Dinosaurs in Their Time

stegosaurus blackDinosaurs in Their Time is the first permanent exhibition in the world to feature scientifically accurate, immersive environments spanning the Mesozoic Era—the Age of Dinosaurs—arranged chronologically and filled with actively posed original fossil specimens. See dinosaurs like they haven’t been seen in 66 million years!

The historic, century-old Dinosaur Hall was closed in Spring 2005 for over two years of renovation and construction, resulting in the spectucular exhibition Dinosaurs in Their Time. The renovated and expanded exhibition illustrates the incredible diversity of life in the Mesozoic Era, placing the dinosaurs in dramatic, scientifically accurate poses amidst the hundreds of plant and animal species that shared their environments.

Exhibit Highlights

In the century since the discovery of Diplodocus carnegii, scientific interpretations of dinosaurs and their lives have changed remarkably. Dinosaurs in Their Time is a dramatic exhibit arena that reflects current scientific evidence of these colossal creatures and their environments. For instance, we now know that Diplodocus did not drag its tail through Jurassic swamps, and the sheer size of Tyrannosaurus rex casts a shadow of doubt on its reputation as a Cretaceous killing machine.

The continental and climatic changes that affected the evolution of species over time are also addressed as well as the other extraordinary life forms that shared their environment, including birds, fish, amphibians, turtles, plants, and even mammals. The museum's vast fossil collections, combined with its scientific expertise, guarantee an exhibition that accurately interprets the incredible record prehistoric animals left behind and integrates the dinosaurs into the ancient ecosystems in which they lived.

Research in Action

The dinosaurs on display are only a few of the real fossil skeletons that make up one of the world's best dinosaur collections. But dinosaurs aren't all we have! Carnegie Museum of Natural History is also an active research institution.Visitors can witness dinosaur fossils and other prehistoric creatures being prepared for exhibit and study in PaleoLab.

Exhibit Interactives

Experience the thrill of unearthing dinosaur and mammal fossils casts in our hands-on interactive fossil dig, Bonehunters Quarry. In addition, more than 300 pages of scientific content on 20 interactive touchscreens offer in-depth information on the creatures and dioramas in the exhibition.

Exhibit Online

footLearn about Carnegie Museum of Natural History's first dinosaur in the online exhibit Dippy, This Is Your Life.

footSee the LEED certification website to learn about the award-winning green building techniques used in Dinosaurs in Their Time.

footDinoGuide gives you the 411 on 13 of the dinosaurs that appear in the exhibit.

footTo learn more about the bizarre new unnamed dinosaur currently being studied by Carnegie paleontologists, visit the Field Guide to the Oviraptorosaur.

footWatch archival footage of the original fossil excavations in the silent film Monsters of the Past. 

footCheck out the Web cam archives to relive the historic renovation of some of our world-famous specimens. View digital shots from the dismantling of Diplodocus carnegii, Apatosaurus louisae, and Allosaurus fragilis, and see both the dismantling and reinstallation of Tyrannosaurus rex.

Did You Know?

Dinosaurs lived from about 225 to 65 million years ago, during the Mesozoic Era. In that tremendous span of time, a great variety of dinosaurs evolved—over 370 species of these "terrible lizards" have been named. Cenozoic Hall, the Hall of Fossil Mammals provides information on the Age of Mammals, which followed the dinosaurs.

The 78-foot-long Diplodocus was one of the longest animals that walked the Earth, and the more famous Apatosaurus, formerly known as Brontosaurus, nearly equals it in length.

For More Info

  • Check out our Programs for information on Carnegie Museum of Natural History's dinosaur programs, classes, and events.
  • Visit the Section of Vertebrate Paleontology website to learn about our staff and their research.