Welcome to the Dallas Paleontological Society Website

The Dallas Paleontological Society was founded in 1984 for the purpose of promoting interest in and knowledge of the science of paleontology.  It was intended by the founding members that the Society would be a network for the exchange of data between professionals and serious amateurs in this field.

Regular January Monthly Meeting

      Tracking Dinosaurs

The DPS met on Wednesday, January 11th, at 7PM Central time in the Boonesville Auditorium (Room 125) of the Ellison Miles Building (Bldg H) at Brookhaven Campus of Dallas College (3939 Valley View Lane, Farmers Branch).  Tom Vance, retired professor of biology at Navarro College, will speak on “Roland T. Bird's rare and/or lost photographs of the Paluxy Dinosaur Trackway”.  The Paluxy River has uncovered an incredible number of beautifully preserved dinosaur tracks in Dinosaur Valley State Park.  But the river also covers them up with sediment, and flood events erode the tracks and can remove the track layer completely.  So before the area was preserved as a park, parallel trackways of a sauropod and a following theropod were removed, and are now displayed in the American Museum of Natural History in New York.  A smaller trackway is displayed outside the Texas Memorial Museum in Austin.  But the tracks are also preserved in historic photographs that show the tracks as they were uncovered in the river bed.

Tom Vance was raised in Ennis, Texas, where he developed a life-long interest in herpetology and paleontology.  He earned an Associate in Science degree from Navarro College in Corsicana, and then a BS in Biology and Earth Science and a MS in Biology with emphasis in zoology from East Texas State College (now Texas A&M at Commerce).  One of his professors was Dr. Joan Echols who pioneered excavations and studies of the vertebrate fossils of the North Sulphur River.  Tom had earned 30 hours towards a PhD when he began teaching biology at Navarro College in 1977.  He is a long-time member of the Dallas Paleontological Society and a prolific author of articles in our Occasional Papers series.  He was principal investigator of the excavation of Ellie May, a complete mammoth from Ellis County, now on display in the Perot Museum, and also led the excavation of a mosasaur from near Blooming Grove.  The DPS awarded him Honorary Lifetime membership in 2015 and the William Lowe Lifetime Achievement Award in Amateur Paleontology in 2020.  Tom often represents DPS at events at the Waco Mammoth National Monument, and shows his fossil reconstructions and specimens at Fossilmania.  He gave a shorter version of this talk at Fossilmania in 2022, but this presentation will include some more photographs made by the WPA of the tracks in the Paluxy River and the excavation project.

DPS meetings are always free and open to the public.  We invite members to bring food to share, and everyone can bring fossils to show and get identification if you would like to have done.

Fossil Bits and Pieces

From Tony Fiorillo:

Thank you for the latest Fossil Record.

As you likely know by now, I have left the Dallas area.  But continuing to receive the Fossil Record is a great way for me to remain in touch with the remarkable fossils of northcentral Texas and the enthusiasm of those that love those fossils.

Happy holidays to everyone.




Executive Director

New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science

1801 Mountain Road NW

Albuquerque, NM  87104


Senior Fellow


Southern Methodist University

Dallas, TX  75275

Latest info on Lake Ralph Hall on the North Sulphur River’


To view a new 18 minute film on Florissant Fossil Beds Monument, please click on the link below:


We at SMU prepared a short video about the Smithsonian exhibit, "Sea Monsters Unearthed: Life in Angola's Ancient Seas," that has been posted on the Embassy of Angola in the United States website (https://angola.org) and on the Embassy Facebook page.  To see it, click on the link (https://angola.org), which will take you to the website.  The video is playing without sound on the banner.  Scroll down to Highlights and you will see a photo of a fossil. Click on that photo and you will see the video with sound and Portuguese captioning on the Embassy Facebook page. Attached is an information sheet about the exhibit, prepared for the Angolan Embassy.  If you would like the video with English captioning, just let me know.  Enjoy!

Louis Jacobs, DPS Advisor        jacobs@mail.SMU.edu  

NMNH Notice and Links_July 2020.docx       (This will download to your computer to view.)

We are very happy to announce that the very first Occasional Papers Volume 1, written by 9 members of the founding group of the DPS is now available to download!  It is under the HOME choice on the menu bar, then Members-Only Content and then Documents and Resources.

To see the info for Earth Science week, click here.

The Paleontograph back issues are now available at the following link


The DPS offers extra benefits for Members. Types of Memberships and costs of each can be found under MEMBERSHIP choice in the menu bar, then New Member Online Application. Below is a list of what Members receive and the reasons you should plan to join (or re-join) us in our paleo adventures! Our address to join, click here!

                                        MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS

Newsletter: The Fossil Record, the Society’s monthly newsletter, is sent to all members.

Special Events: Members receive Eblasts on surprise events and reminders of upcoming events.

