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ROBERT EDWARD "BOB" HANSON & wife, MARION JEAN HANSON

Robert Edward "Bob" Hanson was an extraordinary man. He had a very successful career, while at the same time spent much time and resources as a collector for various hobbies. Marion Jean (Darragh) Hanson says she kept thing running smoothly on the home front so that husband, Robert could become very successful in his occupation and an outstanding collector.

Robert Edward "Bob" Hanson's childhood, educational and family background:

Bob Hanson was born in Springfield, Massachusetts where he lived and went to school until he went away to college. The backyard of the home where he lived had a huge wooded area. It was here at an early age that Bob started 'finding things'. These 'things' turned out to be AmerIndian artifacts. It seems that AmerIndians had inhabited the entire area around Bob's boyhood home.

Bob earned a Bachelor Of Science Degree in Chemistry in 1952 and a Master of Science Degree in Biology & Organic Chemistry in 1954 from Oregon State University. He worked for Shell Oil Company for 33 years in their Research Laboratories and technical services.

Bob graduated from Classical High School in 1945 and then attended Springfiled Jr. College for one year. According to Bob's mother, as related to Marion, Bob's wife, Bob did not put out much effort so Bob's mother told him to forget school and go to work.

Bob was able to obtain an assistant chemist job at Monsanto Chemical Company. Bob liked his job, but his boss, who had a Dr. degree, convinced Bob to go back to school. The Dr. told Bob he was wasting his life working at a bench. Therefore Bob enrolled in Norwich University, in Northfield, Virginia. This time around, Bob's performance in college was different. Bob was tops in his class every year and graduated as Valedictorian in 1952. He won the German Award and various other awards, although his degree was a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry.

Bob went on to Princeton University where he obtained a Master's and a PhD Degree in Chemistry. By the time Bob finished Princeton University, he had 21 job offers. He chose to go to work for Shell Oil Company in Denver Colorado. Mr. Hanson had always wanted to live in Colorado.

In the meantime, Bob and Marion had dated for five years and been engaged for 1-1/2 years when they were married on June 5, 1954. At that time Bob was teaching chemistry until he could teach no more. Marion says he ran out of every source of money he could think of, so they got married. The wedding, Marion says, was a beautiful wedding. She also says taht the honeymoon was such as to convince most brides they had married the wrong guy. She promises more details later

Bob and Marion arrived in Denver, only to learn that first day that Shell Oil Company was moving its entire installation in Denver to Modesto, California. This was just about the last place Bob wanted to live. However, Bob and Marion did get to live in Colorado for Shell for a year and a half. Shell Oil Company also did a very nice thing for the Shell employees there. They allowed Shell employees, including Bob, in the summertime, to go to work at 7 or 7:30 AM so that the employees could leave early. This gave Shell employees, including Bob and Marion, a chance to head to the mountains for a picnic, fishing, hiking or whatever recreation they enjoyed. At that time Marion says Shell was very family oriented. The company had Christmas parties, barbecues, picnics and many other get togethers every year.

The Hansons had four children, two boys and two girls, with the youngest child, a daughter, having been born only five days before the oldest child turned six. This was a handful of children to raise as a group with ages so close to each other.

Robert Edward "Bob" Hanson's avocational background:

Bob had such a variety of interests that it boggled the mind. These included collecting AmerIndian (American Indian) artifacts; fossils; books; fishing; hunting; and collecting of animal skulls among other things. Bob did not just collect. He took each new interest seriously, by doing intensive reading, training, and study of that area of his hobby life.

Marion says that Bob's thirst for knowledge is beyond description. She says she was upset over his intensity of the search for knowledge in each area, but he convinced her that they could do these things together. So they were a team on each avocation Bob undertook. His collection of things he left were enormous.


Marion generously gave your curator sizeable amounts of the Hanson fossils, books and AmerIndian artifacts, some of which will be on display on this website and at the Proctor Museum of Natural Science location. Links to those items on this website, will be indicated on this page, where you can click on the link, and go to those items.


Bob and Marion collected Kemmerer, Wyoming fossil fish. Also they collected some in area outside of Hams Fork Campgrounds in Wyoming. Some collecting was with a Japanese guide outside of Laramie, Wyoming for ammonite fossils. One very nice fossil was a Stylemys nebrascensis tortoise shell. This tortoise lived in the late Eocene and early Oligocene in Nebraska and South Dakota primarily.

Stylemys nebrascensis
common fossil tortoise of the Badlands
of Nebraska & South Dakota

Leidy, 1853

Marion donated this fossil to
Lone Star College in Tomball,
Harris County, Texas

More is being added to this Biography and links will be added to the fossil page and AmerIndian page in the future