Edward Drinker Cope: American Paleontologist
Edward Drinker Cope, along with O.C. Marsh, is responsible for filling museums around the world with the bones of dinosaurs and other prehistoric creatures. He and Marsh began as friends and then became bitter enemies in their quest for finding the most and the biggest fossil creatures. Born in 1840 in Philadelphia, he spent years in the western United States digging up some of the most famous dinosaur fossils.
Cope was a "gentleman scientist" who used his personal money to fund most of his research and expeditions. He began searching the American west in the mid-1860's and was assisted with a number of his excursions by the U.S. Army.
Cope produced two books that are considered among the most important in American paleontology. "The Vertebrata of the Cretaceous Formations of the West" and "The Vertebrata of the Tertiary Formations of the West." Together these books are known affectionately among paleontologists as "Cope's bible." If you would like to see these books in their entirety, just click on "Download File" for a searchable PDF document.