The first catalogue ledger of the Illinois Natural History Survey Amphibian and Reptile Collection was started in 1941.  The first 879 entries were transcribed from index cards and include specimens collected as far back as 1870.  Most of these early specimens do not include collector information.  The earliest specimen with collector information is an Eastern Massasauga collected by Stephen A. Forbes in Pekin, Illinois in 1873.  Also among these earliest records with collector data are specimens from Colorado collected by George Cooper and C.C. Crandall (possibly Christopher C. Crandall) in 1875.  Other early collectors include Franklin Sumner Earle (specimens collected in Union Co., IL; 1877); Harrison Garman (Marshall Co., IL; 1878); H.A. Surface (Mason Co., IL; 1882) and Julius Hurter (Madison Co., IL; 1896).  See “A History of Herpetology in Illinois” for more information on early herpetologists in Illinois and List of INHS Collectors.  Stephen A. Forbes reported to the University of Illinois Board of Trustees in 1886 that he had just completed moving all property from the former State Laboratory of Natural History facilities in Normal, IL.  Included in this list were 1,400 specimens of amphibians and reptiles. Unfortunately, It seems that many of these early specimens did not survive to be catalogued in 1941.

Ouachita Map Turtle (Graptemys ouachitensis), A.R. Kuhns photo