Image courtesy the Smithsonian Institution, via flickr.
Uncle Beazley has led quite the picaresque life for a fiberglass archosaur. He's even been an actor. In 1968, NBC aired an episode of "NBC's Children's Theater" called The Enormous Egg. It was an adaptation of Oliver Butterworth's 1956 children's story, in which a 12 year old farm boy's life is made a bit more interesting when one of his chickens lays a Triceratops egg. The dinosaur is played by Uncle Beazley, and as F. Gwynplaine MacIntyre writes in a wonderfully thorough review,
The most interesting thing in this TV adaptation is, of course, the triceratops. 'The Enormous Egg' could be sub-titled 'The Microscopic Production Budget'. I think they spent about 29 cents on the dinosaur ... and yet all of the dinosaur sequences are very impressively done. The triceratops in this film is 'played' by a huge dinosaur-shaped piece of moulded fibreglass which does NOT have articulated limbs, so the individual portions of the triceratops cannot move separately. The thing is like a child's toy plastic dinosaur (all in one piece) except that it's life-size.I haven't found any video of it, unfortunately. The review also mentions that Uncle Beazley is one of the Sinclair dinosaurs from the New York World's fair.
Image from Jordan Smith, via Flickr. There's Uncle Beazley in the center of the exhibit.
Garland Pollard of BrandLandUSA confirms that he is indeed from the World's Fair. The fate of the dinosaur models from the various world's fairs is something I'm pretty interested in, and it's really cool that Uncle Beazley has survived, now residing at the National Zoo, while his brethren enjoy a Texas retirement.
Uncle Beazley at the National Zoo. Photo by Mo Kaiwen, via flickr.