Marshosaurus bicentesimus was first named in 1976, and received the second half of its scientific binomial name (bicentesimus) from the fact that it was described during the bicentennial of the United States! The first part of the name (Marshosaurus) honors the famous paleontologist Othniel Charles Marsh, one of two main participants in the extreme paleontological competition more than 100 years ago! If you want to learn more about the Bone Wars, be sure to check out a song that I wrote about it below: to the tune of Carrie Underwood's "Two Black Cadillacs!"
|One of two small trays of bones belonging to Marshosaurus that the Denver Museum has on display in the paleo lab for the time being. Looks like we have some vertebrae and ribs!|
According to the article, the remains of the Denver Museum's Marshosaurus specimen were discovered at a site in Dinosaur National Monument that, due to a fluke of the law (I would say loophole, but I feel like that's too harsh of a word), allows the Denver Museum to collect fossils and take them back to their collections, as opposed to them going to the collections facility at the visitor's center. At this particular site, the remains of "at least six other animals made their way back to Denver." Amongst these remains includes the small, plant-eating ornithopod Dryosaurus, and the very famous Stegosaurus, as well as a few bits and pieces of a crocodile!
So how likely is it that Marshosaurus will become as famous as Tyrannosaurus and Triceratops? Not very likely at all! But it's a cool animal, and I definitely hope we find the remains of more of these guys sometime in the future!