Books About Fossils
Arduini, P., and G. Teruzzi, 1986, Fossils: New York, Simon and
Schuster, 321 p.
This comprehensive guide to fossils contains 260 color plates and fossil descriptions.
Armstrong, C., and P. Armstrong, 1962, Trilobites of the Chicago
Region: Naperville, Illinois, private publication, 59 p.
Illustrated guide identifies Chicago-area trilobites and the quarries where they are found.
Baker, F.C., 1934, Fieldbook of Illinois Land Snails: Champaign,
Illinois, Illinois Natural History Survey, Manual 2, 166 p.
This well-illustrated book identifies modern and Ice Age snails.
Carpenter, F.M., A. Petrunkevitch, and E.N. Kjellesvig-Waering,
1979, Coal Age Fossils from Mazon Creek: Springfield, Illinois, Illinois
48 p., 8 pls.
Fossil insects, spiders, horseshoe crabs, and eurypterids from northern Illinois are described.
Case, G.R., 1982, A Pictorial Guide to Fossils: New York, Van
Nostrand Reinhold Company, 514 p.
More than 1,300 photos and drawings illustrate this relatively advanced survey of the fossil world. Major emphasis is on animals with backbones.
Daeschler, T., 1988, Fossils—Fossil Collecting Explained:
Philadelphia, Running Press, 95 p.
This introduction for beginners explains evolution and the fossil record, how fossils are formed, what information is yielded by fossils, and how to collect
fossils. A plastic viewing box on the cover contains several fossil fragments.
Feldman, R.M. (ed.), 1996, Fossils of Ohio: Columbus, Ohio, Ohio
Division of Geological Survey, Bulletin 70, 577 p.
A profusely illustrated series of chapters, written by twenty-three paleontological experts, covers in detail most fossil groups.
Fortey, R., 2000, Trilobite! Eye Witness to Evolution: New York,
Alfred A. Knopf, 284 p.
This book presents a popular history of trilobites from the Cambrian to the Permian time.
Greb, S.F., 1988, Progression of Life: Lexington, Kentucky,
Kentucky Geological Survey, poster.
A colorful poster featuring 150 animals and plants from the Earth's past.
Greb, S.F., 1989, Guide to "Progression of Life," with Notes on
the History of Life in Kentucky: Lexington, Kentucky, Kentucky Geological
Survey, Special Publication 13 (Series XI), 44 p.
This booklet, written as a companion to the poster, contains photographs of common fossils in Kentucky and illustrations of the animals from which the
fossils came. The booklet also contains illustrations that recreate what Kentucky looked like at various times in the past.
Janssen, R.E., 1979, Leaves and Stems of Fossil Plants from Fossil
Forests: Springfield, Illinois, Illinois State Museum, 140 p.
Fossil plants from the Mazon Creek area of northern Illinois are described and illustrated in this publication.
Jennings, J.R., 1990, Guide to Pennsylvanian Fossil Plants of
Illinois: Illinois State Geological Survey, Educational Series 13, 75
This handsomely illustrated guide to Coal Age plant fossils found the world over provides current information on classification, identification, relationships
of whole plants to parts of plants, distributions of plants through time, and tips on where and how to collect these fossils. This book will be a basic
reference for anyone interested in fossil plants. The venation diagrams are excellent.
Langford, G., 1958, The Wilmington Coal Flora from a Pennsylvanian
Deposit in Will County, Illinois: Downers Grove, Illinois, Esconi
Associates, 360 p.
Illustrated guide identifies Coal Age fossils from the Wilmington area in Will County, the source of the famous Mazon Creek plant nodules.
Levi-Setti, R., 1993, Trilobites, Second Edition: Chicago, The
University of Chicago Press, 342 p.
This volume has superlative illustrations and detailed descriptions of the class Trilobita. The book is an authoritative, exquisite work that is useful at all
levels of expertise.
