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If Money Could Buy Anything: Carnegie’s Diplodocus

What would you purchase if you had more money than you could spend?  A private island?  A fleet of personal jets?  A sports team?  Gilded Age industrialist Andrew Carnegie purchased a dinosaur skeleton.

Carnegie became interested in dinosaurs in 1898 after reading an article in the New York Journal that detailed the discovery of the largest dinosaur species to date.  He became excited at the sight of a sketch showing the sauropod peering into the 11th story of a building and mailed a $10,000 check to the director of the Carnegie Museum, which opened in 1895, with orders to purchase the skeleton.

“My Lord — can’t you buy this for Pittsburgh — try. Wyoming State University isn’t rich — get an offer — hurry. – AC,” the instructions read.

In reality, the great find was only one bone.

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