Review of ICR Impact Article 151

(C) 1986, Glen J. Kuban

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This article was originally published in Origins Research, Spring Summer 1986, Vol. 9, No. 1. It addresses a number of serious misconceptions about the Paluxy controversy fostered in ICR's Acts/Facts/Impacts article 151 by John Morris in January 1986 (Vol. 15, No. 1), and the developments which led to the publication of ICR's article.


Between 1980 and 1985 I conducted extensive investigations of the Paluxy sites alleged to contain human tracks. I found strong evidence that many of the alleged "man tracks" were actually elongate dinosaur tracks, and that other alleged "man tracks" were due to a variety of spurious phenomena.[1]

Since the evidence I gathered conflicted with the claims of ICR and other creationist groups, I discussed my concerns with John Morris, Duane Gish, and others at ICR on several occasions between 1981 and 1984 [2], but received little response. In 1984 and 1985, I issued invitations to Morris and others at ICR to join me on the Paluxy sites, but they declined. In September of 1985, as my concern grew that important evidence was not being given sufficient attention by ICR, I wrote a long letter to the entire ICR staff, enclosing photographs from the Taylor Site and other Paluxy sites, and urging any and all ICR members to join me at the sites to view and discuss the evidence together. In response, John Morris called and arranged to meet me at the Paluxy sites in October of 1985.

On October 3, 1985 I met John Morris in Glen Rose, along with others who had been involved in the early creationist work in the Paluxy: Paul Taylor, Marian Taylor (son and wife of the late Stanley Taylor, producer of Footprints in Stone [3]), Tom Hendersen, and Marvin Herrman. We first went to the Al West Site, which most of the group had not seen before, where I pointed out many specimens of elongate, man-like tracks in the same trails with other tracks showing dinosaurian digit impressions.

We then went to the Taylor Site[4]. There I pointed out that almost every track in the Taylor Trail showed anterior splaying, as well as distinct infilling color patterns indicating dinosaurian digits, with overall track shapes very similar to the elongate tracks they had just seen on the West site. The Ryals Trail near the south bank was also visible, and several tracks showed dinosaurian features. The Giant Run tracks near the north bank were buried by sediment, but several GR tracks leading up to these were visible, and showed color distinctions in the shape of dinosaurian digits. The Turnage Trail was buried under deep sediment, but Morris indicated that it was not necessary to uncover it (I had previously shown them photos of the Turnage tracks from 1984, which showed dinosaurian features).[5]

I made another trip to Glen Rose later in October,[6] and on November 1 ran into Morris, Hendersen, and Taylor at the Paluxy. Morris indicated that they had come to look at the tracks again, and to expose the ones in deeper water that they had not viewed in October. With the aid of a glass-bottomed aquarium, which we pushed into the water to allow a clear view of the tracks, we were able to see several of the Turnage tracks, which exhibited indentations and colorations in the shape of dinosaurian digits. They also viewed the GR tracks near the bank to confirm, as I had previously maintained, that they were directly in line with other elongate tracks exhibiting dinosaurian features.

After the November meeting, I had several phone conversations with John Morris about the Paluxy evidence, during which time he repeated he suggested the colorations might not be genuine, and that the dinosaurian origin of the Giant Run and Turnage Trails was still questionable. Since many lines of evidence supported the genuineness of the colorations, and since the human interpretation was precluded by many track features besides the colorations, I wrote ICR another long letter reviewing this evidence. Subsequently, Morris indicated that he did agree that all of the Taylor Site tracks were probably dinosaurian, but that he was not yet ready to abandon the Paluxy controversy.

Shortly thereafter Morris issued an Impact article [7] addressing ICR's position on this matter. Paul Taylor also issued a similar notice similar but shorter notice, accompanying the withdraw of his company's film Footprints in Stone from distribution.[7b] Morris' article, however, received far greater circulation, and fostered many of the continuing misconceptions about the tracks.

