Mary Anning (1799-1847) was a pioneering paleontologist and fossil collector. She was born in Lyme Regis in southwest England. This area is now called the Jurassic Coast because of all the fossils that are found there still.
When Mary was 12, her brother Joseph found a strange-looking fossilized skull. Mary went out and dug it up very carefully over the next few months. Turns out the skeleton was 17 feet long. This was the first Ichthyosaurus (meaning fish-lizard) discovered.
From then on she kept discovering more and more fossils and she was the first to discover a complete skeleton of a Plesiosaurus (near to reptile). In 1828 Mary discovered a skeleton that had a long tail and wings. The first of a new species that came to be known as Pterodactyl. (You know, the one you couldn’t hear in the restroom in last month’s Dino Dispatch Raptor Riddle.)
Although she carefully excavated, cleaned, prepared, identified and cataloged her finds, they were usually purchased by male scientists who often didn’t give her credit for the find. She was refused admission into the Geological Society of London because she was a woman and poor. I suspect it was also because the guys couldn’t handle it. She was finding all the cool fossils and leaving the boys “in her dust”.
You can find more information here! Source: https://www.nhm.ac.uk/discover/mary-anning-unsung-hero.html