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Rare Geology Book: Mudge, B. F.; First Annual Report of the Geology of Kansas. Lawrence Kansas, John Speer, 1866.

$150.00

Rare Geology Book: Mudge, B. F.; First Annual Report of the Geology of Kansas. Lawrence Kansas, John Speer, 1866.

$150.00
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Book 590-F
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5.00 LBS
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Mudge, B. F.; First Annual Report of the Geology of Kansas. Lawrence Kansas, John Speer, 1866. Octavo, pp. 56. 

The work is complete and in a contemporary half calf and marbled boards, marbled end sheets and spine edges. Light wear to binding edges, corners and spine, later paper title label on cover. Book plate on front paste down, inner hinges re-enforced with archival tissue, the text is very clean. In very good condition. Rare.

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 Prior to 1864, very little was known about the geology and paleontology of Kansas and that sparse knowledge came from the hasty notes kept by members of the exploring expeditions to the west including those of Long, Fremont, Stansbury, and Meek. In 1864 the need for a geological survey of the state was addressed by the American Lawyer and geologist Benjamin F. Mudge. (1817-1879). Judge graduated from Wesleyan, worked as an attorney for 16 years and then moved to Kansas to teach natural history in 1861. He immediately began to lobby the Kansas government for a State Geological survey and those efforts paid off in 1864 with his appointment as the first State Geologist. He immediately began a systematic survey of the state. While the focus of his surveys were to be on the mineral resources, soils and stratigraphy of the state, Mudge soon recognized the abundance of both invertebrate and vertebrate fossils within the strata. His work yielded but one short report in a limited number of copies. The first 15 pages was devoted to general principles and the remainder to economic geology. Mudge included in that second part of his report important details on the various strata and gave first mention of the important fossil bearing Cretaceous strata and its chalk deposits.

Judge was to continue his studies of Kansas geology but outside of the survey. In the following year he began teaching at Kansas State University.

His paleontological collecting led to the discovery of the first bird with teeth found in America in 1872 and the discovery of fossil footprints in 1873. From 1874 to 1876 he led field trips for O. C. Marsh in the Kansas chalk. Over the course of his life collecting fossils, Mudge collected several species of mosasaurs and placed vertebrate fossil specimens in numerous major museums with over 300 being in the Yale Peabody Museum collections. Without a doubt, Mudge was the first; and most active, of the early fossil collectors in Kansas. In addition to Marsh, Mudge sent numerous vertebrate specimens to Cope in Philadelphia and invertebrates to Meek at the Smithsonian. Cope honored his work on mosasaurs when he named a new species of mosasaur Liodon mudgei.

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