Review of the Impact article

Although Morris acknowledges that the Taylor Trail "appears, obviously, dinosaurian," he encourages doubts about the other trails on the site, even though all of these trails show dinosaurian features. He also suggests that strong claims were never made about the Taylor Trail. Morris states, "He [Taylor] made no claims that these prints contained unquestionable toes or other diagnostic features." However, ICR and other creationist groups have been actively portraying the Taylor Trail as clearly human for many years. On page 96 of Morris' own book, he ardently argues that the Taylor Trail is clearly human, and dismisses all other explanations. Morris states (referring to the Taylor Trail), "When excavated in 1968 and 1969, the Films for Christ team noted that these prints were made by bare feet, showing clear toe marks in several of the tracks." The Taylor Trail was also argued to be clearly human in Footprints in Stone. In one scene Stan Taylor describes a Taylor Trail track as having a "human-like shape, the well-formed heel, the ball of the foot, and some indication of the angle of the toes."

Further, Morris fails to mention that the Giant Run, Turnage, and Ryals trails were also formerly claimed to be clearly human, even though all of these trails exhibit dinosaurian features. On page 203 of his own book Morris refers to these trackways as "clear human trails." Other statements to this effect are abundant in Footprints in Stone, in Morris book, and other creationist works on this subject.

Morris also emphasizes a number of "mysteries" about the dinosaurian features on the Taylor Site tracks which rely on unsupported assumptions and omission of important facts. When the full evidence is brought to light, it is clear that all of the Taylor Site tracks are dinosaurian. I would like to address each of these "mysteries."

1) Morris asks why the deep dinosaur trail (IID) did not receive the infilling material, since "it was evidently made first."

First, Morris' premise that the deep dinosaur trail (IID) was made first has no basis. The evidence does not indicate which of the many dinosaurs that walked across the site walked first. Second, there is no basis for Morris' suggestion that the deep dino trail (IID) did not receive the infilling. The bottoms of the IID tracks show the same blue-grey coloration characteristic of other tracks on the lower parts of the site. That the elongated tracks are not as deep as the IID tracks is not necessarily due to different amounts of infilling. It is quite likely that the tracks were different depths when originally made, due to differences in the weights of the individual dinosaurs, and/or differences in the consistency of the sediment when each walked through the area.

2) Morris asks, "Since the marl which infilled the deep dinosaur tracks was unconsolidated and easily removed by investigators, why did the Taylor tracks retain much of the material while providing a solid print bottom and flush toes?"

As mentioned, the size and contours of the elongate tracks suggest that they were shallower than the deep dino tracks when originally made. Any infilling would be expected to more completely fill the shallower tracks. That the digit region of the elongate tracks are more completely filled than the posterior region is also not surprising, since the elongate dinosaur tracks on other sites show that the digit impressions are typically the shallowest part of these tracks. Morris suggests that all the toe colorations are flush with the surrounding limestone. How ever, in many cases, especially in the Taylor Trail, the colorations are associated with shallow tridactyl grooves at the an anterior of the tracks, which are splayed in a typical dinosaurian fashion. Morris assumes that the material associated with the colorations is identical to the marl that lies between the limestone layers, but the former appears to be more homogeneous than the marl, and may have a significantly different composition.

3) Morris asks, "If the reddish stain is due to minerals in the river water, why did the Ryals Trail, which has been exposed at least 60 years, begin to stain at the same time as the more recently exposed prints?"

Morris bases this question on another invalid assumption: that the colorations must be due to minerals in the water if they are genuine. Although an increase in iron content is a possible factor for the colorations becoming more noticeable in recent years, other factors are involved as well. Indeed, the main reason for the color differences is that the tracks are evidently largely infilled with a secondary sediment whose texture and color is different from the surrounding limestone.

