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Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Not Mary Anning's fossil-hunting hammer!

The  picture on the left shows an object in Lyme Regis Museum that for many years was believed to be a geological hammer made especially for Lyme’s most famous fossilist, Mary Anning (1796-1847), by her father Richard. However, it was discovered last year that it is nothing of the sort! It is the pick-shaped handle head and broken part of the shaft of an 1882-issue British Army entrenching tool!

The entrenching tool is featured in a new series on the History of Lyme Regis in Museum Objects on the Museum website, produced by the Museum's research team. If you follow the link, you will find a number of in-depth PDF documents you can download, including one by Richard Bull explaining in detail how "Mary Anning's Hammer" was found to be something else entirely!

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