Mastodon skeleton unearthed in Indiana on display

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A mastodon skeleton unearthed in northeastern Indiana 15 years ago has finally gone on display following meticulous conservation work at the Indiana State Museum.

The assembled skeleton of the hulking beast that lived about 13,000 years ago and stood up to 12 feet tall was unveiled Thursday night at the museum in Indianapolis.

Allen County resident Dan Buesching and his family were among first people to see the fully assembled skeleton. Buesching dug up the ancient bones in 1998 in Allen County, including the elephant-like animal's 250-pound skull.

The family donated the partial skeleton to the state museum in 2006, and a fundraising drive paid for it to be assembled and mounted.

Museum paleontology curator Ron Richards tells The Journal Gazette, "We built it from the toes up."

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