Celebrate Women's History Month with Sue Hendrickson

Have you heard of Sue Hendrickson? Her namesake is is one of Chicago’s biggest tourist attractions. A pride and joy of the city. 

Of course, I’m talking about the Field Museum of Natural History’s pride and joy, Sue.  She’s one of the largest and most complete Tyrannosaurus Rex fossils ever discovered. And Sue Hendrickson is the woman who discovered her.  

Sue embraced passion fire before it was cool. Instead of completing high school, she moved to Florida and became a professional diver. Hendrickson’s diving ability allowed her the opportunity to explore old shipwrecks, and search them for artifacts.

Sue Hendrickson

Sue volunteer to assist in digs over the summers, and even worked as an amber miner in the Dominican Republic.  She became highly skilled at discovering insects in amber.

A Passion for Paleontology 

It was late summer, 1990. The team had just completed the discovery of an Edmontosaurus specimen, and was getting ready to call it a day.

Discovering Sue

Unfortunately the truck got a flat tire. While most of the group was working to get this fixed, Hendrickson decided to explore some nearby cliffs which the team hadn’t gotten to yet.

A Fortunate Misfortune

Hendrickson discovered some small pieces of bone as she walked along the cliff. Looking up, she noticed larger bones coming out of the side. The team began their work of uncovering the largest T-Rex fossil ever discovered!

Discovering Sue