The collective features of the tracks, as well as preliminary study of the rock samples, all support the hypothesis that the blue-grey material represents the original infilling material, and that the rust colorations represent an oxidation of iron on the infilling surfaces. The oxidation (producing the rust coloration) would be expected to be accelerated on tracks which were repeatedly exposed to air and water, which has occurred more frequently to the Taylor Trail than the Ryals Trail, since the latter is in a deeper section of the site. The Ryals Trail may have been first exposed 60 years ago, but since then it has been almost continually under water, sediment, and algae that bind to the rock surface, which would likely inhibit oxidation. Even when exposed by investigators, any sediment or algae not completely removed from the rock surface would inhibit oxidation, and obscure from view any color distinctions that were present. Photos of the Ryals Trail in Morris's book and other literature show that often these tracks were not well-cleaned, and in the cases where they were well-cleaned, indications of the color can be seen (examples are cited under question 4 below).

4) Morris states, "Applying a reddish stain to the rock surface can easily be accomplished by the application of certain readily available chemical agents."

Morris' statement gives the impression that the colorations resemble man-made stains that can be readily duplicated, which is not at all the case. That the colorations are genuine is supported by several lines of evidence.

First, although the color distinctions have become more prominent in recent years, they are also visible in photos from earlier years. The color patterns on RY+5 are visible in Morris' book (page 217). Those on RY+2 are visible on page 34 of Wilbur Fields' book,[8] (even though the photos are black and white, the darker tone of the colorations are quite apparent). Fields sent me copies of his color slides from 1977, which show indications of colorations on several of the Taylor Trail tracks. My own photos from 1980 also show indications of the color, although the very dry conditions that year made them less noticeable (the contrast is more noticeable when the surface is wet). Several photos from the 1970 Loma Linda study also show colorations on the Taylor Trail tracks. Even in Footprints in Stone, indications of the color distinctions can be seen on Taylor Trail track +4 (which is shown at the point the narrator says, "some of the tracks proved to be merely elongated slides").

Second, the color distinctions are not all "reddish." The tracks on the lower areas of the site are blue-grey, and of a fine grained texture, contrasting the ivory-to-tan color and relatively coarse texture of the surrounding limestone. The tracks on somewhat higher areas are blue-grey on the bottom, grading to rust-color on the higher parts of the track. The tracks on the highest sections of the site are completely rust colored. This supports the hypothesis that the rust coloration represents an oxidation phenomenon--the oxidation would be accelerated on tracks that were most often subjected to exposure to the air--those at the higher parts of the site.

Third, many of the colorations are associated with indentations and/or small fissures in the rock surface, confirming that the color distinctions are associated with an underlying material. Even those tracks whose digits are not significantly impressed show at least some slight relief difference with the surrounding limestone, and/or fissures at the borders of the colorations.

Fourth, the entire Taylor Site has been under water since October of 1984, after which time many of the colorations have become more distinct and many new tracks have been found (discussed further in the article "Taylor Site 'Man Tracks'").

Finally, rock samples taken by Ron Hastings [9] clearly confirm that the colorations are associated with an underlying material distinct from the surrounding substrate (discussed further under question 6). Thus, the color distinctions are related to large number of phenomena that preclude any possibility of a "painting" hoax. Even if these colorations were not present, the other features of the tracks alone would refute the human interpretation.

5) Morris asks, "Is the Giant Trail extension valid? Likewise, are the prints in the Turnage Trail really part of that trail? How could the "old-timers" be all so wrong about the track removed from the Ryals Trail?"

a) Contrary to Morris' suggestion, The Giant Run extension is not "tenuous." Although there is a gap in the trail where only shallow depressions occur (evidently two tracks were not well preserved), the Giant Run Tracks showing clear dinosaurian features are directly in line with the more indistinct oblong tracks near the north bank (see Taylor Site map). Even if they were not in line, there would be no reason to consider them human, since they do not, and never did, show clear human features, and are the same basic size and shape as other indistinct, elongate dinosaur tracks on other Paluxy sites. Morris implies that only one of the Giant Run tracks shows dinosaurian digits (GR-2), but at least three GR tracks show them (GR-1, -2, and -4). Morris states that GR-1 was stepped on by a dinosaur print; however, it was only the left corner of the print that was overlapped; the middle and right dinosaurian digits of the GR-1 print are plainly visible.

