Alfred Wegener's Theory Of Pangaea And Continental Drift

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Introduction Fredrick Douglass once said “If there is no struggle, there is no progress.” (Douglas, n.d.). This seems to fit the life of Alfred Wegener and his struggle to prove his theory of Pangaea and continental drift. A brief overview of his life, his research, and difficulties he faced will be presented. In addition, discussing why Mr. Wegener’s theory was so widely criticized, other scientists’ objections, and his use of certain fossil organisms for his theory.
Mr. Wegener’s Life Alfred Wegener was born in Germany in 1880 and later went on to study at the University of Berlin where he completed his doctorate in astronomy in 1904 (Hughes, 1994). Instead of pursuing astronomy, Mr. Wegener was intrigued by meteorology and went on to
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Wegener was captivated by how it appeared that Africa and South America seemed to fit together like a puzzle (Hughes, 1994). Once captivated, Mr. Wegener gathered all the information that he could, including maps, samples taken from his Greenland expedition, to other fossil samples, gathered by other scientist, from areas he thought were once attached. Wegener sought information on the theory of the land bridge which also held fossil information showing the same species in Africa and South America (Hughes, 1994). However, Wegener did not believe in the land …show more content…
Of the fossils used were Glossopteris and Mesosaurus. One may wonder why these two. The Glossopteris (seed fern) produced seeds that were too large and heavy to be carried upon the air over oceans (Lutgens, Tarbuck, & Tasa, 2014). The Glossopteris has been found on several continents, thus indicating further that these areas must have been close together. The Mesosaurus was an animal found on both South America and Africa and one in which many doubted could swim the ocean to reach the other side (Lutgens, Tarbuck, & Tasa, 2014). Suppose Wegener would have chosen an aquatic animal like a shark, many could just make the assumption that the shark migrated for unknown reason. The same could be said of any aquatic life form but it appears harder to disprove fossils that don’t

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