Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Siphonophrentis and Heterophrentis Horn Coral Fossils

These horn coral fossils were seen at the New Harmony Indiana USA Working Men's Institute Museum & Library in June 2020. Accession numbers are WMI 50.46 and 50.013.

The one on the left is Siphonophrentis (O'Connell, 1914) and on the right Heterophrentis (Billings, 1875). They existed in the Devonian Period. I wonder if they were found at the Falls of the Ohio. The genus  was named by Dr. Marjorie O'Connell in 1914, click her name to read about her fascinating life.

Sunday, October 2, 2022

Triarthrus becki Trilobite Fossil

 

Triarthrus becki Trilobite Fossil illustration done in 1920 by Elvira Wood
Yesterday's posting was of the trilobite Triarthrus eatoni (Hall, 1838) specimens on display at the Harvard Museum of Natural History. Today's post will cover another species of this trilobite highlighted in The Appendages, Anatomy, and Relationships of Trilobites by Percy E Raymond. It was published in December of 1920 by Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Raymond was associate professor of palaeontology and curator of invertebrate palaeontology in the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University. It covers Charles Emerson Beecher (1856-1904) unpublished work on trilobites including the Triarthrus becki (Green, 1839?) found in the Utica Shale. Paleo-illustrator and MIT/Columbia University educated paleontologist Elvira Wood (1865-1928) did a lot of illustrating on this book.

On page 40 a historical description was provided, "Specimens of Triarthrus retaining appendages were first obtained by Mr. W. S. Valiant from the dark carbonaceous Utica shale near Rome, New York, in 1884, but no considerable amount of material was found until 1892. The first specimens were sent to Columbia University, and were described by Doctor W. D. Matthew (1893). This article was
accompanied by a plate of sketches, showing for the first time the presence of antennules in trilobites and indicating something of the endopodites and exopodites of the appendages of the cephalon, thorax,
and pygidium. Specimens had not yet been cleaned from the lower side, so that no great amount could then be learned of the detailed structure. Matthew concluded that 'The homology with Limulus seems
not to be as close in Triarthrus as in the forms studied by Mr. Walcott; but the characters seem to be of a more comprehensive type, approaching the general structure of the other Crustacea rather than any special form.'"

The following are from plate I in the book. Described as "Photographs of Triarthrus becki, made by C. E. Beecher."

Fig. 1. Specimen 213. The dorsal test has been removed from the glabella, revealing the outline of the posterior end of the hypostoma, the proximal ends of the antennules, the gnathites, and incomplete
endopodites of some appendages, × 5.43

Fig. 2. Specimen 214. The head of a complete large specimen. Part of the thorax is shown on pl. 3, fig. 6. Note especially the form of the segments of the endopodites and of the anterior coxopodite on the
right side, × 7.33.
Fig. 3. Specimen 217. This specimen shows better than any other the form of the gnathites of the cephalon. Note also the setæ of the exopodites under the cheek at the right. The appearance of a hook on the posterior gnathite on the right may be accidental, but it does not show broken edges, × 6.85.
Fig. 4. Specimen 215. The ventral side of the cephalon of a small entire specimen. Shows well the form of some of the gnathites and a few of the endopodites. Note the unusual position of the antennules. × 7.63.
Fig. 5. Specimen 226. This specimen did not photograph well, but is important as showing the exopodites and endopodites emerging from under the cephalon. × about 6.


Saturday, October 1, 2022

Triarthrus eatoni Trilobite Fossils


When I visited the Harvard Museum of Natural History in August 2022, one of the most historical invertebrate fossils I found were these two. These trilobite fossils are Triarthrus eatoni (Hall, 1838). They were found in the Utica Shale of Trenton, New York USA. During the Taconic Orogeny, the geological process of moutain-building ash, clay and organic carbon compacted into what became the Utica Shale. The fossils date to the Late Ordovician Period.


