Evolution, Civil War history entwine in plant fossil with a tragic past

A fossil leaf collected on a Virginia canal bank is one of North America’s oldest flowering plants, a 120-million-year-old species new to science. The find raises questions about whether pollen evolved along with flowering plants or came later. It also unearths a forgotten Civil War episode reminiscent of “Twelve Years a Slave”: Union troops forced a group of freedmen to dig the canal that exposed the fossil.
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Source: http://feeds.sciencedaily.com/~r/sciencedaily/top_news/top_science/~3/MMMERe59d28/131202112146.htm

    

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