One hundred years ago this year, a young George Adams discovered a strange impression in the Wheeler Branch streambed that would put the county and Glen Rose on the world-wide map for paleontologists and adventurers alike.
Unbeknownst to him, the teenaged Adams had discovered theropod tracks left by the Acrocanthosaurus.
Acrocanthosaurus was a three-toed carnivore that could get up to 30 feet long and weigh as much as three tons. The predator was armed with claws, knife-like serrated teeth and a protective bony ridge down its spine.
Since that day in 1909, scientists, researchers and tourists have traveled to the area to study the remnants of this ancient creature and others like the Paluxysaurus.
In 1970, the Dinosaur Valley State Park was dedicated and has worked to preserve and showcase the fossils and the legend has grown ever since.
Adamsí discovery, along with Glen Rose and the state park, is highlighted in the June 2009 edition of Texas Highways, on newsstands now.
The feature is written by Laurie Jasinski, an author who has also published a book about the area, titled Dinosaur Highway: A History of Dinosaur Valley State Park.
No doubt with the landmark anniversary and summer vacation quickly approaching, many families will return to the area to rediscover these treasures of the past.
Dinosaur Valley State Park has 1,590 acres of camping, hiking, trails and swimming off FM 205 in the western part of Somervell County. More information about the park can be found at www.tpwd.state.tx.us.