Thursday, 15 May 2008
Dragon in the Rocks. A Story Based on the Childhood of Early Paleontologist Mary Anning
Toronto: Owl/Greey de Pencier, 1992.  p.ISBN 0-920775-76-4
Mary Anning (1799-1847)/biography – Paleontology/England/19th century
Looking to inspire a young mind to the wonders of our world? Consider a new picture book for young readers from Owl Press. This lovely new book shares the early years of Mary Anning - a simple tale of curiosity and determination within the wider context of an historical geological discovery.
Twelve-year-old Mary Anning had always enjoyed collecting fossils with her father, an amateur collector, who before he died, taught her the techniques of chipping and separating fossils from rocks.
Mary's father also told her of a dragon skeleton he had once seen in a cave near their home in Lyme Regis on the southern coast of England. One day the opportunity arose to visit the cave herself, and subsequently she spent many months chipping, numbering and packing up the fossil pieces of the 26-foot-long ichthyosaur skeleton, which has now been on display at the Natural History Museum in London for nearly 200 years.
Although the story ends with the visit of important scientists to her home to see her rebuilt skeleton, children may well be inspired to learn more about the interests and life of this unsung heroine and about paleontology.
Looking for more inspiration on the significant finds of other young paleontologists... look to Tumbler Ridge and the discovery by Daniel Helm of a significant dinosaur trackway that inspired a community or to Vancouver Island and the tale of paleontology in beautiful Courtenay where the Trask family found one of BC's most famous marine reptiles.
Visit http://www.bcfossils.ca/ and learn more!