Five positive carbon isotope excursions are reported from Platteville-Decorah strata in the Upper Mississippi Valley. All occur in subtidal carbonate strata, and are recognized in the Mifflin, Grand Detour, Quimbys Mill, Spechts Ferry, and Guttenberg intervals. The positive carbon isotope excursions are developed in a Platteville-Decorah succession in which background ??13C values increase upward from about -2??? at the base to about 0??? Vienna Pee Dee belemnite (VPDB) at the top. A regional north-south ??13C gradient, with lighter values to the north and heavier values to the south is also noted. Peak excursion ??13C values of up to +2.75 are reported from the Quimbys Mill excursion, and up to +2.6 from the Guttenberg excursion, although there are considerable local changes in the magnitudes of these events. The Quimbys Mill, Spechts Ferry, and Guttenberg carbon isotope excursions occur in units that are bounded by submarine disconformities, and completely starve out in deeper, more offshore areas. Closely spaced chemostratigraphic profiles of these sculpted, pyrite-impregnated hardground surfaces show that they are associated with very abrupt centimeter-scale negative ??13C shifts of up to several per mil, possibly resulting from the local diagenetic effects of incursions of euxinic bottom waters during marine flooding events. ?? 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.