Postcard of an Extinct Reptile Skeleton

ID: SIA2013-07791 (front) and SIA2013-07792 (back)

Creator: Albertype Company, The

Form/Genre: Postcard

Date: 1933

Citation: Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 65, Box 16, Folder: Postcards

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Postcard of an extinct reptile skeleton on display at the US National Museum, now the National Museum of Natural History. The postcard is unused, but the message side has a printed note about the reptile: "This giant extinct reptile, Dimetrodon gigas, was excavated from the Red Beds of the Permian period of geological history in Texas. It is 5 feet in length, and was a flesh eater as shown by its sharp cutting teeth. It lived on the western plains over 200,000,000 years ago when the area was a desert. It was the dominant animal of the period. The spinous extensions of the vertebrae are believed to have been united in life by a thin membrane, forming a crest along the back."


  • United States National Museum
  • National Museum of Natural History (U.S.)


Historic Images of the Smithsonian


The National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) first opened to the public on March 17, 1910, as the new United States National Museum. The first National Museum was housed in what is now the Arts and Industries Building.

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 65, Box 16, Folder: Postcards

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2520,



Restrictions & Rights

No restrictions


  • Postcard
  • Exhibitions
  • Reptiles, Fossil
  • Skeleton


  • Postcard
  • Paper

ID Number

SIA2013-07791 (front) and SIA2013-07792 (back)

Physical description

Number of Images: 2; Color: Black and White; Size: 5.4w x 3.4h; Type of Image: Postcard; Medium: Paper

Full Record

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