cover
The Golden Play Book of Animals of the Past Stamps, 1954
By Rose Wyler and Gerald Ames

The path that led to my career as a scientist began when I was about 4 years old and I found a Marx plastic
dinosaur (I think it was an Allosaurus) on the sidewalk in front of Charlie Kinkowski's (sp?) house.  (Sorry
Charlie, wherever you are, but back then as you probably remember, preschoolers knew all about the law of
"finder's keepers, losers weepers.") After that paleontological theft...er "find," I soon came into possession of
several more, legitimately obtained, Marx plastic dinosaurs.  Soon thereafter, I somehow acquired an
incomplete set of prehistoric animal cards that were illustrated by Matthew Kalmenoff.  Over the next few
years I eventually lost or traded away (for Baseball or Beatle cards?) my prized prehistoric animal card
collection.  But lo-and-behold, one day (late 1960's) I happened to see a set of the same cards, in perforated
bound pages, for sale at some long-forgotten store.  After purchasing the cards, all I had to do was carefully
separate each individual card at the perforations.  And finally--a complete set!  But alas, I currently only
possess maybe 15 of the original 46 or so cards. 

I didn't realize until several years later that the Kalmenoff illustrations were also published in a sticker book. 
The original version of the sticker book was titled as above.  Later reprintings from the 1960's and 1970's were
titled "The Golden Stamp Book of Animals of the Past."  I do not know which came first--the stamps, or the cards. 

Note that there are some differences between the "card" and the "sticker" sets.  The sticker set has a few
extra illustrations (e.g., "Skull of the Uninta Beast," "Cave Painting of Bison," etc.) that were not included in
the "card" set.  In addition, the "card" set has more specific captions than does the sticker set (e.g., "Dimetrodon"
versus "sail-backed reptile).

wyler-dimetro

I really like Kalmenoff's illustrations in this sticker book; perhaps because they evoke fond childhood memories? 
In any event, the illustrations have a nice mix of bold colors; and some, such as the "bear-dog" (which was swiped
from a Borophagus illustration by Charles R. Knight), are executed very nicely.  (Note that a color version of Knight's
Borophagus is contained in Czerkas and Glut.)

Kalmenoff based many of the sticker book illustrations on those of Knight (e.g., the "bear-like dog," "giant mosasaur,"
"plated dinosaur," etc.).  The "early reptile" is based on an illustration by F. L. Jaques, and the "Plesiosaur" is based
on a line drawing by Richard Deckert that is contained in Osborn's, Origin and Evolution of Life.

Oh yes, I need to mention that Robert Garland prepared the adequate line drawings contained in this sticker book.

Finally, if you enjoy vintage illustrations of prehistoric animals, get yourself a copy of this sticker book.

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