The following slides are excerpted from a presentation I gave at the Milwaukee Public Museum in 2016 entitled, Coal, Shale and Ironstone: The Geology and Paleontology of Mazon Creek.Additional slide images from the talk are sprinkled into the website galleries of Mazon Creek fossil plants and animals.
In 2020, ESCONI published A Comprehensive Guide to the Fossil Flora of Mazon Creek. Since the 2006 release of Jack Wittry’s first book, The Mazon Creek Fossil Flora, much work has been done in the field and many new taxa have been discovered, some rare and unique to the area. Over 20,000 specimens were identified and studied from three different institutions for this project alone. In addition to updated names and natural affinities based on the most current scientific literature, this volume contains over 100 more pages of information, with detailed color photos and a broad census extracted from The Field Museum’s collection. Pages in this edition are also reorganized from the most archaic to the most derived plant groups to conform to other contemporary taxonomic works. The Mazon Creek flora of Illinois is still the most diverse known flora of Paleozoic age in North America.