Since 1994, Paleo Direct, Inc. has supplied supreme quality specimens to many of the most esteemed museums and educational institutions throughout the world. Our client list also includes everyone from royal families and celebrities, to the parent of an intrigued child just starting a collection. As well as their shared passion for history, they also share a common desire - acquire the finest, honestly represented, authentic fossils and artifacts direct from the lab source, guaranteed IN WRITING by several decades of experience.
Where we are different is that you are buying DIRECT from those that work on the specimens being sold. Paleo Direct, Inc. is one of these few suppliers in commercial paleontology / archaeology that operates their OWN lab facility.
Here in Florida, we own and operate a 3200 square foot preparation lab facility. EVERY piece we sell, whether it be collected in the field by us or acquired from the original collector of a dated private collection, is subjected to a complete inspection and assessment in our lab. Every specimen we offer goes through the same process that the best museums in the world utilize from preparation to conservation. Our lab is outfitted with the finest, modern equipment available. When you purchase a specimen from us, it is comparable to buying from a major museum lab. Some of the best techniques known for metal artifact conservation were proprietary methods first developed by us.
To better understand why we are different, it is important to first understand the market we operate in. There are two ways to buy fossils and artifacts - either direct from the preparation lab who did the work or, from a reseller. The commercial fossil and artifact market is dominated by "resellers" - those that simply buy a FINISHED piece from one source and resell to their customers. Many pitfalls exist when dealing with resellers because they lack first-hand knowledge about the specimen's true nature - how it was prepared, restored, repaired or if anything was done to it at all. Since resellers are not preparators, they also reliably lack the ability to detect alterations because they themselves, lack the ability to do such alterations.
Today, there are numerous extraordinarily sophisticated forgeries. The risk and burden is on the buyer when you purchase fossils and artifacts from resellers rather than preparators such as Paleo Direct. Extensive knowledge and caution is a must due to forgeries, fraudulently altered specimens or misidentified specimens. There are only a handful of professional, full-time commercial paleontology / archaeology preparators in the world, who are selling direct to the public - suppliers who are offering material direct from their lab to you. Paleo Direct, Inc. is one of those few direct suppliers, actively engaged in every aspect of commercial paleontology and archaeology, from field collecting to lab preparation of specimens we offer.
Most collectors do not know that ALL fossils and artifacts (except for Paleolithic tools) REQUIRE some type of preparation and conservation process performed in a lab. No fossil or artifact you see in a photo looked that way when it was first found. Every serious museum subjects their specimens to treatment in a lab. Most of the items in the fossil and artifact market are sold by resellers who lack an understanding of the work performed because they acquired it in a "finished" state and have not a facility nor active, on-going lab experience to identify what is repaired, restored, original or forged. Today, every market is fraught with forgeries and misrepresented items. The fossil and artifact market is one of the worst examples of this and some resellers are facilitating this dangerous market climate.
"You cannot reliably tell what has been done to a fossil or artifact when you yourself, lack the ability to do what you are trying to detect"
We follow a strict acquisition protocol of not acquiring specimens from unknown sources and we adhere to all domestic and foreign regulations and laws when it comes to collecting, exporting, importing and selling. We refrain from selling any items that are prohibited to export from our resident country or import into our customers' resident countries.
Our roots go back to 1986. In those beginning years, our business was conducted by the "ancient" methods of magazine advertising and selling from a printed catalog we produced and mailed several times each year. In 1994, our fossil and artifact business was online by way of a rudimentary website through Earthlink. Local internet service providers did not even exist then! This was literally the "STONE AGE" for online business and we are proud to say we were one of the first to be there! The PaleoDirect.com website went online in early December 2000 and has consistently grown to the enterprise we are today.
Our founding principles of 1986 are still the basis of our business conduct today -QUALITY, HONESTY, DISCLOSURE and GUARANTEE. In the early days when we began, NO ONE talked about repair or restoration until our listings started to mention it as routine. We were the FIRST online fossil supplier to offer extensive information SPECIFICALLY ABOUT THE INDIVIDUAL SPECIMEN BEING OFFERED and provide numerous high resolution photographs online for the viewer, of each item available for sale. We were the first commercial online supplier to loudly warn of fakes, openly educating with detailed photos and descriptions on our website, the techniques used by fraudulent sellers and artisans in the fossil market. We were also the first major online commercial supplier to present high end and rare fossils as PROMISING INVESTMENTS. We were RIGHT ON in our assessment and today, the finest artifacts and fossils command prices many, many times what they did just 10-15 years ago.
Finally, Paleo Direct prides itself in being one of the FIRST online suppliers to offer an UNCONDITIONAL LIFETIME WRITTEN GUARANTEE OF AUTHENTICITY / IDENTIFICATION. The lack of a written guarantee by the seller, renders you the buyer, legally 'powerless' should any problem down the road arise with your purchase.
In summary, the greatest collections begin with great sources. Time and experience in making purchases within today's fossil and artifact market will bear witness to the claims we make here.