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Stratigraphic framework of Cambrian and Ordovician rocks in the central Appalachian Basin from Medina County, Ohio, through southwestern and south-central Pennsylvania to Hampshire County, West Virginia

Bulletin 1839-K

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Abstract

A 275-mi-long restored stratigraphic cross section from Medina County, Ohio, through southwestern and south-central Pennsylvania to Hampshire County, W. Va., provides new details on Cambrian and Ordovician stratigraphy in the central Appalachian basin and the structure of underlying Precambrian basement rocks. From west to east, the major structural elements of the block-faulted basement in this section are (1) the relatively stable, slightly extended craton, which includes the Wooster arch, (2) the fault-controlled Ohio-West Virginia hinge zone, which separates the craton from the adjoining Rome trough, (3) the Rome trough, which consists of an east-facing asymmetric graben and an overlying sag basin, and (4) a positive fault block, named here the South-central Pennsylvania arch, which borders the eastern margin of the graben part of the Rome trough. Pre-Middle Ordovician structural relief on Precambrian basement rocks across the down-to-the-west normal fault that separates the Rome trough and the adjoining South-central Pennsylvania arch amounted to between 6,000 and 7,000 ft. The restored cross section shows eastward thickening of the Cambrian and Ordovician sequence from about 3,000 ft near the crest of the Wooster arch at the western end of the section to about 5,150 ft at the Ohio-West Virginia hinge zone adjoining the western margin of the Rome trough to about 19,800 ft near the depositional axis of the Rome trough. East of the Rome trough, at the adjoining western edge of the South-central Pennsylvania arch, the Cambrian and Ordovician sequence thins abruptly to about 13,500 ft and then thins gradually eastward across the arch to about 12,700 ft near the Allegheny structural front and to about 10,150 ft at the eastern end of the restored section. In general, the Cambrian and Ordovician sequence along this section consists of four major lithofacies that are predominantly shallow marine to peritidal in origin. In ascending stratigraphic order, the lithofacies are identified by the following descriptive names: (1) sandstone, shale, limestone, and dolomite unit, (2) dolomite and sandstone unit, (3) limestone and black shale unit, and (4) shale and sandstone unit. Each of these units and their associated subunits thicken from west to east across the restored section to a maximum near the depositional axis of the Rome trough and then thin eastward to the end of the section. The sandstone, shale, limestone, and dolomite unit is largely confined to the asymmetric graben that marks the initial phase of the Rome trough. This unit is Early and Middle Cambrian in age and consists, in ascending order, of a basal sandstone unit (undrilled but probably present), the Tomstown Dolomite (undrilled but probably present), the Waynesboro Formation, and the Pleasant Hill Limestone and its equivalent lower one-third of the Elbrook Formation at the eastern end of the section. The dolomite and sandstone unit forms the core of the Cambrian and Ordovician sequence. In the Rome trough and on the adjoining South-central Pennsylvania arch, this unit consists, in ascending order, of the Middle and Upper Cambrian Warrior Formation and the equivalent upper two-thirds of the Elbrook Formation at the eastern end of the section, the Upper Cambrian Gatesburg Formation, and the Lower Ordovician and Middle Ordovician (Whiterockian and Chazyan) Beekmantown Group. West of the Ohio-West Virginia hinge zone, the dolomite and sandstone unit consists, in ascending order, of the Conasauga Formation of Janssens (1973), the Krysik sandstone of driller's usage, the B zone of Calvert (1964), the Knox Dolomite and the associated Rose Run Sandstone Member, and the Wells Creek Formation. The widespread Knox unconformity is located at the base of the Wells Creek Formation and at or near the top of the adjoining Beekmantown Group, except near the depositional axis of the Rome trough, where the unconformity seems to be absent. The limestone and black shale unit i

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Stratigraphic framework of Cambrian and Ordovician rocks in the central Appalachian Basin from Medina County, Ohio, through southwestern and south-central Pennsylvania to Hampshire County, West Virginia
Series title:
Bulletin
Series number:
1839
Chapter:
K
ISBN:
0607657693
Edition:
Version 2.0
Year Published:
2003
Language:
ENGLISH
Description:
40 p.