While camping in the backwoods of the Eastern Sierra Nevada, Rachel Hodgkiss spent time hunting for fossils. Hoping for a great discovery she was quite surprised by what she did find. This happened in 1967 and until now the family has kept the finding private.
Rachel slept on the floor of the tent and each night complained about something sticking her in the back. Each night her parents, used to Rachel's vivid imagination, would tell her to "Shut up and go to sleep!"
By the fourth morning Rachel, exhausted from no sleep for three nights, convinced her dad that there really was something sticking her in the back. So her dad moved the tent and Rachel began digging with a small wooden spoon that had come with some Neapolitan ice cream she'd bought at the camp store. It took her about an hour-and-a-half to uncover this amazing discovery.
You can imagine how surprised they were when SNL did a skit about the Coneheads in 1977.
Rachel Hodgkiss holding Conehead fossil outside family tent, August 1967.