b) The Turnage Trail tracks are clearly dinosaurian. During the November meeting Morris and Taylor viewed with me Turnage tracks IIN+2, IIN+3, and IIN+4 (which Morris calls Turnage tracks 3, 4, and 6--the discrepancy due to Morris' numbering of "missing" tracks). Everyone on the site agreed that these tracks were dinosaurian, and that they were the same Turnage tracks Morris had seen before. Morris implies that he saw only two Turnage tracks in November, but he also viewed IIN+4 (track 6 by his system), which he suggests might be from a separate trail. This track does head in a separate direction from the other Turnage tracks, but it too is clearly dinosaurian.

c) The Ryals Hole. Morris asks "how could the 'old-timers' be so wrong?" First, it is not uncommon for stories to be enhanced with time. Second, local residents, not being scientists, would naturally associate track shapes with things they were familiar with. Thus, it would not be surprising that oblong depressions or elongate dinosaur tracks would be mistaken for human tracks, just as it is not surprising that the tridactyl, digitigrade dinosaur tracks were originally known among the local residents as giant bird tracks. Last, and most important, several Ryals tracks both preceding and following the Ryals Hole, show definite dinosaurian features. That should settle the matter for anyone who puts more credence in scientific evidence than 'old timer' stories.

6) Morris asks why the cores do not show unequivocal evidence of infilling?

They do. The rock samples taken by Hastings and McKay clearly confirm that the colorations are related to an underlying material. Although the chemistry of the color distinctions is still being studied, there are many features related to the colorations that confirm that the colorations are genuine. I informed Morris about Hastings' samples before he wrote the Impact article, but Morris omitted this information from his article. Mckay's cores all came from one track (RY+4) which has especially thin digit colorations (but clearly dinosaurian), so it would not be surprising if the cores from this track showed less underlying material than other tracks. Nevertheless, McKay and Taylor related to me that the McKay cores did in fact show evidence of an underlying material distinct from the limestone. Morris acknowledged this also, but suggested they were "inconclusive" because the underlying material was deeper in some areas than others. That it is not the same depth in all places is not surprising; and thick or thin, it is there, so the samples are not "inconclusive." [10]

Review of the Impact Article Drawings

The drawings of the Taylor Trail tracks in Morris' Impact article are inaccurate and misleading. Contrary to Morris' comments, the track shown on the left side of his drawing is not characteristic of the original appearance of the Taylor Trail tracks. Morris' drawing shows a very human-like footprint, with mud push-ups extending around the front of the track. Although such a shape is occasionally found among elongate dinosaur tracks (apparently due to the way the mud oozed or was pushed by the middle digit or central pad of the dinosaur's foot) it is the exception, not the rule. It is, in fact, the exception, not the characteristic case, in the Taylor Trail. Most of the Taylor tracks showed a quite different anterior shape--they splayed into a wide V pattern. Morris himself acknowledges that they had "problematic" features, but fails to mention what these problematic features were, or to include them in his drawing.

The photographs that I have seen from early excavations do not match the Impact drawing. Only six close-up photographs of the individual Taylor Trail tracks taken at the time of the original excavation are shown in Morris' book (pages 208 and 209). Of these six, four do not look very human, nor anything like Morris' Impact article drawing. Of the remaining two tracks, +1 was wet out to look like a human left footprint, when it is really a right print in the series. Track +3 was the most man-like in the trail, but even this track showed some indications of the lateral dinosaurian digits, and now shows color distinctions that plainly indicate a tridactyl foot. The close-up photos Morris shows on pages 204 and 205 were taken several years after the original excavations by Taylor; the tracks in these photos do not look very human, and several show anterior splaying and other problematic features.

