The Yale College Scientific Expedition of 1871
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Yale Students on the 1871 Expedition

John Jay DuBois ’67, M.A. ’72
Oscar Harger, ’68
George M. Keasbey, ’71 S
George G. Lobdell, Jr., ’71 S.
Alfred Bishop Mason, ’71, M.A. ’74
Frederick Mead, ’71, M.A. ’74
Joseph French Page, ’71.
Theodore Gordon Peck, ’71, M.A. ’93
John F. Quigley, ’71 S
Harry D. Ziegler, ’71 S

Other Yale College Scientific Expeditions: 1870 | 1872 | 1873

 

The Expedition

The second Yale College Scientific Expedition proceeded immediately to Fort Wallace, Kansas, in hopes of finding more of the pterosaur that had been recovered the previous year in the Cretaceous chalk of the Smoky Hill River region. They were not disappointed. Setting out on July 2, with 5 army wagons and the usual army escort, O.C. Marsh began retracing his steps almost immediately on setting up camp. They not only recovered more of the same specimen, but several others.

After a month, the party headed to Denver for a short rest. From there they went to Cheyenne and then to Fort Bridger, reaching there on August 22. They set out on a 6-week exploration of the Green River Basin, collecting 11 boxes of material, including the type specimens of Orohippus uintanus and O. pumilis.

After a break in Salt Lake City, the party moved on to the John Day Basin in Oregon, reaching Canyon City, Oregon, on October 17. Escorted by soldiers from Fort Harney and guided by Rev. Thomas Condon, they spent only a couple of weeks there before winter brought their collecting to a halt.

The party split up after reaching Portland, Oregon. Some accompanied Marsh by steamer to San Francisco, while a smaller group started back overland. In San Francisco, the group split up again, some returning by rail and others joining Marsh returning via Panama by ship. Marsh and his small entourage arrived back in New Haven on January 14, 1872.