Looking For Fossils and Discovering a Local Treasure
With the water levels down so low on the Ohio River, its a great opportunity for taking the family to the Falls of the Ohio State Park and exploring the fossil beds. I don’t think you will find the elusive Burginsaurus, but Snow White and I went down today and snooped about and saw all sorts of interesting things. Several people were fishing as well. One youngster caught a 12 pound Striped Bass. That’s no fish story but his claim that he landed it in just one minute might have been a stretch. It was an impressive fish though as was about a 7 pound catfish landed by a gentleman taking a day off from Jeffboat. There were two people really being sporting as they used a bow and arrow. My guess is that the water level will remain low for awhile but the river can rise fast and often the fossil beds remain covered for extended periods so take the opportunity while you can.
As for the Burginsaurus, let me tell you, I get questions about him all the time. He may look like a carnivorous beast but in real life he’s a big teddy bear. I’m going to tell a secret: He has helped many many young journalists fulfill their dreams of developing a successful career. Steve Burgin is also a top shelf journalist himself. He is the first person from this area inducted into the Silver Circle of The Ohio Valley Chapter of the National Television Academy. That small fraternity is considered the “best of the best.” He’s also received the Edward R. Murrow award and the Scripps Howard National Award for Investigative Reporting as well as several regional Emmy Awards and others honors. He even walked my mother down the aisle at my wedding! He may be a fossil but he’s our fossil and we should all be thankful to have this journalistic treasure in our midst. See, I have to tell people because the Burginsaurus is really quite shy. He’s really a quite friendly creature, just keep your hands and feet clear at feeding time.
On This Date in History: Sam Clemens had followed his brother Orion to the Nevada Territory in 1861 where Orion had been appointed as Secretary to the Governor of the territory. Sam took a job as a reporter for the Territorial Enterprise, the local newspaper in Virginia City…the same Virginia City you used to see on the big map of the Ponderosa in Bonanza. In his autobiography, Clemens says he took the name Mark Twain so that when he wrote scalding, often humorous articles about politicians, they wouldn’t know it was him. This would ensure he continued to get access. He began his newspaper career on this date in 1862 and he went on to fame as one of the great American writers as Mark Twain. He was born in 1835 under Haley’s Comet and died 75 years later under the same celestial phenomena. Unlike the comet, the light such as his will not likely be seen again. I’m still investigating the rumor that Steve Burgin was a cub reporter in Virginia City at the same time as Twain.