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Nick Hotton

I grew up across the Potomac from DC, and visited the Natural History Museum 
ad-naseum since I was a wee little one, remember when parts of it still had 
that last turn of the century cabinet look. Masked as they now are in the 
archaic mists of time that we now call the 60s and 70s I am not sure when I 
read his "Dinosaurs" and "Evidence for Evolution" (the latter being graced by 
some especially nice prints of parts of the then new Matternes murals). In 
1976 I was attending Northern Va CC, and was starting to try to figure out 
how to get into paleo. The girlfriend of my geology instructor was working at 
the USNM, and suggested I write a letter to Nicholas Hotton. Did so, and 
heard nothing back. Wondered what I'd said in the letter. Then in May got a 
call from Dr Hotton, saying he had found my letter under one of his infamous 
piles. Invited me to come down and visit. Drove my Mach 1 Mustang (don't make 
em like that anymore) to the Mall and met my first real paleontologist. John 
McIntosh happened to be visiting that day, lucky me. The two of them made me 
feel very comfortable as they enthusiastically introduced me to the 
profession. They said very nice things about my latest dinoart (stuff that 
now makes me cringe and you'll never see). In the following months Nick had 
me do some prep work on one of his in sediment as hard as concrete therapsid 
skulls - which taught me that prep work is not my forte - and we had many 
happy discussions about the new and radical notions that dinosaurs were 
warm-blooded and might be even (gasp) feathered!   

Ah, those were the days. 

Greg Paul