The track shown in the right half of Morris drawing is not representative of the present appearance of the tracks. Morris' drawing shows colorations occurring only at the anterior of the track, whereas the colorations typically follow the entire length of the track. It also shows the coloration crossing the mud push-ups in an unnatural manner, and forming a very rounded shape at the anterior, but most of the tracks show a more pointed middle digit, and the colorations conform more naturally to the contours of the track. Hastings and I have taken many photographs, measurements, and casts of the individual tracks, as well as video tape) during the last several years. A selection of these photos is printed herein; others are available direct from this author, and many are included in The Texas "Man Track" Controversy. [11]

Morris states that the shape of the track shown in his drawing, including the impression and coloration, is unlike any known dinosaur track. Well, perhaps the tracks in his drawing are not quite like any on the Paluxy sites, but the real Taylor Trail tracks are indeed similar in shape to other elongate dinosaur tracks found on the West Site and other Paluxy sites, as discussed below.

Significance of Elongate Dinosaur Tracks and Important Facts Omitted from the Impact Article

Most curiously, Morris leaves out of his Impact article one of the most significant pieces of information in the whole Paluxy controversy: that elongate dinosaur tracks are common in the Paluxy area, and in many cases resemble large human tracks when their digit impressions are obscured by erosion, mud back-flow, or other phenomena. Indeed, one can find indistinct, superficially man-like specimens of elongate dinosaur tracks immediately preceding or followed by specimens which plainly show dinosaurian digits. These elongate dinosaur tracks not only explain the Taylor Site "man tracks" but call into question all other cases of indistinct, oblong depressions often referred to as "man-like" or "moccasin-like"

Morris did not explain this in the Impact article. In fact he implies that tracks shaped like those on the Taylor Site are completely unknown, stating, "the shape of the entire track, including both impression and coloration, is unlike any known dinosaur track." Not only are tracks of similar shape known, but Morris has seen them for himself, and they occur on several Paluxy sites (I pointed out many in his presence), as well as in other states and in other countries.[12] The exact dinosaur species that made them is not known, as it is not known with certainty what species made any of the Glen Rose tracks, but the existence of these elongate dinosaur tracks is definitely known. In fact, the IIDW trail (which was never claimed to be human) is a long trail of elongated dinosaur tracks bearing distinct colorations, and occurs right on the Taylor Site.[13]

Besides the above problems with the recent Impact article, I am disturbed that Morris, when faced with numerous in- consistencies and inaccuracies in his own work, makes a sweeping condemnation of his critics, accusing the C/E team and other researchers of "ignoring and distorting" evidence. Although I have not agreed with all the statements of the C/E team, in the last few years they have done much more field work than Morris, and have made many valid criticisms of the Paluxy claims.[13B] Morris mentioned in his Impact article that I have done extensive research on this subject, but neglected to mention my conclusions, namely, that all of the Taylor Site Tracks are definitely dinosaurian, and that no genuine human tracks occur on any of the Paluxy Sites.


I am entirely in favor of further excavations in the Paluxy, as proposed by John DeVilbiss in a previous issue of Origins Research. Based on past experience, it is likely that any new excavations will turn up many new and interesting dinosaur tracks. However, it is unlikely, based on the same past experience, that new excavations will turn up genuine human tracks. Many areas of the Paluxy Riverbed have already been exposed by excavators and natural forces, revealing literally hundreds of dinosaur tracks, but not one clear human footprint. [14] If they are found, and are properly documented, I, for one, will be more than willing to acknowledge the find. However, I will not support exaggerated or unfounded claims.

A careful examination of the Paluxy evidence demonstrates that claims for human tracks in the Paluxy are not, and never have been, well supported. Of course, this does not disprove the creationist viewpoint [15] in general, since even if humans and dinosaurs lived at the same time, one would not necessarily expect to find evidence that they were walking around together in the same mud flat. Hopefully, those creationists who promoted the "man track" claims will gain at least one benefit from the refutation of the claims: incentive to be more thorough and careful in the future.


1. Among the spurious phenomena mistaken for human prints were erosional features, severely eroded tridactyl tracks, metatarsal dinosaur tracks, indistinct oblong marks associated with dinosaur trails (and probably representing drag or swish marks of a dinosaur's tail), and a few carvings. Further discussion of these phenomena is found in the article "The Taylor Site Man Tracks," in reference 14, and in "The Texas Man Track Controversy" (reference 11).

