Natural History Museum's Expanded Dinosaur Hall

Smithsonian to Open New State-of-the-Art Dinosaure Exhibits

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••• Photo courtesy Museum of the Rockies

The Smithsonian is set to exhibit one of the most complete T. rex specimens ever discovered! The National Museum of Natural History has made a 50-year loan agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to transfer a Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton for eventual display in the museum's new dinosaur hall. Known as the "Wankel T. rex," the rare fossil was found in 1988 by Kathy Wankel, a rancher from Angela,

Montana on federal land near the Fort Peck Reservoir in eastern Montana. It was loaned by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, Montana from 1990 to 2011. The T-rex skeleton has arrived in Washington, DC and will be the centerpiece of the museum's new 31,000-square-foot national fossil hall.

About the New Fossil Hall

The Smithsonian will create a new hall of prehistoric life in the National Museum of Natural History in what will be the largest and most complex renovation in the museum's history. The new hall will be completed in 2019 and will feature specimens from the museum's unrivaled collection of 46 million fossils and present the latest scientific research in paleobiology. The old exhibit is now closed in order to begin the complete redesign and renovation of the exhibition space. Three interim dinosaur-focused exhibitions will be launched to give visitors a chance to immerse themselves in the ancient world of dinosaurs and cutting-edge paleontological research.

The museum is planning additional exhibitions and programs for 2015-2019.

"The Last American Dinosaurs: Discovering a Lost World.”

Open Now. The new 5,200-square-foot exhibition, on the second floor of the museum, tells the story of non-avian dinosaurs’ final years in western North America through an extraordinary diversity of animals and plants discovered in the fossil-rich layers of the Hell Creek Formation in North Dakota, South Dakota and Montana.

  It features a giant, plant-eating Triceratops, and a 14-foot-tall cast of a T. rex.  The exhibit also displays other fossils, murals of ancient environments, a video presentation, and an arcade-style game, “How to Become a Fossil.” The new FossiLab will also be open for guests to watch staff and volunteers prepare and conserve fossils. The exhibition will remain on view until the completion of the museum’s newly renovated dinosaur and fossil hall.

The National Museum of Natural History is one of the most popular museums in Washington DC. It is located at 10th Street and Constitution Ave., NW Washington, DC. See a map and directions to the National Mall.

See also, National Museum of Natural History Photos to get a glimpse of some of the most popular exhibits at the museum. 

The Smithsonian is made up of 19 museums with more than 137 million objects, including many irreplaceable historic artifacts, works of art, scientific specimens and cultural exhibits. To learn all about them, see A Guide to All of the Smithsonian Museums.