Our Story

Indiana9 Fossils is a family owned and operated business that is located outside of DeSoto, Missouri.  As a child growing up I was always fascinated by dinosaurs and wanted to be a Paleontologist when I grew up.   Well, God had a different plan for me and I became a professional Paramedic/Firefighter in 1981.   As an adult my interest in dinosaurs and fossils was rekindled and I began buying and collecting fossils as a hobby.  In 1997 I conceived the idea of starting my own fossil business by selling off duplicates of my own fossils to help support my fossil addiction.  At the time I had started buying Mazon Creek Nodules off of eBay and decided to ask one of my favorite sellers (Brian) to allow me to build a website for him to sell his fossils on as well as my duplicates.  At the time, he was one of the largest sellers of fossils on eBay.  I had recently learned how to build websites using Microsoft FrontPage and was excited to build the fossil site and get down to business!  We met in person to discuss the idea and quickly became good friends.  The idea was agreed upon and I developed the site and launched it in early 1998.  The site contained some of Brian’s fossils and some of my fossils but each kept their own fossils at their location, so when an order was received that contained fossils from each of us we both had to ship separately to the buyer.  It all sounded good in theory, but in practice it was not ideal.  This continued for almost a year until Brian decided to bow out of the endeavor and left me to develop the website and my fossil business on my own.  Now, many people still ask “If you live in Missouri why are you called Indiana9 Fossils”?  Well the answer is quite simple.  My buddy Brian’s eBay user ID was “Indiana9” because he lived in Indiana.  After we started the business I took the eBay user ID of “Indiana9 Fossils” and had started visiting fossils shows, etc.. and people got used to the name. By the time Brian bowed out, the name had been out there long enough that I was “branded” and changing the name was not a good option.  So we are Indiana9 Fossils from Missouri!    In 2004 I was forced to retire early from the Fire Department due to injuries received during a rescue, which allowed me to go full-time in building my business.. and grow it did!  In 2010 I hired my son Christopher to work for me full-time and hired his wife Lisa to work for me part-time.  Together we have worked to build the business to the point where by April 27th 2015 it was arguably the largest web-based fossil business in the world.  Then tragedy struck.  An electrical fire totally destroyed the business causing us to lose our entire inventory.  But through the love and support of our family and friends in the fossil world, hard work and dedication and blessings from above we have started to rebuild our business and begin the long journey back to where we were..  Thank you for coming along with us on that journey.    Merv