2. I shared my research with John Morris via letters and phone conversations, and spoke to Duane Gish when he was in Ohio on several occasions. In 1984 I showed Gish numerous photographs from my research on the Baugh, Taylor, West, and other Paluxy sites, and left with him a written summary of my research, which he latter indicated he had distributed to the ICR staff.

3. Footprints in Stone. 1973 (film). Films for Christ Association, Inc. Mesa, AZ. Films for Christ withdrew this film from distribution shortly after the 1985 meetings at the Paluxy. However, FFC continues to distribute a booklet called The Great Dinosaur Mystery, and a film by the same title, even though both promote the "man track" claims, using the Taylor Site tracks as evidence. If FFC is truly concerned about accuracy and consistency in their materials, these items should also be withdrawn from circulation, or at least be accompanied by a notice about the invalid "man track" claims.

4. There was shallow water over the site at this time, but the water was clear and slow moving, and I had swept most of the site clear of sediment the day before, affording a clear view of tracks on the site.

5. The same day I gave John Morris and Paul Taylor a tour of the site on which Carl Baugh had been working, a short distance upriver from the Taylor Site. Morris and Taylor agreed that the evidence did not support Baugh's claims, and that there were serious problems in Baugh's approach and methods. Ron Hastings, Steve Schafersman, James Farlow, and other track researchers were also in Glen Rose at this time, but Morris declined to meet with them (Farlow is a professional paleontologist who specializes in the study of fossilized tracks). After Morris left, I showed the West and Taylor Sites to Farlow, who was very excited about the many interesting dinosaur tracks on both sites, and agreed that the Taylor Site "man tracks" were really elongate dinosaur tracks reflecting metatarsal impressions. In mid October Ron Hastings returned to the Paluxy again to take small rock samples from some of the tracks, to further study the coloration/infilling phenomena. Cores from one of the Ryals tracks were also later taken by John McKay, editor of the creationist publication Creation Ex Nihilo.

6. I was in Glen Rose in late October and early November of 1985 to attend Fossilmania (a fossil show held at Oakdale Park), and to do further research on the track sites.

7. Morris, John D., 1986, "The Paluxy Mystery," Acts/Facts/ Impacts, Vol. 15, No. 1.

7b. Taylor, Paul, 1985, "Notice Regarding the Motion Picture 'Footprints in Stone'," dated 12-04-85.

8. Fields, Wilbur, 1980, Paluxy River Exploration, Revised Edition (1977-1979), Joplin, MO: privately printed by Wilbur Fields.

9. Ron Hastings was one of the four members of the Creation/Evolution (C/E) team that studied some of the alleged human tracks and published its findings in Creation/Evolution, Issue 15, Vol. 5, No. 1.

10. The cores are not inconclusive in regards to whether the colorations are genuine, since they clearly indicate that the colorations are related to an underlying (infilling) material.

11. Kuban, Glen J., 1986, The Texas "Man Track" Controversy, self-published, P.O. Box 663, Brunswick, OH 44212. Note: The above address is no longer valid; Glen Kuban has since moved to Texas. The monograph project has been replaced with a compilation of articles at , and a comprehensive book on the Paluxy controversy, still in preparation .

12. Among the sites containing elongate dinosaur tracks are: the Alfred West Site, a site on the north-east side of Dinosaur Valley State Park; a shelf south of Blue Hole in the state park; bend of the river between the state park and the Taylor Site; the Taylor Site itself; areas between the Taylor Site and the McFall house; the Baugh/McFall ledge (some partial metatarsal impressions and a few tracks showing complete or almost complete metatarsal impressions); and the McFall Site (far west end of McFall property). Elongated dinosaur tracks have also been reported from sites south of Glen Rose, and in other countries. For more information see the paper Elongate Dinosaur Tracks at

13. Even if Morris meant that no dinosaur tracks are known with the exact same shape and coloration, his point is moot, since no two tracks or trails are ever identical. In any case, his statement obscures the important fact that elongated dinosaur tracks with shapes similar to those on the Taylor Site do occur on other sites.