The historical part of the specimens is that they were collected by Charles Doolittle Walcott (1850-1927). He is famous for discovering the Cambrian Burgess Shale of Canada and was the 4th secretary of Smithsonian Institution. Walcott published a number of papers on trilobites including the 1894 Note of Some Appendages of the Trilobites and 1918 Appendages of Trilobites.

https://mczbase.mcz.harvard.edu/guid/MCZ:IP:IPAR-5630

Recently, I bought a book that relates to this called The Appendages, Anatomy, and Relationships of Trilobites by Percy E Raymond. It was published in December of 1920 by Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Raymond was associate professor of palaeontology and curator of invertebrate palaeontologyin the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University. It covers Charles Emerson Beecher (1856-1904) unpublished work on trilobites including the Triarthrus becki (Green, 1839?) found in the Utica Shale. Paleo-illustrator Elvira Wood (1865-1928) did quite a bit of work on this book.



Friday, September 30, 2022

Tenontosaurus tilletti Dinosaur Fossil


This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. This dinosaur limb bone belonged to a herbivore ornithopod Tenontosaurus tilletti (Ostrom, 1970). This specimen was found in the Cloverly Formation at Montana USA. It dates to the Middle Cretaceous Period.

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Priscacara pealei Fish Fossil


This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. This fish fossil is called Priscacara pealei (Cope, 1887). This specimen was found in the Green River Formation at Kemmerer Wyoming USA. It dates to the Eocene Epoch (48 million years ago), Paleogene Period

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

New Albany Shale Conodonts

 

 

Here are two freshly found conodont fossils in the New Albany Shale (Late Devonian Period). The first appears to be some sort of Spathognathodus sp. (Branson and Mehl, 1941). The second appears to be of the genus Elictognathus (Cooper, 1939). Both were found on a shale plate about 4 cm by 4 cm. Field of view for images was about 1 mm. Specimens were collected in Floyd County, Indiana, USA. Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 41, Conodonts from the Jacob Chapel Bed (Mississippian) of the New Albany Shale in Southern Indiana by Carl B. Rexford (1969) was used for the identification of these fossils.



Monday, September 26, 2022

Harvard Notogoneus osculus Fish Fossil

 

This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. This fish fossil is called Notogoneus osculus (Cope, 1885). This specimen was found in the Green River Formation at Kemmerer Wyoming USA. It dates to the Eocene Epoch, Paleogene Period. Catalog number is MCZ5350 or VPF-5350.

https://mczbase.mcz.harvard.edu/guid/MCZ:VP:VPF-5350

Posted another specimen at the American Museum of Natural History in 2020.

https://louisvillefossils.blogspot.com/2020/03/notogoneus-osculus-fish-fossil.html 

Sunday, September 25, 2022

Fish Fossils from Lebanon

 


Here are some more pictures of Diplomystus brevissimus (Blainville, 1818) fish fossils. The fish lived during the Cretaceous Period (about 150 million years ago) in what is now Beirut, Lebanon. They were bought by A.E. Day in 1902 and are now on display at the Harvard Museum of the Ancient Near East as of August 2022. 

 

See this link for images from yesterday's posting.



Saturday, September 24, 2022

Diplomystus brevissimus Fish Fossils

 


Here are some pictures of Diplomystus brevissimus (Blainville, 1818) fish fossils. The fish lived during the Cretaceous Period (about 150 million years ago) in what is now Beirut, Lebanon. They were bought by A.E. Day in 1902 and are now on display at the Harvard Museum of the Ancient Near East as of August 2022. Fossil is also known as Armigatus brevissimus (Blainville, 1818). Species name in Latin means "smallest or shortest".



Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Plate of Promicroceras Ammonite Fossils


Picture of plate of Promicroceras (Spath, 1925) ammonite fossils. Found in Charmouth, Dorset, England. Creatures existed in the Lower Jurassic Period (190 million years ago; upper Sinemurian age). Common ammonite found in the Black Ven Marl on the coasts of Lyme Regis and Charmouth.

Genus named by Leonard Frank Spath (1882-1957) in 1925.

Thanks to Dale for letting me take this picture.

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Ukrainian Sea Scorpion Fossils

Here are some pictures of Eurypterus tetragonophthalmus (Fischer, 1839) sea scorpion fossils. These creatures existed in the Silurian Period. Specimens were found at Kamenets Podolsky, Ukraine.

Thanks to Dale for allowing these pictures.



Monday, September 19, 2022

Platyceras dumosum Snail Fossil (ex-museum specimen)

 

This fossil is a Platyceras dumosum (Conrad, 1840) spiny snail (gastropod). It was found at the Falls of the Ohio in Clark County, Indiana USA. Fossils cannot be collected at the Falls any more but this one came from a de-accessioned museum collection in Michigan. The layer it was found is called the Jeffersonville Limestone which dates to the Middle Devonian Period.