DPS Website: Current members have access to the Members only section of the DPS website, which includes the Membership Directory, past newsletters, and more.

Field Trips: Some field trips have limited access (quarries, Oklahoma trilobites, etc.), and some field trips are designated members-only.

Excavations: Participation in Fossil Bureau of Investigation (FBI) excavations.

Discounts: Fossil prep kits, display items, books, and other unique items are occasionally offered at a discount to members.

Occasional Papers: Each Occasional Papers is a collection of in-depth articles on paleontology written by members. One copy per membership is free to members for a limited time immediately following publication. Past Occasional Papers are available for purchase.

Volunteerism: Volunteer opportunities to work the DPS booths provides community outreach, interaction with the public, and occasionally free entry to an event.

Family: Family Membership provides a discount to a second adult and allows for PIT Crew membership in which children can participate in special PIT Crew-only workshops, classroom activities, and field trips.

Dues pay for: food and drinks at the monthly meetings, refreshments on field trips, scholarships, and professional speakers for special meetings.

DPS Advisor Tony Fiorillo in the News

Below is a link to the Washington Post's feature article on Tony Fiorillo's Alaska research.  ENJOY!

On a trek for Arctic dinosaur footprints in Alaska preserve, three scientists spent eight days searching for such fossils to reconstruct the extinct creatures’ ecosystem. They hope their research could shed light on climate change, too.

Read in The Washington Post: https://apple.news/AZ7JzoF7KQWa0HLqatIDJNw

Dallas Library and DPS

The Dallas Library’s Podcast on Natural Dallas (P.O.N.D.) Annual Community Nature Expo includes a video featuring the DPS. Please watch all the videos for some interesting things to do and learn about in the outside world. Visit http://dallaslibrary2.org/pond/ for the videos.

Upcoming Events

  • No upcoming events

DPS Officers for 2023

The DPS officers for 2023 are: (r to l)

President: Michelle Kelly

Vice President: Joe O'Neil

Editor: Bill Weaver

Secretary: Dana Baggott 

Treasurer:  Paul (Pam) Lowers                    

Now Available!

Order your T-Shirt Now.  Click on the image to see details.


Also Available Now

Copies can be purchased at monthly meetings for instant gratification. Or the book can be purchased and shipped to your home by Clicking Here

Join us now

Come and join us for a great time at our next meeting, and click below to become a member.  Individual and Family memberships are available, and kids can participate in the PIT Crew (Paleontologists In Training).

Mail Check to:


PO BOX 223846

Dallas, Texas 75222-3846


The PIT Crew

The Paleontologists In Training is a program of the DPS that is open to kids from age 7 to 15.  If you are interested in fossils, want to have fun on field trips, and like learning about our beautiful world, come join us at one of our meetings, or field trips.  You will find it educational, and fun at the same time!

For more information, Click the link here or click the link under the home page called "For Kids - The Pit Crew" , to see policies, upcoming events, announcements, and how to sign up to take advantage of this new program.

About Us and Our Monthly Meetings

The Dallas Paleontological Society normally meets the second Wednesday of every month at 7:00 PM.

Due to 
 COVID-19, we are holding our monthly meetings on ZOOM.  Please check our Calendar for exact dates.  Come meet with us about 6:30 PM and before the start of the meeting. You will be welcome, and we will enjoy meeting you. This is a way to show your latest finds, get identification for them, and meet and greet other paleo people. Our speakers are a great way to learn about paleontology. 

Buy DPS Books Online

You can now buy books from the DPS online by clicking the "Store" button on the navigation bar at the top of this page.  If you buy online, and we ship the books to your home, you will have a shipping charge and tax.  If you buy the book at a meeting, you will not have to pay the shipping fee or tax.  Check out this new service.

Questions For DPS?

If You have any questions about the Dallas Paleo Society feel free to:

Contact Us 

Hot Line 


Who we are

The DPS is a group of professional and amateur paleontologists that want to exchange information, interact, and continue their education in paleontology.  We meet once a month on the second Wednesday evening of the month at Brookhaven College, Building H.

Mailing address: 

Dallas Paleontological Society 
P.O. Box 223846 Dallas, Texas 75222-3846

What we do

Do you have a question? If you have a fossil you cannot identify, or need a site investigation, contact the Fossil Bureau of Investigation for help.

Contact Us at 817-355-4693.


Why join us

We have fun.

We learn stuff.

We go cool places.

We find interesting things.

We make new friends.

Visiting Researcher Program

The Dallas Paleontological Society (DPS) offers local logistical assistance to professionals/academics conducting research in the North Central Texas area.  Assistance may include the loan of tools, but is not financial.  Past projects have included providing transportation to field sites, assistance in locating particular fossils or outcrops of a particular formation, field collection and excavation.     If you are interested in assistance, please contact the DPS President at president@dallaspaleo.org

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The Dallas Paleontological Society is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
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