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George Gaylord Simpson's "History of the Section of Vertebrate Paleontology in the Paleontological Society"

Joseph Allen Cain
Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology
Vol. 10, No. 1 (Mar. 29, 1990), pp. 40-48
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4523294
Page Count: 9
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George Gaylord Simpson's
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Abstract

In December 1940, vertebrate paleontologists dissolved the Paleontological Society's Section of Vertebrate Paleontology and formed the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology as the principal professional organization of their discipline. During the months leading to this founding meeting, Simpson wrote a manuscript about the former Section. That manuscript, which Simpson never published, had two purposes: (1) to justify the dissolution of the Section and the formation of the separate Society, and (2) to describe the Section's administrative practices. Presented here in its entirety, with historical notes added by Cain, this manuscript provides insight into the relation between vertebrate paleontologists and the Paleontological Society during the 1930s. Simpson's manuscript also illustrates the extent to which vertebrate paleontologists expressed disciplinary independence during this period.

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