Last Days in the Jurassic

in The Second Jurassic Dinosaur Rush

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print July 2010 | ISBN: 9780226074726
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226074733 | DOI:
Last Days in the Jurassic

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By 1905, the American Museum's Department of Vertebrate Paleontology (DVP) had accumulated an enormous quantity of Jurassic dinosaurs of many different types, from gigantic sauropods to small, birdlike theropods, many of which specimens were reasonably complete and suitable for display. Osborn never got the complete sauropod specimen he wanted, but there was sufficient material in the DVP collections with which to mount a composite skeleton of Brontosaurus. More important, he had a wandering eye, and his fancy was being diverted to the spectacular Cretaceous dinosaurs that Barnum Brown was then collecting in Montana and Wyoming, including the gigantic new theropod Tyrannosaurus rex. Osborn's competitors at the Field and Carnegie Museums had both abandoned the search for Jurassic dinosaurs in favor of other groups and other horizons, including the Cretaceous. So he was very keen on taking the lion's share of the best Cretaceous specimens before they fell into less deserving hands.

Keywords: Jurassic dinosaurs; fossils; Bone Cabin Quarry; Cretaceous; Henry Fairfield Osborn

Chapter.  8138 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of Science and Technology

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