 Judging from by the color this fossil might have been collected over 100 years ago.

The genus Platyceras was named by Timothy Abbott Conrad (1803-1877) in Third Annual Report on the Palaeontological Department of the Survey. New York Geological Survey, Annual Report 4(1):199-207 1840.

Thanks to Dale for letting me take these pictures.


 

Friday, September 16, 2022

Probelesodon minor Fossil

 

This fossil reptile skull and jaw were displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. It is called Probelesodon minor (Romer, 1973). The creature lived during the middle Triassic Period. Fossil was found in 1965 in the Chañares Formation of La Rioja Province of Argentina.

Thursday, September 15, 2022

Placenticeras Ammolite Fossil

 

 


This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge,Massachusetts, USA. It is an ammonite fossil is called Placenticeras (Meek, 1870). The creature lived during the Upper Cretaceous Period (80 million years ago). Fossil was found in Bearpaw Formation on the Blackfeet Reservation of southern Alberta, Canada. Specimen on loan to museum from the Mineral Trust.


The amazing iridescent colors are the mineral ammolite (aragonite).



Wednesday, September 14, 2022

Aeger tipularis Prawn Fossil


This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge,Massachusetts, USA. This prawn fossil is called Aeger tipularis (Schlotheim, 1822). The crustacean lived during the Jurassic Period (Kimmeridgian Stage). Fossil was found Solnhofen Limestone of Bavaria, Germany. Catalog number is MCZ106308.

https://mczbase.mcz.harvard.edu/guid/MCZ:IP:106308

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Eurypterus remipes Eurypterid Fossil

 

This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge,Massachusetts, USA. This eurypterid fossil is called Eurypterus remipes (Dekay, 1825).  This sea scorpion lived during the Silurian Period. This specimen was found in Litchfield, New York which is famous for this type of fossil.

Monday, September 12, 2022

Amadeus Grabau's Eighteen Mile Creek Palaeontology Book

 

This week a book arrived call the Geology and Palaeontology of Eighteen Mile Creek and the Lake Shore Sections of Erie County, New York - A Hand-book for the Use of Students and Amateurs by Amadeus W. Grabau Fellow in Palaeontology, Harvard University; Late Instructor in Palaeontology in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Published by the Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences 1898-1899.

I was attracted to this book for a number of reasons: Amadeus Grabau (1870-1946) is a famous paleontologist, Elvira Wood (1865-1928) did a number of illustrations for this work, the book is signed to a well known naturalist William P. Alexander (1881-1956) in Buffalo, New York, and the Devonian fossils are very similar to the ones we find in Louisville, Kentucky.

It is inscribed: "To Prof. Wm P. Alexander Whose absence on this occasion we deplore. With the compliments Amadeus W. Grabau Aug 19 /33." William Alexander while born in New York, studied violin and cello at the Conservatory of Music in Leipzig, Germany. He attended the University of Leipzig. He returned to the United States and taught agriculture at Cornell University. He served as assistant to Professor Anna Botsford Comstock (1854-1930). In 1920 he became assistant curator of education at the Buffalo Museum of Science. In 1940, he retired from this position in 1940 after co-authoring seven books and numerous articles about nature. It is possible he crossed paths with someone I have written earlier in this blog Elizabeth Letson (1874-1919) who was one time director of the museum and noted malacologist and resident of Buffalo, New York.

 
In the inscription, Dr. Grabau is referring to a reunion of 75 friends and family at his brother's home in Sunset Hill, New York in 1933. Dr. Grabau had been living in China since about 1920 where he was teaching at the University of Peking and was a member of the Chinese Geological Survey. He returned on June 27, 1933 to the United States to attend the International Geological Congress in Washington D.C. He left to go back to China on September 8, 1933. This trip is documented in an excellent book by Allan Mazur entitled A Romance in Natural History - The Lives and Works of Amadeus Grabau and Mary Antin (2004) on 348-360.
 
It appears that Professor Alexander missed this event and Dr. Grabau signed a paper seen in the image above that was glued in to the handbook. At an event earlier in the week, the Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences hosted a tea in Amadeus Grabau's honor. Dr. Grabau proposed a revision and enlargement of this guide and this book may have been a gift to the curator to help with proposal. No new update was every released.
 
