At the Allegheny Front in northeastern West Virginia, five large structural lineaments trend northwesterly to westerly across the structural grain. This paper concludes that two and perhaps three of them separated structures that were active in Devonian time.
Along strike over about 200 km of the Front, J. M. Dennison and coworkers recognized and mapped numerous, mostly thin, shale, siltstone, sandstone, and limestone units in 18 measured sections between the Early Devonian Oriskany Sandstone and the Late Devonian Hampshire Formation. Many of these units terminate in intervals between measured sections. Nonparametric statistical analysis reveals that significant numbers of stratigraphic terminations occur in and between intervals in which three of the five lineaments intersect the Front.
The Petersburg and Fairmont-Rowlesburg and perhaps the Bartow lineaments were loci of structural control over topography, bathymetry, or both, and of structural influence on patterns of influx and dispersal of clastic sediment. It is not clear whether this pre-Alleghany activity reflects intermittent motion (1) on a strike-transverse basement fault, as occurred under similar lineaments in Pennsylvania and Alabama, or (2) between Paleozoic thrust masses advancing somewhat independently of each other. However, if the Petersburg lineament formed over a basement fault, it cannot still overlie it because the rocks containing the lineament have been detached and transported too far to the northwest. Of the five lineaments considered, the one most likely to have formed over and to still overlie a basement fault is the Parsons lineament, especially in its northwestern portion in the eastern Plateau province.
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Stratigraphic evidence for Devonian tectonism on lineaments at Allegheny Front, West Virginia; supporting material