Mary Leakey

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by KmKober
Last updated 7 years ago

Scientific Biographies

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Mary Leakey

Mary Douglas Leakey was born on February 6, 1913 in London, England.She married Louis Leakey who was not only her husband then, but the person who influenced her. The two of then became a dynamic duo of science.She was a paleoanthropolgist who made many archaelogical and anthropological discoveries.Mary made her first big discovery of a partial skull fossil in 1948.This fossil was called a Proconsul africanus which means it was an ancestor of apes and humans that later evolved into two distinct species.This fossil she discovered is found to be over 18 million years old.In 1979, she discovered a fossil called homo habilis which is believed to be between 1.4 and 2.3 million years old.Mary Leakey died on December 9, 1996 in Nairobi, Kenya.

More about Mary

Mary really enjoyed what she did. She loved being outside and even stated, "I'd rather be in a tent than in a house." I think enjoying the outdoors was very big part of her movitvation as well as her husband. Leaky's research was inspired by Charles Darwin's notion that humandkind originated in Africia. Mary Leaky did this work from before 1959-1983. She encouraged many other scientists to study primated in their nature environment such as Jane Goodall. During World War II, Mary conducted fieldwork at Olorgesailie and Ngorongoro, Rusing Island, Lewa and the Kavirondo area. She came across many things including Acheulean cleavers, axes, and various Miocene fossils.

Lasting Impact

Mary Leakey has affected our world because she has proven that anyone can be a scientist or paleontologist, even women! She was a very intelligent female who discovered many things!


- Leakey, Mary D. Disclosing the past. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1984. Print.- "Mary Leakey Quotes." Motivational Posters, Inspirational Posters, Awards Recognition, Business Gifts. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Mar. 2014.- "Mary Leakey." 2014. The Biography Channel website. Mar 21 2014, 03:21

All About Mary Leakey


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