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Abstract

The geological literature about the Grand Canyon does not cover a terribly long period of time, at least in comparison with the age of modem geology. The firsi scientist to visit the Grand Canyon was the geologist John Strong Newberry, who arrived there with the Ives military exploring expedition in April, 1858. The first definitive geological report about the Grand Canyon was Newberry’s (1861) “Geological Report”, published as Part 3 of the single volume, Report upon the Colorado River o f the West (Ives, 1861). This pioneering work was the only volume available to geologist John Wesley Powell—the Canyon’s first true explorer-when he planned his first journey down the Colorado River in 1869. After Powell’s second expedition, in 1871–1872, and after he published his narrative of the expeditions (Powell, 1875), the Canyon surged into the scientific and popular interest. It is a captivating subject even today, as the literature testifies.

What began as an almost inconsequential mention of “the Big canon” in a geomorphological monograph completed by January, 1856 (Hitchcock, 1857), and followed by just two major publications during the next two decades, now is a publishing record of scores of titles each year. And within the hundreds of papes and monographs that have been produced, especially in the last few decades, there is a tremendous amount of data which can be extracted only by lengthy, sometimes laborious and serendipitous, scanning and cross-referencing.

About ten years ago, compilation of an annotated bibliography of Grand Canyon geology (including paleontology) was begun.

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