Dinosaur Hunters: The Bone Wars

Thursday, July 22, 2010

We discovered a story of real skull-duggery. We learned about the two most prominent paleontologists of the 19th century and their monomaniacal, competitive pursuit of the glory to be found by uncovering the most sensational, new species of dinosaurs.

It's a story of adventure tempered by bribery, theft, politics, incursions into Indian territories, virulent personal attacks and ultimately the discoveries of Edward Drinker Cope and his rival Othniel Charles Marsh that changed our understanding of the world we live in.

Working with modern day dinosaur hunter and renowned paleontologist, Robert Bakker, Ph.D, we went back to the scene of the crime, Como Bluff, near Medicine Bow, Wyoming. Dr. Bakker took us to the site where the great dinosaur craze was born over one hundred years ago.

Their tireless collecting increased the knowledge of dinosaur species from 18 to over 130 as they unearthed previously unknown creatures such as Stegosaurus and Triceratops. Their pursuit of dinosaurs bones led them from the rich bone beds in Wyoming to Colorado, Nebraska, and New Mexico.

Bakker's found that Cope and Marsh left some "bone" treasures behind.


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