OSKALOOSA, Iowa – An Iowa family which discovered mammoth bones in the backyard is hoping archeologists will help dig up the rest of the skeleton.
The father and sons were digging at their home in Oskaloosa two years ago when they found what appeared to be an enormous bone buried in the dirt.
"I got down on my hands and knees on the bank and I could see a marrow line around the edge of this and I said boys, that's a bone, that's a really big bone," the father, John, told WOI-TV.
The family kept the discovery to itself, but recently decided to enlist experts for help to extract the rest of the mammoth skeleton.
Researchers from the University of Iowa identified the original bone as the femur of mammoth. Since then they uncovered the mammoth's vertebrae and ribs, all of which John keeps in his living room.
Archeologists and paleontologists are excited about the find because it is unusual to find so many bones from a mammoth in one place. However, since the bones were found on his property they belong to John -- who has yet to figure out what he will do with them.
"Build another room off the side of the home and put it together? I don't know, I haven't decided yet," he told WOI-TV.