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Re: Dino Firsts

On Sun, 03 Aug 1997 09:32:26 -0400 "D.I.G." <dinosaur@interport.net>
>Ignoring, for the moment, that the Chinese were digging up and eating
>dinosaur bones for centuries (thinking that they were dragon bones),
>when was the first dinosaur bone per se "discovered" and "identified" 
>When was the first "complete" mounted skeleton put on display. AMNH 
>the first sauropod dinosaur on display in 1903, but was there an 
>non-sauropod displayed? The Crystal Palace exhibit was not actual
>mountings, but rather sculptures, or am I mistaken?
>E. Summer

In 1677, Robert Plot described a "Giant Human" bone found as a fossil in
Cornwall, England.  It wasn't until the early 1800s that this bone was
recognized as belonging to something non-human, which we later called
dinosaurs.  We now know it belonged to Megalosaurus.

WIlliam Buckland in 1824 described the theropod Megalosaurus from a jaw
with teeth, some vertebrae, and a few other bones found in Great Britain.

In 1858, in Haddonfield, NJ, 35 bones of the duckbill Hadrosaurus foulkii
were discovered by William Parker Foulke, making it the most complete
skeleton of a dinosaur found up to that time, the first remains to tell
us some dinosaurs were bipedal, the first dinosaur skeleton found in
North America, and the first duckbill discovered [phew!].  I think this
skeleton was put on display, but I don't remember where -- check National
Academy of Sciences, Philly.

I've tried to keep track of "firsts" for our dinosaur exhibit training
manuals.  These entries were put in the manual this way since around 1990
and I've lost the original references.  Check Norman's _Dinosaurs!_ book
(companion to the PBS series), or Michael Benton's _ Illustrated
Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs_.  Something tells me it was a British author's
general work, or I got it directly from the following:

"Resource Guide to _Discovering Dinosaurs_, Academy of Natural Science,
Philadelphia 1986.

DINOSAURS!" Volunteer Training Materials.  Prepared by Eileen Flory.  The
Science Museum of Minnesota, summer 1986.

Judy Molnar
Education Associate, Virginia Living Museum
All questions are valid; all answers are tentative.