Long before Alabama was Alabama, prehistoric life thrived in the area that now encompasses the state. Although these creatures died out many millions of years ago, their fossils tell us how they lived and what they looked like. Most of present-day Alabama was covered in a shallow sea for millions of years, and so most of the fossils found in the state are of marine creatures, including giant mosasaurs and ancient oysters. A few land-based animals have been found, including a small relative of T. rex named for Montgomery County: Appalachiosaurus montgomeriensis. Many of these fossils can be seen in the state’s museums, including the Alabama Museum of Natural History, the McWane Science Center, and the Anniston Museum of Natural History.