Wonders in Monsterland

In 1865, Lewis Carroll published Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, the story of Alice, who falls through a rabbit hole and enters a fantasy world of anthropomorphic creatures. E. D. Cuming captures this same energy and style but uses dinosaurs in his 1901 work, Wonders in Monsterland, the tale of two siblings who travel back to the Mesozoic Era to encounter these and other prehistoric animals. William James Affleck Shepherd (1866-1946), an English illustrator and cartoonist, provided the original artwork.

At the time that Wonders in Monsterland debuted, the Theodor Reichardt Cocoa Company in Hamburg, Germany, began to sell its chocolates with collectible chromolithographed prints showing dinosaurs in natural settings. F. John, the artist for the first two sets of print collections published by the German chocolatier, drew inspiration for the art from the dinosaur paintings of Charles R. Knight, done a few years earlier for the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

"The Song of the Dinosaurs"

Wonders in Monsterland

E. D. Cuming; illustration by J. A. Shepherd

London: George Allen, 1901

On loan from the collection of Charles Valauskas