Matthews, W.H., III, 1970, Fossils: An Introduction to Prehistoric
Life: New York, Barnes and Noble, 337 p.
The origin, collection, and identification of fossils as well as the evolution of life and the concept of geologic time are topics of discussion in this volume.
Appendixes include a glossary and lists of dealers, museums, and geological surveys.
Murray, J.W. (ed.), 1985, Atlas of Invertebrate Fossils: New York,
John Wiley and Sons, 241 p.
Authoritative, advanced articles covering the major invertebrate fossil groups appear in this well-illustrated collection. Each article represents a detailed
classification and morphology for a fossil group.
Nitecki, M.H. (ed.), 1979, Mazon Creek Fossils: New York, Academic
Press, 581 p.
This major collection of articles covers everything you wanted to know about the Mazon Creek fossils.
Ostrom, M.E., 1962, Fossil Collecting in Wisconsin: Madison,
Wisconsin, Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey, Educational
Series 3, 10 p.
This guide to Wisconsin fossils is nontechnical and suitable for collectors of all ages.
Perry, T.G., 1954, Fossils: Prehistoric Animals in Hoosier Rocks:
Bloomington, Indiana, Indiana Geological Survey, Circular 7, 83 p.
Beautifully illustrated survey of Indiana fossils includes a list of twenty collecting localities. The booklet is aimed at high school students and adults.
Pine, R.M., 1976, Guide to Collecting Illinois Fossils, Vol. 1,
Northern Counties: location unknown, Educational Visuals (single-sided
machine copies), 31 p.
This detailed map guide identifies twenty-eight collecting localities in the northernmost twenty-four counties of Illinois.
Rhodes, F.H.T., H.S. Zim, and P.R. Shafer, 1962, Fossils: A Guide
to Prehistoric Life, Golden Nature Guide: New York, Golden Press, 160
Colorful, well-illustrated book introduces the topic to beginners and amateurs.
Rich, P.V., T.H. Rich, M.A. Fenton, and C.L. Fenton, 1996, The
Fossil Book: New York, Doubleday, 740 p.
Superbly illustrated comprehensive guide covers the entire field of paleontology and paleobotany. The 1,500 drawings and photos, along with its
expansive text, are international in scope. They come with identification keys, a glossary, listings of collections, and thirteen pages of references.
Rose, J.N., 1967, Fossils and Rocks of Eastern Iowa: Iowa City,
Iowa, Iowa State Geological Survey, Educational Series 1, 147 p.
Collectors' field guide includes detailed descriptions of collecting sites and their rock sections. Eighteen plates of drawings are provided for identifications.
A geologic map of Iowa is included in a pocket.
Shabica, C.W., and A.A. Hay, 1997, Richardson's Guide to the Fossil
Fauna of Mazon Creek: Chicago, Illinois, Northeastern Illinois University,
An excellent guide covering the wide spectrum of fossil animals found in the Mazon Creek area, including chapters on the geologic and
paleoenvironmental setting. Although aimed at the professional, it provides the detailed information relished by many amateurs.
Shaver, R.H., 1959, Adventures with Fossils: Bloomington, Indiana,
Indiana Geological Survey, Circular 6, 52 p.
In this attractive introduction to fossils and collecting, thirty-four collecting areas in Indiana and adjacent states are described in some detail.
Thompson, I., T.P. Dickinson, and C. Nehring, 1982, The Audubon
Society Field Guide to North American Fossils: New York, Alfred A. Knopf,
Photographic field guide contains 474 color identification photos, an identification guide, detailed descriptions of fossils, and maps to collecting localities.
Unklesbay, A.G., 1955, Common Fossils of Missouri: Columbia,
University of Missouri, Bulletin Handbook 4, 98 p.
General survey introduces fossils and fossil collecting in Missouri.
The printed version of Guide for Beginning Fossil Hunters can be purchased from the Shop ISGS Web site.
Updated 09/21/2011 SLD