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Littell's Living Age/Volume 169/Issue 2190/Monster Sea Turtle in Kansas

The discoverer of a gigantic extinct sea turtle found near Fort Wallace, in western Kansas, first observed the large bony shields projecting from a bluff near Butte Creek. They were carefully taken out and brought to Philadelphia, where the restoration was made. The fore flippers alone were nearly five feet long, while its expanse from the tip of one extended flipper to another was about seventeen feet. The question may arise, How did the sea turtle become buried in a bluff in the State of Kansas? A natural supposition would be that Kansas is the bed of a former ocean, and so it is. Ages ago, in what is called by geologists the Cretaceous Period, that part of the world was the bed of a great sea, in which the great turtle swain, together with other monsters of curious shape and appearance. Gradually the crust of the earth was raised, the water felt back or became enclosed, and left the inhabitants of the crustaceous sea high and dry, to be covered by the earth and preserved for us to study ages afterward. The shores of this ancient ocean are easily found and followed by geologists. Its extent has been traced on our western plains by the bleaching and disintegrating remains that have been found upon and beneath the surface.