Below is a sample of the fossil pages in the book. The figure 10 illustration was done by Amadeus Grabau while 10A was copy of a Hall illustration done by Elvira Wood. Throughout the book are blue ink notations listing fossils from the Hibbard Collection.  They refer to a local paleontologist Raymond R. Hibbard (1895-1957). He had donated part of fossil collection (more than 100,000 fossils) to Buffalo Museum of Science. He was appointed research associate in invertebrate paleontology at the museum and made honorary life member of the Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences. [Source: December 10, 1957 obit. in Buffalo Evening News page 33).


 
 
 
 


 

Saturday, September 10, 2022

March Fly Fossil


This fossil insect was found in the Florissant Formation of Teller County, Colorado USA. It appears to be march fly. Fossil dates to the Eocene Epoch of the Paleogene Period (about 34 million years ago). Field of views is approximately 7 mm.

Thanks to Kenny for the image.

Friday, September 9, 2022

Midge Insect Fossil


This fossil insect was found in the Florissant Formation of Teller County, Colorado USA. It appears to be midge fly. Fossil dates to the Eocene Epoch of the Paleogene Period (about 34 million years ago). Field of views is approximately 5 mm.

Thanks to Kenny for the image.

Thursday, September 8, 2022

Phenanthera petalifera Flower Fossil


This fossil flower was found in the Florissant Formation of Teller County, Colorado USA. It appears to be Phenanthera petalifera (Hollick, 1907). Fossil dates to the Eocene Epoch of the Paleogene Period (about 34 million years ago).

Appropriately, this being a flower fossil that florissant is French for flowering. Thanks to Kenny for this picture.

The American Naturalist, Sept. 1908, Some Results of the Florissant Expedition of 1908 by Professor T.D.A. Cockerell (page 576)

Tuesday, September 6, 2022

Anaethalion knorri Fish Fossil


This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge,Massachusetts, USA. This fish fossil is called Anaethalion knorri (Blainville, 1818).  Fish lived during the Jurassic Period (Kimmeridgian Stage). Fossil was found Solnhofen Limestone Formation of Bavaria, Germany. Catalog number is MCZ5333.

This display was odd in the MCZBASE database lists its name as Aethalion knorri but the name on the wall in the museum lists it as Analthanion knorr.

https://mczbase.mcz.harvard.edu/guid/MCZ:VP:VPF-5333 

Monday, September 5, 2022

Urocles lepidotus Fish Fossil


This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge,Massachusetts, USA. This fish fossil is called Urocles lepidotus (Agassiz).  Fish lived during the Jurassic Period (Kimmeridgian Stage). Fossil was found Solnhofen Limestone Formation of Bavaria, Germany. Catalog number is MCZ5336.

https://mczbase.mcz.harvard.edu/guid/MCZ:VP:VPF-5336 

Sunday, September 4, 2022

Macrosemius rostratus Fish Fossil


This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. This fish fossil is called Macrosemius rostratus  (Agassiz, 1844).  Fish lived during the Jurassic Period (Kimmeridgian Stage). Fossil was found Solnhofen Limestone Formation of Bavaria, Germany. Catalog number is MCZ5300.

https://mczbase.mcz.harvard.edu/guid/MCZ:VP:VPF-5300 

Saturday, September 3, 2022

Leptolepis dubius Fish Fossil


This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. This fish fossil is called Leptolepis dubius  (Blainville, 1818).  Fish lived during the Jurassic Period (Kimmeridgian Stage). Fossil was found Solnhofen Limestone Formation of Bavaria, Germany. Catalog number is MCZ7090.

https://mczbase.mcz.harvard.edu/guid/MCZ:VP:VPF-7090

Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Pycnodus platessus Fish Fossil

This fossil was displayed on August 2022, at the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. This fish fossil is called Pycnodus platessus (Blainville). This specimen was found at Monte Bolca, Veneto, Italy. It dates to the Eocene Epoch, Paleogene Period. Catalog number is MCZ6248 or VPF-6248.


https://mczbase.mcz.harvard.edu/guid/MCZ:VP:VPF-6248

https://hmnh.harvard.edu/