13b. The most detailed of the articles by the C/E team appeared in Creation/Evolution, 1985, Issue 15, Vol. 5, No. 1.

14. Besides the Taylor Site, two other sites which have received much attention by "man track" advocates are the State Park Shelf Site in Dinosaur Valley State Park, and the Baugh/McFall ledge. I have extensively studied both areas, as well as other "man track" sites, and found no evidence of human tracks. The State Park Shelf is a very undulating, eroded, and pot-marked surface on which almost any shape can be found. The alleged human tracks there are indistinct oblong marks, some of which have small solution pits mistaken for "toes" (such pits occur all over the shelf), and which have often been highlighted with water or other substances to encourage a human appearance. The many features of these Shelf "prints" inconsistent with genuine human prints were discussed by the C/E team (reference 9).

All of the "man tracks" on the Baugh/McFall Ledge appear to be due to misidentified phenomena and/or show signs of alteration. None bore more than a vague resemblance to human prints. The "man tracks" on Baugh's sites (farther east on the same ledge) involved partial metatarsal impressions at the back of dinosaur tracks, some vague oblong depressions associated with dinosaur trails (probably representing drag or swish marks of the dinosaur's tail, manus, snout, or other body part); shallow irregularities of the rock surface that bore little resemblance to human tracks, and some outright contrivances (gouges in the hard clay that overlies the rock layer). Although initially Baugh's claims were strongly supported by some creationists, many creationists are now acknowledging that Baugh's claims do not match the evidence. John Morris stated in his recent Impact article that, "the various controversial prints labeled human by Carl Baugh are of uncertain origin ...and provide no support for the original position."

Most of the other "man tracks" on less well-known sites involve indistinct elongate dinosaur tracks, or erosional features and natural irregularities of the rock surface. In some cases these are simply shallow indistinct depressions whose origin is unknowable, but which may be due to any of the phenomena described above, and which lack any conclusive human features.

Finally, several "man tracks" on loose slabs of rock were alleged to have originated in Glen Rose in the 1930's. However, these loose slabs have never been conclusively associated with the Paluxy riverbed. Further, all show anatomic problems, and those that have been cross sectioned show subsurface features truncated abruptly at the depression, strongly indicating a carved origin. Although some of these loose slabs such as the "Burdick Print" have been promoted as genuine by a few creationists in the past, and more recently by Carl Baugh, most recent researchers (creationist and noncreationist alike) regard them as likely carvings.

Paul Taylor wrote in his 1986 FFC statement (ref. 7b above) that, "Certain individuals, in no way associated with FFC, have been making claims of authenticity for a few human-like 'footprints' existing on relatively small slabs of rock or as casts in concrete or aluminum.... We consider these tracks to be of doubtful origin and suspicious in nature. Evidence suggests they were carved by a Glen Rose resident..."

15. Many creationists believe the earth is relatively young, and that humans and dinosaurs coexisted. However, others who consider themselves creationists believe the earth is much older, and that humans and dinosaurs may not have lived at the same time.


Undoubtedly, many readers will wonder what my position is on the creation/evolution controversy in general, or my motive for researching and reporting on the Paluxy evidence. I wish to clarify this here.

I have been interested in the creation/evolution controversy for many years, but have not yet formed definite conclusions about some aspects of the issue, such as the exact age of the earth, or the limits to biological change. I am a Christian and believe in a Creator, but prefer not to be labeled a "creationist" or a "evolutionist," since I do not fully identify with all of the tenets that are often assumed to typify each camp. However, on some issues that I have studied in depth, such as the Paluxy controversy, I have formed definite conclusions. Although my findings are not favorable to the "man track" claims, the objective of my research has not been to attack creationism, but to carefully investigate and document what actually exists on the Paluxy sites alleged to contain human tracks.

Addendum (2004)

Since this article was first published my view on the age of the earth have crystalized with further study and field work. I now am fully convinved that the earth is about 4.6 billion years old, and has had a long and complex history. Glen Kuban, 2004.


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