scheele coverPrehistoric Animals, 1956
By William E. Scheele

This is a very nice book on prehistoric animals.  The author, William E. Scheele, was the Curator of the Cleveland Museum of
Natural History when he wrote and illustrated the book.  The book does not discuss overarching topics such as evolution or the origins of
fossils, but rather provides one or two page descriptions (with illustrations) of various prehistoric invertebrates, and vertebrates.  The prehistoric
vertebrates include fish, amphibians, reptiles (e.g. dinosaurs and ocean-dwelling reptiles such as plesiosaurs and mosasaurs), mammal-like
reptiles, and prehistoric birds.  Prehistoric mammals are not included in this book, but were included in a subsequent volume published in
1957 titled, "The First Mammals."


William E. Scheele studied art and biology at the Western Reserve University, and according to the short biographical sketch contained
in the book, won the first annual Bird Art Contest sponsored by the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.  This eventually led to a
staff position at the museum.  The illustration of Ornitholestes, above, is one of the many beautiful charcoal drawings contained in the book. 
If you collect vintage books on prehistoric animals, get yourself a copy of this one.  See Doubtboy's writeup on this book here.