General Web Earth History Resources
To a person uninstructed in natural history, his country or sea-side stroll is a walk through a gallery filled with wonderful works of art, nine-tenths of which have their faces turned to the wall. Teach him something of natural history, and you place in his hands a catalogue of those which are worth turning round.- Thomas Henry Huxley, Aphorisms and Reflections
- University of California, Berkeley: Museum of Paleontology ( This site may be offline. ) - The exhibits are like richly-illustrated online textbooks, emphasizing evolution and plate tectonics, with excellent historical backgrounds and a collection of educational resources, including frequently-asked questions about paleontology. A good place to start is the University of California's Museum of Paleontology: Geologic Timeline (more info) , an interactive geologic timescale.
- Oceans of Kansas (more info) - The unofficial but highly useful web page of the Sternberg Museum of Natural History (more info) , a paleontology museum. You'll have to scroll to the middle of the page to access its real content.
- The exhibits, articles with photographs of fossils and paintings about marine reptiles and fish who flourished in the late, great Western Interior Sea which covered much of North America until shortly after the Cretaceous.
- An online collection of full-text paleontology papers
- A links page
- USC Sequence Stratigraphy Web (more info) - emphasizes the application of an Earth history approach to physical geology and has all kinds of multimedia educational resources and a section on the history of stratigraphy.
- USGS' Education Resources for Paleontology (more info) is a series of booklets on geologic time, fossils, dinosaurs, and plate tectonics, including
- GeoTimes: Newsmagazine of the Earth Sciences (more info) an online geology and geology-news journal often has articles relevant to Earth history. It is produced by the American Geological Institute and is intended for the geology community, but is readable by the general public.
- AGI also has one of their most impressive textbooks, the richly illustrated Evolution and the Fossil Record (more info) , available free online.
- Palaeontologica Electronica (more info) is an online scholarly journal dealing with paleontology and occasionally geoscience education issues.
- Notebooks on Geology ( This site may be offline. ) is the English translation of a French online paleontology journal.
- Some of the most important books of Charles Darwin (more info) and papers by Sir Charles Lyell (more info) can be downloaded or read online.
Free Earth History Graphics
- David Alles' Alles Introductory Biology - Illustrated Lecture Presentations (more info) from his Earth History Class contain a lot of projection-ready graphics (within .pdf files) useful in lectures.
- Nice graphics help students to visualize bygone fauna. Early Image: A collection of illustrations from popular sources. (more info) is a collection of extinct-animal paintings and sketches produced before 1923 (and therefore in the public domain) like the lovely Stegosaurus above. Some of the works are of Victorian age and may lend atmosphere to a class emphasizing the history of geology.
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration: Paleoclimatology Program (more info) includes:
- An incredible amount of paleoclimate data (19 types!) from historical data to ice cores, most of it Late Quaternary
- Free data visualization software, such as Site Seer for pollen data
- Paloclimatology education/outreach materials
- Information about research programs
- Exhibits (PaleoPerspectives) on North American Drought and on Global Warming
- The Palaentology Research Group (more info) at the University of Bristol have put a number of resources online including:
- Access to several paleontological databases
- Animations of Mesozoic animals
- Press releases about the research they do
- Essays on paleobiological topics