissodactyl at 10:23 AM on May 4, 2007

Very cool post. What an amazing thing to find in your backyard. I'd love to visit.

tqk: that episode wasn't nearly as good as The Grail on the Edge of Forever and it's stunning musical number.
posted by oneirodynia at 11:53 AM on May 4, 2007

Very interesting post, thanks Matt
posted by caddis at 12:36 PM on May 4, 2007

So what does it take to scare a tree into being petrified?
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 3:38 PM on May 4, 2007

posted by Dizzy at 4:58 PM on May 4, 2007

How beautiful. The seventh picture in the gallery is gorgeous.
posted by schroedinger at 5:43 PM on May 4, 2007

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