A Brief History of U.S. National Museum Specimen 2210

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  • Mark Lay, a volunteer in the Vertebrate Paleontology Preparation Laboratory, National Museum of Natural History, provides a history of U.S. National Museum specimen 2210, a Camptosaurus dispar, collected in 1882 from the Morrison Formation section of Quarry 13, near Como Bluff, Wyoming, by William Reed for the famed dinosaur hunter Othniel Charles Marsh. This is an ornithischian dinosaur of the Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous periods (145-155 mya). The specimen was unusually intact, although it lacked a skull.
  • Marsh collected the specimen in his role as a paleontologist for the U.S. Geological Survey, but Marsh had the specimen sent to his laboratory at Yale University where he taught. Since all USGS specimens had to be deposited at the Smithsonian, after his death in 1899, Marsh's USGS specimens (five train car loads) were transferred to the National Museum. The specimen was prepared by Norman H. Boss, a talented fossil preparator, and placed on display when the new U.S. National Museum building (now the Natural History Building) opened in 1911.
  • Lay also described recent restoration of the specimen, which he worked on.


  • Marsh, Othniel Charles
  • Boss, Norman H
  • United States National Museum
  • Paleontology Laboratory (NMNH)
  • United States Geological Survey (USGS)
  • National Museum of Natural History (U.S.) Vertebrate Fossil Preparation Laboratory
  • National Museum of Natural History. (U.S.) Division of Vertebrate Paleontology
  • National Museum of Natural History (U.S.) Division of Paleontology and Paleobotany
  • National Museum of Natural History (U.S.)
  • United States National Museum Vertebrate Paleontology Division
  • United States National Museum Dept. of Geology
  • Peabody Museum of Natural History
  • Yale University


Smithsonian History Bibliography

Contained within

Fossil News October 2008 (Journal)

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2520, SIHistory@si.edu




  • Dinosaurs
  • Iguanodontidae
  • Scientific expeditions
  • Vertebrate Paleontology
  • Paleontology, Vertebrate
  • Camptosaurus
  • Collectors and collecting
  • Specimens
  • Reptiles, Fossil
  • Wyoming



Physical description

Number of pages: 4; Page numbers : 2-5

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