Phacops rana, a trilobite.
The Pennsylvania state fossil.


The Section of Paleontology and Geology houses collections of fossils, rocks and minerals from Pennsylvania and around the world. We have a large collection (8,000 +) of fossil plants from Pennsylvania’s world famous anthracite coal fields and an equally large collection of Paleozoic marine invertebrates. Noteworthy special collections include: the Issac E. James paleobotanical collection; the John Oleksyshyn marine invertebrate and paleobotanical collections; Lower Devonian marine invertebrate collection from Curtin Village, PA; and the William F. Klose, II paleobotanical and insect collections. The section also serves as the repository for fossils collected by the Pennsylvania Geological Survey (including those from the Second Survey of Pennsylvania, 1874 to 1889).

Fossil vertebrates includes numerous fish (most notably Gyracanthus) specimens from the Upper Devonian Catskill Formation (Sullivan and Clinton counties); a median plate from the of the giant armored fish Dunkleosteus from the Upper Devonian Chadokoin Formation (Erie County); skeletal remains of the phytosaur (crocodile-like reptile) Rutiodon and the labrynthodont amphibian Buettneria from the Upper Triassic New Oxford Formation at Zions View (York County); dinosaur footprints from the Upper Triassic Lockatong Formation at Graterford State Prision (Montgomery County); and the most complete mastodont from Pennsylvania found at Marshalls Creek (Monroe County).

The section has a small, but important, type collection, which include Paleozoic marine invertebrates, fossil insects, fossil fish and dinosaurs.

Notable mineral holdings include specimens from Cornwall (Lebanon County) and the John S. Frankenfield mineral collection.

The collections of Section of Paleontology and Geology are under the care of Steven E. Jasinski, Acting Curator.

The collections are accessible to bona fide researchers and college students by appointment only. Interested individuals should contact Steven E. Jasinski by phone at: (717)783-9897, or by email:Steven E. Jasinski.


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