This Is The Oldest Engraving Of A Trunked Animal Ever Found In The U.S.
Discovered by fossil collector James Kennedy in 2006 or 2007, this fossilized bone was found in Vero Beach, Florida, an exclusive area which once contained human and animal bones from the Ice Age laying side-by-side. The bone, which belonged to a giant sloth, mastodon or mammoth, was stored under Kennedy's sink for several years before he retrieved it for cleaning. It was while dusting the bone that he discovered the engraving of a walking mammoth.
After contacting scientists at the National Museum of Natural History as well as the Smithsonian's Museum Conservation Institute, a startling discovery was made: the carving was made on the bone close to the time of the animal's death, which puts bone and art at over 13,000 years of age, the time when mastodons, mammoths and giant sloths died out.
Though there are engravings and depictions on many bones and cave walls in Europe and Asia, Kennedy's engraving is the first, oldest and only Ice Age image depicting a trunked animal ever found in the United States. As Kennedy told National Geographic in 2009:
"I had no idea it was this big of a fuss. [When I heard] there was nothing else like it in the Western Hemisphere, that's when my heart kind of stopped."