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Tooth in Coal

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Tooth in Coal

 

Early in November of 1926, archaeologist J.C.F. Siegfriedt made a discovery in another mine, this one the Number Three shaft of the Mutual Coal Mine of Bear Creek, 55 miles southwest of Billings, Montana. What Siegfriedt found was a human tooth, in which the enamel had been replaced by carbon and the roots by iron, by seepage petrification. In an account published in the Carbon County News and dated November 11, 1926, Siegfriedt reported that he had meticulously preserved the mineral matrix that had been deposited around the tooth, and several dentists identified the mold created as being a human second lower molar. The tooth, however, came from the lower level of the mine - from an Eocene deposit dated at 30 million years old. Siegfriedt could generate no interest in his find among other specialists, and as far as is known, no one has done any further study of the mystery.

 



 

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